Weapons thief arrested
Police yesterday arrested a man over a night raid on a naval vessel in which weapons were allegedly stolen by a balaclava-clad intruder dressed in military clothing. Northern Territory Police said they had recovered the two shotguns and 12 pistols stolen from a navy patrol boat moored at HMAS Coonawarra in Darwin around midnight on Thursday. Police raided a Darwin city unit yesterday afternoon and recovered “all of the outstanding weapons,” Commander Richard Bryson said. “One man is currently in police custody and the investigation is continuing as to the contextual circumstances surrounding the theft of the weapons,” Bryson said. The weapons were taken after the officer on duty was assaulted and bound with cables ties. He suffered only minor injuries and was eventually able to release the ties to raise the alarm.
Former prince granted bail
Former Nepalese crown prince Paras Shah has been granted bail after being arrested and charged with cannabis possession on the resort island of Phuket, police said on Friday. Shah, who as crown prince was unpopular for his playboy lifestyle, was detained along with a Thai woman on Oct. 23 after the management of his condominium complained about his unruly behavior. Police found roughly 3 grams of marijuana. “We didn’t know who he was when he was first arrested because he had a normal passport, nothing identifying him as a VIP,” Police Colonel Jirasak Siemsak said. Shah, who is free on bail, denies the charge. If convicted he faces a light sentence because marijuana possession for personal use is not considered a serious offense.
Native saint celebrated
Nearly 1 million Roman Catholics on Friday gathered in central Cebu City to celebrate the canonization of the country’s second saint, 17th-century teen martyr Pedro Calungsod. Devotees waved palm fronds, shouting “Viva San Pedro Calungsod” when Calungsod’s flower-decked wooden statue arrived at a shrine built on 27 hectare. Last month, Pope Benedict XVI canonized the teenager from central Philippines who joined Spanish Jesuit missionaries to Guam in 1668 to convert the native Chamorros. He was killed when the natives resisted. Cardinal Ricardo Vidal urged the faithful to emulate Calungsod’s love for Christ and sacrifice for his fellow men. Police say up to 900,000 people flocked to the open-air thanksgiving Mass. Among them was President Benigno Aquino III. The Philippines is Asia’s largest predominantly Roman Catholic country.
Sailors rescue sea turtles
Sailors rescued more than a hundred sea turtles from poachers, but Chinese nationals who were allegedly buying the endangered animals escaped, the navy said on Friday. At least 123 turtles were recovered from three fishpens off the western island of Balabac on Tuesday as part of a campaign against such illegal activities, the navy statement said. “At least six Chinese nationals were sighted fleeing the area using a speed boat,” regional naval chief Commander Rostum Joseph Pena was quoted as saying. It took two days to remove all the turtles from the fishpens and six of them were found to be dead, he said. Residents have reported that Chinese financiers were paying local people to gather the turtles for 5,000 pesos (US$120) each, so they could be shipped abroad, the navy commander said.