Singapore teacher jailed for ‘love bites’

A Singapore court has jailed a 42-year-old female teacher for six months for committing indecent acts on a 13-year-old boy studying in the same school, including giving him “love bites”.

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The woman, a teacher for 11 years and a mother-of-four, had earlier pleaded guilty to two charges of sexual exploitation of a child or young person under Singapore’s Children and Young Persons Act.

According to court documents, the woman, who cannot be named as it could lead to the identification of the victim, kissed the boy on his lips and given him love bites on his shoulder and neck on two separate occasions in 2012.

She became acquainted with the boy, a football team-mate of her son, and started to chat with him on Facebook, subsequently committing the incriminating acts when they went on outings to public parks.

The boy’s mother filed a police report after discovering a love bite on his neck.

“This case involved the sexual grooming and exploitation of a young victim 13 years-of-age, by a school teacher,” district judge Ng Peng Hong said in a written judgment.

“In my view, implanting of love bites and kissing with her tongue into the victim’s mouth in a public park by the teacher were indecent, sexual and not appropriate,” he said.

The judge said he was imposing a stiff sentence due to the “significant age gap” between the woman and the boy.

“The accused as a teacher and educator should not have defiled and corrupted the young victim,” he said.

The judge said he did not place much weight on the defence argument that the woman was suffering from depression.

The woman could have been jailed for up to five years, fined Sg$10,000 ($A8,800) or both, for each of the two charges she faced.

War Memorial reveals WWI centenary program

The name of every one of 62,000 Australians killed during World War I will be projected onto the Australian War Memorial and repeated throughout the four-year centenary period.

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And many visitors to Gallipoli and the Western Front will be given small wooden crosses on which school children have written messages, to place on the graves of Australian soldiers.

These are among the many events the Australian War Memorial is planning for the WW1 centenary, outlined by memorial director Brendan Nelson at the program launch on Wednesday night.

For the memorial, the redeveloped WWI gallery will be reopened in November. For those outside Canberra, there will be a series of travelling exhibitions of photographs and large objects such as the memorial’s WWI Mark IV tank.

Dr Nelson said this would remain consistent with the vision of historian Charles Bean, who saw the memorial as holding the spirit of those who fought and died in WW1.

“This is not a celebration,” he said. “It will be a commemoration. We commemorate the sacrifices.

“From a population of 4.5 million people, one million men could volunteer. Four hundred and thirty thousand did, 330,000 were sent overseas. Sixty-two thousand were dead. Another 60,000 died within a decade of returning from the 155,000 wounded or imprisoned.”

Dr Nelson said their sacrifice would be commemorated.

“What we will celebrate is a legacy that has been born of these cataclysmic events that shaped and defined largely the way we see ourselves as Australians and relate to one another in the world today almost a century later.”

Veterans’ Affairs Minister Michael Ronaldson said the centenary should leave a lasting legacy of understanding.

“During this time, we will honour the extraordinary deeds of ordinary men and women, men and women who did not go to battle to seek glory but who by their deeds and actions achieved greatness,” he said.

Wales halfback Phillips dropped for France clash

Phillips, capped 82 times by Wales and with five test appearances for the British and Irish Lions, has suffered behind a struggling forward pack and makes way for Rhys Webb.

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“I thought Rhys played excellently for the Ospreys at the weekend and he comes in and gives us a different dimension and it’s a great opportunity for him,” coach Warren Gatland said on Wednesday.

Williams was injured tackling Ireland’s Brian O’Driscoll in Dublin while Davies, who suffered a chest injury in the November test against South Africa, has failed to recover sufficiently despite returning for club side Scarlets, meaning North shifts infield and Liam Williams starts on the wing.

Luke Charteris returns at lock after missing the last match with a hamstring injury.

“Luke has been working really hard over the past couple of weeks and it’s a big boost for us that he is back,” New Zealander Gatland added.

“George moves into the midfield and he brings great footwork to the role and we were impressed when he went there against Australia in the autumn. His partnership with Jamie will be important as we look to stop the directness of France and Mathieu Bastareaud.”

Wales have looked off the pace in this season’s championship, with the Ireland defeat preceded by a sluggish performance in a 23-15 win over Italy.

Gatland acknowledged a win was required to keep them in the hunt for the crown, as well as boosting their confidence ahead of the final two matches against England and Scotland.

“Friday is a massive game for us,” he said.

“As a squad we have a huge amount of experience in this tournament and we will be calling on that this weekend. We see the game as a huge opportunity for us to put things right.”

France have made a perfect start to their campaign, narrowly beating England in their first match before easing to a comfortable 30-10 win over Italy in their last outing.

They have made one change to their starting lineup for Friday’s clash, with flanker Wenceslas Lauret called up to earn his sixth cap as a replacement for Bernard Le Roux, who is recovering from a blow to the head.

Team: 15-Leigh Halfpenny, 14-Alex Cuthbert, 13-George North, 12-Jamie Roberts, 11-Liam Williams, 10-Rhys Priestland, 9-Rhys Webb; 8-Taulupe Faletau, 7-Sam Warburton, 6-Dan Lydiate, 5-Alun Wyn Jones, 4-Luke Charteris, 3-Adam Jones, 2-Richard Hibbard, 1-Gethin Jenkins

Replacements: 16-Ken Owens, 17-Paul James, 18-Rhodri Jones, 19-Jake Ball, 20-Justin Tipuric, 21-Mike Phillips, 22-Dan Biggar, 23-James Hook

(Reporting By Josh Reich in London; Editing by Rex Gowar)

Nervy Ligety holds off French to win giant slalom

The 29-year-old was in a class of his own on the first run down a crisp Rosa Khutor piste and built a 0.

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93-second lead, but a nervy second leg meant his margin of victory over Steve Missillier was shaved down to less than half a second.

Alexis Pinturault trailed Ligety by 0.64 seconds to win bronze.

Ligety’s victory gave the U.S. its first Alpine skiing gold of these Games while France celebrated its first medals of any colour on the slopes of Rosa Khutor.

Ligety, twice a giant slalom world champion and four times the overall World Cup winner in the longer of the two technical events, threatened to turn the race into a one-man show in the Caucasus mountains when he obliterated the field early on.

However, when it was his time to burst out of the start gate second time around the tension was palpable as one mistake on a rutted and bumpy course would have turned almost certain victory into crushing disappointment.

Halfway down, through the trickiest part of the 59-gate maze, Ligety appeared to lose speed with a large sideways slide but he recovered his rhythm to cross the line still in front.

Missillier was only 10th quickest after the first run but laid down a perfect slalom in his second, winning the leg by 0.48 seconds, to ramp up the pressure on the men to follow.

Pinturault was also fast as he moved into second spot, and when Italy’s Davide Simoncelli and Czech Ondrej Bank failed to deliver an unlikely French gold appeared possible.

Ligety’s second run was only the 14th quickest but it proved just enough.

“We’re there, it’s beautiful. We knew that after the first leg we had to go full gear, that’s what I did and it worked,” Missillier told French TV.

“Vice Olympic champion – it’s huge, it has not sunk in yet. Sharing it with Alexis is fantastic.”

(Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Peter Rutherford and Robert Woodward)