Thursday, June 9, 2011

NATO official: Gadhafi a legitimate target -- BREAKING NEWS

A U.N. resolution justifies the targeting of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi, a senior NATO military official with operational knowledge of the Libya mission told CNN Thursday.

Asked by CNN whether Gadhafi was being targeted, the NATO official declined to give a direct answer. The resolution applies to Gadhafi because, as head of the military, he is part of the control and command structure and therefore a legitimate target, the official said.

NATO has been ramping up pressure on the regime, employing helicopters last weekend for the first time against Gadhafi's forces. Explosions are heard often in Tripoli, evidence of allied air strikes.

NATO began bombing Libya on March 31, under a U.N. mandate to protect civilians who have been targeted by Gadhafi's military.

Resolution 1973 said allied forces could use "all necessary measures" to protect civilians.

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said Wednesday it is time to start planning for what to do in Libya after Gadhafi's departure "because Gadhafi's reign of terror is coming to an end."

In statement broadcast on state media, Gadhafi vowed a day before that "we will not surrender," even as NATO airstrikes bombarded his compound in Tripoli. (read more)

Tenants priced out of the housing market as rents rise

Increased tenant demand and low levels of rental property coming onto the market pushed rents higher in the three months to April, according to the latest RICS Residential Lettings Survey.

The RICS said that 42 per cent more surveyors reported rents rose rather than fell in the three months to April. It added that rents in some areas have now risen so sharply that previously affordable homes are now unattainable to many, as an increasing number of renters are priced out of the market.

The organisation said that the strict lending criteria is forcing many people to rent rather than buy. As a result, surveyors report that many people have little choice but to rent. 35 per cent more respondents reported demand rose rather than fell – the highest level for over two years.

Despite an upturn in new instructions, supply to the market still remains unable to keep up with demand. Tenants are staying longer, resulting in less availability, while fewer landlords are selling their properties at the end of a tenancy. Just 2.8 per cent of landlords sold property in the three months to April (down from 4 per cent).

RICS spokesperson James Scott-Lee said:"Although we are beginning to see more mortgages aimed at first-time buyers, many potential home owners are still restricted from getting a foot on the property ladder, leading to increased demand in an already oversubscribed rental market. There has been a small uplift in supply, but the imbalance between demand and availability can only mean rents will continue to rise."

Last month it emerged that increasing rents are leading to demise of the love nest, as couples can no longer afford to live alone. According to flatsharing website easyroommate.co.uk, one in nine people looking to rent will be moving in with a partner in order to halve rent responsibilities. (read more)

German E. coli death toll rises further -- now at 27

German health authorities confirmed two more deaths due to a virulent bacteria outbreak, they said Thursday, bringing the total number of dead in Europe to 27. All but one were in Germany.

The rate of infection is slowing down, but the number of infections continues to rise, the Robert Koch Institut said. The number of people infected with E. coli now stands at 2,808, of whom 722 have the severe form of the intestinal illness.

The European Union on Wednesday agreed to pay 210 million euros ($307 million) to farmers who suffered losses due to the E.coli outbreak.

The figure is up considerably from the 150 million euros EU agriculture officials proposed Tuesday, and Dacion Ciolos, the EU's agriculture commissioner, said that figure may change again. (read more)

New report shows Premier League wages still rising -- while the common man goes bankrupt

A new report from accountancy firm Deloitte has revealed that English Premier League wages are continuing to rise at a quicker rate than club revenues.

In publishing their 20th Annual Review of Football Finance, Deloitte also revealed that revenues broke the two billion euro barrier ($2.9 billion) in season 2009/2010, although this was offset by the fact that wages now take up 68 per cent of that revenue.

The exact figures confirmed that the Premier League continues to be the world's richest domestic league, with the 20 clubs earning 2.03 billion euros ($2.94 billion), a figure which is expected to rise to 2.2 billion euros ($3.19 billion) for the season just gone on the back of a new television deal.

This shows an increase of 49 million euros ($71m) on the previous year, although that improvement is tempered by a 64 million euros ($93m) rise in wages, taking total payroll costs to 1.4 billion euros ($2 billion). (read more)

China to develop N. Korea trade zones

China has broken ground on two economic development zones in North Korea, in a tentative sign that the secretive Leninist state is warming to Chinese-style economic reforms.

China's commerce ministry said on Thursday the countries would develop two "government-led, enterprise-based and market-oriented" economic zones close to the Chinese border.

There have been numerous attempts by Chinese entrepreneurs, provincial officials and even the UN to promote cross-border economic co-operation, with limited results. Thursday's announcement marked the first time the two allies had jointly launched such an initiative.

After ceremonies attended by Chen Deming, China's commerce minister, and Chang Sung-taek, administrative director of the Korean Workers' party, the two sides said the zones would provide "a platform to promote economic and trade co-operation with the rest of the world". Mr Chang is also the brother-in-law of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il.

Mr Kim has visited China three times in the past year, fuelling speculation the two countries are discussing closer economic ties. China already provides extensive aid to prop up its communist neighbour.

One economic zone will be located in the North Korean border city of Rajin-Sonbong (Rason). The other will be built on the undeveloped islands of Hwanggumpyong and Wihwa. Projects include the planned rebuilding of a road from China to Rason, a new cement factory, electricity infrastructure and modernisation of Rason's port. (read more)

Nuclear agency refers Syria to Security Council

The United Nations' nuclear watchdog agency Thursday found that Syria built a covert nuclear reactor and failed to comply with demands for information on the facility.

The International Atomic Energy Agency's strongly worded resolution referred Syria to the U.N. Security Council for further deliberation.

Syria has been repeatedly questioned over whether a nuclear facility existed at the Dair Alzour site, which was bombed by Israeli aircraft in September 2007. Syria has said it was a non-nuclear military site.

The IAEA approved the resolution with 17 in favor and six against. There were 11 abstentions and one absence.

The United States welcomed the findings and said it was step toward upholding nonproliferation rules.

"As the IAEA reports, with assistance from North Korea, Syria attempted to build a secret nuclear reactor capable of producing large amounts of nuclear weapons-usable plutonium, but with no apparent legitimate civilian purpose," the White House said in a statement. "Syria has stonewalled and obstructed the efforts of the IAEA to investigate the nuclear reactor for years, refusing to provide access to associated sites, personnel and documents in violation of Syria's freely-accepted legal obligations."

Syria claimed Israeli missiles that destroyed the building at the site were the source of uranium particles, according to an IAEA report issued in 2009. (read more)

Pentagon sees Libya military costs soar -- What happened to, "It'll be over in a week"?

