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Today Tonight -

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(generated from captions) Living it up in paradise. Telstra workers are being rewarded. This is how hundreds of They're taking over an entire island,

most expensive resorts staying at one of Australia's at a cost of over $1.5 million. complain about service, bills All this while thousands of families the collapsing share price. and, of course, spending taxpayers' money. They've got no right and welcome to Today Tonight. Hello. I'm Naomi Robson to that island paradise in a moment. We'll take you Also tonight, dobbed in. Australia's biggest welfare cheats

hundreds of thousands of dollars How they rorted closest to them had had enough. and were caught out when those in the country Plus, this man has the best memory the simple techniques and tonight he'll reveal children, parents and grandparents. that will improve the memory of marriage break-up. And Warwick Capper's with the former AFL pin-up boy, Our exclusive to take him back. and why he wants his cover-girl wife But first - and their partners to the hundreds of Telstra staff on a luxury island who will be living it up and taxpayers' expense. at shareholders' that it comes at a time And I don't need to remind you from an angry public when the telco is under siege you name it. over bad service, overbilling, And Sophie Hull takes up the story. lodged with Telstra at the moment I've actually got a formal complaint with their service. because I've been so unhappy So that makes me really cross. job to deserve it in the first place I don't think they are doing a good so I don't think it's really fair. going It's 400 staff and their partners on this trip and they've earned a place simply through hard work to our customers. and delivering good service is clearly a matter of opinion Good service is unbelievably good but one place the service is Club Med Lindeman Island. In its wisdom, Telstra has decided

their partners to a tropical paradise to send 400 employees and have a hit of golf, where they can soak up some sun, take in nightly entertainment sip cocktails by the beach, and generally unwind. you've passed on to us Because if the litany of complaints is anything to go by, for stressed-out Telstra staff. it's been a tough year Perhaps the staff member responsible Internet access for charging Robert Lewis than there are in a day for more minutes from his account for no reason and then direct debiting $2,000 his request for a refund. could use the time to think about actually get the money back?" I said, "Okay. So when do we And they said, against your future bills." "Oh, we'll just offset it at the rate of $400 a quarter, And I said, "Well, that's - a year and a quarter "that's gonna take "before we ever get the money back." back before then?" And they said, "Oh, did you want it responsible for the series of errors Or maybe the employees Internet connection with Lorraine Cobcroft's their performance can be bettered. will use the time to think about how We could never assess that were resulted from this. the value of the lost opportunities It would be impossible to calculate. business failed to take off Lorraine's fledgling Internet

a reliable Internet connection. because it didn't have She's considering legal action but was reportedly told to take on the might of Telstra. there was no way she could afford A Telstra employee told me to spend $20 million fighting me that they would be happy in compensation in preference to paying out $67,000 of the claim. regardless of the merits to book out an entire island It may seem strange is at a two-year low at a time when the share price by 10% in the next 12 months, and earnings look set to fall an extravagance like this for staff. but, of course, Telstra can afford more for its services It's been charging Australians

in the world. than just about any other telco luxurious Lindeman Island The five-star festivities on will cost Telstra $2,000 a head a mantra Telstra has been putting out of cost-cutting and cost controls happening at this point in time and to see this sort of thing and the company is struggling, where the share price is down it doesn't seem to make much sense.

the Shareholders Association says Stuart Wilson from too many fans for its decision Telstra won't be winning on a tropical getaway. to spend at least $800,000 has a big reputation issue. I think Telstra everything it can to improve service It needs to make sure that it does

to all Australians. even get appropriate service in Lindeman Island To see that people are off partying be sending Australia and consumers. is really the wrong message to It's their shareholders' money to spend it that way. and they have no right what entitles them to do that? What is their justification, to Telstra's Rod Bruem. We put that question of business today This is an essential part This is an essential part

in this way. to have to reward and retain staff they'll go somewhere else If you don't do it, in our company's future. and it's a great investment and we do have to lift our game Service is a big issue for Telstra in this way. by recognising our best performers So this is something shareholders should feel happy about? you feel your customers and

should feel assured I think our shareholders that this is how we retain staff and improve shareholdings for them. The Whitsundays get-together from all levels of Telstra is an incentive for staff

who may bring their partners with unlimited food, drink and be rewarded

and use of the Club Med facilities.

