Notorious gang-rapist Mohamed Sanoussi was this afternoon released from Silverwater jail. The 29-year-old had been in prison since he was 16 for his role in the Skaf gang rapes of young girls in Sydney in 2000. Sanoussi was granted parole on his third attempt on September 5 but it was revoked the next day, after his brothers were charged with assault and his accommodation with them was deemed “unsuitable”. Sanoussi must comply with 30 strict conditions while on release, including wearing a monitoring device.
The Sydney Morning Herald has turned to the public for help. After axing some of the country’s most experienced reporters, Fairfax Media is now asking for public assistance with its investigative journalism.
As part of its reporting on Federal MPs’ expenses, its website is calling on readers to “help aid the search” for potential misuse of funds.
It comes after revelations Prime Minister Tony Abbott used taxpayers’ money to attend the weddings of two parliamentary colleagues.
Breakdowns of MPs’ travel records and expense claims are freely available on the internet. Now Fairfax is asking its readers to peruse these and “email us what you find”.
In June, the publisher announced it would shed 1900 jobs over three years – more than 20 per cent from editorial – and close two printing plants. It also moved its Sydney Morning Herald and The Age newspapers to a tabloid format and introduced digital subscriptions for those two mastheads.
The most recent cuts were announced earlier this month, with 45 jobs to go from the business media, news media and life media departments.
A former editor-in-chief of theSMH, Peter Fray, told media website Mumbrella that changes in the industry had put pressure on the quality of journalism as media outlets were forced to do more with fewer resources.
But the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance has encouraged the SMH’sattempt to engage with its readership.
“Crowd-sourcing has been used many times before,” a spokesman said.
“TheGuardian used crowd-sourcing to examine UK politicians’ expenses four years ago.”
Police have warned drivers to slow down this Labour Day long weekend. Double demerit points will be in place for drink-driving, speeding, seatbelt and motorcycle-helmet offences. Operation Slow Down starts at midnight on Friday and runs until 11.59pm on Monday. There have been 246 deaths on our roads so far this year, compared with 279 last year.
Police have charged a 36-year-old man over the stabbing of three people in the CBD early this morning. Police were called to a backpacker hostel in Pitt Street, Haymarket, about 2.15am, where they found two German men, both aged 19, and a 24-year-old Irish woman suffering stab wounds. The man has been refused bail.
Beachgoers are being reminded not to leave valuables unattended while swimming, after a string of thefts at beaches in the eastern suburbs. Constable Ella Dundler said thefts from beaches were ”common at this time of year”.
Flocking to see the fleet
Large crowds are expected on Sydney Harbour this weekend to mark 100 years since the arrival of the first Royal Australian Navy fleet. Prince Harry will take part in the International Fleet Review celebrations on Saturday. Police urge visitors to plan ahead and use public transport because there will be road closures, clearways and changes to traffic conditions across the CBD. “Any criminal, anti-social or dangerous behaviour will not be tolerated,” Superintendent Craig Sheridan said.
A 23-year-old man will face Waverley Local Court later this month after an assault in Sydney’s east at the weekend. Police allege the man approached a group of people in Hall Street, Bondi Beach, about 1.30am on Saturday, September 28, and assaulted another male. He then waved a “large machete-style knife” in the air. He was charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm and wielding a knife in a public place. – Evan Zlatkis