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.
Today Tonight -

View in ParlView

(generated from captions) We're talking about large sums of

lengths. money. People go to extraordinary

Disabled? Who are you kidding? Australia's biggest insurance fraud. Catching out surveillance operation. We go inside the four-year I'm Anna Coren. Hello, and welcome to Today Tonight. a little later. That exclusive report You're told to stop using water, Also tonight -

the wealthy are up to - but look what an unlimited supply. tapping into another for the rest of us. It's one rule for them, the tricks modelling agencies play - Plus, promising you the world, they take your money, and you end up with nothing. And, dramas on the dancefloor - Naomi Robson's partner pulling out the reason behind before the show even begins. But first, hurt his arm at work Kevin Simmons to the tune of over $400,000. and put in a claim for injuries Australian Meat Holdings, The only problem was his employer, didn't want to join by lying employees each year. the 65,000 businesses ripped off So they made a stand. they got their man. Four years and a lot of money later,

Karryn Cooper reports. Kevin Simmons is a very busy man - welding, whipper snipping, including his children, lugging heavy loads, for long periods, even pushing around cars. so severely incapacitated Problem is, he's supposed to be

through a workplace injury let alone electrical wire. he can't lift a finger,

It's estimated that one in

Australian businesses are the It's estimated that one in five

victims of being defrauded by an

employee in some way. A meat worker at AMH - in Rockhampton - Australia Meat Holdings for 14 months, more than $400,000 in compensation. Kevin Simmons was after claimed an accident at work In his bid, the 51-year-old injuring his right arm left him in so much pain with chores and their children. he couldn't help his wife about to set off on a fishing trip, But here he is on a shopping excursion and again here with his child.

projects around the home his welding and steel-fixing He also claimed

had to stop. But, caught out again - as he mends his boat. here sparks fly his deception His workplace suspected investigation to bring him undone. and it took a 4-year undercover employee in some way. We're talking victims of being defrauded by an

about large sums of money. People go

achieve to extraordinary lengths to try and

achieve their ultimate result.

of International Detection Services, Peter Harkin, director on Kevin Simmons wasn't involved in the sting

company is regularly contracted but his private investigation

to expose workplace fraud.

It's about gaining that evidence

that is capable of being presented

in a court, to show the truth or the

fact of what's going on.

a sling on his right arm in public Kevin Simmons went as far as wearing to continue his con. waiting for a ride. Here he is at the Brisbane Airport with such severe injuries, But for a man he's surprisingly able. due to the accident He claimed he couldn't work again but investigators filmed him as a tow-truck operator. moonlighting back in 2004 AMH were tipped off when they received medical advice

the father-of-six that there was nothing to stop from returning to work. fact of what's going on. It in a court, to show the truth or the

indirectly affects the customer. an expert in workplace fraud, says Solicitor Peta Tumpey, the Australian community millions. it's a problem that's costing In the past year, were the victims of fraud - 65,000 companies and it's not just cases like Kevin.

We commonly think of employees of

putting their hand in the till, but

there's other types of fraud. And theft is right up there. her employer, Maureen Lefiels tricked just west of Brisbane the Toowoomba Turf Club she was a lucky punter. into thinking she was robbing them blind, Instead, on horse races were dumb luck claiming her every-week windfalls she was stealing from the tills, to explain the hundreds of dollars Shirley Winkleman also came unstuck while trusted snack-bar worker when surveillance cameras caught her in the cash register. with her fingers It's no surprise, says Peta Tumpey, to undercover methods that employers are resorting to guard themselves against fraud.

