How jailed New York model became a drug mule for an ex-Vice editor

Hidden in his suitcase, which he’d picked up from a stranger in Las Vegas, was 4.

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7 kilograms of cocaine worth more than $3.7 million.

Carty’s Canadian travel companion, Jordan Gardner, then a successful DJ, and two other young men on the same flight, Robert Wang and Kutiba Senusi, also had millions of dollars worth of drugs stashed inside their luggage.

The four men on Friday were jailed at the Downing Centre District Court for importing a commercial quantity of cocaine in December 2015.

The 20-kilogram haul had a street value of more than $16 million.

Judge Dina Yehia sentenced Senusi, 24, and Gardner, 27, to at least four years and four months in jail.

Wang, 25, was sentenced to at least four years while Carty, 23, received a minimum term of three years and four months.

They’d all been recruited as drug mules by Vice Canada’s then-music editor Slava Pastuk who offered to pay for their trips to Australia and provide spending money.

At a Vice magazine party Carty, who had modelled for Puma, Adidas and Coca-Cola, told Pastuk he’d always wanted to visit Australia.

“I can make that happen,” Pastuk said.

All Carty had to do was take some luggage from America to Australia.

When he and the other young men grew suspicious and tried to back out they were threatened with harm.

Gardner told authorities he believed his family and his girlfriend would be tortured or even killed. The man he met in Las Vegas had “produced a gun menacingly”.

Judge Yehia said the men were “low in the hierarchy of the drug enterprise”.

“These offenders were exploited by people who were ruthless, manipulative and persistent,” she said on Friday.

Carty, the youngest of the four, was immature and “the most naive”.

“He was completely out of his depth,” the judge said.

0:00 New data shows record number of drug induced deaths in Australia Share New data shows record number of drug induced deaths in Australia

She said they were all genuinely remorseful, had excellent prospects of rehabilitation and were unlikely to reoffend.

Carty will be eligible for release in April 2019, Wang will be eligible in December 2019 and Gardner and Senusi in April 2020.

Wang’s travel companion, Porscha Wade, who he claimed was his girlfriend, is due to be sentenced next month for importing cocaine.

Canadian media have reported Toronto police are investigating Pastuk.

Israel buoyed by Trump tack against Iran atom deal but sees long way to go

While the White House’s distaste for the 2015 pact may be sweet to the ears of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, his government is mindful of the limits of any unilateral U.

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S action in the face of dissent from other big power signatories.

Some Israeli officials quietly question whether Washington has the will to follow through, noting what they deem insufficient U.S. efforts to stem the entrenchment in next-door Syria of Iran-allied forces helping Damascus in the civil war.

Trump was expected to say in a 1645 GMT speech that he will not re-certify the nuclear agreement in light of Iran’s ballistic missile projects and involvement in regional trouble-spots.

That would give the U.S. Congress 60 days to decide whether to reimpose sanctions on Tehran that were suspended in return for it rolling back technologies with nuclear bomb-making potential.

Netanyahu spokesmen declined to comment on the pending speech. A veteran Israeli cabinet minister from Netanyahu’s Likud party sounded cheered by Trump’s resolve, but appeared to note the depth of partisan rifts around the U.S. administration.

“The outcome that could happen, and this is the only positive outcome we can see at this stage, is that Congress manages to come together around new, significant sanctions,” the minister, Tzachi Hanegbi, told Tel Aviv radio station 102 FM.

“(That) will confront a lot of gigantic international companies which are today streaming to the Iranians … with a dilemma of having to choose between the Iranians and trading with the world’s biggest economy, which is the United States.”

Fix it or nix it 

Netanyahu has lobbied hard against the Iran deal, delivering a speech in Congress shortly before it was signed that angered then-U.S. President Barack Obama.

Addressing the U.N. General Assembly last month, Netanyahu urged world powers that negotiated the deal to “fix it or nix it.”

He called specifically for cancelling a core “sunset clause” that removes caps on Iran’s nuclear projects after a number of years.

Asked about the sunset clause in the radio interview, Hanegbi gave no indication Israel believed it would be reviewed.

He noted the resistance that Trump’s new measures faced from European powers, Russia and Iran, which has threatened to quit the nuclear deal if the U.S. imposes new sanctions against it.

