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Thu, 23 Mar 2023
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Police crackdown on protests in Greece: EU AWOL

© AP photo
Protesters scuffle with riot police outside the finance ministry during a rally in Athens, on Friday.
Scuffles broke out Friday between demonstrators and police outside the finance ministry in central Athens, as Greece's international debt inspectors met with ministers to discuss the pace of reforms.

The demonstrators, mainly finance ministry cleaning ladies, school guards and municipal workers, were protesting job cuts required under Greece's bailout agreement. They attempted to block a major avenue outside the ministry and jostled with riot police, who used small amounts of pepper spray. At least one protester was injured.

Later, about a dozen jeering protesters moved toward the motorcade carrying the debt inspectors away from the ministry, and threw a plastic water bottle at one of the cars. Police prevented any more demonstrators from getting close, and the vehicles were able to speed off.

Authorities detained 17 protesters who had attempted to enter another nearby government ministry.


Major updates in Justina Pelletier case: Lawmakers get involved

© Image source: Facebook
Justina Pelletier with her parents, Linda and Lou. Justina has been in the custody of the state of Massachusetts since last year.
Massachusetts lawmakers are getting involved in the Justina Pelletier case and have begun circulating a resolution asking the Department of Children and Families (DCF) to initiate the process of releasing the teenager to her parents.

State Reps. Marc Lombard and Jim Lyons, both Republicans, announced on Wednesday that 12 representatives have already signed on to support the resolution.

"The self-stated goals of the Department of Children and Families is to strengthen the link between families. Removing a child from her family is reserved for only the most egregious circumstances where evidence of malicious intent, negligence or the blatant inability to care for the child is present. No such findings are present in this case," Lombardo said in a press release.

Lyons argued the Pelletier case is a "dispute between conflicting medical opinions" and treatment decisions should be left to parents, not DCF."

Bad Guys

Indiana minister, wife face child molestation charges

© Morgan County Jail
A Morgan County minister and his wife were arrested and charged with multiple felony counts of child molestation.

43-year-old Reverend Jonathan Harness and his 44-year-old wife, Buffy, were arrested in Columbus Tuesday, following a five hour search of their home. Details surrounding the arrest are not yet known.

24-Hour News 8′s newsgathering partner the Columbus Republic reports, the minister was charged with four counts of sexual misconduct with a minor, two counts of criminal deviant conduct, two counts of intimidation, neglect of a dependent and sexual battery.

A sergeant from the Bartholomew County Sheriff's Department spotted the couple sitting in their parked vehicle outside the Clarion Hotel on Jonathan Moore Pike near I-65 Tuesday night. Harness was then taken into custody.

The two children were found unharmed inside a motel room a short time later.


Criminal gangs running fake share scams arrested‏

© Anthony Devlin/PA
City of London Police and their Spanish counterparts during a raid on a suspected hub of boiler room fraud in Barcelona, Spain.
Criminal gangs blamed for fake-share scams that robbed British victims of millions of pounds in savings have been rounded up in an international crackdown involving UK police.

Officers from City of London Police joined Spanish counterparts from the Policia Nacional in a series of raids in Barcelona, Madrid, Marbella and London in one of the biggest anti-fraud operations ever staged. There were further arrests in the US and Serbia. Details are being reported for the first time after a ban on publication was lifted by a Spanish judge.

A total of 110 people were held by police on accusations of participating in boiler room fraud, where investors are duped into buying worthless or non-existent shares. Investigators targeted a number of organised crime gangs.

Comment: Now if only they would go after the real criminals and fraudsters at the big banks,we might be getting somewhere!

Eye 2

Scandal: Patricia Hewitt takes responsibility for supporting Paedophile Network‏

fiona hanson
© Fiona Hanson/PA
Former Labour cabinet minister Patricia Hewitt served as general secretary of the National Council for Civil Liberties from 1974 to 1983.
Former cabinet minister Patricia Hewitt has said that the organisation to which she and her former Labour colleague Harriet Harman belonged was "naive and wrong" to accept the assurances of a paedophile group that it was a campaigning and counselling organisation.

Hewitt said that, as general secretary of the National Council for Civil Liberties in the 1970s, she took responsibility for the mistakes that were made and apologised for having "got it wrong" on the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE). The two organisations were affiliated for eight years from 1975 to 1983.

In her first public statement since the scandal came to light earlier this week, Hewitt said: "I got it wrong on PIE and I apologise for having done so.

Eye 1

Cardiff teacher to face voyeurism and indecent images charges for allegedly filming pupils using the toilet

police line uk
© Unknown
Mr Williams is accused of filming pupils using the toilet
A suspended deputy headteacher accused of videoing teenagers using the toilet for his sexual pleasure has appeared in court to face child pornography charges and allegations of voyeurism.

Teacher Gareth Williams, who has been suspended from Ysgol Gyfun Gymraeg Glantaf, appeared before magistrates in Cardiff accused of 48 offences.

Charges relating to voyeurism took place at the school he worked at, while other alleged offences took place at two addresses - one in south Wales and one in north Wales, Justices of the Peace were told on Thursday.