US military operations in Libya are on course to cost hundreds of millions of dollars more than the Pentagon estimated, according to figures obtained by the Financial Times.

Robert Gates, the outgoing secretary of defence, said last month that the Pentagon expected to spend “somewhere in the ball park of $750m” in the 2011 fiscal year as part of efforts to protect the Libyan people.

But according to a Pentagon memo which includes a detailed update on the progress and pace of operations, by mid-May US operations in Libya had cost $664m, a figure confirmed by the Department of Defence.

The document, entitled the “United States Contribution to Operation Unified Protector’’, adds that US costs are running at a rate of about $2m a day or $60m a month. The memo has been circulating on Capitol Hill since last week. The DoD declined to comment on the increased costs of the operation.

The pace of spending is higher than reported by the DoD comptroller’s office in late March. In a congressional hearing, Pentagon officials said the US had spent about $550m on Libya, at a rate of about $40m a month.

If spending remains at the increased rate until the end of the recently extended Nato authorisation period, the DoD could face an extra bill of about $274m to pay for a combination of air strikes, refuelling operations and intelligence-gathering missions, putting further strain on its budget. (read more)

Iran now considering testing nuclear bomb: 'The day after Iran's first nuclear test is a normal day'

Any mention of an Iranian nuclear weapon is taboo in the Islamic Republic, which insists that its nuclear programme is entirely for peaceful, civil purposes. So it is remarkable, to say the least, that an article has appeared on the Gerdab website, run by Iran's Revolutionary Guards, anticipating the day after Iran's first test of a nuclear warhead. Here is a translation of the text:

The day after Iran's first nuclear test is a normal day.
The day after Islamic Republic of Iran's first nuclear test will be an ordinary day for us Iranians but in the eyes of some of us there will be a new sparkle.
It's a good day. It's seven in the morning. The sun is not fully up yet but everywhere is bright. In the northern hemisphere many countries are beginning the day...
The day before, probably in central deserts of Iran, where once Americans and some other Western countries wanted to bury their nuclear waste, an underground nuclear explosion has taken place. The strength of the explosion was not so great as to cause severe damage to the region nor so weak that Iranian scientists face any problems in running their tests.
Today is a normal day like any other. Like 90% of the year, there is news about Iran, and these are the headlines which can be seen on foreign news sites:
Reuters: Iran detonated its nuclear bomb
CNN: Iran detonated nuclear bomb
Al-Jazeera: The second Islamic nuclear bomb was tested
Al-Arabia: The Shia nuclear bomb was tested
Yahoo! News: Nuclear explosion in Iran
Jerusalem Post: Mullahs obtained nuclear weapon
Washington Post: Nuclear explosion in Iran, Shock and despair in Tel Aviv
Meanwhile, the domestic media will offer many congratulations to the Hidden Imam and the Supreme Leader:
Keyhan: Iran's first nuclear bomb was tested
Jomhoori-e-eslami: Iran successfully carried out a nuclear test
Iran: By order of the president, Iran's 100% homemade nuclear bomb was tested
Ettela'at: Iran's much anticipated nuclear bomb exploded

This strange, hypothetical, article, which first appeared on April 24, hammers home again and again the message that an Iranian nuclear test will not lead to disaster. On the contrary, life will go as before except that Iranians will feel better about themselves. (read more)

SWAT team launch dawn raid on family home to collect unpaid student loans

A father was dragged from his home and handcuffed in front of his children by a SWAT team looking for his estranged wife - to collect her unpaid student loans.

A stunned Kenneth Wright had his front door kicked in by the raiding party at 6 am yesterday before being dragged onto his front porch, handcuffed and led to a police car with his three children.

He says he was then detained for six hours while officers looked for his wife - who no longer lives at the house.

Mr Wright was later told by Stockton police that the order to send in the SWAT team came from The U.S. Department of Education who were looking for his estranged wife to collect defaulted loan payments.

Speaking to ABC News 10, a visibly shaken Mr Wright described what happened when he was woken by a banging on his front door.

He said: 'I look out of my window and I see 15 police officers.

Dressed in his boxer shorts, Mr Wright says he rushed downstairs and was about to open the door when it was kicked open.

An officer then grabbed him by the neck before dragging him out onto the front lawn.

His 3, 7, and 11-year-old children were also removed by officers and put in a waiting police car.

'He had his knee on my back and I had no idea why they were there,' Mr Wright said.

'They put me in handcuffs in that hot patrol car for six hours, traumatising my kids.' (read more)

U.S. Treasuries at risk of ‘junk’ rating: Fitch

U.S. Treasury bonds, seen worldwide as the risk-free investment, could be labeled “junk” if the government misses debt payments by Aug. 15, credit agency Fitch Ratings warned on Wednesday.

The ratings would go back up once the government fulfills its debt obligations, but probably not to the current triple-A level, Fitch said on Wednesday in a stark statement about the impact of a short-lived default on U.S. credit-worthiness.

The statement follows similar warnings by Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s, but Fitch was the first among the big-three rating agencies to say U.S. Treasury securities could be downgraded, even for a short period of time, to a non-investment grade.

The idea of a brief U.S. default, sometimes called a technical default, has been growing among some members of the Republican Party, who believe it would be an acceptable price to pay if it forces the White House to deal with runaway spending.

“Even a so-called ‘technical default’ would suggest a crisis of ‘governance’ from a sovereign credit and rating perspective,” Fitch said in a statement. (read more)

CNN: 48% believe a Great Depression is coming within a year

Alternate headline: Great Depression worries go mainstream. I guess we can count Barack Obama among the 51% who aren’t worried about it, since he’s not even worrying about a double-dip recession. CNN’s latest poll shows an almost even split between Americans who expect a big collapse within a year, and, er, Americans who aren’t quite as worried about it:

President Barack Obama’s overall approval rating has dropped below 50 percent as a growing number of Americans worry that the U.S. is likely to slip into another Great Depression within the next 12 months, according to a new national poll.

The three-point difference makes this a dead heat within the margin of error. Moreover, this is the most pessimistic survey result we’ve seen on the subject. In 2008, only 38% expected another Great Depression, which rose to 41% in 2009 shortly after Obama took office. In the two years of the Obamanomics recovery, it’s jumped seven points — which shows just how effective people believe Obamanomics to be.