You should not have a large number

of people rewarded for doing a

great job when at the end of the

day the company has gone backwards.

I don't think they care about the

Sophie Hull with that report. impact on service

So what do you think? $1 million or more on its staff Should Telstra be spending given the current climate? on our web site You can let us know your thoughts or just give us a call. No-one really likes to be a dobber but these days more and more people feel compelled to report someone they see sponging off the system. Dole cheats, tax evaders and even water wasters are costing us a fortune.

As David Richardson reports, they're now being dobbed in like never before, even by their own families. They're ripping off the taxpayer. They're not ripping off Centrelink, they're ripping all of us off. fraudsters roped in by a nationwide dragnet after being dobbed in by people they knew - people like this 45-year-old British citizen. Booted out of Australia initially,

she went to incredible lengths to create a whole new identity to run her scam. She went across to New Zealand, got the name of a person from a gravestone, established a New Zealand identity, New Zealand passport, came over here and was paid benefits for a number of years. The identity this woman stole belonged to a dead child but she managed to use it to rip off $95,000 out of the system over nine years. She was finally brought undone by a tip-off. For five years, this man claimed he was too disabled to work but it didn't stop him working at this rural printing shop

while at the same time taking more than $50,000 in pension payments. Is that the more common rip-off that occurs here? This is, and in this case it was a case of false identity. This was actually picked up as a result of our computer-matching exercises. He was eventually ordered to repay the money and he scored a criminal record for his trouble

and a 12-month good behaviour bond. This is not a traffic offence that we're talking about here. This is action under the Commonwealth Crimes Act and it does result in a criminal record which tarnishes your record for the rest of your life. Age is no barrier to a good con. Take this 68-year-old woman who claimed a widow's pension and an aged pension for 12 years. Trouble was, she was working and she was married, finally busted after being dobbed in.

Tip-offs are a major weapon in Centrelink's fight against welfare fraud. We receive about 8,000 calls a month. On average, we investigate 55,000 cases a year and we save the taxpayer about $103 million as a direct result of those public tip-offs. Centrelink's national communications manager Hank Jongen never ceases to be surprised by some of the scams people will pull to rip off the system. It's hard to fathom why people still try it on. Have you seen a hardening in the attitudes of Australians to these sort of rip-offs? You know, it's funny, because I think Australians are all about a fair go. They understand that people do need help and they provide a safety net for those that genuinely need it. But they draw the line at people that try and take more than their fair share. Aussies hate a dobber Traditionally Aussies hate a dobber but more and more Australians are breaking with tradition

and doing the dirty on neighbours, friends, even loved ones. It seems we have no qualms when it comes to dobbing on welfare cheats. I think Conway is, for the lack of a better term, a parasite of society. Mate, I've got a bit of work. You've already done this. I'm busy. Conway Rashley was dobbed in by Steve, an old schoolmate. Steve got sick and tired of Conway not earning his keep. In fact, Conway hadn't worked a day in his life so Steve dobbed his mate in to Today Tonight. Come out and work for us. Conway and his type are just - they're just bleeding society dry. There's no revenge. I think actually I pity him. Peter Swanson was dobbed in Peter Swanson was dobbed in by the person closest to him, his wife Kathy, when she discovered him pulling a pension while still working full-time. Frankly, he's cheating the system

and laughing as he gets away with it. What do you want me to do - pay it all back?

