Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
Disclaimer: The Parliamentary Library does not warrant the accuracy of closed captions. These are derived automatically from the broadcaster's signal.
Lateline Business -

View in ParlView

(generated from captions) daughters. And so began raping his 9-and 11-year-old

operation koala. European

police found the sisters in

Belgium and arrested their fath

eralong with an Italian man who

filmed the video. Investigations revealed the

Italian produced some 150

videos and sold them via a

website to thousands of people

around the world. But it's

been very good to take part in

an international operation

which has been able to take

down a significant website that

was distributing child

exploitation material. The

operation led to more than 90

arrests not only of the

website's operators but also of

its clients some of whom who

had careers involving direct

contact with children. All

kinds of professions were being

remented such adds school

teachers, swimming instructors,

IT experts, but also students,

unemployed people, doctors and

lawyers. And they were buying tailor made content. Individuals were

willing to pay hundreds and

hundreds of euros if, for

example, their favourite model

would do their particular

posing. Films were being

ordered with specifics such as

we want those children on the

video, we want to be present,

we want them with or without lingerie and we will even lingerie and we will even bring

the kind of lingerie we will

want them to wear and this is

quite unique for society this

is beyond expectation and

fantasy but in is also the real

world. And 15 months after it

began, operation koala came

full circle. 9 men in the

sunshine state have been

charged with one of the

Queensland arrests leading to

the rescue of a 4-year-old girl

who was allegedly being abused

by her grandfather. The sexual

abuse of a grandchild here in

our State, that's why we do

what we do here. These children

need our protection. And 23

victims have been rescued in

Europe, mostly from the

Ukraine. They're aged between 9

and 16 and were duped into

performing sex acts with the

promise of lucrative modelling

careers. They were recruited

through newspaper

advertisements or they were

picked up on the

street. Further arrests are

expected after more computers

are analysed. 'Lateline

'Lateline Business' coming up

in a moment but if you would

like to look back at our

interview or review any stories

or transcript yous can visit

our website. Here's 'Lateline

Business' with Ali

Moore. Tonight, and the winner

is the Melbourne Cup. Racing

proves resilient at the spring

carnival. Victorian turnover is

down #% to tend of October

whereas NSW down whereas NSW down 21%. So certainly the Victorian racing

industry is carrying Australian

racing at the moment. Each way

bet, Betfair refutes claims

betting exchanges are a threat

to the racing industry. The

arguments that we are seeing

exactly the same arguments we coming out of Racing NSW are

heard in Tasmania two year ago

that the sky was going to fall

Tasmania and in if Betfair was licenced in

Tasmania and I didn't happen.

And it won't happen in

NSW. Smaller lenders stay

afloat in a tough

market. They're a significant

player. To the markets and

bargain hunting investors

shrugged off their jitters

buying back into the major

stocks. The All Ords advanced

half a per cent ending two days of losses. With of losses. With many eyes on

the horses today the ASX 200

gained 46 points on low trading

volumes. The Nikkei ended at a

7-week low for the second

straight session. A rebound in

property stocks pushed Hong

Kong's Hang Seng 1.5% like

higher and the FTSE has also

rebounded from three days of

lotsss. Just a few months ago

there were fears horse flu

would stop the race that stops

a nation. But today it a nation. But today it was

business as usual for the

Melbourne Cup and Australia's

racing industry. Still,

Victorian racing authorities

turnover were down because of say attendances and betting

the outbreak of equine

influenza and the situation is

even worse in NSW where horse

flu is expected to cost $250

million. It's the Melbourne Cup

carnival that could have been

derailed by e-Quinn influenza

but the worse fears of racing

fans proved unfounded as

Flemington turned on a picture

perfect day and a crowd of

102,000 roared its approval.

What we worked over the last

12 months is with the presale

of ticket, this was always

going to be the toughest day

for us because Melbourne Cup

day we get a lot of interstate

and a lot of international

visitors and I think this was

the day that probably a little

bit of the EI did have an

impact on the crowd from an

interstate tourism perspective

and we just were not able to

get that crowd that people

might be anticipating. Just

short of $80 million bet on the

Melbourne Cup this year, well

short of the $98 million we got

to last year but considering

three late scratchings on the

event where we paid a lot of

refunds and

refunds and the impact of

equine influenza we're very

pleased with that overall result. And while Victorian

racing has escape ed the worse

of the horse flu scare it's a

different story north of the

Murray. Victorian turnover is

down 9% to tend of October

whereas NSW down 21%. Certainly

the Victorian racing industry

is carrying Australian racing

at the moment. Horse racing in

Sydney won't resume until

December and the cost of equine

influenza continues to

mount. By the time we get in

operation at Randwick on 1

December, we would have lost

$250 million in turnover just

on the TAB alone and just as

much as book maker as well in NSW and that's only in NSW

itself. So there's also lost

turnover throughout Australia

because every State bets on the

NSW product. That doesn't

include the cost of

sponsorship, admission and sponsorship, admission and

catering revenue. But racing

NSW says the impact on breeding

has been reasonably well

contained. I think about 85% of

our mares will be served.