His Osama bin Laden bounce has dissipated, CNN’s analysis concludes, especially among Republicans. Two weeks ago, 27% of Republicans approved of his performance, but that’s been cut almost in half to 14%. Independents have also started peeling away, with a five point drop in the same period from 47% to 42%. His overall approval rating dropped from 54/48 — apparently a math-challenged result in May from CNN that adds up to 102%, so I’m guessing that’s a typo for 54/46 — to 48/48 today. (read more)

What are the chances the U.S. economy could eventually trigger violence in our country?

For the first time maybe since the Vietnam War or certainly since the civil rights movement, there are some darkening storm clouds on the civility horizon. A growing number of voices are continuing to suggest that if this economy doesn't turn around, and people can't start feeling optimistic about their futures again, we could be headed for some ugly scenarios. A new CNN poll says 48 percent of Americans think the country is headed for another Great Depression in the next twelve months. That is a stunning number.

James Carville, who in 1992 told Bill Clinton, "It's the economy stupid," says the current economy is so bad, there is a heightened risk of civil unrest. And unless things start changing for the better, it's a distinct possibility.

Our country is bankrupt and our government refuses to do anything about it. Unemployment is stuck above 9 percent. Millions of Americans are out of work, some for a number of years now. The value of peoples' homes is sinking below the break-even line. In the most recent jobs report, more than half of the private sector jobs that were added were at McDonald's.

For young people coming out of the nation's colleges and universities, their families having invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in their education, the outlook is grim.

Add in the early record breaking heat in the cities in the East and we might not even have to wait until 2012. It could become a long, hot, ugly summer. (read more)

Falling Stock Tells The Story TEPCO Doesn't Want You To Know


With blatant disrespect for human health Tokyo Electric Power Company has failed to provide accurate information regarding the amount of radiation that has been released to date, and the full spectrum of isotopes that were emitted. Reactor 3 at the Fukushima Daiichi plant was operating on MOX fuel which exploded, sending highly radioactive Plutonium into the atmosphere.

his is the story that TEPCO will do anything to keep you from talking about. They have admitted through tight lips that yes, Plutonium was discharged, and yes, it has been found outside of the power plant. They would have you believe that by spraying a green chemical agent on the grounds they are able to contain all of the MOX fuel elements.

The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Disaster set many firsts for the nuclear industry:

1) Never before has a nuclear meltdown occurred in which MOX fuel elements have been discharged from the site
2) Never before has a nuclear meltdown occurred in multiple reactors simultaneously
3) Never before has a nuclear meltdown occurred containing these amounts of melted corium
4) Never before has a nuclear meltdown occurred in this densely populated of an area
5) Never before has a nuclear meltdown occurred this close to one of the largest populated cities in the world (Tokyo)
6) Never before has a nuclear meltdown occurred has spent fuel pool damage been so extensive

The nuclear industry is facing challenges in the upcoming years at Fukushima Daiichi that most physicists felt were impossible. The regulating agencies since conception have moved forward on the belief that "Reactors don't make mistakes, people do". In the Soviet Union, risks in nuclear power plant designs were a classified secret, a fact that led to the disaster at Chernobyl. (read more)

US government "shaking down" dual national foreigners

This morning I enjoyed a sumptuous buffet breakfast at the Hotel RIU with my longtime friend and Panamanian attorney, Augusto. He’s just had a new baby, and from the way he was pounding the coffee, Augusto’s not getting much sleep.

He’s also swamped at the office; Augusto is a key figure in a rapidly growing practice area for his Panamanian law firm– tax compliance. Funny thing, though, it’s not Panamanian tax compliance, it’s US tax compliance.

That’s right.

There are a lot of Panamanians who, for one reason or another, have US citizenship. During Latin America’s tumultuous times several decades ago, many families with means temporarily moved to the United States so that they could watch the turmoil from their television sets instead of their living room windows.

Most of these families popped out a child or two while living in the US, and, per US law, those children were automatically US citizens.

A few years later, they moved back. The kids grew up in Panama, became adults in Panama, went on to take over the family business, etc. Along they way they had a number of bank accounts in Panama, owned Panamanian companies, formed Panamanian foundations, and definitely earned healthy profits.

As it turns out, however, those Panamanians who were born in the US were required to file tax returns and disclosure forms annually with the IRS, as well pay the US government its “fair share” of their income. And now, with so much stink being raised about offshore tax compliance for US citizens, these dual nationals find themselves caught in a tough situation. (read more)

Jim Rogers: US Is Nearing Even Worse Financial Crisis














The U.S. is approaching a financial crisis worse than 2008, Jim Rogers, chief executive, Rogers Holdings, warned CNBC Wednesday.

"The debts that are in this country are skyrocketing," he said. "In the last three years the government has spent staggering amounts of money and the Federal Reserve is taking on staggering amounts of debt.

"When the problems arise next time…what are they going to do? They can’t quadruple the debt again. They cannot print that much more money. It’s gonna be worse the next time around."

The well-known investor believes the government won't shut down in August if agreement isn't reached on raising the debt ceiling, but he did say "draconian cuts" are needed in taxes and spending, especially military spending.

"We’ve got troops in 150 countries around the world. They’re not doing us any good, they’re making enemies. They’re costing us a fortune," he said.

Rogers said he is "not long anything in the U.S." and short on American tech stocks. He owns Chinese stocks as well as commodities and would love the world price of silver and gold to come down so he could "pick up the phone and buy more."

He said he owns Chinese stocks, currencies and commodities, adding the Chinese yuan will be a safer currency than the dollar. (read more)

Rich, Famous and Powerful Converge at Bilderberg while majority of world languishes in poverty

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, naturally, isn't attending this year, and his likely successor Christine Lagarde is in China, but the Bilderberg Conference which kicks off in the Swiss resort of St. Moritz on Thursday retains its conspiratorial chic and pulling power.

The attendee list of Bilderberg is still pretty much the only thing that is not a closely guarded secret, as 120 of the world's richest and most powerful people meet behind closed doors, this time at the Suvretta House hotel in Switzerland, a venue which not only boasts a "fairytale castle" design, but also its own "Teddy World."

U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron and Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne are known to have attended in the past, although it seems unlikely that either will attend this week.

A spokesperson at the U.K. Treasury press office said it "didn't know" whether or not Osborne would go this year, but promised to call CNBC.com back. They did not. Given the secretive spirit of Bilderberg, that could well be taken as a confirmation.

The first Bilderberg meeting in 1954 was an attempt to stamp out post-war anti-Americanism in Europe, bringing together senior U.S. and European figures to meet and discuss the international challenges of the day.

