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Fri, 03 Feb 2023
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Sarkozy Enters Post-Elysee Life Facing Possible Investigations

© Michele Tantussi/Bloomberg
Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy has denied getting illegal campaign contributions, saying on April 3 on Canal Plus television channel that “there’s not a penny whose origin is unaccounted for.”
Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who's going back to practicing law, may spend much of his time in the months ahead defending one person: himself.

Only the second French president to not win re-election, Sarkozy's immunity ends tonight, opening the door for his questioning as a witness or a target in allegations ranging from illegal campaign financing to two-decade-old kickbacks.

"Mr. Sarkozy has to be a little concerned once he loses his immunity of being hauled before the courts," William Keylor, a professor of modern French history at Boston University, said in a telephone interview.

With questions involving L'Oreal SA (OR) heiress Liliane Bettencourt, a French submarine sale to Pakistan and funds from late Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi, Sarkozy, 57, is likely to remain in the limelight he sought to avoid after being defeated in the May 6 election. Before the vote, he said he would quit politics if he lost. He has since found an office in the chic 8th arrondissement of Paris and begun hiring staff for a return to practicing law.


Students Suspended for Viewing Porn in Class

Students were suspended during the month of May, the district confirmed


Nine male students were suspended from Bell Middle School for allegedly masturbating while looking at pornography on their cell phones during English class.

Students were suspended during the month of May, the district confirmed in an e-mail to NBC San Diego. But the email also states, the district is "prohibited from commenting on confidential student or personnel matters."

The teacher, Ed Johnson, is reportedly under fire because he did not respond to students who told him about the behavior while it was allegedly happening - only saying he would give students referrals if he caught them - then went on reading at his desk.

Following the incident, there are reports of controversy from the faculty over how the situation was handled by the teacher.

Arrow Down

Bahrain Court Upholds Convictions of 9 Doctors

© Hamad I Mohammed/Reuters
Fatima Haji, right, embraced Zahra al-Samar, the wife of Dr. Ghassan Dhaif, after hearing the verdicts announced by a Bahraini court in Manama on Thursday. Dr. Dhaif was sentenced to one year in prison on charges including taking hostages and participating in illegal gatherings.
Bahrain on Thursday upheld the convictions of nine doctors charged with crimes related to the popular uprising last year, in a case that drew international condemnation and was seen as a crucial test of the government's commitment to political reform. Related in Opinion Room for Debate Nudging Bahrain, Without Pushing It Away

As the United States struggles to handle escalating violence in countries like Syria and South Sudan, how can it also support peace in Bahrain?

The nine doctors, who did not appear in court when the verdicts were announced, were sentenced to between one month to five years in prison. Nine other doctors had their convictions overturned.

The doctors, all Shiites, were among thousands of people arrested during a government crackdown last year, after protesters demanding greater political freedoms occupied a central roundabout in the Bahraini capital of Manama.


Michigan Lawmaker to Perform 'Vagina Monologues' in Protest of Gag Order

Michigan State Rep. Lisa Brown only had to say the word "vagina" once to be banned from speaking on the House floor last week.

In response to the gag order, she and at least nine of her fellow congresswomen will utter the word tonight more than 100 times on the state Capitol steps in Lansing while performing The Vagina Monologues.


Canadian Psycho: Suspect in Killing, Dismemberment Case has Arrived in Canada

Luka Magnotta
© Facebook
Luka Magnotta
Mirabel, Quebec - A Canadian porn actor suspected in the dismemberment of a Chinese student arrived in Canada on Monday via military transport from Germany, where he was arrested this month.

Luka Magnotta did not fight his extradition. He is suspected of killing Jun Lin and sending body parts to Canadian political parties and schools. The head is still missing. Police said they would ask Magnotta where it is.

Investigators say Magnotta posted a video online showing him having sex with the dismembered corpse.

Montreal police Cmdr. Ian Lafreniere said Magnotta's plane landed at Mirabel airport just outside Montreal.

Bizarro Earth

Bath Salts Drug Linked to Another Bizarre Biting Attack

bath salts
© unknown
Police in Missouri are investigating the possibility that a woman was on synthetic drugs marketed as "bath salts" when she attacked and bit her neighbor, KCTV reported Friday.