Employers aren't being forced to

monster and investigate

monster and investigate fraud

occurring in their workplace, but

do so. it's a prudent business practice to it's a prudent business practice

when he fronted at court The game was up for Kevin Simmons to fight for his $400,000 payout. of the damning video footage, But, surprised with hours he abandoned his bogus claim. a lot more than just a sore arm, And Kevin's problems may be considering with his former employer AMH taking further action against him. that ultimately costs us all, It's a fraud

you'd like to share with us, and if you have a similar story to our website - please email the details

which are constantly under review. Every State has water restrictions to use less, While we're all being told an unlimited water supply. it seems the wealthy have found

watering their gardens, They're filling their pools, whenever they like - using this precious resource getting away with it? but how are they Siobhan Gleeson reports. the trees and the plants My first thing is to protect and vegetation of Toorak. Ground water is a fantastic resource If you've got a bucket of cash, of water sitting under your home. there could be a bottomless well is not cheap. But turning the tap on Water is the new liquid gold from the poor. dividing Australia's rich If the water's been sitting there, wealth belt, Don Maddock lives in Melbourne's of Toorak but the usually white-collar suburb has been invaded by tradies, working in the gardens of the rich,

I reckon about an 80% increase on work demands so we've got enough work til Christmas now Farmers used to make up the majority of the McPherson's bore water business, but now they're cashing in on the suburban wives too house proud to let their gardens die. And the boys are laughing all the way to the bank. Never seen it so busy, not in mine or Dad's time, no. It's brilliant, it's our turn to make a dollar now. Legally home owners aren't doing anything wrong. Water restrictions don't prevent accessing private bore water supplies, but some think the move's a bit rich. This neighbour has clearly said "I have no consideration for the broader community, "I must maintain my garden and I will do so "and bugger the rest of the community." Boyd Fraser is embarrassed by the actions of those who share his prestigious postcode. It's obviously going to encourage many wealthy individuals We've got some beautiful plant life which has been here for 100-plus years, and if we lose it over the next 18 months or two years, because of this drought, just for the sake of not tapping some ground water that would be a tragedy in my eyes.

You won't find lawns turning brown

here, where residents are spending

up to $6,000 on private up to $6,000 on private bores. John Bastiaan is a top-rate water saver.

He's installed pipes to run the grey water from his appliances direct into his garden and he always keeps a bucket in the shower. It takes a shower or two to fill a bucket up, but we get at least 2 litres of water while we are waiting for the water to heat up. John only has native plants in his garden and has gone to great lengths

to make sure he's recycling every drop used in his home. But he'd never install a private bore. I think that to recycle their water would be a much better improvement, so who are Australia's worst water wasters? If you live in Caroline Springs,

then you're one of Victoria water wallies. This year residents of the Melbourne's western suburb used 20% more water than last year. But not everyone in the west is doing the wrong thing - residents of Doreen are using 25% less water since restrictions were introduced. In New South Wales, it's Woollahra - a well-to-do suburb of Sydney is the highest ranking water wasters. While they are still conserving water,

it's only a low 6.8% extra than before restrictions were enforced. Kiama is the State's top water-saving town now.

While in Brisbane, the State Government is proud to announce not one single suburb has failed to save water since restrictions were put in place. Residents in Upper Brookfield are the most conscious, conserving almost 70% more water in the last year. Dr Richard Evans is a hydrogeologist who warns if everyone starts drilling into the water table, there could be consequences. There's no doubt there's some situation in Australia

where pumping large amounts of water, there are significant environmental effects I can understand why they want to maintain their gardens,

but I think it is a very short-sighted and selfish approach. Hardly seems fair, considering Queensland has the toughest water restrictions. The average person uses just 180 litres a day - around half the national average. Now, imagine being told you have an incurable cancer, that there's nothing doctors can do except advise you to go home and wait to die. Well, that's what happened to 46-year-old Jennifer Anderson. But the mother-of-two refused to believe the diagnosis and got herself a second opinion, as Jonathon Creek reports.

