52:07 | News and current affairs
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60 Minutes

May 24, 2020  |  Nine

Shock Waves Hosting a breakfast radio show has to be one of the most gruelling jobs in Australian media. The workload is so punishing, and the take-no-prisoners competition so stressful, it's not surprising that there's a long list of talented broadcasters who have failed in the timeslot. But not Kyle Sandilands and Jackie 'O' Henderson. Their radio partnership has endured for 20 years, and in that time they've not only consistently topped the Sydney FM radio ratings, they've turned waking up their audience into an art form. On assignment for 60 Minutes, Karl Stefanovic reports there are no airs and graces with this pair, which is exactly what their fans love. But it's also what supplies the ammunition to keep their critics - and there are plenty of them - huffing and puffing. Help When Hannah Clarke's estranged husband murdered her and their three young children in Brisbane in February, it was unthinkable to most Australians that someone could be that evil. Or brutal. He doused his family in petrol and set them alight. The crime highlighted the danger and complexity of domestic violence, as does Jacqui Barker's story. She's the victim of frightening abuse which was compounded because police refused to prosecute the man who splashed her with petrol and threatened to light it. But she didn't give up. Jacqui bravely fought back by launching a private criminal prosecution against her ex-partner.

51:42 | News and current affairs
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60 Minutes

May 17, 2020  |  Nine

Escape from the Palace Divorces are often messy and costly affairs, but nothing compares to the one that currently entangles the royal family of Dubai. The Emirates' ruler, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, is pitted against his ex-wife, Princess Haya Bint Al-Hussain, who surprisingly at this point, holds the upper hand. In this billion-dollar battle a judge has ruled the princess' claims that the all-powerful sheikh intimidated her with guns and threatened her with imprisonment are true. Other accusations against Sheikh Mohammed are so outrageous they're difficult to believe, but as Tom Steinfort has been reporting for two years now, this royal ruler has form. Shot in the dark Right now, there's one thing all 8 billion people on earth are wishing for: A vaccine for COVID-19. Political leaders everywhere, sweating on getting us to the other side of the pandemic, boldly promise it'll happen within 12 to 18 months. But why should they be so optimistic? After all, vaccines normally take decades to formulate and manufacture, and quite often success never comes. As Liam Bartlett finds out, some scientists say talk of a coronavirus vaccine is not only raising false hope, it's fake news. She'll be Wright It doesn't happen that often, but two-time world surfing champion Tyler Wright does know what it's like to be wiped out in the water. What's been a shock for her though, is being wiped out on land. Two years ago, long before coronavirus brought its menace to the world, Tyler was struck down with the flu. Like many people who get it, she thought she'd be right, but she was wrong. Tyler was hit so hard with post-viral syndrome, at one point it even looked as if she'd never get back on her surfboard. But how she fought back is what makes Tyler Wright a real champ.

57:51 | News and current affairs
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60 Minutes

May 3, 2020  |  Nine

Trading Blows It was an almighty slap. A few days ago Australia was described as chewing gum on the boot of China that needed to be scraped off on a rock. The insult came from an influential Chinese newspaper editor who is backed by the ruling Communist Party. Australia's crime? The Chinese think we're troublemakers because the Morrison government is calling for an independent inquiry into the origins and spread of coronavirus. It's fair to say Canberra's relationship with Beijing is currently fractured, but understanding why China is so defensive, not to mention petulant, can be difficult because the regime is so suspicious of the western media. However, in an exclusive and at times robust interview with Tara Brown, Professor Chen Hong, head of the Australian Studies Centre in Shanghai, argues the Chinese case. Sea Sick 'Coronavirus super spreader' is an unwanted label which is forever now attached to the cruise ship industry. In Australia, and all over the world, cruise liners have proven to be the perfect host for the disease. In confined spaces with lots of people partying, COVID-19 thrives. The companies which operate the ships say the wellbeing of their passengers is their priority, but on 60 Minutes, Tom Steinfort reveals how profits are the real captains of this industry. On the Right Track At the Nine Network, Richard Wilkins' high-profile job means he meets a lot of people. Six weeks ago he spent time with Hollywood royalty, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson. He didn't know it then, but they seem to have given him more than a welcoming handshake and a great interview - he also got coronavirus. Wilkins was lucky. He didn't suffer symptoms, but when it was confirmed that he had the disease an incredible mission began, to track down all the people he'd had close contact with and determine if they had been infected too. Medicos, social workers and even military people were tasked with stopping this potential spread of COVID-19. But this wasn't special treatment just for Wilkins. Liz Hayes reports that there are extraordinary operations like this for every coronavirus case in Australia. The Cost of Living With the total dominance of the coronavirus pandemic in our lives, many of us now characterise the way we live as the "new normal". The truth is it's not normal. Nothing like it. The disease itself, the social distancing, the massive job losses and the world's blown-up economies are completely alien to us. Governments are throwing enormous amounts of money at the problem but it's still impossible to accurately calculate the human cost of this catastrophe. And as Sarah Abo finds out, there's a priceless quality that also needs to be factored into the equation - our extraordinary resilience. Update: Bianca She swears like a trooper and has a lightning left and right hook that would make a prizefighter proud. Bianca Saez is a very lively 27-year-old woman. She is also Australia's most recognisable sufferer of Tourette syndrome; in fact she's one of the worst cases in the world. Bianca lives with constant, uncontrollable tics combined with sudden outbursts of inappropriately colourful expletives. Tourette syndrome is, without question, an enormous burden, but the way she's getting on with her life is remarkable. For more than a decade Bianca has allowed 60 Minutes to tell her story publicly with the aim of increasing awareness about Tourette's. And now she has more inspiring news to share.

