CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 28, 2007
The former music director of a Catholic church has been charged with having unlawful sex with a 16-year-old female choir member in 1995, authorities said Friday. Albert Lee Schildknecht, 56, the former music director of St. Timothy Roman Catholic Church, is accused of orally copulating and digitally penetrating the minor, whom he met at the church when he was 44. If convicted, he could face more than four years in prison.
December 24, 2006 |
One of Iraq's most influential Shiite clerics rejected a U.S.-backed proposal to isolate Shiite extremists in the national government, saying the country should govern itself with the help of anti-U.S. firebrand Muqtada Sadr, according to politicians who spoke with the cleric Saturday. Shiite politicians met with Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani in this Shiite holy city, and then said they had thrown their support behind Sadr, who demands a withdrawal of U.S.
March 14, 2006 |
Scattered attacks targeting police and civilians killed 30 Iraqis on Monday as populist cleric Muqtada Sadr lashed out at Iraqi politicians and U.S. officials for failing to stop the violence. The attacks followed a bloody Sunday in which 52 people were killed and close to 300 injured by bombs and mortars in Sadr City, a vast Shiite slum in northeastern Baghdad.
October 22, 2006 |
Iraq's top law enforcement official met Saturday with a radical Shiite cleric in an attempt to rein in marauding militias that have wrought havoc on large stretches of the country and carried out execution-style slayings of Sunni Arab men. Authorities found the bodies of at least 23 such men, who were bound and bore signs of torture, scattered around the capital.
March 22, 2007 |
The U.S. military Wednesday released a senior member of Shiite Muslim cleric Muqtada Sadr's movement at the request of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki. The decision, officials said, was made with the hope of easing tensions between Sadr's Al Mahdi militia and U.S.-led forces in Iraq. Sheik Ahmed Shibani, who had been in prison for 2 1/2 years, was handed over to the office of the Shiite prime minister.
August 18, 2006 |
A little-known ayatollah has emerged at the center of a violent conflict among Shiite Muslims that is sweeping Iraq's southern desert. Mahmoud Hassani, whose gunmen fought a competing Shiite faction in the holy city of Karbala this week, is a renegade in the mold of Muqtada Sadr. He has criticized the largest Shiite party for being too closely aligned with Iran, and his green-clad militia has attacked Americans as well as fellow Shiites.
February 24, 2006 |
Rarely since the U.S.-led invasion have Iraq's politicians appeared so insignificant and its religious leaders loomed so large as in the 48 hours since the bombing of the Golden Mosque in Samarra. Few Iraqis seemed to pay attention to statements by Prime Minister Ibrahim Jafari and other political leaders who called for calm.
April 16, 2006 |
Iraqi leaders worked Saturday to resolve their impasse over who will rule the country, with a secular coalition proposing an emergency government that would supersede election results and Shiite clerics conferring on how best to preserve their sect's newfound power. Politicians remained deadlocked over Sunni Arab and Kurdish opposition to Ibrahim Jafari, the main Shiite Muslim coalition's nominee for prime minister.
January 10, 2006 |
The trial of cleric Abu Hamza al Masri on charges of stirring up racial hatred and urging the killing of non-Muslims opened Monday in a London court. Masri, 47, is the best-known figure to be tried for such offenses in Britain since the Sept. 11 attacks in the U.S. The Egyptian-born cleric faces nine counts of using public meetings to incite followers to kill non-Muslims. Four other charges allege that he urged the killing of Jews.
May 13, 2006 |
There is nothing physically imposing about Warren Jeffs. He's tall and reedy with a quavering voice and, acquaintances say, an especially limp handshake. Family members describe the church leader as secretive, strict and "very militant about his religion." Jeffs, 50, grew up in a Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints compound in Salt Lake City, where he served first as a teacher and then principal of the sect's Alta Academy.