Anything less than that we'd

have a big worry for the future

because those horses don't come

into operation for three years

down the track so. We want to

minimise the effect, short term

but also long term. Away from

the track the impact of equine

influenza is also being felt by influenza is also being felt by

Australia's biggest wagering

operators. Tabcorp estimates it

will lose $30 million in profit

before tax. Tattersals is yet

to provide a forecast but Jenny

Owen estimates it could be $10

million in pretax

earnings. Anecdotally talking

to the companies it does appear

that sports betting remains

quite strong. So the effect is

quarantined, if you like, to race wagering

race wagering and we're still

seeing good growth in sports

betting so that's also protecting both companies to

some extent. NSW authorities a

are now hoping to resume racing

in full by January and that's

likely to prompt an all out

markets push. What we have to

remember is that the NSW race

clubs and Queensland race clubs

that have not been conducting

racing have still been receiving product fees from

Tatts and Tabcorp. So there's a significant war significant war chest f you

like to call it, in terms of

money that has been - can be

put aside to really relaunch

racing in January. All that's

needed now for equine influenza

to come under control,

something that racing

authorities have learned is no

Cantor. Well, the Cup may have

been a big distraction for our

market today but overseas the

focus is still ton fallout from the subprime

the subprime debt crisis after Citigroup's near $12 billion

write down. To discuss the

latest I'm joined u from London

by Michael Hughes chief chesmt

officer at barings investment

asset. Investors are feeling a

little more positive

today? Only marginally so. If

you look at the banking sector

Barclays, hall fax Bank of

Scotland are still down. Some

of the other banks have

recovered a little bit recovered a little bit but

frankly there isn't much volume

to those moves. It sounds a bit

like our market today. The Bank

of England glovernor has

predicted it's going to be

several more months before the

problems from the subprime

crisis subside, I suppose.

Given the latest that we've

heard from Citigroup though, do

you think several more months

may in fact be optimistic? Potentially. I

think once we get the think once we get the end of

calendar year and we have

audited accounts for all the

banks, we'll then probably have

an idea of what the banking

exposure is. But the real

problem is that a good half of

the CDE exposure in this area

is in areas that we just do not

know about, be it insurance companies, private wealth

management companies, we just

do not know where those assets do not know where those assets

lie. And hence it may take

quite some time before you can

see the casualities coming out

away from the banking sector

and that will take us well into

2008. Do you think we're likely

to see more very senior heads

roll? Yes, I do. I think that

it's perhaps inevitable that

you've had a very high level of

risk taking in a period where

interest rates have been pretty low and

low and where economic

prosperity and the options to

gear up to that have been very

high. That game is over, arguably people should have

been drawing down the risk a

few months ago, they didn't,

they kept going and in the case

of one or two of them spectacularly Citibank, even in the summer of this year they

were suggesting that the music

hadn't stopped. Well it's

stopped playing pretty quickly. What's that meaning

for your market in the short term?

term? You do say confidence has

only marginally reentered the

market , what are you expect

over this week in particular? We're still looking

to the States. There's an

important speech by Ben

Bernanke on Thursday and I

think people were a bit

confused last week in the

statement that attached to the

interest rate decision where he was describing monetary policy

is now moving to a neutral

territory and I think if

anything, people think that the

data that's coming out of the

States would rather suggest the bias towards further easing is

necessary. So I think they will

be looking for an explanation

of why he feels a neutral

stance for a while is now

preferred. What about in the

UK? You've got an interest rate decision yourselves on

Thursday, is it steady s that's

what's expected? Yes, it is.

