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Seven Afternoon News -

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(generated from captions) 30... (WHISPERS) Three. ..3. Well done, Terese. True or false?
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False.
True. What letter comes immediately
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'F'.
'D'! 'Crazy in Love', 'Halo' and 'If I Were a Boy'
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89.
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Scrub.
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Supertext Captions by
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This program is captioned live. In this bulletin - the Government dumps its pledge
to deliver a budget surplus.

Police smash a Customs drug ring
operating out of Sydney Airport.

A World War II veteran robbed
buying Christmas presents.

And the 'Les Miserable' cast
in Sydney ahead of the Australian premiere.

VOICEOVER: This is Seven's 4:30 News
with Rebecca Maddern.

Good afternoon. The Government has abandoned
its long-held promise to deliver a budget surplus
this financial year. Political reporter Mia Greves
joins me now. Mia, why did the treasurer
break the news today?

Rebecca, today's announcement
came on the back of monthly data which showed there was $5 billion
less cash coming in than expected. The Treasurer said the facts
had now changed and the Government could no longer
achieve a surplus in time for next year's May budget. But Wayne Swan said his decision
today was beyond politics.

At the end of the day, I don't care
about the political outcomes. I care about
the economic outcomes. It wouldn't be responsible to continue to make up
for that revenue hole if that endangered growth or jobs. I simply couldn't stand here and say
that would be the responsible thing. But it's more than the numbers - it's a political nightmare
for the Government. Both the Prime Minister
and Treasurer had regularly promised
over the past three years to achieve it. Come hell or high water. Failure is not an option here
and we won't fail. This budget delivers a surplus
this coming year, on time, as promised.

So, Mia, what's been the reaction? Well, Bec as you can imagine, this is a gift for the Opposition. They have always said that this government
could not deliver a surplus, saying it spends beyond its means
and cannot be trusted. Here's what the Opposition Leader
had to say.

You can't trust it on the budget,
you can't trust it on boarders, You can't trust it on the budget,
you can't trust it on borders, you can't trust it with the truth. You simply cannot trust
this Government. Rebecca, the people who
will be pleased at this decision are the economists who say at a time of need,
the budget should be in deficit, to allow more spending
to generate jobs.

Thanks, Mia.
Mia Greves in Canberra.

The Federal Government's
promising to hunt down and lock up any Customs officials involved
in importing drugs into Australia. Eight people,
including two customs staff, have been arrested following
a 2-year investigation.

They're meant to be
on the front line, protecting Australia
from the importation of drugs. But today, corruption within the Customs
department has been exposed. This is the result
of a 2-year operation. A total of eight people
have been arrested in relation to the importation
of drugs through Sydney Airport. Two Customs officers -
one arrested this week. It will be alleged in court that the Customs officer
facilitated this importation of approximately 10kg
of pseudoephedrine. Also arrested
was one Quarantine official. The rest were members of the public allegedly acting as drug couriers. The Government's talking tough
on the issue. And if you're corrupt, we will
hunt you down and lock you up.

Jason Clare says there will be
more stings and more arrests. He's sent a blunt warning
to Customs staff. If you're thinking
of taking a bribe, then think again, because the next time
you take a bribe, it could be off a police officer. Seven News first unveiled serious
problems in Customs last June when we revealed
a shipment of illegal drugs had not been detected
at Port Botany. The Home Affairs Minister says tough reforms to Customs
are already under way. They include integrity testing,
drug and alcohol screening and more money to the corruption
watchdog to examine the department. The Government
has also announced plans to set up the Customs reform board. The job of the board will be to provide me
with advice and recommendations on further reform that is required. The Opposition's placing the blame
on the Federal Government. The budget for Customs
and the personnel for Customs has been significantly slashed. The Customs budget
is bigger now than it was under the former government.

Sydney police have charged a man after a 91-year-old war veteran
was robbed while doing his Christmas shopping. WWII veteran Ralph
had just withdrawn money from an ATM at Westfield Liverpool when he was allegedly put in
a headlock and pushed to the ground. He knew exactly where the money
that I'd drawn out of the bank was, in my pocket. It was in an envelope, and he grabbed that
and took off like a Bondi tram. A 33-year old-man has been charged
with aggravated robbery.

A bullet has pierced the window
of a home in Sydney's south-west while a woman and her five children
were inside sleeping. Two men were arguing out the front
of the house early this morning when a struggle ensued
and the gun was accidentally fired. It is a dispute over money, but it's certainly not over
any legitimate money. This is as a result
of a criminal enterprise. A surge in gun-related violence
across Sydney has prompted a review
into current gun laws.

US President Barack Obama
has set up a taskforce to look at ways
of reducing gun violence in the wake
of the Sandy Hook massacre. But he's angrily denied
avoiding the issue during his first term in office.