Since then, the rich and powerful have continued to meet. The 2010 event, in Sitges, Spain, included on its agenda "The Growing Influence of Cyber Technology," "Security in a Proliferated World," "Promises of Medical Science," and "Can We Feed the World." according to its official website. (read more)

Louis Wayne Cuff arrested for using food stamps to buy lobster and other luxury foods, then reselling them

Buying $141.78 worth of lobster, steak and Mountain Dew with a Bridge card violates no laws or rules.

But turning around and selling the stuff for 50 percent of its value, well ... that's a different matter.

Louis Wayne Cuff, a 33-year-old Menominee man was arraigned in 95th District Court in Menominee last week for food stamp trafficking, a felony. Cuff's arrest resulted from a month-long joint investigation by the State Department of Human Services' Inspector General and the Menominee County Sheriff's Department. Cuff allegedly bought the lobster, steak and Mountain Dew and resold it for 50 cents on the dollar.

It began with a receipt allegedly found in the parking lot of Angeli's County Market, in the Upper Peninsula town of Menominee.

It showed that somebody went into Angeli's in February and bought six lobsters, two porterhouse steaks, and five 24-packs of Mountain Dew using a Michigan Bridge Card. (read more)

"Green Buildings" Hazardous to Health?

The buildings commonly referred to as "green" could actually be hazardous to your health, according to a new report.

That's one of many warnings out of a new report from the Institute of Medicine, which tracked the potential impact of climate change on indoor environments.

The report cautions that climate change can negatively and directly affect indoor air quality in several ways. But the scientists behind the study warn that homeowners and businesses could also be making the problem worse by pursuing untested or risky energy-efficiency upgrades.

"Even with the best intentions, indoor environmental quality issues may emerge with interventions that have not been sufficiently well screened for their effects on occupant safety and health," the report said.

To save costs and cut down on emissions, building owners typically find ways to seal off potential leaks and conserve energy. But in "weatherizing" the buildings, they also change the indoor environment.

By making buildings more airtight, building owners could increase "indoor-air contaminant concentrations and indoor-air humidity," the report said. By adding insulation, they could trigger moisture problems. By making improvements to older homes, crews could stir up hazardous material ranging from asbestos to harmful caulking -- though that problem is not unique to energy improvements. (read more)

Sleep-walking into ANOTHER war? U.S. steps up covert missions in Yemen as conflict leaves government clinging to power - 9th June 2011

The Obama administration has intensified the covert U.S. war in Yemen, hitting militant suspects with armed drones and fighter jets.

The accelerated campaign has occurred in recent weeks as violent conflict in Yemen has left the government in Sana'a struggling to cling to power.

A report in the New York Times said Yemeni troops that had been battling militants linked to al Qaeda in the south have been pulled back to the capital.

American officials hope the strikes will help prevent militants from consolidating power.

A drone strike by U.S. special operations forces on May 5 targeted U.S.-born al Qaeda cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, but a malfunction caused rockets to miss him by a matter of minutes, two U.S. officials said.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss intelligence matters.

The recent operations come after a nearly year-long pause in American airstrikes, which were halted amid concerns that poor intelligence had led to bungled missions and civilian deaths that were undercutting the goals of the secret campaign.

Officials in Washington told the Times said that U.S. and Saudi spy services had been receiving more information - from electronic eavesdropping and informants - about the possible locations of militants. Read More

Hunt for the King's Island theme park 'sex attacker'... but will e-fit of 'woman with moustache' really help police catch MALE predator? , Mason,Ohio

Police hoping for clues from this e-fit of a male 'sex attacker' might be waiting a while - as it appears to be little more than a drawing of a woman with a moustache stuck on top.

A mother reported that her son had been assaulted after an incident at King's Island theme park in Mason, Ohio.

Police had little information to go on, other than a description of the man.

Officers said they will be releasing more details about the alleged attack as they become available.

Spokesman for King's Island, Don Helbig said: 'At approximately 6:30pm on June 3, 2011, a mother reported to Mason Police that her juvenile son was assaulted at King's Island.

'The Mason Police Department and King's Island are working together diligently to ascertain the identity of the suspect.

'King's Island has a long established history of providing a safe, secure and family-friendly environment and takes this allegation very seriously.

'The Mason Police Department will release further information as it becomes available.'

Parents at the park voiced concerns to a local news channel.

One mother Annette Ward told Nine News: 'If a child was assaulted what happened? Is it something specific that we should be told?'

Another woman told wlwt: 'We live in a good town but it doesn't mean that bad people don't come to good areas. Bad people come everywhere.'

Police are asking that anyone who identifies the suspect from the e-fit come forward with information. Source

Mexican Drug Wars: Teenager survives being tortured, shot… and hanged from bridge - 9th May 2011

A teenager with a gunshot wound and signs of torture was found hanging over a motorway with a dead body strung up next to him.

The body of a third man was found below the bridge on the busy road in what appears to have been a hit by a drug cartel.

Witnesses told police that a group of gunmen got out of a vehicle and threw the men over the side of a bridge at around 10am, stopping traffic along one of the busiest routes in Mexico's third largest city, Monterrey.

All three men had been shot and tortured, and their hands bound with duct tape said a police investigator, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

One man, thought to be in his early 20s, was bound with a mobile phone in his hands, a possible sign that he was considered an informant.

None of the victims have been identified.

On Sunday, two other men, one with a foot cut off, had been hanged from a pedestrian bridge in Monterrey. Both died.

The city has seen a rise in violence over the past two years after warring cartels began fighting for control of drug traffic.

The violence occurred in Michoacan, the same region where the infamous drug cartel La Familia is based. Police discovered 21 bodies piled up at six different sites in the outskirts of the capital Morelia - thought to be the work of the gang.

Attorney general Jesus Montejano said all the murders are connected but that it was too soon to know the motives for the crimes.

The victims appeared to have been asphyxiated - either hanged or drowned - and all showed signs of torture.

In the Pacific coast resort city of Acapulco, police also unearthed ten bodies this week - two women and eight men - in a mass grave. Read More

Lauren Spierer's Family offer $100,000 reward as 'Corey Rossman' last man she was with was in 'fight' but 'remembers nothing' - 9th June 2011

The family of missing Lauren Spierer have offered a $100,000 reward for any information that might lead to her whereabouts.

The 20-year-old Indiana University student was last seen on Friday heading back to her Bloomington apartment after a night out, police said.

