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The Wednesday news briefing: An at-a-glance survey of some top stories

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley speaks to reporters at the McDougall Centre in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2016.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
October 05, 2016 - 2:47 PM

Highlights from the news file for Wednesday, Oct. 5

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HURRICANE LIKELY TO MISS CANADA: The Canadian Hurricane Centre says the latest computer models suggest hurricane Matthew is unlikely to pose much of a threat to Canada's East Coast. Meteorologist Bob Robichaud says the powerful, slow-moving storm is now expected to veer off into the Atlantic Ocean after scraping along the coast of Florida and may double back for another run at the state. He says earlier models had suggested the Category 3 hurricane could slam into the Maritimes late on the holiday weekend, prompting marinas and ports to begin securing boats and cargo.

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AT LEAST 5 DEAD AS MATTHEW HITS HAITI: Rescue workers in Haiti struggled to reach cutoff towns and learn the full extent of the death and destruction caused by Hurricane Matthew as the storm began battering the Bahamas on Wednesday and triggered large-scale evacuations along the U.S. East Coast. At least 11 deaths were blamed on the powerful storm during its weeklong march across the Caribbean, five of them in Haiti. But with a key bridge washed out, roads impassable and phone communications down, the western tip of Haiti was isolated and there was no full accounting of the dead and injured in Matthew's wake.

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TORONTO STUDENT CLEARED IN TERROR ATTACK: The family of a Toronto university student who was detained in Bangladesh expressed relief Wednesday after a court formally cleared him of all allegations related to a deadly terror attack in the country three months ago. Tahmid Hasib Khan, a permanent resident of Canada, was taken into custody after surviving a July 1 raid on an upscale restaurant in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka, in which 20 hostages were killed. He was never charged in connection with the attack but was held as he was interrogated for weeks.

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BEER THROWING FAN SOUGHT: Baseball fans, Toronto residents and the city's mayor expressed their disgust Wednesday after a spectator hurled a beer can at a Baltimore outfielder during Tuesday's dramatic playoff game between the Blue Jays and the Orioles. The incident — which triggered a frenzy online and in the stands — saw the can narrowly miss Orioles outfielder Hyun Soo Kim as he made a catch during the seventh inning. In the confusion that followed, another Orioles player said he was taunted with racial slurs. Toronto police urged the person to turn themselves in.

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OTTAWA NOT PLANNING TO SUE IBM OVER PHOENIX: The head of the federal department overseeing the effort to fix the Phoenix civil-servant payroll system says the government isn't contemplating legal action, even though at least one other country has gone down that path. Tech giant IBM created the Phoenix pay system, basing it on the PeopleSoft program that is used worldwide and tailoring it to the needs of the federal civil service. Now, the federal Liberal government has budgeted an extra $50 million to handle issues related to Phoenix, including millions to IBM to make fixes to the system.

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PIT BULL BAN MUZZLED: A Quebec judge has suspended parts of Montreal's controversial pit bull bylaw until a legal challenge can be heard on the merits of the case. Superior Court Justice Louis J. Gouin ruled Wednesday the pit bull-related provisions in the bylaw will not be enforced pending further court arguments. On Monday, the Montreal branch of the SPCA went to court seeking the suspension of several pit bull-related parts of the animal control bylaw, which came into effect that day.

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TRIAL OF WOMAN ACCUSED OF HIDING REMAINS OF 6 BABIES: A Crown attorney says evidence is clear that a Winnipeg woman deliberately tried to hide the remains of six infants. In her closing arguments, Debbie Buors says Andrea Giesbrecht gave birth at her home and then concealed the remains in a U-haul storage locker where they were found in October 2014. Giesbrecht was charged with six counts of concealing human remains after police discovered the babies in the storage unit she had rented. The defence did not present evidence during the trial.

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TEEN NAKED PHOTO TRIAL DELAYED: A prosecutor says the high-profile trial of six Nova Scotia teens charged with sharing intimate images of at least 20 high school girls should serve as a cautionary tale for other young people. Crown attorney Peter Dostal said it's hoped it will both encourage alleged victims to come forward to report similar cases, and show the consequences of sharing images without consent. The case was put over Wednesday to Oct. 19 to allow lawyers time to receive more of the disclosure, which includes thousands of pages of evidence from several electronic devices that were seized in the lengthy investigation.

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PIG TRANSPORT CRASHES: More than 100 pigs survived a truck crash in the Toronto area only to be marched to the slaughterhouse on foot shortly afterward as dozens of animal rights activists watched in a tense standoff with police on Wednesday. Police said the truck crashed as it was turning onto a road beside Fearmans Pork plant in Burlington, Ont., around 7:30 a.m., which led to several pigs escaping and roaming nearby streets. Police said there were about 160 pigs in the vehicle, but most remained pinned inside until workers from the plant removed them from the toppled truck.

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NSA CONTRACTOR ARRESTED: U.S. federal prosecutors say that a contractor for the National Security Agency has been arrested on charges that he illegally removed highly classified information and stored the material in his house and car. Harold Thomas Martin III, 51, of Glen Burnie, Md., was arrested by the FBI in August after authorities say he admitted to having taken government secrets. A defence attorney said Martin did not intend to betray his country. The arrest was not made public until Wednesday, when the Justice Department released a criminal complaint accusing Martin of having been in possession of top-secret information.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2016
The Canadian Press

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