The President declared that
tackling the issue of gun violence will really be a priority
in his second term. The fact that this problem
is complex can no longer be an excuse
for doing nothing. President Obama assigned
Vice-President Biden to work with members of the Cabinet,
Congress and outside groups to come up with a specific
set of policies in time for a State of the Union
address next month. Their task is gonna be to sift through every good idea
that is out there and even take a look at some
bad ideas before disposing of them. Mr Obama responded sharply when challenged
on why it has taken them till now to make the issue of gun control
and gun violence a priority. Where have you been? I have been
President of the United States, dealing with the worst economic
crisis since the Great Depression. I don't think
I have been on vacation. And, so... I think all of us
have to do some reflection on how we prioritise
what we do here in Washington. The President even used
the Newtown massacre as a political wedge when questioned about
stalled negotiations over the so-called fiscal cliff. And when you think about
what we have gone through over the last couple of months - a devastating hurricane and now one of the worst tragedies
in our memory - the country deserves folks
to be willing to compromise on behalf of the greater good.

A gay Australian politician
has married his partner in Spain. South Australian MP Ian Hunter
tied the knot with artist Leith Semmens at a gallery in Granada. According to local tradition, the couple kissed for 17 seconds
while their guests counted out loud. We were coming to Spain anyway so why not get married
while we could? Spain is leading the world
with changes to its laws and Australia
is still having the debate. Hugh Jackman has welcomed the director of 'Les Miserables'
to Sydney ahead of the film's Australian
premiere tomorrow night. And while his performance
is creating Oscar buzz, the Aussie actor says
he's not buying into any of it. Sarah Coates has more.

Good afternoon, Rebecca. I am here at The Rocks in Sydney where, this morning,
Hugh Jackman had a photo call ahead of the Sydney premiere
of his new movie, 'Les Miserable'. Now, Hugh was with
director Tom Hooper and British theatrical producer
Sir Cameron Mackintosh, on the final stop
of this promotional tour for the screen version of 'Les Mis'. The movie is creating plenty of hype and it is being talked about
as potentially being Oscar-worthy. But Hugh Jackman tells me
he does not read into any of that. I don't read them. I am too thin-skinned. But the great thing for me was watching the movie
with an audience and it was amazing. In New York and in London, and hopefully in Sydney
tomorrow night, it'll be the same. and they're excited. It's a great feeling. Jackman has also been advised that he's a certain contender
for the Best Actor Academy Award for his role as an Jean Valjean, the ex-prisoner who creates
a successful new life for himself. But he says
the most challenging part was taking the role
from stage to screen. This man here, Tom Hooper,
he's the one who really did it. And I think one of the great things
that Tom did, who directed 'The King's Speech',
Tom Hooper, and he decided for us all
to sing live. in a way, it's quite theatrical. So, in effect, even though
you are watching a movie, in a way, it's quite theatrical. It's just that you get the seat
that you cannot buy in the theatre. And, Rebecca,
the movie comes out on Boxing Day, which is traditionally one of the biggest
movie-going days of the year. Back to you.

Next in Seven's 4:30 News - investigations into
a petrol bomb attack in Melbourne. Also, is this Hollywood actor
planning a move into politics?

And how doomsdayers are preparing
for the end of the world.

Come on. Just relax those nerves.
This is not really a sport. OK, that's good to know.
WOMAN: Let's do it, guys! Alright, let's gee him up.
Here we go. Releases the ball.
ONLOOKERS: Ohh! That was short.
I'm a little self-conscious. Got the glasses on. Hiding the
eyes. He's looking for the wind. Make mama proud! Make mama proud! I call it 'patting the bottom'.
MAN: Nice. Just like a pat on the bottom. He's gonna carry that through to
the gully. He's gonna take it out! Oh!
Gutter ball. Reckon that was a good one. MAN: Good one, there, mate.
(LAUGHTER)

A man is recovering in hospital after an early morning
fire bomb attack on his home
in Melbourne's north-west. Two stubbies containing burning fuel
were thrown through the lounge room window
of the Meadow Heights property just after 6:00 this morning. A 39-year-old man was badly burnt
while trying to douse the flames. It could have caused
substantial damage, but he's gotten onto it
and prevented the fire with what he's done, been very brave. Police believe
it was a targeted attack.

Hollywood star Ben Affleck
has addressed the US Congress about the humanitarian crisis
in the Congo, sparking rumours he may be planning
a career in politics. It's become sort of fashionable
to say, in a larger sense, the continent of Africa - "Oh, well -
hopeless, corrupt, can't fix it." Um, you know - not true. It's believed Affleck is planning to run for the US Senate
seat of Massachusetts.

