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    Indonesian university expels student over ‘sexual mummification’ of multiple victims

    Airlangga University (Unair) in Surabaya, East Java, has officially expelled a student who had reportedly tricked multiple victims into performing an act known as “bondage mummification” under the pretense of academic research.

    In a statement published on Wednesday, the university acknowledged that the accused student, Gilang, had committed sexual assault on the victims.

    Prior to his expulsion, the Unair rector, Mohammad Nasih, and its ethics committee had conducted an online meeting with Gilang’s family, in which the latter admitted his actions and expressed regret.

    The case, which gained public attention after several first-person accounts of the allegations made the rounds on Twitter, had tarnished the university’s reputation, said the rector.

    “We think this case [involving] G has caused immense damage to Unair’s reputation as a state university that upholds excellence with moral values,” Nasih said, referring to Gilang by his initial, in a statement posted on Unair’s official website.

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    Thai man under psychiatric treatment stabs sister to death

    Police in Songkhla’s Ban Na subdistrict arrested Boonya Yama, 39, after his family alerted officials that he allegedly stabbed his sister to death and assaulted his mother and aunt after becoming “hallucinated”.

    Village officials yesterday (Aug 4) found the body of Johfah Reda Yama, 49, with multiple knife wounds on her face, torso, shoulders, arms and legs at a house in Ban Khok Khed.

    The other injured persons found at the scene were Boonya’s mother Timoh Yama, 68, and his aunt Song Ma Sale, 80. They were hit in the face and forehead while trying to stop Boonya from stabbing his sister.

    Police arrested Boonya and is holding him in a Jana Station cell while waiting for him to “come out of his hallucination”. They also collected the rubber-harvesting knife that he used.

    He has been initially charged with being a murder suspect and for assault.

    His father Doha Yama, 73, said Boonya has been suffering from a psychotic disorder as a result of prolonged drug use and was receiving treatment at Songkhla Rajanagarindra Psychiatric Hospital, but his doctor told him to rest at home on that day.

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    Facebook and TikTok’s fraught history

    SAN FRANCISCO – Facebook’s escalated a bruising fight with TikTok with the launch on Wednesday of its new short-video feature Reels, a look-alike service embedded within its popular Instagram app.

    The debut arrived at a fraught moment for TikTok, which has come under threat of a ban by the White House, prompting China’s ByteDance to weigh a sale of the app’s US operations to Microsoft.

    Here is a look at the tense tangle between heavyweight Facebook and upstart TikTok.

    Before China’s ByteDance acquired Shanghai-based startup Musical.ly in 2017 and turned it into TikTok, Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg tried to buy the app, BuzzFeed has reported.

    A source familiar with the effort confirmed the talks to Reuters. Discussions ultimately stalled, and by 2018 Facebook executives believed TikTok was not retaining US users long-term, another source said.

    In mid-2018, ByteDance began an aggressive push aimed at growing TikTok’s US footprint, surging app-install ads on Facebook’s ad network.

    At the peak, it was responsible for nearly 22 per cent of all such ads on US Apple devices, according to data from Sensor Tower.

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    ‘Gnarly’ tumour shows dinosaurs got cancer, too

    WASHINGTON – When scientists first unearthed fossils of a horned dinosaur called Centrosaurus in the badlands of Dinosaur Provincial Park in Canada’s Alberta province in 1989, they spotted a badly malformed leg bone they figured was a healed fracture.

    A fresh examination, researchers said on Monday, shows something different. The malformation was a manifestation of osteosarcoma, an aggressive bone cancer, making this Centrosaurus, which lived 76 million years ago, the first known example of a dinosaur afflicted by malignant cancer.

    About 20 feet (6 metres) long, Centrosaurus was a four-legged beaked plant-eating Cretaceous Period dinosaur possessing a long horn above its nose and a bony frill above its neck with two smaller hooked horns.

    The Centrosaurus fibula, a lower leg bone, contained “a massive gnarly tumor larger than an apple,” said palaeontologist David Evans of the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, one of the researchers in the study published in the journal Lancet Oncology.

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    Man in Medan sentenced to 3 years in jail for desecrating Quran

    A panel of judges at the Medan District Court in North Sumatra has handed down a three-year imprisonment for a 44-year-old man after finding him guilty of blasphemy for having desecrated the Quran at a mosque earlier this year.

    “[We] sentence defendant Doni Irawan Malay to three years in prison,” presiding judge Tengku Oyong said while reading out the verdict on Tuesday.

    The punishment was one year lighter than the prosecutor’s demand, as the court said the defendant had behaved politely during the trial.

    Doni was charged under Article 156 of the Criminal Code on religious defamation.