Although you might argue that

the strength of stirling

recently is the recently is the equivalent of

another interest rate hike and

certainly the data from the manufacturing sector would

suggest the exchange rate is

now being a big issue for manufacturing companies, I

think that the Bank of England

wants to retain some degree of

stability and I think an

unchanged rate is a product of

what appears to be a monetary

policy committee that currently

is split. Let's look at

specific stock that's been in

the news yesterday and again

today. The supermarket group

Sainsbury still in trouble

after yesterday's big fall

following the withdrawal of

that private equity bid. That's

right. It's one of the casualities of the credit

crunch and the funding that was

behind that bid was either too

expensive or was proving more

difficult. Equally the rational

for the bid was to effectively

introduce a property deal for

the sains brrk's assets. So all

that's now gone away and it's

unlikely that anything will

reappear quickly simply because

of the size of the deal that

was being proposed and there

are very few agencies that

could really mount anything on

that scale at the moment. So

Sainsbury is down again? Yes,

it is. We've had better news

from other part of the market.

Marks an Spencer came out with news that was news that was reassuring. There

is good news in the retail

sector but not for Sainsbury's. What are the

futures telling us? Slightly up

after what has been a fairly

weak period but having said

that, we're entering into a long holiday weekend over

Monday and I think if anything,

people, unless they get

something to change their minds

from the Bernanke speech, if

anything they just want to keep

thing asbit calmer for a

while. Many thanks for talking

to us. Thank you. To the major

mover on our market today.

Overseas and Chinese E trade

company bar. It shares almost

tripled closing up almost 200 preponderant. Alibaba's

President says the share price

will encourage other Chinese

and technology firms to float

in Hong Kong. Alibaba's IPO

raised $1.6 billion, the second

largest Internet offering after

Google. Building societies and

credit unions are managing to

stay profitable despite tough competition from the banks

according to a new report.

Accounting firm KPMG says asset

growth in the sector is higher

while bad debts remain stable

at low levels. In the face of

interest rate rises and the

global credit crunch. KPMG also expects more friendly mergers

in the sector next year with

smaller lenders trying to ward

off takeovers. While banks

hold the headline, building

societies and credit unions are

prospering virtually under the

radar. With 18 branches and

50,000 member, Sydney credit

union is one of them with

profit up nearly 30% last

year. Chief executive Ashley

Jennings says a close

relationship with its members

is one of the keys to that success. We make sure that our

frontline people know them very

well. We make sure that any

contact with them, particularly

in the contact centres or even

by the net, we try to be very intimate with that relationship

and it's worked quite

successfully. According to

KMMG, prudent lending policies

and keeping costs under control

have also contributed to the

health of building societies an

credit unions. Building society

profits were up more than 14%

in the last financial year

while the 63 credit unions surveyed showed average profit

growth of more than 16%. Asset

growth was equally good and

Martin McGrath from KPMG agrees

with Ashley Jennings that a

strong bond with members is crucial. It might be because they're in the police force and

part of the police credit union

or in a regional area, but that bond is really important to

people. So I think in terms of

every day financial needs of

people they're a significant

player. But a significant

player facing massive

competition an Reserve Bank

statistics bear that out. At

the end of June, total assets

for building societies were $21

billion, for credit unions it

was $37 billion, banks though

had assets of $1.8 trillion and

they're growing at a faster

rate. Adrian Lovney is head of

Abkus which represents mutual

organisations such as credit

unions and building societies.

He says he's comfortable with

the present situation. We're

not focused on growth for the sake of growth or growth for

the sake of pleasing analysts,

we're focused on providing

services to our member, great

savings an loans rates, great

service and that's reflected in

KPMG's report. The turmoil on

world debt markets an the

problems suffered by Rams Home

Loans cast a big shadow in the financial sector but Adrian

Lovney says his members are

very different to rams. 95% of

our loan comes from our retail

deposit books so we're much

less ex exposed to those

overseas pluck situations. KPMG

is expecting bad debt expense

will rise in 27% in the coming

year, but it admits it made the

same prediction last year and

was wrong. Despite rising

interest rates and a stronger

Australian dollar, the mining

boom shows no signs of easing. Forecaster Access Economics

says the value of construction

projects mostly confined to the

mining sector now stands at

$178 million, that's a 20%

increase over the previous

year. I'm sure that should be

billion dollars and that record

figure is set to rise with $357

billion worth of extra projects

still in the planning stage.

Wem, back to horse racing now

and among those enjoying the

day were the betting agencies

including Betfair, the online

betting exchange licenced in

Tasmania and roughling feathers

with its efforts to spread its

business into other States.