What did he tell you? Go home and die. There is nothing we can do. My wife's only 46. (Cries) At 46, Jennifer Anderson says she still has plenty to live for. We have a daughter doing her deb, our second grandchild, and our daughter doing her deb. But after surgery revealed a 15cm malignant tumour in her bowel, surgeons at the Bendigo Hospital in regional Victoria told her there was nothing they could do, leaving her husband, Fred, and their two kids, shell-shocked. It's reprehensible. A disgrace. Doctors notes declared Jennifer's condition incurable and didn't prescribe any further treatment. In the Andersons' opinion, the hospital simply gave up.

I look after all of them, and I

don't know what they'll do without

me if I die. Determined to fight and not just lay down and die, Jennifer sought a second opinion - a move scoffed at by her surgeon. I said "I've been referred to Peter McCallum" and he said "What for?" "I told you, you are dying, there is nothing anyone can do." But the Andersons' determination could prove life-saving. Experts 200km away at the Peter McCallum Cancer Centre are now giving the family hope. They said there is a 95% chance they can remove it.

I've had chemo, I've had radiation therapy, and it's shrunk, so they are looking at going in and removing it. We are talking 12 to 14 hours of surgery with a 10% chance my wife won't survive. Or the other option is we do nothing, we sit back,

and she lives for 12 months, maybe 2 years. What option do you take? How do you explain to intellectually disabled kids that they may not have a mother? (Cries) Bendigo Health declined the offer to appear on camera, but in a statement to Today Tonight said that the actions of their clinicians have been reviewed and found to be completely in keeping with acceptable practice. They stand by their opinion that to operate would be a major risk leaving Jennifer's life in the hands of experts at the Peter McCallum Cancer Centre. A good fight is the best fight, the best fight is a fair fight, and what they offered us was no fight. They offered us nothing, and to this day, offer us nothing. After chemotherapy and radiotherapy, Jennifer only this week successfully underwent surgery,

with no plans of seeking assistance from Bendigo Health in her recovery. I don't think I would ever go back there. Now, modelling agencies are in the business of selling you or your child's appearance to fashion houses, magazines, department stores - wherever a fresh face is needed.

And while most are reputable and live up to their promises, the industry is rife with those that test the truth, charge fortunes

and deliver very little, as Rebecca Bergh discovered. Rich, beautiful and famous - it's on every young girl's wish list - how to become an instant celebrity. But there are some unscrupulous talent agencies who, while claiming they can catapult young wannabes to stardom, on their dreams. just end up cashing in

They'll either try and charge you a joining fee, which is actually illegal, they'll try and charge you for an interview, they'll sign you up for their websites, for photographs. I'm quite angry about it, like I'm only 18 years old and $750 is a lot of money to... well, anyone. 18-year-old Hannah Ciobo found out the hard way. She gave $750 to Darcy Ryan from National Online Talent Management. After being promised a professional makeover, a modelling portfolio, modelling or acting course and work, she got nothing. and to tell me to send my availability dates

to his email address and he never called me back after that. But where Darcy Ryan is a small, one-man operation based on the Gold Coast, talent scouting agency ProScout is a big American company with an arm here in Australia. Priscilla's, we have Viviens, we have Camerons, Chadwicks, I mean, the list goes on and on and on.

These are a quality group. This is an open call for fame and fortune on a far grander scale. All paid $1,500 for the privilege of possibly being discovered by one of the major modelling agencies. But listen to these sums - means ProScout pocketed an estimated $600,000 for this one-day open call.

There are no guarantees in this business and trying to access agencies is not an easy process, you're going to have travel expenses, you're gonna have to go out there and pound the pavement, gasoline, air travel, hotels,

just to get into the place of meeting people. But Natalie Hall from Natalie Hall Management says prospective talent shouldn't have to fork out hundreds, let alone thousands of dollars to get work. shonky agents opening up There have been so many

and just ripping people off. But in the case of Darcy Ryan, Hannah claims at the very least National Online Talent Management misled her.