In an emotional appeal Lauren's father Robert urged land owners to check their garages, fields, sheds, and wooded areas and if they found anything to call police.

'Anything small could be big,' he said at a press conference today.

It has also emerged the male student she was with that night was caught up in a fight at Lauren's apartment, but has no memory of it, according to his lawyer.

Corey Rossman, 21, who was the last person to see Lauren before she disappeared, can't even remember being punched in the face after the two returned to her building from nearby Kilroy's Sports Bar, his lawyer Carl Salzmann said.

The pair were captured on surveillance video returning to her apartment at about 2:30am last Friday, where the altercation between him and several other men occurred, according to reports.

They then left the building about 10 minutes later, police said.

'She was helping him home at that point,' Salzmann told the Journal News. Read More


Girl, 5, Drowned18-month-old Jermane Johnson Jr because she didn't like him and he cried to much - 9th June 2011

A five-year-old girl dragged a toddler to a bathtub and drowned him because he made too much noise and cried too much, according to police.

It was at first thought that the death of 18-month-old Jermane Johnson Jr was an accidental drowning at a relative's home in Kansas.

But after social workers questioned the girl who was in the house with him, she told them that she didn’t like the toddler because he 'made too much noise', and 'cried too much', police said.

She then indicated that she drowned him on purpose, police said.

Kansas City police and local juvenile court officials said they could not remember ever investigating such a serious case involving such a young suspect.

The children had been left in the house in the care of a 16-year-old girl, who reportedly has mental disabilities, on Friday when the adult in the house went to pick up a relative from the bus stop.

It was then the five-year-old is said to have dragged him to the bath tub, which had not been drained.

Jermane lived in the St. Louis area but was being cared for by relatives in the 2600 block of Elmwood Avenue in Kansas City. He had been staying at the house for several weeks, police said.

Mary Marquez, a juvenile officer with Jackson County Family Court, told the Kansas City Star: 'I’ve been here 26 years, and I’ve never seen anything like this.

'With such a young age, there is no way you could prove intent.'

Ms Marquez said she could not divulge where the child was staying, but police said they never arrested the girl.

His father, Jermane Johnson Sr, couldn’t be reached by phone but wrote on his Facebook wall on Monday: 'I just got asked the hardest question that no parent should never answer. What kind of caskets do I want to put my son in.'

According to the City Star, police said they are still looking into other aspects of the case, including the welfare of other children in the home and the decision to leave the children alone on Friday. Source

Kids That Kill

Carl Newton Mahan was six years old when he killed his friend Cecil Van Hoose, 8, over a piece of scrap iron on May 18, 1929 in eastern Kentucky. Source

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In 1968, 11-year-old Mary Bell was convicted of killing two young boys, 4-year-old Martin Brown and 3-year-old Brian Howe. Source

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In 2008, an 8-year-old boy, whose name was not released, was arrested and charged with shooting and killing his father and his father’s friend in their St. Johns, Arizona home. Source

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Amarjeet Sada just 8 years old from India became the youngest ever serial Killer, Killing 3 other children Source

A woman's best friend: The dog who inherited $12MILLION from billionaire Leona Helmsley dies - 9th June 2011

Money can't buy you everything it seems - even if you are a dog.

Leona Helmsley's pampered Maltese 'Trouble', who inherited $12million from the real estate billionaire, has died at the age of 12.

That's 84 in dog years.

Helmsley, who died in 2007, cut two grandchildren out of her will and evicted her son's widow after his death, left part of her fortune to the dog - although a judge later reduced it to $2million.

And she even wanted the pooch buried with her in the 12,000-square-foot family mausoleum at Sleepy Hollow Cemetery in Westchester County, New York.

However this was not to be.

Stephen Byelick, a member of the cemetery's board, said: 'You cannot bury pets in a cemetery. The same rules apply to mausoleums.'

A spokesman for the Helmsley Sandcastle Hotel in Sarasotam, Florida, where Trouble lived out the rest of her days in style, said: 'Trouble was cremated, and her remains are being privately retained.

'The funds held in trust for her care have reverted to The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust for charitable purposes.'

Trouble retired to Florida in 2007 shortly after Helmsley's death and was cared for by Carl Lekic, the general manager of hotel.

Mr Lekic said he could manage on $100,000 a year: $8,000 for grooming, $1,200 for food and the rest for his fee and a full-time security guard.

Security was necessary as Trouble had received 20 to 30 death and kidnapping threats.

The pooch had a life of luxury after being bought at a Kennel Club pet shop on Lexington Ave, New York, and was brought to her new home in a Mercedes-Benz stretch limo. Trouble, who was always immaculately dressed, accompanied Helmsley everywhere and was no stranger to Helmsley's private jet when she travelled to her homes around the U.S.

A source told the New York Daily News the dog was bought for her 'to help Leona get over her grief over Harry's death.'

Helmsley left $3million for the upkeep of her final resting place where she is buried with her husband, Harry , who died in 2007.

Helmsley, who died in her Connecticut home became known as a symbol of 1980s greed and earned the nickname 'the Queen of Mean' after her 1988 indictment and subsequent conviction for tax evasion.

One employee had quoted her as saying: 'Only the little people pay taxes.'

She served 18 months in federal prison on tax evasion charges in the early 1990s. Source

Timothy and Rebecca Wyland convicted of neglect after relying on prayer to heal baby girl with 'baseball-sized' face tumour - 9th June 2011

An abnormal growth of blood vessels on her left eye could have blinded her.

But Christian couple Timothy and Rebecca Wyland relied on faith healing instead of taking infant daughter Alayna to a doctor.

Her condition has now improved under state-ordered medical care but her parents have been convicted in Oregon of felony criminal mistreatment.

Alayna was born in December 2009 and developed the blood vessels that covered her left eye and threatened her vision.

But her parents belong to unorthodox Oregon City congregation the Followers of Christ, which relies on faith healing.

So rather than taking their daughter to a doctor, they relied on prayer, anointing her with oil and laying hands on her.

Clackamas County sheriff's deputy Emile Burley testified in May that he made a child welfare check at the family home in June 2010, and instantly noticed a 'large bulging area' on Alayna's left eye.

It was 'the size of a golf ball, maybe a little larger', he said - and photos shown in court suggest at one point that it was as big as a baseball.

Her parents said in another hearing last July they wouldn't have willingly taken her to a doctor because it would violate their religious beliefs.

