May 14, 2013 Associated Press
PHILADELPHIA — A Philadelphia abortion doctor convicted of killing three babies born alive at his grimy clinic was spared a possible death sentence Tuesday in a deal with prosecutors.
Dr. Kermit Gosnell gave up his right to appeal and in return will spend life in prison. Gosnell, 72, was found guilty Monday of first-degree murder in a case that became a flashpoint in the nation's abortion debate.
Former clinic employees testified that Gosnell routinely performed illegal abortions past Pennsylvania's 24-week limit, that he delivered babies who were still moving, whimpering or breathing, and that he and his assistants dispatched the newborns by "snipping" their spines, as he referred to it.
Prosecutors had sought the death penalty because Gosnell killed more than one person, and his victims were especially vulnerable given their age. But Gosnell's own advanced age had made it unlikely he would ever be executed before his appeals ran out.
May 14, 2013 Reuters
MOSCOW - Russia expelled a U.S. diplomat on Tuesday after saying he had been caught red-handed with disguises, special equipment and wads of cash as he tried to recruit a Russian intelligence agent to work for the CIA.
Apparently detained in an incongruous-looking blond wig, with props reminiscent of a schoolboy's spy kit, U.S. Embassy Third Secretary Ryan Fogle hardly looked like a Cold War secret agent.
But the announcement still came at an awkward time for Washington and Moscow as they try to improve relations and bring the warring sides in Syria together for an international peace conference. Nevertheless, there was little sign that either country wanted to escalate the affair beyond a minimum response.
The Russian Foreign Ministry summoned U.S. Ambassador Michael McFaul to discuss the case on Wednesday and released a statement ordering Fogle to leave Russia.
"Such provocative actions in the spirit of the Cold War will by no means promote the strengthening of mutual trust," it said.
May 10, 2013 ABC News
A first responder who helped treat victims of the fertilizer plant explosion in West, Texas, last month was arrested and charged today with possessing an explosive device.
The arrest came on the same day that Texas authorities opened a criminal investigation into the April 17 explosion.
Paramedic Bryce Reed, who works with the West, Texas, EMS and served as incident commander during the response to the explosion, appeared in federal court in Waco, Texas, this morning for alleged possession of a destructive device. According to the charges filed against Reed, the McLennan County Sheriff's Office was called to a residence in Abbot, Texas, on Tuesday because of a possible destructive device, and arrived to find powders, metals and canisters filled with bomb-making materials.
An official with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms said in an affidavit that officials found a metal pipe, canisters of fuses, a lighter, a digital scale, a plastic spoon, coils of metal and several pounds of chemicals at the residence and determined that they belonged to Reed. The resident of the home said that he had unknowingly accepted the materials from Reed on April 26.
May 10, 2013 Associated Press
NEW YORK — A worldwide gang of criminals stole $45 million in a matter of hours by hacking their way into a database of prepaid debit cards and then draining cash machines around the globe, federal prosecutors said Thursday — and outmoded U.S. card technology may be partly to blame.
Seven people are under arrest in the U.S. in connection with the case, which prosecutors said involved thousands of thefts from ATMs using bogus magnetic swipe cards carrying information from Middle Eastern banks. The fraudsters moved with astounding speed to loot financial institutions around the world, working in cells including one in New York, Brooklyn U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch said.
She called it "a massive 21st-century bank heist" carried out by brazen thieves.
One of the suspects was caught on surveillance cameras, his backpack increasingly loaded down with cash, authorities said. Others took photos of themselves with giant wads of bills as they made their way up and down Manhattan.
May 8, 2013 NBC News
A jury Wednesday found Jodi Arias, the woman accused of murdering her one-time boyfriend in Arizona, guilty of first-degree murder.
Arias, 32, was charged with murder in the 2008 death of Travis Alexander. As the verdict was being read, Arias began crying.
The woman admitted she killed Alexander but claimed self-defense. Arias faces life in prison – potentially even the death penalty.
The Arias case has been the most watched murder trial this year, as 17 weeks focused around the soft-spoken defendant told of kinky sex and horrific violence.
Led by Juan Martinez, the prosecution argued that Alexander’s murder was premeditated. On June 4, 2008, Arias drove from Yreka, Calif., to Mesa, Ariz., where she showed up at Alexander’s home. She’d rented a car, dyed her hair, turned off her cell phone—apparently to make her harder to identify, her movements harder to track. Her mission, prosecutors said, was murder.
May 8, 2013 Associated Press
BRUSSELS — Authorities claimed a major breakthrough on Wednesday in their investigation of a spectacular $50 million diamond heist, detaining at least 31 people in a three-nation sweep some three months after robbers pulled off the theft with clockwork precision at Brussels Airport
A Frenchman who is believed to have been one of the actual robbers at the airport was arrested in France, while six to eight people were detained in Geneva, and 24 in and around Brussels. Police did not indicate what the other suspects' roles might have been.
What's more, police say they have proof that diamonds found in Switzerland were part of the cache that was spirited away in the brazen Feb. 18 robbery that ranks among the biggest diamond heists of recent times.
After two months of investigation on some of the suspects, police moved in. Suspects in France and Switzerland were detained on Tuesday, and the following day Belgian police carried out a massive operation, with 250 police involved in 40 house searches.