UCLA, UCSF obtain FDA approval for PSMA PET imaging in men with prostate cancer

The University of California’s two nationally ranked medical centers, UCSF and UCLA, and their nuclear medicine teams have obtained approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to offer a new imaging technique for prostate cancer that locates cancer lesions in the pelvic area and other parts of the body to which the tumors have migrated.

Known as prostate-specific membrane antigen PET imaging, or PSMA PET, the technique uses positron emission tomography in conjunction with a PET-sensitive drug that is highly effective in detecting prostate cancer throughout the body so that it can be better and more selectively treated. The PSMA PET scan also identifies cancer that is often missed by current standard-of-care imaging techniques.

UCLA and UCSF researchers studied PSMA PET to provide a more effective imaging test for men who have prostate cancer. Because the PSMA PET scan has proven to be more effective in locating these tumors, it should become the new standard of care for men who have prostate cancer, for initial staging or localization of recurrence.”

Dr. Jeremie Calais, Assistant Professor, David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA

A clinical trial conducted by the UCSF and UCLA research teams on the effectiveness of PSMA PET proved pivotal in garnering FDA approval for the technique at both universities. The PSMA drug used in the technique was developed outside the U.S. by the University of Heidelberg.

“It is rare for academic institutions to obtain FDA approval of a drug, and this unique collaboration has led to what is one of the first co-approvals of a drug at two institutions,” said Dr. Thomas Hope, an associate professor at UCSF. “We hope that this first step will lead to a more widespread availability of this imaging test to men with prostate cancer throughout the country.”

How it works

For men who are initially diagnosed with prostate cancer or who were previously treated but who have experienced a recurrence, a critical first step is to understand the extent of the cancer. Physicians use medical imaging to locate cancer cells so they can be treated.

PSMA PET works using a radioactive tracer drug called 68Ga-PSMA-11, which is injected into the body and attaches to proteins known as prostate-specific membrane antigens. Because prostate cancer tumors overexpress these proteins on their surface, the tracer enables physicians to pinpoint their location.

The current standard of care in prostate imaging is a technique called fluciclovine PET, which involves injecting patients with fluciclovine, a synthetic radioactive amino acid. Since prostate cancers consume more amino acids than normal prostate cells, the tumors accumulate large amounts of the synthetic tracer, making them easier to detect during scans.

In their research comparing PSMA PET and fluciclovine PET, the UCLA and UCSF research teams found that imaging with PSMA PET was able to detect significantly more prostate lesions than fluciclovine PET in men who had undergone a radical prostatectomy but had experienced a recurrence of their cancer. Their findings indicate that PSMA PET should be strongly considered both before initial treatment in men with high-risk cancers and in cases of cancer recurrence after surgery or radiation to provide more precise care. The PSMA tracer also can be used in conjunction with CT or MRI scans.

UCSF and UCLA are the only two medical centers in the U.S. that can offer PSMA PET to the public through this FDA approval. A limited number of other U.S. medical centers are currently using PSMA as an investigational technique, generally as part of a clinical trial. However, more hospitals will have the opportunity to adopt the technology after applying for expedited FDA approval, which is now possible as a result of the initial FDA approval gained by UCLA and UCSF.

“I believe PSMA PET imaging in men with prostate cancer is a game changer because its use will lead to better, more efficient and precise care,” said Dr. Peter Carroll, a professor at the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center.

“Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers in men, with more than 190,000 newly diagnosed cases expected just this year alone,” said Dr. Johannes Czernin, chief of the Ahmanson Translational Theranostics Division at UCLA. “That’s why this major effort between the UCLA and UCSF nuclear medicine divisions and our many partners was important and will significantly change for the better how this cancer is detected and treated.”

The UCLA research team was led by the nuclear medicine faculty from the molecular and medical pharmacology department’s Ahmanson Translational Theranostics Division. They worked in collaboration with the departments of urology, radiation oncology and radiology, along with support from the Geffen School of Medicine, the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Prostate Cancer Foundation.