Around 20 supporters from their church were in court to hear the verdict, made by the jury in an hour, and sentencing was set for June 24. Read More

UN we need your HELP mass MURDER threat!! Australia considers cull of 1.2million camels 'to save the planet' - 9th June 2011

Australia is considering proposals to kill all the wild camels that roam the outback as part of its contribution to fighting global warming.

The 1.2 million camels, considered pests by farmers and conservationists, each produce a methane equivalent of one ton of carbon dioxide a year.

That makes them collectively one of the Australia's biggest emitters of greenhouse gases.

But if the government goes ahead, politicians will be braced for a backlash from animal lovers, who are already a powerful voice against annual kangaroo culls.

Tim Moore, managing director of Adelaide-based Northwest Carbon, a commercial company, proposed the extermination idea to the government.

He said: 'They live anywhere from 30 to 50 years in the wild and because there's 1.2 million of them their numbers and the gases they produce are doubling every nine years.'

The camels were brought to the country by Afghan migrant workers in the 1800s to help with building roads and laying railroad tracks.

Under Mr Moore's plan, which will see the government awarding carbon credits to individuals and organisations involved in the cull, camels will be shot from helicopters or four-wheel-drive vehicles.

Others would be rounded up and sent to an abattoir for either human or pet consumption.

Culls of camels that roam in the outback reaches of four states have been carried out before, but Mr Moore's plan would involve wiping out every one of the creatures. Read More

Amina Arraf kidnapped U.S. lesbian blogger in Syria does she actually exist...? or did she steal Jelena Lecic's identity? - 9th June 2011

Image: Jelena Lecic said that the identity theft has put her in danger.

The reported kidnap of a U.S. lesbian blogger in Syria has come into question after a woman in Britain claimed that photos being used to call for her release are actually her.

Thousands of campaigners joined protest groups after media outlets across the world reported that Amina Arraf, a blogger known for her frank posts about her sexuality and her open criticism of President Bashar Assad had been detained.

But a woman in London came forward today claiming the photos being circulated were actually her, raising questions about the existence of the blogger.

Jelena Lecic found out that pictures of her were being used by the blogger when she saw her photo used next to an article in a British newspaper.

It reported that on Monday the supposed U.S. citizen was bundled into a car by three men in their 20s in civilian clothes in Damascus, the capital of Syria, where homosexuality is illegal.

'That is absolutely my picture taken in the last year in Paris,' Miss Lecic told the BBC's Newsnight.

'It was [taken] on my birthday. I don't know how this happened. I was very upset to see my picture.

'I've never met her [Amina]. I'm not part of her blog. I'm not friends with her,' said the Croatian who is working as an adminstrator at the Royal College in London.

'I'm very upset because you have privacy settings on Facebook and obviously it doesn't work because anyone can hijack your picture.

'This has put me in danger. This person is a gay activist in Syria. I really don't feel comfortable.' Read More

Lee Tansey and Rickton Mark Henry Jailed for their role in Three Robberies, Watch as they threatened Security Guard with a Machete - 9th June 2011

Wielding a two-foot machete and a sledgehammer, this is the terrifying moment when two bank robbers threaten a cash delivery man.

The security worker cowers behind a small wooden table as the men try to snatch his case of money. A third man with a crowbar took a member of bank staff to another room where money was stored.

The trio eventually fled the Lloyds TSB bank in Elland, West Yorkshire, with £25,000 from the cash box and a further £150,000 from the safe.

As the shocking CCTV footage was made public for the first time, two men have been jailed for their role in three bank raids in West Yorkshire and Lancashire.

Lee Tansey, 33, admitted three robberies, including the one in Elland, while Rickton Mark Henry, 31, pleaded guilty to a separate armed robbery in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire.

Tansey was told he must serve 11 years behind bars while co-defendant Henry was ordered to serve eight years and eight months by a judge at Leeds Crown Court yesterday. Read More

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Ineta Dzinguviene, 26, suffocated her baby son with clingfilm within hours of his birth - 9th June 2011

A mother who murdered her newborn son by smothering him with clingfilm was jailed for life today.

Ineta Dzinguviene, 26, killed Paulius by placing the plastic wrap over his nose and mouth then put a carrier bag on his head and hid his body in a holdall.

She had managed to hide her pregnancy from new friends in Fraserburgh, Aberdeenshire, after moving from Lithuania.

Today she returned to the dock after being convicted of murder after a harrowing trial last month.

Her QC claimed Dzinguviene 'still could not explain' what happened to her son.

Judge John Beckett QC sentenced Dzinguviene, who is wanted in her homeland for a similar killing, to life behind bars. Prosecutors in the Baltic state want to question her over the death of a newborn girl two years ago.

The mother wept as the judge told her there was 'no justification for such a dreadful crime'.

He added: 'This was an innocent child - your own baby who was no more than a few hours old.

'He was wholly defenceless and extremely vulnerable. He should have been protected and nurtured by you and instead you killed him.'

A jury last month heard how the killer’s husband Arunas Dzingus claimed not to know his wife was expecting. He instead believed she was just overweight.

Dzinguviene gave birth to her son at Fraserburgh Hospital on April 12 last year. He weighed 6lb 9oz.

However, the mother, who already had three children, quickly took him home and murdered the boy within hours.

She placed the body in a holdall which was dumped behind a roll of carpet in the close of the flats where she lived. Read More

Eveline Kelmenson, 83, suffered 'a slow death' from hypothermia as she was Tied up and robbed by Kuba Dlugosz, 33, and Szymon Wyrostek, 26 - 9th June

A spinster was gagged, bound and left to die in her bedroom by two Polish burglars, the Old Bailey heard today.

Kuba Dlugosz, 33, and Szymon Wyrostek, 26, locked 83-year-old Eveline Kelmenson inside her large north London home after stripping her of a gold necklace and wedding ring.

The Jewish pensioner, known as Lina, suffered a 'slow death' from hypothermia over the days that followed as she lay helpless on her bedroom floor unable to free herself from the restraints.

Jurors heard the break-in had taken place overnight on November 27 and 28, 2008.

But police only found her body five weeks later, on January 1 2009, after relatives became concerned that she could not be contacted.

Inside the property, a five-bedroom terraced house in Leweston Place, Stamford Hill, officers found three chisels which Dlugosz and Wyrostek had used to force entry.

Both men were 'burglars, robbers' who had committed a string of offences in their native Poland and in London, where they had arrived in 2007.

Dlugosz was arrested in July 2010 after police had linked him forensically to DNA found on one of the tools left inside the house. Wyrostek was picked up two months later in September.

The two men had entered the property through a cellar window at the front before forcing their way through a locked door on the ground floor.