He's just a complete fake, pretty much. You've promised them modelling portfolios, you've promised them work. Some of the girls have not got a thing. Hannah is one of the only clients that I've got out of my probably 15,000 clients that isn't happy. How many jobs did you ever get from him? None, absolutely nothing. Catherine Sies isn't happy, either.

Neither is Sasha Pilling. I paid $750 and I didn't get anything out of it - nothing. All three of these women say they were promised a lifetime subscription to National Online Talent Management's job notification service as part of their joining fee. But what they paid for, they could have got themselves. The modelling and television jobs Darcy Ryan was spruiking weren't his own, rather cut and pasted from employment sites like

But Darcy Ryan claims he's poured every cent he owns into finding jobs for all his registered talent.

So you think you operate a legitimate modelling agency? Look - I work 6 days a week, 12 hours a day and you can talk to any of my clients, I'm always online. All my clients are freely contactable. So you're not a smooth talker, a con man? I'm a hard-working salesman. My job is to sell my service. An acting job, it says it's based in Sydney. Well, I'm based in Brisbane, you have to a professional dancer, this is for families and it's based in New Zealand - the list goes on.

Natalie Hall says to find yourself a reputable agent start by calling ad agencies and production companies, ask them which talent agencies they use and would recommend, and certainly question the payment of cash up front. Rebecca Bergh reporting. Now to our Fly the Flag campaign we launched on Australia Day. We had such a massive response, we needed to employ the services of some very special people to help us get those stickers out to you. Chris Simond reports on just how patriotic we've become. Oi, oi, oi! (Chants) Aussie, Aussie, Aussie...

Aussie spirit is well and truly alive. And in the last few weeks,

there have been plenty of opportunities to exhibit national pride at the tennis, the cricket, on Australia Day. Hearts have been pumping, flags flying high, voices to be heard. # Advance Australia fair... # For the good folk at the Sunshine homes, it's been a special few weeks, too. They've been participating in Today Tonight's Fly the Flag campaign, helping us respond to the thousands of requests

from Aussies across the nation, all of them wanting our Fly the Flag stickers. What do you think of when we say Australia? I still call Australia home! Everybody's talking about the flag and what Australia means to a lot of us here, a lot of kidding around, a lot of laughing and sharing of memories. This is really exciting for us to be doing this job. Chief of Sunshine homes, Gail Jeltes, says it's been a fun project for her enthusiastic team, each of whom has a different interpretation of what it is to be Australian. Australia means cricket and barbecues! You love Australia? I love Australia! It's the best! They're really proud and really excited. And they're really busy, answering your call to Fly the Flag. So if you have already asked for a sticker, and haven't received yours yet,

be patient - it is on the way. Chris Simond reporting. And our 'Fly the Flag' campaign continues. Please send in your name and address to our website and our terrific helpers will get the stickers out to you as soon as possible. After the break - The dramas on 'Dancing With The Stars'.

Why Naomi Robson's partner had to suddenly withdraw.

(Pants) (Heartily) Breakfast-time! Yeah, won't be a minute, Merv. 45 grams of All-Bran with fruit and yoghurt - beautiful! Mmm, looks good. Well, if you're going to make fibre your friend, the trick is you gotta keep the relationship interesting. Merv, reckon you could pass one of those bricks? MAN: Take the All-Bran Challenge and see if it changes your life. Small pieces of information from members of the public

can help keep Australia safe from terrorism. Police and security agencies are working hard, but you could help them complete the picture. If you see anything suspicious, call the 24-hour National Security Hotline and help protect Australia from terrorism.

Call 1800 123 400. Trained operators take every call seriously, and you can remain anonymous.

There's drama on the dancefloor. One of Australia's most popular TV shows, 'Dancing with the Stars', has become embroiled in controversy even before it hits our screens for another series. Rohan Wenn has this exclusive. It's only week two of rehearsals for series 6 of 'Dancing With The Stars', but already former Today Tonight host Naomi is on to her second partner. Hopefully we can get into the top three or four,

or however the best we can. Last week Naomi was dancing with Csaba Szirmai, a veteran of series 1, 2 and 5.