Betfair's bid to expand into

NSW in particular have angered

the NSW racing industry which

says it will cost it tens of

millions of dollars. Betfair's

Australian operations are

jointly owned by PBL and

Betfair UK. To make his case

for exchange director Andrew

Twaits joined me earlier this

evening. Thanks for talking to

Lateline Business. It's been a

very exciting Melbourne Cup,

has it been a good day for

Betfair? It's been a terrific

day for Betfair. The number of

punters that were betting on

the race from Australia was up

about 75% of last year which

was up 50% on the year before

so we had a terrific

day. That's probably more a

reflection of growth in Betfair

and recognition of Betfair. How

much of it was a reflection of

strength in the industry as

such? The industry's been going

through some tough times

lately. The Melbourne Cup field

probably wasn't as strong or

definitely wasn't as strong as

it would have been had EI not

hit a cum of months ago. But

the industry in Australia is

incredibly strong and

incredibly resilient. So I

think it was still a good day

for all waging

operators. Ironically do you

actually do worse on big days

when people are attracted to

the public tote? I wouldn't say

we do worse. We still do very

well on those days but the

betting exchange that we

operate is - it really appeals

to the more sophisticated

punter. We don't get your once

a year Melbourne Cup type

punters coming on board and

betting with us. They go to

your TAB and that's really

where the TABs are streak ace

head of us in terms of cater to

the needs of that kind of

punter. You will never match

them at that kind of level? No,

we're not a retail operator, we

don't deal in cash, we're

online. We only compete

head-to-head with the TABs in

about 6% of their market

because we don't offer exotic

bet types as well so. It's a

very narrow part of the TAB's

market that we actually play

in. If we look at the business

model, right now you're

licenced in Tasmania, you take

bets from around the country

but outside Tasmania you need a

change in the law in the other

States if you want to

advertise, is that

correct? That is correct in a

nutshell. We think that the

laws are invalid, to put it

bluntly, but more importantly

we think that the

anti-competitive effect of the

laws is holding racing back. Thoroughbred racing's share of

the total gambling pie in

Australia has dropped from 26%

in 1991/92 down to 8% last year

and it's continuing to slide

and the reason for that is that

punters are, or Guamer wills

generally are moving to low margin products that have

nothing to do with racing and racing doesn't earn a return

from those forms of gambling.

As a low margin operator, what

we offer racing is the chance

to compete better with those

non-racing low margin operators

and return a fair amount to the

industry. You say return a fair

amount to the industry, but if

you talk to the NSW industry in

particular they don't say it's

a fair amount. They argue that

you pay 24 cents for every $100

bet compared to $1 from the

book makers and $4.50 from the

TAB. Well that's just plain

wrong. We've never put an offer

to any TAB - sorry, any racing

industry official in the

country that has been in those

terms. What we have offered to

do is to pay a shir of our gross revenue to the racing

industry and the share of the

gross revenue we've offered to

pay is in line with what the

TABs pay here in Australia.

What matters is how much

punters spend with wagering

operators. So what they spend

with us and what they spend

with the TAB might be

marketedly different but if we

agree to pay the same

percentage of that spend to the

racing industry then they

should be happy with

that. You're saying you pay the

same percentage as others in

the industry, that it all

depends on gross revenue,

doesn't snit It does. Punters

only have so much to spend.

We're a low margin operator so

punters will get better value

for us. They will be able to

bet on more races with us

before they spend their $100 a

month or whatever their budget

happens to be. If we end up

with $100 out of the punter's

pocket and the TAB end up with

$100, we'll agree to pay the

same percentage of that to the

racing industry as what the T

sasmed B does. The in terms of

growth you've had in the

market, the share you've got,

where have you got it from?

Have you grown the over all

pool or have you cannibalised? I don't think

we've cannibalised the market

at all. There's no doubt

there's going to be some

migration of punters at the

margins but on the whole all of

the evidence points to us

reinvigorating the wagering

market in Australia just as

we've done in the UK. The State

where we're licenced in Tasmania, Tote Tasmania down

there two weeks ago released

their figures an their wagering

turnover went up 20%. Now we're

not claiming the credit for

that growth but the arguments

that we're seeing coming out of

racing NSW is exactly the same

arguments we heard in Tasmania

two year ago, that the sky was

going to full in if Betfair was

licenced in Tasmania but it

simply hasn't happened and it

won't happen in NSW if we're allowed to advertise in there. Are you close to getting

the changes you want in NSW in

the talk is you could have them

in a cup of months? To be

honest we have no idea. We've

been invited to consult with

Racing NSW about the terms on

which all interstate betting

operators should be allowed to

cover NSW racing. We've been

offered or asked to consult

with the government on exactly

the same terms. We've put proposals to both of them,

we've had discussions with both

of them, we're yet to have any

feedback from Racing NSW in a

formal sense an we're yet to hear what the Government thinks

of their proposal. If Western Australia of course, the Government has banned betting

exchanges and that's a ban that

you're now challenges in court,

but if you lose that case, will

it have a flow on effect to

other States? Look, I don't

know. Only South Australia, all

States and the Commonwealth have intervened in these

proceedings which start in the

High Court tomorrow but only

South Australia has supported

Western Australia's attempt to

ban interstate betting

exchanges based on integrity

grounds. So what does that say?