The UCSF research team was led by faculty from the molecular imaging and therapeutics section of the department of radiology and biomedical imaging, who worked in collaboration with the departments of urology, radiation oncology and medical oncology. Support was provided by the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center and a philanthropic gift to the UCSF Department of Urology, and by the Prostate Cancer Foundation.

“‘Game changer’ is almost an understatement for how prostate cancer patient care could be improved by this technique,” said Dr. Jonathan W. Simons, CEO of the Prostate Cancer Foundation. “After investing more than $26 million in research on PSMA over many years, we are honored to congratulate the research teams at UCSF and UCLA on their milestone achievement.”

When David McEowen discovered he had a recurrence of prostate cancer, his physicians used PSMA PET as part of his treatment plan. Today, he is cancer-free.


University of California – Los Angeles Health Sciences

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Waugh’s men break cricket world record

The result confirmed their stature as one of the best teams in the history of the game.

Waugh’s team began its streak with the one-off Test in Harare in October last year, then won all six Tests in Australia last summer against Pakistan and India, and a clean sweep of three wins in New Zealand in March before winning the first two matches of this series.

The new record, completed at 3.50pm in Perth yesterday afternoon, also confirmed Waugh’s status as an outstanding attacking captain and completed a unique double after he led the one-day team to a new world record for consecutive wins (13) in that form of the game earlier this year.

As a captain and batsman Waugh also dragged his one-day team out of a slump in the middle of last year’s World Cup. Australia went on to win that trophy in emphatic style in the final against Pakistan at Lord’s.

Remarkably, at the start of last summer’s series against Pakistan, Waugh asked his team to aim for six straight wins. Then when they won the second Test against New Zealand in Wellington they passed the Australian record of eight set by Warwick Armstrong’s team in 1920-1.


Soon after the Australians returned to the dressing room yesterday, the former West Indian batsman Sir Vivian Richards, a key member of Lloyd’s team, congratulated the Australians and wrapped his arm around Waugh’s shoulders.

With the West Indies in disarray, the Australians have a strong chance of adding to their 12 wins in the remaining three matches of this series and could set a record that will stand for a long time.

Unfortunately Waugh will miss the next Test match in Adelaide because of a muscle strain. The team is certain to be led by wicketkeeper-batsman Adam Gilchrist.

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Drinking During a Pandemic – The Good Men Project

While there have been some conflicting reports on how much more alcohol people are drinking because of the pandemic, it’s a safe guess to assume that many people are drinking a little more. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that excessive drinking is bad for you, but what should your limit be? Should you even be drinking at all? Let’s find out.

Drinking in Moderation

The piece of advice you may have heard is that drinking in moderation isn’t bad, and can even be good for you at times. You may have been told that a glass of wine or beer on occasion can even be good for you.

How much a moderate drink is up to debate. For a woman, it can be one drink daily, and two drinks for men. This can also depend on a person’s weight, tolerance, and other factors. Also, some countries have other drinking guidelines.

With that said, the science on the idea of moderate drinking is always changing. General drinking guidelines do say that if you are not drinking, there should be no reason for you to do so. You may find some articles saying that the idea of healthy drinking is a myth and that the “safe” amount of alcohol is smaller. Drinking a lot can be associated with liver, heart, and other health problems.

Of course, many people are still going to drink occasionally, even if the science is iffy. In the end, it’s important that you drink as sparingly as possible. Let’s look at some other reasons to cut back on alcohol during this quarantine.

It’s Calorie-Filled

For many people, it’s difficult to keep off the pounds during this pandemic. You may be moving less and eating more. However, one calorie sink that many people consume without thinking about it is alcohol. Most alcoholic drinks do not have a nutrition label on them, though that is changing. And it should. An ounce of whiskey can be 70 calories. A pint of beer can have 200. It can add up quite a bit. There’s a reason why the beer belly is a thing.

If you want to have the occasional drink and count calories, a seltzer tends to be 100 calories or fewer and they tend to have a nutrition label.