Prosecutor Jonathan Laidlaw QC said: 'Having broken in to the ground floor the defendants in their search for property to steal must have come across Eveline Kelmenson. Read More

4.5 Magnitude Earthquake Baja California, Mexico - 9th June 2011

A magnitude 5.0 earthquake has struck Baja California, Mexico at a depth of just 2.3 km (1.4 miles), the quake hit at 15:22:11 UTC Thursday 9th June 2011.
The epicenter was 20 km (13 miles) from Seeley, California
No reports of Damage as yet.

Dutch find different E. coli, pull beet sprouts

Dutch authorities recalled red beet sprouts from three countries Thursday after samples were found to be contaminated with a strain of E. coli bacteria that was apparently less dangerous than the one causing Europe's deadly E. coli crisis.

German health officials, meanwhile, reported that three more people died of the ailment Thursday, raising the toll to 29 in less than six weeks.

The Dutch Food Safety Authority said laboratories were still trying to identify the Dutch strain of E. coli, but said there have been no immediate reports of serious illness from it.

Still, the agency said it was definitely not the same E. coli strain that killed 29 people, sickened 2,900 others and left hundreds with serious complications, most of them in Germany. The cause of that outbreak has so far eluded German investigators.

Only one Dutch grower, a company called Hamu, was found with contaminated beets, and other produce grown on its farms were cleared of suspicion, said Esther Filon, a spokeswoman for the Dutch regulation agency.

"It's not the same as in Germany. You can become ill, but as far as we know at this moment, it is not lethal," she told The Associated Press. (read more)

Syria crisis: Refugee surge to Turkey 'as troops mass'

Growing numbers of Syrians are escaping over the border into Turkey ahead of a feared government assault on the northern town of Jisr al-Shughour.

About 1,000 Syrians crossed the border overnight, a Turkish official said, bringing the total number of refugees in Turkey to about 1,600.

The UN's human rights chief has urged Syria not to "bludgeon" its own people.

It comes after the UK and France proposed a UN resolution condemning Syria's suppression of protests.

The draft stops short of authorising concrete action, but even so it is not clear when or if it might be put to a vote, correspondents say.

Russia and China have now said they strongly oppose the draft resolution, with Moscow saying Syria must settle its internal conflict without any foreign interference.

"The situation in this country, in our opinion, does not pose a threat to international peace and security," a Russian foreign ministry spokesman is quoted as saying by Russian state media.

The anticipated crackdown on Jisr al-Shughour is in response to claims by Damascus that armed gangs killed 120 members of the security forces there.

It says local residents have requested the army's intervention to restore peace and quiet.

But dissenting accounts say the violence was sparked by deserting soldiers, and that loyal troops have massacred peaceful civilians. (read more)

U.S. resumes airstrikes in Yemen; top insurgent believed dead

The United States has resumed airstrikes in Yemen and believes it killed a top al Qaeda insurgent there, a U.S. military official said on Thursday.

Abu Ali al-Harithi, "described as one of the most dangerous al Qaeda commanders in Shabwa province," has been killed in Yemeni security operations, state-run TV reported on Thursday, citing an official military source. The New York Times reported on Thursday that American jets killed him in an airstrike last Friday.

A U.S. military official with knowledge of the Yemen campaign told CNN that U.S. military-led air operations recently resumed after a pause of some months.

He also said the United States believes it likely killed al-Harithi in an airstrike in southern Yemen in recent days. But he cautioned its "very difficult" to confirm the killing. (read more)

Hurricane Adrian expected to remain offshore as massive storms begin to add to world's weather woes

Hurricane Adrian churned across the Pacific early Thursday as forecasters warned of dangerous surf and rip currents on the southwestern coast of Mexico.

Adrian -- a Category 1 hurricane -- could intensify into a major hurricane in the next day or two, the National Weather Service said.

The first hurricane of the season is expected to stay offshore, sparing Mexico.

But "any deviation to the right of the forecast track could bring tropical storm conditions" to parts of Mexico on Thursday and into Friday, according to the hurricane center.

Adrian's maximum sustained winds increased to nearly 80 mph (130 kph) late Wednesday.

"Additional strength is likely," the weather service said.

The storm was about 275 miles (440 kilometers) south of the town of Zihuatanejo late Wednesday.

Swells caused by the storm were expected to affect the southwestern coast of Mexico. (Source)

German E. coli death toll rises further



German health authorities confirmed two more deaths due to a virulent bacteria outbreak, they said Thursday, bringing the total number of dead in Europe to 27. All but one were in Germany.

The rate of infection is slowing down, but the number of infections continues to rise, the Robert Koch Institut said. The number of people infected with E. coli now stands at 2,808, of whom 722 have the severe form of the intestinal illness.

The European Union on Wednesday agreed to pay 210 million euros ($307 million) to farmers who suffered losses due to the E.coli outbreak.

The figure is up considerably from the 150 million euros EU agriculture officials proposed Tuesday, and Dacion Ciolos, the EU's agriculture commissioner, said that figure may change again. (read more)

Citigroup customer data stolen in cyberattack -- Is cyber crime getting out of control?

Citigroup Inc. said Thursday that hackers accessed the credit card information of North American customers in an online security breach affecting about 200,000 accounts.

The bank said it recently discovered during routine monitoring that account information for about one per cent of customers was viewed.

Citi has more than 21 million credit card customers in North America, according to its 2010 annual report. The New York-based bank didn't say exactly how many accounts were breached. Nor would it provide a regional breakdown of its North American customers, who live in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico.

The hackers were able to gain access to Citi's Account Online service to view customer names, their account numbers and contact information including email addresses. (read more)

Arizona towns empty as raging wildfire advances

A raging forest fire in eastern Arizona that has already forced thousands from their homes is headed for a pair of transmission lines that supply electricity to hundreds of thousands of people as far east as Texas.

The 1,500-square-kilometre blaze is expected to reach the power lines as early as Friday. If the lines are damaged, parts of New Mexico and Texas could face rolling blackouts.

Meanwhile, an Arizona sheriff ordered remaining residents of two towns in the path of the wildfire to evacuate by Wednesday evening. About 7,000 people live in Springerville and Eagar and surrounding areas, although many already have left.

The blaze has blackened about 157,000 hectares and destroyed 11 buildings, primarily in the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest. No serious injuries have been reported.

Fire spokesman Jim Whittington said at a briefing Wednesday night that the fire grew on the northwestern side due to driving afternoon winds, but an updated figure on its size wouldn't be available until Thursday morning.