48:31 | News and current affairs
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60 Minutes

April 26, 2020  |  Nine

Intensive Caring To show the extraordinary effort that goes into the fight against coronavirus COVID-19, 60 Minutes has been allowed inside an Australian COVID-19 intensive care unit. It's the first time any media has been given access which is because it's one of the most dangerous places in the country. In these special wards, every day is a matter of life and death, and not just for the patients. The remarkable health professionals trying to save them also face enormous risks. Every Aussie has made sacrifices during this unprecedented time, but as Tom Steinfort discovers, the intensive caring by medical staff in these ICUs adds an entirely new perspective to this coronavirus crisis. Who's WHO? If you're on the wrong side of US President Donald Trump you certainly know about it, and right now, the focus of his fury is the World Health Organization. He accuses the WHO of being China's lapdog and says it's responsible for helping the communist regime hide the true extent of the coronavirus disaster. As punishment Trump has withdrawn American funding to the organisation. Australia too has questions about the WHO, specifically what it did in China and when? By comparison with the US leader though, our prime minister Scott Morrison is far more diplomatic. He wants a review of the WHO's role, but he's also proposed the health body be given additional powers, including the right to forcibly enter countries to avoid repeating the COVID-19 disaster. Liz Hayes asks the question - who exactly is the WHO? End of Trade With the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, one day is a long time. Consequently, it seems like an age has passed since Liam Bartlett reported 60 Minutes' first story about the disease. But it was actually only seven weeks ago when he went undercover at an Asian wildlife market; one of the very kind where it's believed today's deadly virus originated. His report from Bangkok was not only watched by millions of people around the world, it forced an extraordinary response. Thai authorities raided the market, shut it down, and took the animals they found to safety. This week the Australian agriculture minister David Littleproud demanded further international action, calling these types of markets a risk to human health and food production. Child's Play Everyone knows how successfully Kim Kardashian has proven that you don't need any particular ability to be famous. She's so good at the art of being a celebrity, she has 164 million followers on Instagram as well as another 100 million or so on Facebook and Twitter. And what follows followers is money. Heaps of it. It's a financial carrot that guarantees a plethora of Kardashian wannabes, many of whom are mini-moguls. As Sarah Abo reports, just like the child movie stars of a bygone era, it seems you're never too young to start posting in search of fame and fortune.

51:49 | News and current affairs
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60 Minutes

April 19, 2020  |  Nine

Time's Up No-one should ever be surprised by how often greed and stupidity become intimate companions. Cassandra Sainsbury certainly isn't. Three years ago, 'Cocaine Cassie' as we've come to know her, was locked up in a Colombian prison for attempting to smuggle almost 6kg of the drug out of the country. As well as incarceration, her punishment included lashings of public ridicule for being so foolish. Cassie Sainsbury has now been freed, and a new woman has emerged from the cells. In an exclusive interview for 60 Minutes she tells Liam Bartlett she's stronger, wiser and determined to remedy her mistakes Made in China The true cost of coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, the loss of life and the economic devastation, is incalculable. But what can be counted is the money governments around the world have already spent trying to combat it. So far it adds up to a staggering six and a half trillion dollars. In a class action launched in the United States, China is now being sued to get the money back. The lawsuit accuses Chinese authorities of negligence, lies and cover-ups. In the UK, there are similar calls for compensation to be paid. And as Tara Brown reports, even here in Australia there are demands the communist regime face a Nuremberg-style hearing to investigate its role in this human disaster. The Vaccine Wars What the world needs right now, and what many brilliant minds are devoted to discovering, is the know-how to stop COVID-19. A few days ago, an Australian company announced it hoped to begin human trials of a vaccine within weeks. But in other countries, especially China and the United States, developing - and owning - a coronavirus vaccine has become a bio-tech arms race with political overtones. Tom Steinfort reports there are fears any victories in this battle for scientific supremacy will also be seen as triumphs in the ongoing tussle for 21st century superpower domination.