Iran, Hanegbi assessed, “will not yield at all – period – in other words, not just not within 60 days, but neither within 60 months or 60 years, because they really do not believe that the world will reverse course. They look rather mockingly at the United States.”

But he added, “If the United States reverses course and begins a process of building delegitimation for the agreement, it could be that the world, part of the West, will join it in a process that could take time … There is still a long way to go until the dangers of this deal pass.”

There has been dissent within Israel over the nuclear deal, with several Netanyahu ex-advisers grudgingly coming out in its favour. His former defence minister, Ehud Barak, told the New York Times on Wednesday: “Like many Israelis, I think the Iran deal is a bad deal. But it is a done deal.”

Barak warned that any U.S. withdrawal from the agreement would not be followed by other world powers and could prompt Iran – which denies seeking nuclear weapons – to work on a bomb.

Hanegbi dismissed such predictions as “nonsense”.

“Iran has no interest in withdrawing from the agreement (because that) would immediately unite Russia and China to the United States” against it, he told the radio station. He noted – as have U.N. nuclear inspectors – that the Iranians “have not budged a hair’s breadth from their commitments under the deal”.

Perez takes lead after spectacular finish at CIMB Classic

The 41-year-old was one-under when he made the turn but then scorched the course by picking up six birdies on his final eight holes to end with a two-day total of 131.

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Fellow American Xander Schauffele, who started a shot behind overnight leader Cameron Smith of Australia, carded a 67 to sit a shot behind Perez.

“I didn’t think I really played that well. I got off to a slow start, we had the break obviously and just went out, and I like the front, I play better on the front,” Perez said.

“Just made some decent shots and I putted pretty well today. My short game was good so that saved me.”

The event, co-sanctioned by the PGA and Asian Tours, features a smaller than usual field and there is no cut with the 78 players scheduled to complete all four rounds.

Players were taken off the course during the second round due to the threat of lightning, which caused a delay of close to four hours.

Overnight leader Smith struggled during his second round of 71 and slipped down to a share of third spot with South Korean Sung Kang (68) and Belgian Thomas Pieters (67).

World number three Hideki Matsuyama, who was in the same group as Perez, carded a 68 and was tied for eighth after starting his round with two birdies in three holes.

American Justin Thomas, who has won the tournament for the last two years with a combined score of 49-under, was tied for 33rd after following up his opening round of 70 with a 71.

“I’m going to try to hit it better,” Perez said.

“You’re going to have to putt well anyway. Anytime you’re trying to win you’ve got to putt well. So the guy that wins hits it pretty good, but he putts the best, he scores the best.

“I’ve got to try to do the same thing on the weekend. Obviously Justin, as he did it with low scores last year, the last two years.”

(Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly in Mumbai; editing by Toby Davis)

Holden staff hurt, gutted but still proud

When car maker Holden closes its Elizabeth assembly operations next week, the remaining 900 workers will leave the South Australian plant for the last time.

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Some have jobs to go to, others don’t.

Some will call an end to their working life and others will gamble on opening their own business or take a chance on a move interstate or even overseas.

But they all walk away with their heads held high, knowing they produced some of Holden’s highest-quality cars in the final months of the company’s manufacturing life.

AAP spoke to three workers about the fateful day in 2013 when the learned of Holden’s plans, what went through their minds at the time, what they’ve done since and what they hope to do in the future.

PAUL SMEDLEY:

Surprisingly, Paul Smedley is not angry or bitter about Holden’s decision to close.

Others have asked him if the federal and state governments should have done more to save the company and to save the car manufacturing industry but it’s a discussion the plant quality manager chooses not to join.

That’s partly for his own wellbeing.

“There’s no point in being angry about it,” he said.

“When the announcement was made, yes, it hurt. But I’m just moving on.”

Mr Smedley has worked for Holden for the past 16 years and while he has already secured a position in the defence sector, he chose to stay to the end.

“Being in a leadership role, I wanted to be here to see the last car built,” he said.

“If I left earlier it would have felt like the captain deserting the sinking ship. It didn’t feel right to leave.”

But that doesn’t mean he didn’t take the announcement to heart.

“You felt like you’d been kicked in the guts. It was horrible,” Mr Smedley said.

“But people pulled themselves back together very quickly.

“At least that gave people certainty. At least we knew we had four years of employment and plenty of time to progress to something after Holden.”