She dobbed him in, then ended the relationship. And she's not alone. The Tax Office

relies on 22,000 tip-offs in six months to nab tax dodgers, while Centrelink will receive more than 150,000 tip-offs in the next 12 months alone. This man is now spending 2.5 years behind bars after setting up a phoney ID to claim bogus welfare payments. He was nabbed by Darth Vader - this massive computer data bank computers which daily cross-references from half a dozen government departments to find the cheats, a job made easier with a tip-off. Can you ever wipe it out entirely? I don't think... That's like asking me is it possible to stop traffic offences or speeding fines. I think there are people that are foolish enough to always try it on. David Richardson with that report. If you know of anyone cheating the system, go to our web site and follow the links to the appropriate hotlines - or, of course, you can always give us a call. Now, if you snuck a peak into the Sydney Swans' coaches' room during Saturday's AFL final, you would have seen one man looking over Paul Roos' shoulder that is neither coach nor player. His name is David Wade. Earlier this year, this mad Swans' supporter was diagnosed with a very rare and extreme form of cancer and was told he had six months to live. What has transpired since has become the stuff of legends. Throughout the year, David and the Swans have inspired each other,

with David made an unofficial member of the coaching staff and team. Tonight, David wanted to pay tribute to the man they call Roosy and a team he says has given him new hope to live. My name's David Wade. I want to tell you a story about Paul Roos and the Sydney Swans that I think a lot of you didn't know. In September last year, I was diagnosed with a terminal cancer, which is a carcinoid tumour. I was a South Melbourne supporter I was a South Melbourne supporter and I've been in Sydney since 1985. Somehow, I don't know how, but I wanted to will the Swans to win a grand final

because this is my last season. I went and saw Paul Roos and that man gave me his personal mobile phone number after I told him my plight. He rang my wife the next day and spoke to her about my terminal illness. For the rest of this season, I've been in the box with the coaches of the Sydney Swans and I've been together with the players. I've had people like Stuey Maxfield who ring me every week to see how I'm going

and, when I go to the box, look after me for the game.

I've had the coaches... Paul Roos, this man, he gave me hope.

When doctors told me that I was going to die and I had a short time to live, he gave me the hope that I was going to live and see the Swans win a grand final. From this, I've seen the courage of these players, I've seen their camaraderie and their belief in Paul Roos and each other. I've seen a club that... I wanted to know what the future was going to be for the Sydney Swans. And the future's going to be fantastic in the hands of Paul Roos and this group. Stuey Maxfield - I'm in awe of that man. I watched him during the entire final series and the way he conducted himself, and this gave me the courage to also conduct myself in a way that's dignified in death. I got to see the Swans win a grand final. What am I going to do now, I was asked on grand final day by a number of the players. I said, "Well, I've only got one thing to do, haven't I? "I've got to hang around for back-to-back premierships." When I said that to Paul Roos, he just laughed. But they're a great bunch of blokes and I'm alive today because of the hope that they've given me. Thank you, Swannies. Later in the program, former Swan Warwick Capper's marriage breakdown. A side of the larrikin you've never seen before as he pleads for his wife to take him back. Coming up, Australia's memory champion. His simple techniques to help you boost your memory, and it works for all ages. Swan, tomato, tulip, duck... Memory is actually a skill. People who have a good memory are more intelligent. Invest in your brain. Queen of Hearts, 10 of Spades.

TRAIN WHISTLE HOOTS, CAR STARTER MOTOR WHINES Don't you just hate it when things won't work when you want them to? That's why you'll love the control of TransTV Digital with over 40 digital-quality channels to choose from, plus an abundance of entertainment on demand. You can start, stop, pause or rewind movies.