If the Mayan calendar
is to be believed, the world, as we know it,
is about to end. The prediction has sent doomsdayers
around the world into a spin, but not everyone's a believer. Angela Cox has more.

Good afternoon. If you believe
the ancient Mayan astronomers, the end is coming
on 21 December 2012. And here in the United States, some people are taking this
very seriously. Companies which specialise
in making elaborate bunkers have reported a rush on sales
in the past month. Army supply stores
are also cashing in on customers wanting to stock up
on survival gear - military-style food, blankets,
water purifiers. Now, before you panic because
you're not ready for the end - you can relax. Experts on Mayan culture say that the doomsayers
have actually got it all wrong. Have a listen. The Maya not only did not predict
an end to the world or the calendar but they predicted that things
would go on for thousands of years after 2012. Now, NASA was so concerned they were receiving thousands
of emails from people worried about this, they actually posted a video online debunking the theory
that we're all about to die. The widespread rumours that there will be a catastrophe
or even a doomsday on December 21 are wrong. This is simply a big hoax. If you're not convinced, there are a couple of places
in the world where doomsday believers think
that you'll be safe. There's an ancient Greek village
in Turkey where local business owners are
cashing in on the frenzy, selling souvenirs. Or you can climb to the peak
of a mountain in the French Pyrenees which some believers think
is the only place to hide from the alien spaceship
which is heading to Earth. Of course, this isn't the first time we've heard talk about
the end of the world and those prophets of doom
have always been wrong - so far.

Next in Seven's 4:30 News -

Also, Australia's top five finish
in the Miss Universe contest.

And Joel Parkinson
on top of the world after winning surfing's world title.

Hungry Jack's Penny Pinchers
offers unbeatable summer value. Now for just $1,
you can get a large Frozen Coke. That's right -
the large ones, just $1. SONG: # That is where I'll be # Whoo-hoo! # The burgers are better
at Hungry Jack's.

In breaking news, firefighters have issued
an emergency warning with a bushfire burning
in Sydney's south-west. These are live pictures
from the Seven News helicopter. The blaze is out of control
in Airds near Campbelltown, It's at Woolwash Drive
and Greengate Drive. There is a large amount of

There is a large amount of smoke in the area. Residents are been told to shut their windows and stay indoors.

Time to check the financial markets. The ASX 200 has closed
16 points higher.

Australian beauty Renae Ayris has narrowly missed out
on being crowned Miss Universe. The 22-year-old dancer
made it into the top five during today's competition
in Las Vegas, The coveted crown
was given to Miss USA. WOMAN: USA!

But Australia's national costume
didn't even rate a mention.

Sport shortly. But, first, Seven News is coming up
in your capital city at 6pm, and these are the stories
making headlines. Hello there.
Coming up in Sydney tonight - the reasons behind
the Government's budget backflip. Treasurer Wayne Swan reveals why it's now unlikely the Government
will deliver a surplus this financial year. In a shock development, the man accused of killing
five members of the Lin family has been granted bail. We'll tell you the reasons behind
the Magistrate's decision. What's being done to stop drugs
getting through Sydney Airport after corruption was uncovered among the people who are supposed
to protect our borders. Colourful Sydney businessman
Jim Byrnes has given his support to one of those arrested
in the Customs sting. Find out why he's posted $20,000
for bail. Also at 6:00 - we speak to the 91-year-old
World War II veteran who was robbed while withdrawing
cash from an ATM at Liverpool. We'll cross live to Parramatta, where retailers are bracing for
a marathon trading blitz in the lead-up to Christmas. And we meet the unwanted pets who
need your help this festive season. I'll have those stories and more
in Sydney's Seven News at 6:00 but now here's Mark
with the day's sport news.

Cricket great Shane Warne's
delivered the latest slap to Australia's test bowlers, urging skipper Michael Clarke to blood Tasmania's quick,
Jackson Bird. Warne claims it would be a mistake
for Australia to go with Mitchell Starc
and Mitchell Johnson in the Boxing Day Test
against Sri Lanka at the MCG. I don't think Australia will go
with two left armers. I think Mitchell Starc
and Mitchell Johnson - I think they both leak runs. Bird boasts 14 wickets
at 12 a piece for Tasmania from just two Shield games
at the MCG.

Melbourne Renegades
are top of the Big Bash following a 7-wicket win
over the Hurricanes at Etihad Stadium. Ricky Ponting received a cheeky 38th
birthday present from team-mates. The former Aussie skipper made 25
before falling to Murali as Hobart made 102. Aaron Finch had a certain six
ruled a dead ball, when it cannoned into a roof beam.

COMMENTATOR: It hit one of the beams. That is how well he hits it.