Firefighters planned to assess the area at daybreak and would know then whether any additional structures had burned, Whittington said.

He said a dozer line on the northern end of the fire held Wednesday and crews planned to continue working on it into Thursday, when winds weren't expected to be as strong as the past few days. (read more)

State Government Shutdowns: A Dangerous Game

In early July 2005, artillery massed on the Iowa side of the state’s border with Minnesota, ready to move across the boundary line. To some, it may have been a menacing sight. But Hawkeyes and Gophers weren’t on the brink of war. Instead, the stalled shipment of military supplies -- intended for a Minnesota National Guard camp -- was the victim of a budget stalemate taking place in St. Paul.

That year, Minnesota lawmakers failed to complete work on the state budget before the July 1 start of the fiscal year, leading to a partial government shutdown. For a few days, thousands of public workers stayed home as the state ceased many non-essential functions. One result: Permits couldn’t be issued for trucks carrying oversized loads. That's why the weapons were stuck on the Iowa state line.

The story of the stalled weapons shipment reflects the broad and sometimes unpredictable consequences when a state doesn’t pass a budget on time. Those consequences are on the minds of quite a few legislators across the country right now. Only about half of the states have budgets enacted for the 2012 fiscal year that begins July 1. States breathed a sigh of relief when the federal government agreed this spring to keep its own budget funded until October, knowing that a federal shutdown would have been disruptive to state operations. Now, they’re being forced to contemplate something far more disruptive to state business: Shutdowns of state governments themselves.

If history is a guide, only a handful of states will end up failing to pass a budget by July 1, and of these, most will likely approve stopgap measures to avert shutdowns. But as of now, situations in several states look pretty intractable. (read more)

Climate to wreak havoc on Tropics' food supply, predicts report

Areas where food supplies could be worst hit by climate change have been identified in a report.

Some areas in the tropics face famine because of failing food production, an international research group says.

The Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) predicts large parts of South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa will be worst affected.

Its report points out that hundreds of millions of people in these regions are already experiencing a food crisis.

"We are starting to see much more clearly where the effects of climate change on agriculture could intensify hunger and poverty," said Patti Kristjanson, an agricultural economist with the CCAFS initiative that produced the report.

A leading climatologist told BBC News that agriculturalists had been slow to use global climate models to pinpoint regions most affected by rising temperatures. (read more)

Future Attribute Screening Technology (Fast): "Terrorist" 'pre-crime' detector field tested in United States -- Welcome to Orwell's vision of 1984

Planning a sojourn in the northeastern United States? You could soon be taking part in a novel security programme that can supposedly 'sense' whether you are planning to commit a crime.

Future Attribute Screening Technology (FAST), a US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) programme designed to spot people who are intending to commit a terrorist act, has in the past few months completed its first round of field tests at an undisclosed location in the northeast, Nature has learned.

Like a lie detector, FAST measures a variety of physiological indicators, ranging from heart rate to the steadiness of a person's gaze, to judge a subject's state of mind. But there are major differences from the polygraph. FAST relies on non-contact sensors, so it can measure indicators as someone walks through a corridor at an airport, and it does not depend on active questioning of the subject. (read more)

This post was reader contributed.

Risking it all: The flying men of Yungas valley, Bolivia (Must-watch documentary, just 25 min)

Russia opposes any UN resolution on Syria - Foreign Ministry - 9th June 2011

Russia is against any UN resolution on Syria as the situation in the country is not threatening to global security, Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said on Thursday.

"The [Russian] president has repeatedly said Russia opposes any UN Security Council resolution on Syria," Lukashevich said. "The situation in the country does not pose any threat to international peace and security."

Britain and France submitted a new draft resolution on Syria on Wednesday. The UN Security Council will vote on the resolution in the next few days. Source

Dr David Kelly: There will be no further INQUEST, Ruling of Suicide stays even though his finderprints and DNA were not on the Knife - 9th June 2011

Attorney General Dominic Grieve has today ruled out an inquest into the death of David Kelly.

The decision comes after a group of doctors campaigning for a full inquest told the Prime Minister they would seek a judicial review if Mr Grieve decided no inquest was needed.

But David Cameron appeared to rule out a full inquest last month, saying the Hutton report into the Government weapons inspector's death had been 'fairly clear'.

'I don't think it's necessary to take that case forward,' he said.

Speaking in the Commons, Mr Grieve told MPs the evidence that Dr Kelly took his own life was "overwhelming".

There was no evidence to support claims he was murdered or "any kind of conspiracy theory", he said. Read More

Further questions about the circumstances of Dr David Kelly’s death have emerged after police admitted that no fingerprints or DNA were recovered from his glasses.

Thames Valley Police have confirmed that three fingerprint tests were conducted on the spectacles after Dr Kelly’s alleged suicide, each of which was negative.

But what has puzzled forensics experts more is the lack of DNA evidence, triggering theories that the glasses may have been cleaned by a third party.

The bifocals were in Dr Kelly’s coat pocket when his body was discovered in an Oxfordshire wood in July 2003, along with a mobile phone and three empty blister packs of pills.

These items, together with the knife he supposedly used to kill himself, a watch, and a bottle of water he is assumed to have drunk from, were tested for fingerprints. None was found.

The lack of prints is difficult to explain because Dr Kelly was not wearing gloves when his body was recovered. Read More

Bolivia declares state of emergency over sediments in Pilcomayo River - 9th June 2011

Bolivia issued a state of emergency Wednesday in the southern Tarija province over the Pilcomayo River’s rising level of sediments that has seriously affected the local fishery.

“This phenomenon is affecting not only the environment for the loss of fish, but also the 1,000 local families who live on fishery,” Defense Minister Maria Cecilia Chacon said.

The sediments on the Argentine part of the river have prevented the migration and flow of fish to the upper stream of the river in Bolivia.

The new Bolivian emergency decree authorized the Tarija local government and all affected municipalities to use “all necessary measures” to deal with the situation.

The decree also urges the Foreign Ministry, in coordination with the affected regions, to meet with the Argentine and Paraguayan sides, which share the river with Bolivia, to solve the emergency.

The Civil Defense Ministry will aid the families in the affected areas with subsidized water and food.

The local government of Argentina’s Formosa province said earlier this month that it had started to remove the sediments and that Bolivia must do the same in order to efficiently clean the river.

The Pilcomayo River starts in Bolivia and runs through Argentina and Paraguay before emptying into the Paraguay River. Source