It Costs Money

Alcohol isn’t cheap. Many people are going to bars a lot less because of the pandemic and drinking at home. Just like how eating at home is cheaper, so is drinking. However, it still adds up. A 12-pack of beer can be around $10, and this can add up. The average American can spend over $500 a year on alcohol, and someone who drinks a lot more can double that.

In this time, many have less to spend. Even if your job hasn’t been financially impacted, it’s still important to save money in these times.

This isn’t to say that you can’t spend some money on occasion, but it’s important to be mindful and avoid spending too much on alcohol and other vices.

How to Drink Less

If you find that you’re drinking a little bit too much this quarantine, it’s important that you cut back. Even if you don’t have full-blown alcoholism, drinking can lead to some health issues. Here are some ways to drink less.

  • Keep a journal. Record how much you drink. While it can be difficult to do so while you’re inebriated, do the best you can.
  • Try to reduce the number of drinks you have gradually. For some, this can be a little difficult, but it’s important that one does so. There’s no rush. Once it’s been lowered, have days where you don’t drink.
  • Try to do something else besides drinking. In the time when you should be drinking, spend time learning something new or finding a new hobby.
  • Avoid triggers. If certain thoughts or sights make you want to drink more, then you should try to avoid them, or be mindful if you have to face them.

If you still have trouble with your drinking, your next step is to

Seek Help

If you or a loved one is having difficulties with drinking or is having other issues during this pandemic, it’s important to seek help as soon as possible. Therapy can help you to drink less. During the pandemic, online therapy is making it easier for you to get help without leaving your home. Websites like ReGain can help you to get the help you need.

Just like before the pandemic, it’s important you monitor your drinking and avoid excessive drinking. Even what we think is “moderate” might be a little too much. We all have our vices, but reducing them is a smart move no matter the year.

stock photo ID: 1839112165

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Marcus Rashford, Michaela Coel and John Boyega among winners at GQ Men of the Year Awards 2020

Boyega was named winner of the icon award, with Coel, 33, named the creative icon winner and Rashford awarded the campaigner honour at the virtual ceremony.

Manchester United star Rashford, 23, has won widespread praise and an MBE following his successful lobbying of the Government for the extension of free school meals.


Shawn Mendes


GQ’s annual event, which celebrates men and women who have helped to shape the world’s cultural landscape over style, politics, entertainment and sport, was held online this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.


Lashana Lynch


It was hosted by Jack Whitehall.

Normal People star Paul Mescal was named the breakthrough actor winner with Captain Marvel actress Lashana Lynch named the breakthrough actress winner.


John Boyega


At the event, Lynch took part in a spoof segment where she answered a series of questions linked up to a lie detector in a section called  “No Time to Lie.”

The GQ awards also honoured Patrick Hutchinson, a personal trainer who made headlines after he was photographed in London during a Black Lives Matter protest this year, helping an injured counter-protestor to safety.


Michaela Coel


Mr Hutchinson was named the winner of the humanitarian award.

The winner of breakthrough designer, which was sponsored by Peroni, was Daniel W Fletcher.  Earlier this year, he was named artistic director for menswear of Fiorucci. He also starred in Netflix reality show Next in Fashion, in which designers from around the world competed for a £200,000 prize.

Captain Sir Tom Moore, who recently became GQ’s oldest cover star, was honoured with the inspiration gong.


Sir Captain Tom Moore on the cover of GQ


Author, artist and illustrator Charlie Mackesy, whose book The Boy, The Mole, The Fox And The Horse has been a best-seller, was named winner of the artist award.

Musicians Ozzy Osbourne and Shawn Mendes were presented with gongs too, with Osbourne given a lifetime achievement award while Mendes was named solo artist winner.

Black Sabbath frontman Osbourne revealed at the beginning of this year that he had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.


Jack Whitehall, the host


Mendes finished off the show with a performance.

Good Morning Britain’s Piers Morgan was named the winner of the TV personality award, with designer Tommy Hilfiger honoured as the design legend winner.