I feel like I'm in really good form.
I'm hitting it well. Wish the roof wasn't here. The Renegades captain
unbeaten on 46. A-League newcomers
Western Sydney Wanderers are after Adelaide United's scalp when they meet in Sydney
tomorrow night. Tony Popovic's Wanderers
moved to fourth on the ladder after taking out the Sydney derby. Adelaide sit second, just a point behind league leaders
Central Coast Mariners. We've won two games on the bounce
earlier in the year. The challenge now
is can we put three results together on the bounce? A scare for
Premier League giants Chelsea who had to come from a goal down
before smashing Leeds in the semifinals
of English football's League Cup. Newly crowned world surfing champion
Joel Parkinson can't wait to try to go back to back next year. Parkinson was still getting wet
when he flew in James Bond-style to the Gold Coast, where he was mobbed by fans. The 31-year-old clinched
his maiden title with victory at Pipeline
in the final event. The biggest thing to happen
in my career and I thank you all
for being a part of it. After a well earned break
with family and friends, Parkinson will kick off his title
defence on the Gold Coast in March.

That is a guy who is

That is a guy who is going to enjoy his World Championship. After the break - we'll get the national
weather forecast with David Brown.

There's nothing like Ribena, packed with all its
vitamin C goodness. Ahhh! A big glass of
beautiful, blackcurranty Ribena. Come home to the
delicious taste
of Ribena.

Whoo!

MAN: When you come to Taronga
Western Plains Zoo in Dubbo, you're coming for
magnificent wildlife in wild open plains. And with conservation at the heart
of everything we do, you're coming for rare
and endangered animals. Plus, you can explore the zoo
on our bikes and carts and even stay overnight. For a limited time,
when you buy your tickets online, you'll save 20%
on your next wild adventure. Visit taronga.org.au. Taronga - for the wild.

Good afternoon. David Brown with your weather update on this mild and partly
cloudy afternoon in Melbourne. In Sydney, a cool and gusty change continues to sweep across
the metro area.

In Brisbane, cloud building. Some thundery showers likely. From the satellite, a cold front with scattered showers
and isolated thunderstorms is sweeping across New South Wales followed by a burst of cooler air affecting Tassie
and the south-east corner.

It's hotting up in the west, although cooler air is likely
to affect the south-west tomorrow as this trough heads inland.

Temperatures are gradually rising but we may see a cool change coming in very slightly.

In Brisbane -
another unsettled day, possible shower
and thunderstorms. Canberra,
fine and 28. Melbourne, fine
and becoming mainly sunny 23. Adelaide, a sunny 28. That's the latest weather.
More at 6:00, Rebecca. Thanks, David. That's the latest
from the 4:30 News team. I'm Rebecca Maddern.
Enjoy your evening. Supertext captions
by Red Bee Media - www.redbeemedia.com.au

BRODIE: Alright, who's got
that winning feeling tonight?!

That's good.
We've got lots of prizes for you. Get set - it's that time. Here it is, it's The Price is Right!

And here he is,
ladies and gentlemen. He's the cowboy of cash! Giddy-up! It's Larry Emdur. Giddy-up? (LAUGHS) Giddy-up. Yeah, thanks, Brodes.
Hello, everybody! Come on... Oh. Yeah, yeah. Oh, OK. Thanks, Sarah. Mwah. I picked the flowers.
They're for you. Hello. Welcome. Welcome. Uh, giddy-up. Thank you, everyone. Oh, thanks.

Did you say "giddy-up"?
I said, "Cowboy of cash". "The cowboy of cash."
Alright, let's give something away. Who's gonna get it?
Let's do it! Who wants to be first
with Larry tonight?! Yes! I know you all do. Very exciting game tonight,
so get ready. Contestant number one is... ..Lorraine Walsh! Come on down!

You're the first contestant
on The Price is Right!

Hello, Lorraine! Whoo-hoo! Did you just make that one up? Because you didn't look
like you were gonna go 'whoo-hoo', and then you got here
and you went 'whoo-hoo'. It's just my natural reaction.
I'm so excited. Welcome to the show.
Thanks! You're here with a good crew?
I am. Some good pals up there. Good, good, good. As long as you got the pals in tow, you can always win
on The Price is Right because we need that enthusiasm. We need your help to win Hi Lo.

Thank you, Pricettes. Hey, Lorraine, in the game of Hi Lo, you've got to choose
the three highest-priced items. Any of those look particularly more
expensive than the others to you? Uh, I don't know.
I think...I think so. I have to have a think about it. Right now?
No, no. OK, I've got some time.
No, no, you've got plenty of time. You can have a think about it, in
fact, while we show you your prize. That's a good time
to think about it. OK.
Here it is. It's a camping package!