I don't know. But I'd be

surprised if other States such

as Victoria, Queensland, NSW

would follow suit even if we

lost that case but at the end

of the day that's entirely up

to them. We've prepared as well

as we possibly can for the

case, we've got an excellent

legal team. So we're as

confident as we can be that

we'll get a favourable

outcome. Given that you already

take bets from around the

country and you're licenced in

Tasmania and you're not seeking

another licence, is it simply a

case of if you can't advertise

no business? I wouldn't say

there's no business. We grew

the business by 35% last year

and we weren't coming from a

standing start because prior to

the licence we'd been taking

bets from Australians an

covering Australian racing for

3.5 years. So we do have a

pretty extensive track record

in Australia. But obviously

advertising is the key to us

being able to compete on a

level playing field with the

established operators and the monopoly totalisers in each of

the States. You take bet on

everything from obviously horse

racing to TV programs and also Australian politics, who's ahead in the federal

election? Look, who's ahead?

The punters think Labor's

ahead. The punters have got

Labor at $1.35 on Betfair and

the Coalition at $3.50. But the

really interesting thing is

we've done some analysis on a

state by state basis and as

you'd probably expect around

the country more people are

backing Labor than the

Coalition with the exception of

Canberra which is traditionally

a Labor dominated State. About

82% of our kna based punters are backing the Coalition which means they think the result of

the election is going to be a

lot closer than what the odds

currently predict. And what's

happening in Bennelong, the

Prime Minister's seat? Look,

the Prime Minister, I won't say

he's got it in the bag, but the

Betfair which doesn't accord Prime Minister's $1.65 on

with the latest poll, I knoz.

But our punters tend to get it

right. I know a lot of other

waging operators have said that

the punters are the best

barometers of what's going to

happen in elections and our

figures tend to support that contention. So we think that

the Prime Minister has a very

strong chance of holding his

seat. Many thanks for talking

to Lateline Business. Great, thanks, Ali.

Former HIH chief financial

officer Dominic Fodera has been

sentenced to an extra year in

prison. The 48-year-old has

pleaded guilty to knowingly or

recklessly failing to act

honestly in his duties. The

court heard that in 1999 he

failed to tell fellow directors and auditors of the true terms

of HIH's controversial

reinsurance deals. Fodera is

already serving a 2-year term

for authorising a prospectus

that was missing important

information. He's the ninth

person to be sentenced in

relation to the collapse of the

insurer in 2001. Now a look at

tomorrow's packed business

diary. The much anticipated

vote by Coles Group investor on

Wesfarmers' $20 billion

takeover bid gets top billing.

There's the interest rate

decision by the Reserve Bank.

Telstra holds its AGM where the

issue of executive pay is

expected to dominate. The

Commonwealth Bank also holds

it's AGM and sugar and building

materials firm CSR releases its

latest earnings. A look at

what's makes news in the

business secs of tomorrow's

paper. 'The Age' says support

from Coles shareholders will

deliver the retailer to

Wesfarmers. The Australian

predicts the Telstra board will

defy vetors and adopt the controversial executive

remuneration package. The

'Australian Financial Review'

leads on the same story and the

'Sydney Morning Herald' says

Rodney adder will could soon be

facing more legal action over

the collapse of HIH. That's all

for tonight. As I leave you the

FTSE is up 30 points and the

Dow futures are up 65. If you'd

like to look back at the

program visit our website. We'd

love to hear your feedback. Our email address is:

I'll Ali Moore, goodnight. Closed Captions by


the Federal Government declared Four months ago in the Northern Territory the situation for Aboriginal children

a national emergency. to child sexual abuse, Determined to put an end

of 73 Indigenous communities it took control in the Territory. and the grog and porn were banned, The troops were sent in to ensure kids were being cared for, welfare payments were quarantined

and Aboriginal lands were seized. An emergency is just that, if you have a cyclone, um, and talk to people. you can't sit down and get something done. You've got to go in

'the Intervention,' The process is known as across the Territory and tonight we'll take a journey to see how it's unfolding. very different communities We'll focus on two

and assess what's being achieved. in a turmoil. It put Northern Territory We don't know where we're heading.

going to be like. We don't know what our future's We'll track the intervention to see if the epidemic of child sexual abuse has slowed and ask if the little children are safer.

of the Arafura Sea in Arnhem Land. Maningrida sits on the shores outstations make up The town and the 32 surrounding Indigenous communities one of the biggest and most complex in the Northern Territory. and people are at work. It's Monday morning a lot more going for it than others. In some ways this community has was announced, You think, when the intervention were we treated fairly?