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Four men allegedly involved in Ballina death face court

THE four men allegedly involved in a fight that resulted in the death of an East Lismore man in Ballina have had their charges certified.

Police will allege Bryson Larsen-Tai, 18, Tyrese Hickling, 19, Heath Lyndan Cooper and Jeral Milner were involved in a fight near Hill and Park street, East Ballina on December 23.

During the fight, 24-year-old Jesse Vilkelis-Curas suffered what was described by police at the time as “catastrophic head injuries”.

He was taken to Gold Coast University Hospital before being taken off life-support on Boxing Day and died.

Jesse Marijonas Vilkelis-Curas died from injuries sustained in a fight in Ballina last year.

Only Mr Larsen-Tai has been charged with murder, as well as assault occasioning death, affray and aggravated robbery with wounding causing grievous bodily harm.

Both Mr Hickling and Mr Milner are facing charges of affray, assault occasioning actual bodily harm in the company of others and common assault.

Mr Cooper has been charged with affray.

The Director of Public Prosecutions prosecutor handed up four charge certificates, when all four men’s cases were briefly mentioned before Lismore Local Court on Wednesday.

The court heard the men, alongside their separate legal representation, would be participating in case conferences throughout December.

All four men will have their matters mentioned on February 10 in Lismore Local Court.

Only Mr Larsen-Tai remains bail refused, and the other three men are not required to appear in court next year unless legally represented.

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| The Resurrection of Father Earth and the Return of True Partnership Between Men and WomenTalking About Men’s Health™

I was introduced to Father Earth in 1993 and wrote about my experience in an article, “The Resurrection of Father Earth and the Return of True Partnership Between Men and Women.” Since then my life has never been the same. When Clarissa Pinkola Estes, author of Women Who Run With The Wolves, offered her poem, chills ran down my spine and a feeling of homecoming stirred in me. The first line, “There is a two-million-year-old man no one knows,” awakened an ancient connection that I thought had been reserved for women only.

What would it mean if the Earth was masculine and not feminine? The thought was intriguing. But the last lines of the poem offered an even more exciting possibility. “He has laid upon his two-million-year-old woman all this time, protecting her with his old back, with his old scarred back. And the soil beneath her is fertile and black with her tears.” Estes offers a vision of the Earth being neither feminine nor masculine, but feminine and masculine, a true partnership.

At a time when there is so much conflict in the world and so much separation, there is definitely a need to bring us together. As cultural historian Thomas Berry reminds us,

“The natural world is the largest sacred community to which we belong. To be alienated from this community is to become destitute in all that makes us human. To damage this community is to diminish our own existence.”

In the research I did for my book, 12 Rules for Good Men, I learned that males and females share a long evolutionary history. In their book, The Universe Story, Thomas Berry and cosmologist, Brian Swimme say that one billion years ago, a momentous change occurred. Rather than life in the ancient seas being propagated by a single-cell organism splitting into two identical sister cells, for the first time, a male sperm cell and a female egg cell were created, touched, and shared their DNA. The mystery of sexual reproduction came into existence and has been going strong ever since.

In order to understand the New Partnership Revolution, we have to go back to the evolutionary arrival of the first humans. In their book, Our Human Story, Louise Humphrey and Chris Stringer, researchers at the London’s Natural History Museum, they say that our human ancestry goes back at least two million years to the time of Homo habilis (Handy man). Our human ancestors lived lightly on the land, hunting and gathering, until approximately ten thousand years ago when we began to domesticate plants and animals.

It has been common to view our earlier ancestors as “primitives” and our more recent ancestors as “civilized.” The 17th century English philosopher, Thomas Hobbes, imagining our ancestral life-styles famously wrote, “No arts; no letters; no society; and worst of all, continual fear and danger of violent death; and the life of man solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.”