Heart - Black

UK Woman in coma was told to find work by Department for Work and Pensions


The minister for disabled people, Mike Penning, said that he apologised 'unreservedly' to the family of Sheila Holt.
Sheila Holt was contacted by the Department for Work and Pensions who invited her to attend 'intensive job-focused activity'

A government minister has apologised after it emerged that a Whitehall department sent letters to a woman demanding she make an effort to find work even though she was in a coma.

The minister for disabled people, Mike Penning, said he apologised "unreservedly" to the family of Sheila Holt after he was challenged in the Commons.

"It's about time politicians did stand up and apologise when things went wrong. It clearly has gone wrong and the family have every right to be aggrieved and I hope she makes a full recovery, as much as she can," said Penning.

Holt, who has suffered from physical and mental health problems, was contacted by the Department for Work and Pensions, which invited her to attend "intensive job-focused activity", according to her MP Simon Danczuk. She fell into a coma in December last year and the government and its contractor were informed, the Labour MP told the Commons.


Body of Inuit student researching missing and murdered indigenous women found

Loretta Saunders
© Handout via National Post
Loretta Saunders, Inuk, above, went missing on February 13. The university student was writing her thesis on missing and murdered indigenous women in Canada and Nova Scotia. Her body was found on February 26, and her two roommates were arrested.

The body of a missing Inuit woman who was herself researching the plight of missing and murdered indigenous women in New Brunswick has been found just days after her tenants were arrested with her car hundreds of miles away.

Loretta Saunders, 26, was last seen alive on February 13, according to news accounts. Surveillance cameras filmed her as she left her apartment building, where she had gone to collect rent from her subletters, police told the National Post. Over the next few days, family members received odd text messages from her phone. Then silence. Concerned, especially when one of the messages asked for information about accessing her bank account, the family reported her missing on February 17. Saunders's car was found in Ontario, near Michigan, on February 18 in the possession of her roommates, who were arrested and charged with fraud and possession of stolen goods. Police also discovered outstanding warrants for their arrest elsewhere in the country.

Then on Wednesday February 26 the pregnant Saunders's body was "found on a median off Route 2 of the Trans-Canada Highway in New Brunswick," the National Post reported. It was hundreds of miles from where she lived and was last seen.

Blake Leggette, 25, and 28-year-old Victoria Henneberry were arrested near Windsor, Ontario, 2,000 miles away and brought back to Nova Scotia to face the charges in Halifax. Police said they are treating Saunders's death as a homicide but did not immediately reveal whether more charges were pending. Saunders had left her boyfriend's apartment on the day of her disappearance to meet with them and collect back rent, The Globe and Mail said.


Chicago police use taser on 8-month pregnant woman over parking ticket comment

© AFP Photo/Cengiz Yar Jr.
Tiffany Rent is eight-months pregnant, but that didn't stop a Chicago police officer from using a taser on her. The assault and arrest occurred Wednesday morning outside of a drug store on Chicago's South Side.

The Chicago Police Department Superintendent Garry McCarthy said that even though Rent was only a week or two away from giving birth, "you can't always tell whether somebody is pregnant."

Tiffany, however, said it should have been obvious.

"I was standing at the squad car close enough for him to see that I was pregnant," Rent explained to the Chicago Tribune.

The Chicago Police Department, however says that their officers did nothing wrong. Rent, they said, had "attempted to take off" after parking in a handicap space outside of a Walgreens drug store. Why was she parking in a handicap space? Because she was almost ready to give birth and it was severely uncomfortable - even painful - to walk far.

The officer was not moved by her plight. Poor and frustrated with the $350 ticket, Tiffany tore up the citation saying: "I ain't giving you sh#@," according to the police report. In effect, she was tased, for nothing more than saying she wouldn't pay a fine.

Superintendent McCarthy said this is a matter of "upholding the law" and that Rent should have been tased for her comments:

"Well, first of all, you can't always tell whether somebody is pregnant. So, you want to use it where you are overcoming assault or preventing escape. That's what it boils down to."

To make matters worse, Tiffany was pulled out of her car in front of her two young children and her boyfriend, held down to the ground before being tased. Joseph Hobbs tried to stop the assault. Hobbs is the father of the child and said he was afraid the full-term baby would be injured in the assault. He suffered a dislocated elbow as a result.


Google ordered to remove anti-Islamic YouTube film

© Trendingdig
A U.S. appeals court on Wednesday ordered Google Inc to remove from its YouTube video-sharing website an anti-Islamic film that had sparked protests across the Muslim world.

By a 2-1 vote, a panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected Google's assertion that the removal of the film "Innocence of Muslims" amounted to a prior restraint of speech that violated the U.S. Constitution.

The plaintiff, Cindy Lee Garcia, had objected to the film after learning that it incorporated a clip she had made for a different movie, which had been partially dubbed and in which she appeared to be asking: "Is your Mohammed a child molester?"

In a statement, Google said: "We strongly disagree with this ruling and will fight it."

Cris Armenta, a lawyer for Garcia, said she is delighted with the decision.