It was not clear if the unidentified woman has been charged in the attack. Her landlord said she had not returned to her Kansas City home and could be in a hospital or mental health facility.

The victim, Charles McBride, said she attacked him last week and bit his arm where he had a nicotine patch.

"I've seen her do some crazy stuff, but not that," McBride told KCTV.

After biting him, he recalled, the woman dropped to all fours and began "digging in the ground, like a dog would."

When police arrived at the scene, "they tried to grab her and then she started kicking back at them," according to McBride.

A police report corroborated the victim's account, saying, "her left leg was mule-kicking and she had what appeared to be dirt in her mouth."

Comment: Is Solar and Cosmic Radiation Playing Havoc With Life on Planet Earth?

2 + 2 = 4

Schoolboy, 14, Arrested after He 'Stabs 26 Classmates in the Head and Neck with a Used Needle in Frenzied Break Time Attack'

  • Some students had to go to hospital to be tested for infections including hepatitis and HIV
  • The pupil was arrested on suspicion of assault, and remains in custody
  • It is understood he was taking part in a bizarre game
© Caters News Agency
Stabbed: A pupil shows where she was stabbed with the needle - the 14-year-old youngster want on a rampage during a lunch break
A 14-year-old boy has been arrested over claims at least 26 school pupils were stabbed with a medical needle during a lunch break.

The teenager is understood to have gone on a rampage at Toot Hill School, in Bingham, Notts, stabbing some students in the head and neck.

After the incident on Wednesday some students had to go to hospital to be tested for infections including hepatitis and HIV.

The school said pupils were stabbed with a lancet, but police believe a diabetic pen was used.

Nine have already been tested, although health officials say the risks are very slim, but the test results won't be known for three months.


How Apple Turns Shoppers Into Spending Zombies

Manipulated Shoppers
© Minyanville
If you're looking for new and better ways to save money shopping online, here's one: Abandon your shopping cart. Apparently, online retailers see a cart abandonment rate of about 65%, and many are eager to lure those customers back.

Earlier this month, Reuters reported that several major brands including Home Depot and Best Buy have started following up with customers who don't purchase the items in their carts. In some cases, stores offer shoppers discounts or other perks to encourage them to purchase leftover items.

More traditional, offline retailers have experience encouraging customers to spend money too. And it's not just pushy sales staff, in a lot of cases, the entire design of a store centers on tricking consumers into spending more money.

The classic example of this is the Apple Store. Cupertino company policy has all of a store's laptop screens set at the same 70-degree angle. Not only does this look good, it also forces customers to touch the computers to get a good view of their screens.

In general, Apple's store policy focuses on getting customers to interact physically with their products. That's why the leaders of the store's workshops have customers solve problems themselves, instead of showing them how to do something.


March against police stop and frisk

© Unknown
housands of people marched in silence in New York to protest against street checks by police that rights activists say disproportionately target blacks and Hispanics.

The demonstration, called by civil rights organizations, began in Harlem and moved south through Manhattan to the residence of Mayor Michael Bloomberg in Manhattan's posh Upper East Side.

Among the groups that took part in the march were the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the National Action Network led by the Reverend Al Sharpton and a union that represents health care workers.

"End Stop and Frisks, Silent March Against Racial Profiling," said a flyer handed out by protest organizers.

More than four million New Yorkers, most of them blacks and Latinos, have been stopped and questioned by police in the street since 2004, according to the American Civil Liberties Union.


Cop in Gun Siege with Colleagues: Off-Duty Officer Barricades Himself into Estranged Wife's House and Starts Shooting

© Facebook
Gunman: Off-duty officer Richard Klementovich, pictured, barricaded himself inside the house of his estranged wife while shooting at police in a 10-hour standoff
A 10-hour standoff between an off-duty New Jersey police officer who barricaded himself inside his estranged wife's house while sporadically shooting at police has ended.

Richard Klementovich, 42, an officer with Clifton police department, was taken into custody late Sunday from the Doylestown, Pennsylvania, property with 2,000 rounds of ammunition and multiple weapons, including rifles and sniper guns.

Neighbours were told to stay in their homes, preferably hiding in their basements with doors locked and shades drawn. Some were told to evacuate.

Police from various departments including Clifton, and SWAT teams worked to negotiate with the gunman. According to ABC News, officers were told that if they get a clear shot at him they should take it.