    Both the defendant and prosecutor Nur Ainun accepted the verdict.

    In the previous hearings, prosecutors said Doni had committed a blasphemous act by tearing out pages from the Quran he took from Al-Mashum Mosque in Medan Kota district on Feb. 13.

    “The defendant removed the cover from the Quran, threw it into a garbage bin inside the ablution room and then proceeded to tear out pages from the Quran with both of his hands.”

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    HDB and Bukit Merah NPC hop on the Facebook name pun meme

    For some reason, an internet meme from 2014 has been making a comeback of sorts in recent days: that old chestnut about pun-worthy names on Facebook.

    The premise of the joke is simple. Look for people on Facebook with names that can be pronounced as actual words and add other phrases to construct a sentence.  

    The 2020 iteration of the meme involves an additional step — send a Facebook message to the person with pun potential and form a phrase or sentence. 

    Here, some examples: 
    PHOTO: Facebook / ScreengrabYou get how it goes. Yes, it can get a bit corny. 

    But because we’re living in a very strange year, government agencies and adjacent bodies have no qualms in jumping on the latest memes, including this one.

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    Tourism-reliant Thailand shelves ‘travel bubble’ plan as Asia coronavirus cases rise

    BANGKOK  – Thailand has delayed plans for a “travel bubble” agreement with select countries as new daily coronavirus cases rise in parts of Asia, putting pressure on its vital tourism industry and complicating efforts to revive its battered economy.

    Thailand first proposed the idea in June to allow movement between select countries that have low infection numbers, without the need for travellers to undergo quarantine.

    But that has been shelved, officials said, amid second and third waves in East Asian countries that previously had their outbreaks under control.

    “We are delaying discussion of travel bubble arrangements for now given the outbreak situation in other countries,”Thailand’s coronavirus taskforce spokesman, Taweesin Wisanuyothin, told Reuters.

    Despite more than two months without confirmed local transmission and recording only 3,300 cases, South-east Asia’s second-largest economy is facing its worst crisis in several decades.

    Foreign arrivals plunged 66 per cent in the first six months of the year, to 6.69 million. The industry has warned that 1.6 trillion baht (S$70.6 billion) of revenue could be wiped out this year.

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    YouTube star Jake Paul’s Los Angeles-area home raided by FBI

    FBI agents in tactical gear on Wednesday raided the Los Angeles-area mansion home of YouTube star and social media influencer Jake Paul in an investigation stemming from a looting spree at an upscale shopping mall in Scottsdale, Arizona, officials said.

    The Federal Bureau of Investigation also searched two locations in Las Vegas, but no one was taken into custody during the raids and no arrest warrant has been issued for Paul, the agency said.

    Paul, 23, was not present when his home was searched, according to Laura Eimiller, an FBI spokeswoman in Los Angeles.

    Paul’s lawyer, Richard Schonfeld, in a statement acknowledged that his client’s home was searched and promised cooperation with the investigation.

    Paul, whose viral YouTube video postings of provocative pranks have won him millions of followers, had no comment on his Twitter and Instagram accounts.

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    Thai folk drama actor, police officer killed in car smash-up

    A policeman and Thai musical folk drama actor Sarawut Phongsawat, 34, were killed in an accident before dawn today (Aug 5) – just as they tied to help a man whose car broke down on the road.

    The incident took place on the parallel elevated highway in Bangkok Noi district.

    The girlfriend of Sarawut, a popular musical folk drama actor who starred as a villain in a play, said Sarawut stopped his car on the elevated highway and went over to help the driver of a black Toyota that had broken down and was parked on the side.

    While waiting in the car as Sarawut and a police officer examined the Toyota, she suddenly saw a white car plough into the broken down car. She immediately tried to call her boyfriend.

    When he did not respond, she got out of the car to see what happened and to her horror noticed the unmoving form of Sarawut on the ground below the elevated highway.

    The police officer, identified as Narong Ninsuwan, was also killed in the crash.

    The driver of the white car claimed he could not see the road ahead clearly in the dark because of “low light”, leading to the accident.

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    Suspect named in rape of 80-year-old steamed sticky rice vendor in Thailand

    Police in Phatthalung province are hunting a suspect over the rape of an 80-year-old woman on July 21.

    Muang Phatthalung Police Station said an arrest warrant had been filed for Phuan Thacheen, 56, a local man who lives in neighbouring Trang province.

    He is wanted for sexual assault , fraud and theft after allegedly telling the victim, a banana-sticky rice vendor, that they were neighbours when he was young, then raping her and stealing her purse.

    Police raided his house in Trang province but found no sign of the wanted man.

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