TransACT - there's no time like everytime. It's human nature to be a little forgetful. Who hasn't occasionally forgotten where they left the keys

or an appointment or two? The good news is there are some very simple techniques you can use to improve your memory. Miranda Miller gets advice from those who should know - Australia's memory experts. Swan, tomato, tulip, duck, house... Memory is actually a skill and with any skill, with a bit of motivation and some practice, you can become very, very good at it. ..jungle, lolly, saloon, dark room, exam... It's the old saying, "use it or lose it". We can all easily remember things, we can develop our memory. It's a skill, just like riding a bike., igloo, jacket, knot. If it sounds like Nathan Walk is reciting a list of random words, it's because he is, a list of 110 random words he memorised, in order,

in just 15 minutes, an Australian record. These systems are completely learnable. It's completely systematic. People who are able to remember the names,

they aren't any cleverer than you or I, they just have that technique, they've just got a skill,

they've developed it.

15 minutes left. Jennifer Goddard is the convenor of the Memory Sports Championships. She says

we all know situations where we wished our memory served us better. When you go to a party,

most people don't even think about remembering the names, they just hear a person introduced and they just go on and realise - three or four minutes later they think, "Oh, I don't even remember who that person was" because they weren't listening, they weren't deliberate. TIMER BEEPS Stop memorising, turn your paper over. Simon Orton would be very handy to have at a party.

Here at the memory championships, Simon memorised 119 names and faces he'd never seen before in just 15 minutes. It is often assumed that people who have a good memory are more intelligent, but really what we're doing today is something really anybody could do. People who have good memories are perceived, rightly or wrongly, to be very competent. So having a good memory can help you both at work and at school.

Hand memory coach Chris Lyons a shuffled deck of cards and in a couple of minutes, he's able to memorise their exact order - that's right, all 52 of them. 8 of Hearts, 10 of Clubs, Queen of Hearts, 6 of Diamonds. So how do they do it? Are they just blessed with a better memory than the rest of us? Memory expert Dr Nancy Pachana thinks so. There are people who are just better at memory, so have a photographic memory, and other people are perhaps more forgetful naturally. While she agrees anyone can improve their memory skills, Dr Pachana says having the odd mental blank isn't a cause for concern. where you put your keys, right, Sometimes you might forget Sometimes you might forget

normal forgetfulness. and that is normal memory loss, what the keys are for, But if you forget what their use is, that is much more significant that is a memory loss

some more abnormal process. and that really signifies Dr Pachana says play a role in memory recall, tiredness, illness and stress trying to remember someone's name so frantically racking your brain makes things worse. The more anxious you are, cannot be found in your brain, the more that name and instantly you remember the name and then they walk away and stress level have gone down and it is because your anxiety level and then the memory comes back. Remember those memory champions? Well, how do they do it? The first thing is awareness looking at each card and that is, for a split second, and doing something with the card, with the information. And that's where the second part comes in, which is imagination. It's a technique used by all memory champions. Chris connects each card with a memorable person and puts them into a story-line in a place that's familiar to him - his home. I started here. my heart on a plate with a fork - I saw Hannibal Lecter, who had that's because he ate hearts - the 8 of Hearts. Then I heard some noise. it was Lleyton Hewitt, It was tennis, see him at the tennis club - and that's strange 'cause I normally

10 of Clubs. Princess Diana, Then on the skateboard, the Queen of Hearts. who is, of course, whether it's giving presentations, Chris says passing exams or just meeting people, can improve your life. learning memory skills People with good memories and very intelligent. are perceived to be very competent So invest in your brain. the effort you put in. It'll more than repay Queen of Hearts, 10 of Spades. Mirander Miller reporting. Additional details on how to improve your memory can be found on our web site or you can give us a call. Coming up, former Swans champion Warwick Capper talks about his marriage breakdown to come back. and his plea for his cover-girl wife to come back. It's a side of Warwick we've never seen before. I don't think I'm a bad husband. A bit lazy, yeah, and I was getting a bit arrogant which is fair enough and I've got to change my ways. if she'll let me come home. I'm willing to do that At the height of his career, was the AFL's pin-up boy. Warwick Capper and most of them were young women. He had a legion of followers last wore those tight red shorts. But times have changed since Capper sells real estate He's now 41 years old, a very tough break-up and is going through with his childhood sweetheart. exclusively Tonight, he tells Michelle Tapper about his failings as a husband he wants his cover-girl wife back. and why the lowest point in my life. I think today is probably depressing situation It's just a really doesn't like you as much when your son and your wife's not into you. While the team that made him famous celebrated all weekend, Warrick Capper was at an all-time low, wondering how to win back his childhood sweetheart of 27 years, Joanne Capper. It's like I'm dead inside and she's dead. It's terrible and we're childhood sweethearts and we've got a special bond, so I think it's worth saving. Separated for eight months, the flamboyant former footballer is going through a midlife crisis with a younger woman, but instead of running off he's been going to counselling to try and save his 17-year marriage. in a desperate bid from counselling? REPORTER: So what have you learned with a bit more respect How to treat my wife