No. and fear about the intervention. There's a lot of confusion Community leader Peter Danaja says from the media. they only learnt of the intervention I'm a bit disappointed, lack of consultation because it was lack of information, towards community members. so serious about helping communities And, we think if the Government is side by side, we should work hand in hand,

to make things successful. Maningrida is what the intervention task force terms - a phase one community. In August, the army was brought in and survey teams completed assessments on basic community needs. Since then the medical teams have been out and about

checking the general health of children.

a great place, great experience. So welcome to Maningrida -

has arrived to continue the job. Today, a fresh medical team to check all the kids. It's taking longer than expected been checked up to now? How many children have actually about a third of the kids. We have done about 325,

Progress has been slow, the rest of the children but it's critical they reach potentially at risk. because they're the ones

the medical taskforce, Dr Tim Williams, who heads has come to monitor the progress. to get out into the community It's a harder job and to explain to other people, health services that frequently, ah, that, ah, maybe, don't access that we're providing, the benefit of the checks but we're very keen to provide checks to every single eligible child in the Northern Territory. For the people of Maningrida, part of the problem is when the task force first arrived they didn't adequately consult them and explain what they were planning to do. So, this time the taskforce has come to the school to engage some local leaders.

Jim, pleased to meet you. for 30 years. George has been teaching schoolteachers in Maningrida. George Pascoe was one of the first still angers him. The lack of consultation

in spite of all this intervention? Where do we stand all because of a misguided rhetoric, There's no freedom of speech, power and money. behind it it's all about land,

That's what it's all about. spoken in Maningrida There are more than 10 languages from a representative and the taskforce wants help from each tribal group. But some see the intervention that was imposed upon them. as a racist policy when you said ordinary Australians, My question is that, are you including the white people? All people? with the white Australian? Isn't there any health check done Yeah. This is the same health check. that happens This is the same health check right through the whole country. Hang on, Howard said in Indigenous people. the intervention can only happen to get all the kids tested. The medical team faces a struggle to take their children away. Many parents feared the army arrived

That may be easing. Some of women here have agreed about the testing. to talk with the community Maningrida's health-care clinic is - by remote community standards - well run and well funded. The Northern Territory government backs this smart, modern facility, and the staff here have built up a good rapport with parents, and established trust with the children. But those responding to the intervention call won't be coming here for their check-ups But here, the taskforce's demountable clinic set up in the backyard of the established facility. Predictably, that's prompted claims of waste and duplication, especially when many children have already received similar checks at the local clinic.

For Dr Geoff Stewart, the $83 million already used on taskforce tests across the Territory could be money better spent. It's a significant amount of money and incidentally it's more than what would be estimated to be required to bring all health services across the Northern Territory

up to a level of funding where we'd all be expected to be able to provide, ah, a comprehensive range of primary health care services. So, um, we've already exceeded the amount that would correct the current under funding of health services in the Territory. Later, some kids have turned up to be tested by the taskforce.

Can I see your ears? They're carrying out the standard child tests,

checking everything from ears, eyes and lungs to teeth and head lice.

So, he's got lice in his hair. The other kids too? The taskforce says a $100 million has been set aside to follow up these tests with treatment. I can understand the Northern Territory doctors feeling somewhat defensive about people like me coming in and taking over their patch. I can very much understand that. But, by the same token, you know, politics moves in different ways to medicine, and right now we have a political window where the kids are being concentrated upon. And, I think, it's appropriate to seize that window and do the best we can.

Contrary to the early headlines, the intervention's roll out of check-ups is just not designed to discover child sexual abuse. So, it's not surprising that out of the 3,000 checks across the Territory, 'Four Corners' understands,

only a couple of cases have led to sexual abuse referrals. Child sexual abuse does exist in Maningrida, and it was a horrific case last year that galvanised the community to take action. A young boy was sexually abused over a period of months,