Human life since the advent of agriculture has been viewed as one of continual progress and improvement. Yet, an objective view of the last 10,000 years is clearly not all positive. Anthropologist and historian, Jared Diamond, wrote an essay in 1999 titled, “The Worst Mistake in the History of the Human Race.” Diamond wrote:

“To science we owe dramatic changes in our smug self-image. Astronomy taught us that our earth isn’t the center of the universe but merely one of billions of heavenly bodies. From biology we learned that we weren’t specially created by God but evolved along with millions of other species. Now archaeology is demolishing another sacred belief: that human history over the past million years has been a long tale of progress. In particular, recent discoveries suggest that the adoption of agriculture, supposedly our most decisive step toward a better life, was in many ways a catastrophe from which we have never recovered. With agriculture came the gross social and sexual inequality, the disease and despotism, that curse our existence.”

It’s becoming increasingly clear that what we have euphemistically called “civilization” has offered many benefits—more humans living longer lives and a host of technological innovations–but the drawbacks have outweighed the benefits and we can no longer continue on our present path. The global climate crisis was one wake up call. The Coronavirus may be our final call to change our ways. We can’t go back to the past, but we can go back to the future and bring the new Partnership Revolution into being.

We are out of balance with the laws of nature. Historian of religions, Thomas Berry addresses our current reality directly.

“We never knew enough. Nor were we sufficiently intimate with all our cousins in the great family of the earth. Nor could we listen to the various creatures of the earth, each telling its own story. The time has now come, however, when we will listen or we will die.” 

There is no one I know who has been listening longer, or offering more creative solutions, than Dr. Riane Eisler, President of the Center for Partnership Studies. I met Riane shortly after the publication of her 1987 best-seller, The Chalice & the Blade: Our History Our Future. In this groundbreaking book she describes two alternate possibilities for humankind:

“The first, which I call the dominator model, is what is popularly termed either patriarchy or matriarchy—the ranking of one half of humanity over the other. The second, in which social relations are primarily based on the principle of linking rather than ranking, may be best described as a partnership model.”

In her recent book, Nurturing Our Humanity: How Domination and Partnership Shape Our Brains, Lives, and Future, written with peace anthropologist Douglas Fry, they demonstrate that for more than 99% of human history our ancestors lived with the following partnership practices:

  1. Overall egalitarianism.
  2. Equality, respect, and partnership between women and men.
  3. Nonacceptance of violence, war, abuse, cruelty, and exploitation.
  4. Ethics that support human caring and prosocial cooperation.

It was only in the last 10,000 years that humans settled in one place, developed surpluses that needed to be stored and defended and “civilization” or more accurately, “dominator culture” began to spread throughout the world through violence and war. Anthropologist Stanley Diamond describes our hunter-gatherer ancestors as “conscripts to civilization, not volunteers.”

As Eisler identified, unlike partnership values, dominator practices include the following:

  1. Top-down authoritarian rule in both the family and society.
  2. The subordination of women to men and greater valuing of stereotypically “masculine” traits and activities.
  3. A high degree of institutionalized violence, from wife and child beating to warfare and terrorism, as fear and force ultimately maintain domination.
  4. The belief that rankings and domination are divinely or naturally ordained and that the threat or use of violence to impose or maintain them is normal and moral.

Although our roots are in partnership, humans are also quite capable of domination. We are at a crossroad in human history. Our only hope for survival is through Partnerism, yet we seem addicted to domination. How do we resolve the dilemma? There is a Native American parable that offers guidance.

An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy. “It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.”

He continued, “The other is good – he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you – and inside every other person, too.”

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”

Like the grandfather in the story, we all hold the seeds of partnership and domination inside us. It does no good to look for enemies “out there” or to blame “them” for the mess we are in. As the comic strip character, Pogo, remarked, “We have met the enemy and he is us.” The real question we must each answer is do we feed the wolf of partnership within us or the wolf of domination? The choice is ours.

I often get guidance and solace from Pema Chödrön, an American Buddhist nun in the lineage of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. In her book, When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times she offers words which seem just right for these times.

“Look at your mind. Be curious. Welcome groundlessness. Lighten up and relax. Offer chaos a cup of tea. Let go of ‘us and ‘them.’ Don’t turn away. Everything you do and think affects everyone else on the planet. Let the pain of the world touch you and cause your compassion to blossom. And never give up on yourself.”