And in the last series, he tripped

the light fantastic with Amanda

Keller. Follow my lead. But his

dreams of appearing in series 6 have

been shattered. I'm a bit upset,

losing Naomi and getting out of the competition. But now Naomi will start the show with dancer Steven Grace. If Steve looks kind of familiar, that's because he played the little boy in the movie that started it all those years ago -

'Strictly Ballroom'. So what's been going on?

Well, Csaba and Naomi didn't have a major fallout, but it has been a week of tough blows for the Hungarian dancer. Basically, I broke my nose, and I broke my cheekbone, as well. And got a really strong hit,

so my cheek is bruised as well, so I need to have an operation and the rest I am going to have to clear up. Sadly, a freak jet ski accident on the weekend has forced him to hang up his dancing shoes. The next thing I remember I was in the water, my eyes weren't working, and finally I got one eye open and there was blood everywhere. The decision was made by the show's producers that occupational health and safety concerns would mean Csaba would have to be dropped from this series. When I got the phone call from Seven saying they can't wait for me, it's too risky, I basically broke down in tears. It's really weird because normally I never cry, but this was one time. So that went through my head straight away

what did I do to myself, how can I be so silly. Csaba says he really believed all the way. that with Naomi he could have gone

She's a really, really sexy dancer, that's what I can say. Her body is extremely, extremely beautiful. Like really cut up, really, really fit.

And no matter what I said, hold yourself up, this side, that side, I did not have to say it twice. Every single time she done it. I was imagining all kinds of things

losing Naomi and getting out of the competition. I was just devastated.

When I saw him yesterday for the

first time, it was pretty upsetting. But in the end,

there was just no way Csaba's injuries would heal in time. There are times when I am putting my arms out, if I was to hit him in the face, that would be a disaster and I would never forgive myself. And then we're going onto the jive with legs and everything, so that is really dangerous. I think sometimes I am safer with the jet ski. Imagine doing a jive with her - oh, my God!

first time, it was pretty upsetting. Nameomey is a really

Naomi is a really strong lady, and

she has to understand this is my

profession. As soon as we

I am here to help

profession. As soon as we understood I am here to help her, we had

I am here to help her, we had the best time. I've gone through myself, if I had an myself, if I had an axe best time. I've gone through it

myself, if I had an accident, but

it's devastating when that happens. That was fine. Despite his injuries, Csaba sticking around the help the new partnership prepare. She's in great hands, Stevens going to be great. And you are already gelling with him, I saw you grabbing his bum. (Laughs) Although he says watching the pair on the series premiere won't be easy. I think that will be the hardest thing in the world to sit down and watch the show in front of television and try to believe that could have been me. For now, the talented dancer has no choice but to sit back, lick his wounds and wonder what might have been. I think Naomi's in great hands with her partner, so I think she is going to do really well, but to be honest, I'm not big-headed, but it is going to be hard to replace me.

Rohan Wenn reporting. After the break - You won't catch these mums on the dancefloor. They've thrown their jobs away and are now rolling in money.

Ugh! OK, we're here, kids. (Mumbles) That's... kilometres at 93 cents... That's $7.50, thanks. AAMI can help reduce By choosing AAMI Flexi-Premiums, our new car insurance customers saved an average of $389. Switch today and save.

Now to a look at a story we'll have for you tomorrow night on mums who've thrown in their long-time jobs. They've backed themselves and their ideas and are now raking in the money.

We plan to be a multi million-dollar

company. I had a passion to open

annexe emplaer instruitution That's on the program tomorrow night. annexe emplaer instruitution for children.

Until then, from all of us here at Today Tonight, thanks so much for your company. I'm Anna Coren. Have a great evening. Goodnight. Supertext captions by the Australian Caption Centre.