PETER ALLISON:

After 19 years with Holden, Peter Allison expected to spend the rest of his working life with the car maker.

The technical manager said the hardest part of Holden’s decision was going home to tell his wife and children he was going to be out of a job.

“It was pretty tough. We had a pretty good idea what was going on but it was very nerve-racking,” he said of the announcement.

“Then having to take that news home was really tough to deal with.”

When he finishes next Friday, Mr Allison will relocate to Muswellbrook, NSW, to work in BHP’s Mt Arthur coalmine.

His family, including his three children, will follow next year.

He said he’d been lucky to find what he believed was the right job for him to continue his career development but admits it might not be so easy for others.

Mr Allison said it could be tough for anyone wanting to stay in Adelaide’s north where the job market was challenging, to say the least.

He will also miss his colleagues at Holden who he said had an incredible passion for the work they performed.

“If we’re not Holden fans, we’re car fans. Building cars is what we love,” he said.

He also looks at his forced change of job as a life lesson for his children.

“I’ve come to learn it’s just a part of life in Australia,” he said.

“It’s been a good opportunity to show my kids that if you want something in life you may have to go and chase it.”

HEATHER SINCLAIR:

When she finishes next Friday production line worker Heather Sinclair has no job to go to.

It’s a double whammy for her family because her partner also works for Holden and also faces an uncertain future.

But instead of searching for work in Adelaide, the pair will head for Queensland, hoping for a fresh start but still unsure what they will do.

Ms Sinclair said that like most of her colleagues she was initially shocked by Holden’s decision to close its assembly operations.

“We’d hear the rumours but we all hoped it wouldn’t happen,” she said.

“When they actually made that announcement we all stood dumbfounded, hoping it wasn’t actually real.”

Telling her children was also “a bit scary”.

“I think we hadn’t really absorbed it properly to start with. It was kind of surreal,” she said.

“But when we actually got that end date, that’s when it got real.”

Ms Sinclair has worked at the Elizabeth factory for the past 14 years but her partner is a 30-year veteran.

Their move to Queensland is partly the desire for a change and partly for health reasons because she suffers from asthma.

But she’s also mindful of the just how difficult it’s become to find work in the area.

“I look at all the houses going up for sale, you see this change that’s happening,” she said.

“I guess that’s the worry in the northern suburbs about not having the employment here.

“We’re all fighting for the same jobs.”

Wildcats remain unbeaten to start defence

In some NBL games there are crucial moments that are match-defining.

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In Perth’s 74-64 win over Illawarra at the Perth Arena on Friday night, that moment came just before halftime.

When Andrew Ogilvy knocked Wildcats captain Damian Martin to the floor while driving to the basket, all eyes were on the referee. Both men had already attracted two personal fouls.

The call went the Wildcats’ way and Ogilvy sat down with three fouls next to his name.

With the Hawks’ big man sidelined, the Wildcats launched a defensive avalanche on Illawarra to claim the win and remain unbeaten to start their title defence.

Having led by nine points just after Ogilvy drew that foul, the Hawks still managed to hold a six-point advantage at halftime.

But they managed only 21 points for the entire second half, including just seven in the third quarter.

Crucially for the reigning premiers they showed they can win without big points from Bryce Cotton.

Cotton scored a total of 83 points during the grand final sweep of the Hawks, including 45 in game three, but was kept scoreless in the opening half on Friday.

Mitch Norton was relentless against him this time, keeping him to just three for the game.

Cats centre Angus Brandt was the game’s highest scorer with 17 points.

Wildcats coach Trevor Gleeson was pleased that his side was able to lift in the second half.

“We really stepped it up in the second half and we had to do that,” he said. “I didn’t think we were playing with the intensity level that we needed to and especially against Illawarra.

“If you’re not playing at that level they will cut you to pieces and I thought they were doing that to us.

“And I was really pleased with our defensive intensity in the second half; it was outstanding. “

Illawarra coach Rob Beveridge said although they were happy with their first half, they knew what was coming after the break.

“We followed the game plan to a T,” he said. “We knew exactly what was going to happen and we can learn from that.

“When you come out and start with five turnovers and bad shots and giving up offensive rebound, you can see the tsunami coming. We have to learn the consistency of more than 20 minutes of play.

“We will challenge our guys on it. You have to look in the mirror.

“We have to execute our offence under immense pressure.”