I look forward to your comments. You can read more of my work here.

Image by beate bachmann from Pixabay 

This article first appeared on Jed’s blog.

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Women leaving workforce faster than men, childcare playing big role in exodus: study

TORONTO – A new report from Royal Bank of Canada says more than 20,000 women left Canada’s workforce between February and October, but about triple the number of men joined it.

The study says raising children is likely the cause of the exodus, which is seeing women between ages 20 and 24 and 35 and 39 abandoning work faster than most other cohorts.

Mothers with children under six only made up 41 per cent of the labour force in February and yet, they account for two-thirds of the exodus.

The study warns that this pattern could slow down the economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and impact the future of industries largely dominated by women.

The economists behind the study are particularly worried because the high number of women who have lost their jobs during the pandemic are not temporarily laid off and don’t appear to be looking for work like their male counterparts.

RBC says this could be happening because women are more likely to work in industries slower to recover from COVID-19 restrictions, their ability to work from home may be much lower than men because they dominate the hospitality, retail and arts sectors and they often take on more onerous responsibilities associated with raising kids.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 19, 2020.

Companies in this story: (TSX:RY)



What has been your experience with work and child-care during the pandemic?

Conversations are opinions of our readers and are subject to the Code of Conduct. The Star does not endorse these opinions.

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Russia arrests another ex-governor. Mikhail Men: an unremarkable lawmaker, but a prominent bureaucrat and a lasting administrator

Acting with special permission from the Federation Council, state investigators arrested Mikhail Men on Wednesday, November 18, on charges of embezzling 700 million rubles ($9.2 million) from the Ivanovo region, where he served as governor from 2005 to 2013. The ex-head of Russia’s Construction Industry, Housing, and Utilities Sector Ministry, the son of a famous priest, and currently an auditor for Russia’s Accounts Chamber, Men isn’t expected to spend long in jail, an anonymous source told the news agency Interfax. Instead, detectives reportedly plan to ask a judge to release him on his own recognizance. Meduza reviews Mr. Men’s eventful biography.

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NT Police arrest men over Katherine hit and run that left two people hospitalised

Northern Territory Police have arrested two men in relation to a hit-and-run incident that took a violent turn in Katherine on Tuesday night.

At about 9:45pm a group of people were walking across Katherine Terrace towards Lindsay Street, when a Toyota Hilux struck a female pedestrian, NT Police said.

Police said the driver stopped and attempted to assist the woman, but a man then allegedly assaulted the driver, stole the Toyota Hilux and then drove over the legs of the injured woman.

The man and another person then drove off in the vehicle, with the police in pursuit.

The injured woman and the male driver were both taken to Katherine Hospital.

NT Police said the stolen vehicle was located in a nearby remote community on Wednesday.

A 26-year-old man was arrested for the alleged theft of the vehicle and charged with recklessly endangering life, aggravated assault and unlawful use of a motor vehicle.

A 21-year-old man was arrested in Katherine for the alleged assault of a 39-year-old man.

He was charged with aggravated assault and breach of bail.

The two men will face Katherine Local Court today.

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5 men arrested for rioting after 61-year-old found unconscious at North Bridge Road

SINGAPORE: Five men were arrested on Monday (Nov 16) for rioting after a 61-year-old man was found unconscious at a void deck, the police said in a news release.

The police were alerted at about 9.50am on Sunday after the 61-year-old was found unconscious and bleeding at the void deck of Block 9, North Bridge Road. He was taken to Tan Tock Seng Hospital.

Officers from Central Police Division established the identities of the five men, aged between 21 and 41 years old, and arrested them on Monday.

“Preliminary investigations revealed that the victim is known to one of the men and they had purportedly attacked the victim due to a dispute,” the police said.

The five men will be charged in court on Tuesday.

Anyone found guilty of rioting could be jailed for up to seven years and caned. 

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