54:25 | News and current affairs
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60 Minutes

March 15, 2020  |  Nine

Coronavirus: World of Pain (Update) As the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic escalates in Australia and around the world, Sarah Abo reports on the latest medical and economic impacts of the crisis. What Would You Do? It's not something anyone wants to think about even though we all should. What would you do if someone broke into your home in the middle of the night? How would you protect your family and property? When a burglar, armed and high on drugs, crept into his baby's bedroom, Ben Batterham saw red and gave chase. He pursued the intruder out of his house and down the street. There was a violent struggle as Ben attempted a citizen's arrest. Moments later the burglar suffered a heart attack and died. Ben Batterham found himself arrested and charged with murder - so who's the victim and who's the criminal now? Dirty Dealing The figures are staggering. According to the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission, last year Australians spent eight and a half billion dollars buying more than 11 tonnes of methamphetamine. Ice, as it's more commonly known, is a dangerous and deadly blight on our country, but it's a hell of a high for the manufacturers and traffickers who profit from it. And contrary to popular opinion that most of the ice is cooked up in grimy backyard labs in suburban Australia, two-thirds of the meth consumed here comes from one small area of the notorious golden triangle of Asia. On assignment for 60 Minutes, Chris Uhlmann has spent months tracking the ice supply chain and the crooks who've become billionaires plying this evil trade.

46:20 | News and current affairs
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60 Minutes

March 8, 2020  |  Nine

World of Pain The predictions about the coronavirus catastrophe grow more ominous by the day, and despite the best efforts of countries like Australia in enacting emergency action plans to contain the disease, its spread continues at a worrying rate. Even the World Health Organization forecasts a world of pain. It says the virus poses a greater global threat than terrorism. That's bad enough, but medical experts tell 60 Minutes it's actually even more terrifying. Professor Gabriel Leung, who led the fight against the SARS virus, believes 60 percent of the world's population could become infected with COVID-19 and that up to 45 million people might die from it. For this story, Liam Bartlett has travelled to Hong Kong and Thailand to find out the likely cause of the disease, as well as the latest ongoing efforts to combat it. At all times he and his crew have followed medical advice and undertaken strict protocols to limit their exposure to potential danger. Dolly's Secret Everyone knows the entertainment business is fickle; success is rare and when it does come, often fleeting. But while flimsy careers in showbiz are a grim reality, the incredible exception to the rule is Dolly Parton. She's been working "'9 to 5" for 53 years, and with album sales in excess of 160 million, has become the greatest country artist of all time. It has also helped her to build an empire worth more than half a billion dollars. Dolly's secret is her ability to appeal to new generations of music fans, who celebrate her unique sound and style. And while she's happy to admit she puts a lot of energy into keeping up appearances, Tom Steinfort found out in Nashville, Tennessee that her down-to-earth persona is as effortless as it is enchanting. Home of Horror It was one of the most disturbing investigations 60 Minutes has ever undertaken, centring on horrific allegations of historic physical and sexual abuse of young boys at a government-run home on the outskirts of Sydney. In the two years since the story was broadcast, seven ex-workers at the institution have been charged and are now being held to account for their alleged criminal cruelty. Last week there was an even more significant development when an eighth man, the former superintendent of the home, was also charged by New South Wales police. That's because this man, shockingly, went on to become a federal member of parliament.

47:46 | News and current affairs
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60 Minutes

March 1, 2020  |  Nine

The Principal's Principle On 60 Minutes, a lesson in what not to do if you're a parent with a beef against the principal of your kid's school: Don't become a keyboard warrior and spray hurtful adjectives on social media. Because if you do, be prepared to be sued. Today a Queensland judge found that some parents who posted online about the principal of Tamborine Mountain High School south of Brisbane had slandered her, and were ordered to pay damages. But as Sarah Abo discovers, despite the ruling this case - which is about to enter its fifth year - is so full of bitterness and belligerence not even the class dunce would think it's over. Know My Name Coronavirus might be the biggest news at the moment, but there's another disease in society that's not far behind. It's the scourge of sexual misconduct and violence against women, and as disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein has just found out, being powerful, rich or famous is no longer a get out of jail free card. Before the #MeToo movement, Chanel Miller was fighting her own incredible battle. She went to a party at a prestigious university, thinking it would be safe and expecting to have a good time. Late in the evening a student, well-known because he also happened to be a champion athlete, sexually assaulted and then discarded her behind a dumpster. To add to the insult, the attacker was barely punished for his crime. Chanel, although devastated, vowed to fight back, with a strength she didn't know she had. But as Karl Stefanovic, on assignment for 60 Minutes, reports, Chanel Miller not only had to take on her attacker - she also had to battle a broken system which, far from supporting her, tried to make her disappear.

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