December 29, 2013
The U.S. Department of State issued a warning on Dec. 17 recommending that U.S. citizens not travel to the Republic of South Sudan because of "ongoing political and social unrest. " More info at (888) 407-4747 toll-free in the United States or, outside the country, (202) 501-4444. The State Department also has urged Americans to avoid travel to Libya "because of ongoing instability and violence. " Libya reopened for U.S. visitors in February 2004, but periodic upheavals have put it and its Roman ruins off-limits for Americans.
December 29, 2013 |
In 1963, the Supreme Court established a rule of evidence that is now well known to viewers of television courtroom dramas. In Brady vs. Maryland, it held that prosecutors must turn over to defense attorneys evidence favorable to the accused and "material either to guilt or punishment. " But prosecutors, including in Los Angeles, have complied grudgingly with the Brady rule. Some have ignored it altogether. Now a respected federal appeals court judge has warned of "an epidemic of Brady violations abroad in the land.
December 29, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - U.S. intelligence agencies warn in a new, classified assessment that insurgents could quickly regain control of key areas of Afghanistan and threaten the capital as soon as 2015 if American troops are fully withdrawn next year, according to two officials familiar with the findings. The National Intelligence Estimate, which was given recently to the White House, has deeply concerned some U.S. officials. It represents the first time the intelligence community has formally warned that the Afghan government could face significantly more serious attacks in Kabul from a resurgent Taliban within months of a U.S. pullout, the officials said, speaking anonymously to discuss classified material.
December 28, 2013 |
HOUSTON - Williamson County Dist. Atty. Ken Anderson had risen to a district judge by the time a special investigation was launched this year to scrutinize a murder he had prosecuted in 1987. In a rare finding, a judge determined that Anderson had intentionally withheld evidence, resulting in the wrongful conviction of Michael Morton. Morton served 25 years in prison for the murder of his wife before DNA tests exonerated him and another man was convicted of the crime. Anderson agreed to serve nine days in jail, resign from the bench and surrender his law license.
December 24, 2013 |
WASHINGTON -- The State Department on Tuesday cautioned travelers about the risks of visiting Honduras, known as the “murder capital of the world,” saying that killings of Americans are frequent and almost never solved. In a travel warning , the department said American expatriates experience similar levels of crime as other population groups. Police forces are unable to keep up and have solved only two of the 50 killings of Americans since 2008, U.S. officials said. Honduras has had the highest murder rate in the world since 2010, and levels of violence and crime remain "critically high," the warning said.
December 22, 2013 |
HONOLULU -- President Obama told congressional leaders Sunday that he was closely monitoring the unrest in South Sudan, after four U.S. service members were attacked near Bor, and said he “may take further action to support the security of U.S. citizens, personnel and property, including our Embassy, in South Sudan.” After an aborted rescue mission of U.S. citizens Saturday, 380 U.S. officials and private citizens -- as well as 300 citizens of...
December 21, 2013 |
HONOLULU - President Obama warned Saturday that using military force to gain power in South Sudan could cost the country international support. Obama was reacting to reports that four U.S. service members were wounded when South Sudanese militias fired on three U.S. military aircraft on a mission to evacuate American citizens. He encouraged talks to help end the violence in South Sudan. “Any effort to seize power through the use of military force will result in the end of longstanding support from the United States and the international community,” the president said, according to White House officials.
December 19, 2013 |
WASHINGTON -- Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew formally told congressional leaders Thursday they must raise the debt limit by early March at the latest, warning the government has less ability to postpone a potential default than in the past. Some top Republicans have said in recent days they plan to try to get concessions from the Obama administration in exchange for raising the $16.7-trillion debt limit, which was suspended last fall until Feb. 7. With rumblings of another showdown over the politically volatile issue, Lew made clear Congress needs to "take prompt action to protect the full faith and credit of the United States.
December 19, 2013 |
A mosquito-borne virus usually restricted to Africa and Asia has been detected for the first time in the Western Hemisphere, with 10 confirmed cases on the French side of the Caribbean island of St. Martin, U.S. authorities have warned. With the winter travel season in full swing through the holidays, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a travel advisory for those headed to the tourist playgrounds. The chikungunya virus in spread by the bite of infected mosquitoes and can cause " debilitating illness , most often characterized by fever, headache, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, muscle pain, rash and joint pain," the CDC said on its website.
December 16, 2013 |
Alert: Unconfirmed reports of explosives at four sites on campus: Science Center, Thayer, Sever and Emerson. Evacuate those buildings now. Harvard University issued that warning Monday morning, and police swarmed the Cambridge, Mass., campus for several hours. The bomb threat proved false, but Harvard was not alone in seeing its final exams disrupted: That afternoon, the University of Massachusetts Boston evacuated a building after reports of a gunman, which also turned out to be unfounded.