to be a bit more giving. and I've learned more about myself, I'm too self-centred. is something Capper is famous for Being in the spotlight in '88 and his splashy wedding to Joanne

in sporting circles. was the first of its kind wasn't it? The fairytale wedding of the year, It was fantastic. it was as good as Princess Diana's. They said She had the beautiful dress like Bon Jovi, and I had the leather pants the white leather, so it was a bit different. But it hasn't all been a fairytale. the look-alike couple - This isn't the first time hairstyles, skimpy outfits renowned for their similar and decadent living - have separated. Back in '92, Capper was accused of assaulting Joanne's lover but was finally cleared of all charges. REPORTER: Have you had affairs over the years? Not really. only while I was separated. I've had bits and pieces - It just makes it hard on a marriage we need to spend more time together. and I think Is there a third person involved? things over the years - No, but it's just and everything. innuendo, photos and girls Surprisingly introspective, hasn't always been the best husband. the egotistical Capper admits he as a husband? How would you rate yourself Probably six or seven out of 10. though, I think everyone's got their faults, Joanne could be a bit more forgiving and I'm hoping I can rectify those faults. 'cause I know

of being a public figure Warwick says the constant pressure and life in the spotlight on the couple's marriage and privacy. has taken its toll She liked it at first, but the last few years she got sick of it. Can't blame her. That's why we moved to the farm.

It's just pretty hard on a relationship. It's a big call from the attention-seeking Capper who posed nude with his wife in Penthouse and grabbed headlines with those tight red shorts which left little to the imagination. You claim too much media attention to the breakdown of your marriage has contributed courted the media over the years. but you love the media and have Yes, I was a bit egotistical. first, that's what I've realised. I've got to put me son and wife to give Warwick another go, But until Joanne decides is couch-hopping at friends' places, this former high-flyer

to help him out. relying on the good will of mates a humbling experience for you? So has this been It has a bit.

It's brought me back to earth,

work things out and get on with it. so I'm hoping we can all what do you want to say to her? If Joanne is watching now, and I want to work things out. I love you and I love Indiana let's hope we can get through it. It's been a terrible period and

I think we can. Michelle Tapper with that report. Now to one of the stories I'll have for you tomorrow night when we look at AVOs, or intervention orders. How they're being handed out to anyone wanting to get even, putting innocent people behind bars, ex-wives taking them out against ex-husbands, children against parents, neighbour against neighbour. We'll show you just how easy it is for anyone to take one out against you. It's just too willy-nilly. It's like giving out bus passes. you wanted to smash my face in. I got told that head, that's what an AVO is. Like someone's got a gun on your Like someone's got a gun on your

And it could happen to anybody. It's completely destroyed my life. and rebuild another one. I've had to go up see who can get the most. It's like a popularity contest,

People have one put on them. It is

a popularity contest. against anyone, and that's it. Believe me, anyone can get one You don't need any real proof. tomorrow night. I'll have that story for you I hope you have a great evening. So until then, Please take care, and goodnight. Email - Captioned by Seven Network The $2 jackpot lottery...