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Plane overloaded with cocaine crashes on take-off

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A light aircraft overloaded with cocaine crashed on take-off on its way to Australia, police said on Saturday, exposing a Melbourne-based crime syndicate and leading to the arrest of five men with alleged links to the Italian mafia.

The Cesna aircraft, which was stuffed with more than 500 kilograms (1,100 pounds) of cocaine, went down while attempting to leave a remote airstrip in Papua New Guinea on July 26.

Australian Federal Police said in a statement that “greed played a significant part in the syndicate’s activities” and added they “cannot rule out that the weight of the cocaine had an impact on the planes (sic) ability to take off.”

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Five suspects were arrested in Queensland and Victoria in recent days, and have been charged with conspiring to import over 500 kilograms of cocaine and a number of related offences.

They each face a maximum sentence of life in prison if convicted.

The pilot was also arrested two days later, after surrendering himself to police.

Authorities said the plane had flown to Papua New Guinea from the small town of Mareeba in Far North Queensland, flying at about 3,000 feet to avoid detection by radar.

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The cocaine stash was eventually found on Friday after a search of the area. Its total value was estimated to be around 80 million Australian dollars ($57M USD), the equivalent of about 500,000 street deals.

“With current interstate travel restrictions in place due to COVID-19, the attempt to import illicit drugs into Australia shows how opportunistic and greedy organised crime can be,” AFP deputy commissioner Ian McCartney said in a statement.

The arrested men — aged 31, 36, 31, 33, and 61 — were charged with a variety of crimes.

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The first man arrested faces charges of directing activities of a criminal syndicate and money laundering of over $1m AUD. A number of assets were seized by police, with an estimated total value of $3.5 million AUD.

The drugs bust is one of the largest in recent Australian history. In 2016, a similar-sized 500-kilogram haul of cocaine was seized by officers in New South Wales.

(www.newsnow.co.uk)

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Metro

UI student’s death: Family demands CCTV footage of incident

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The family of Richard Gbadebo, a 300-level student of the Department of European Studies, Faculty of Arts, University of Ibadan, who died at a factory last week has demanded for the Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) footage of the accident.

The Father of the deceased, Mr Shola Gbadebo, made the demand to know how his son died before he would believe the death was an accident.

This is as he also appealed to the Oyo State government to help facilitate thorough investigations to ascertain the true cause of his son’s death.

Mr. Gbadebo made the demands on Thursday when a delegation of the state government paid a condolence visit to the family residence in Idi Ahun, Elebu, Ibadan the Oyo state capital city.

The state government delegation was led by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, Dr Bashir Olanrewaju.

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The father of the deceased who was still obviously in pains insisted that before any attempt to initiate talks with the family by the management of the soap factory, the family of Richard must be assured that there was no foul play or conspiracy in the death.

He lamented that he had endured harsh economic realities just to ensure the late Richard and his elder sister concluded their University education before the unfortunate incidence, appealing to the state government to prevail on the company to play the CCTV camera installed in the factory so that everyone could watch how the accident that claimed the life of his only son happened.

Gbadebo, a mason said he would not believe that his son’s death was accidental until he watched the CCTV camera footage that would show how the accident happened.

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He said he will not be willing to discuss or receive any form of compensation from the company until he is sure that his son’s death was actually accidental.

Gbadebo said

“Issue of compensation doesn’t arise now. My son could become Governor or President in future if he is alive, so I don’t care about what they will offer me.

“My appeal is that the government should assist me to pressurize the company to show its CCTV camera footages so that the whole world would see how my son died.

“I want the investigators to make sure they play the CCTV that covered what really happened on that day. Unless they play it, it is after that I will know that there is no foul play before they can even come to me for anything. They should just play the CCTV camera footage in order to make it transparent that what really happened was an accident.”

Speaking on behalf of the state government, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, Dr Bashir Olanrewaju said the state government has begun a safety audit of the factory and would ensure that necessary sanctions would be meted on the company and ensure compensation for the bereaved family.

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Olanrewaju, who described the incident as unfortunate, assured the family that government would do everything to unravel the cause of the accident, adding that the government would ensure that preventive measures are put in place in the factory and other companies in the state to avoid reoccurrence of such in the future.

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African family of five including two children killed in suspected arson attack in Denver (Photos)

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An African family of five including two children have been killed in a suspected arson attack in Denver, Colorado.

Mr Djibril Diol, his wife, daughter, sister, and niece all died in a house fire in Green Valley Ranch on Wednesday, August 5. But three other adult residents managed to escape by jumping from the house and are expected to be ok.

According to the Denver Post, the family had immigrated from Senegal some years back and were staying at their friend’s home until they could find one of their own.

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The report said an alarm was raised by a Denver police officer who noticed smoke in the area; before police and firefighters descended on the address shortly after 2:30 AM Wednesday morning.

When they got to the scene, it was sadly too late to save the family who all were trapped inside.

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Fire Captain Greg Pixley said officers made several attempts to get into the home to rescue those trapped but were beaten back by intense flames which damaged two neighbouring homes.

According to him, the horrific tragedy could have been even worse, had firefighters not managed to stop the spread of the fire to the surrounding houses.

Denver Police Chief Joe Montoya confirmed the investigation is a homicide one.

“We have indication through some evidence that it was an arson,” he said, but refused to elaborate any further.

Fire investigators will work with the Denver Police Department’s homicide unit to determine “the true story of this fire.
Friends of the family in the tight-knit community said Diol was an engineer, while both his wife and sister worked for Amazon.

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See Photos below;

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Man robbed of his entire life savings outside bank seconds after withdrawing the money (Video)

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A man was robbed of his entire life savings outside a bank just seconds after he withdrew the money from his bank.

The man identified as Francisco Cornejo was attacked outside a Chase Bank in Huntington Park, California, US.

A masked man was seen on video running off with Francisco Cornejo’s life savings of $200,000.

The video shows Francisco Cornejo trying to grab the thief as he falls to the ground. He can then be heard begging for help as the man runs off with his money.

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The money came from a recent sale of his house and was everything he had in his bank account.

Francisco’s lawyer, Nathan Soleimani explained:

“He was parked as close as possible to the bank, knowing he was going to withdraw a large amount of cash.

“Before he was able to get to his car, he was grabbed and beaten.

“And when he was being beaten he was doing his best to try and retain the bag that he brought with him.”

The lawyer said investigators are now looking into CCTV footage from the bank to try and hunt the suspect. The FBI is also involved and a representative from Chase Bank said they were working with law enforcement.

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Though the violent attack left Francisco battered and bruised, his family say they are grateful he’s alive.

Huntington Park police has asked anyone with information to call.

Below is a video of the attack;

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