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Thu, 30 Mar 2023
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Human corpses harvested in multimillion-dollar trade

© Konstantin Chernichkin/Kyiv Post
“Two ribs, two Achilles heels, two elbows, two eardrums, two teeth, and so on'' ... a relative holds a picture of Oleksandr Frolov, some of whose body parts were found during a raid by Ukrainian authorities.

A grisly trade in human body parts leaves relatives grieving and some recipients at risk of life-threatening disease.

On February 24, Ukrainian authorities made an alarming discovery: bones and other human tissues crammed into coolers in a grimy white minibus.

Investigators grew even more intrigued when they found, amid the body parts, envelopes stuffed with cash and autopsy results written in English.

What the security service had disrupted was not the work of a serial killer but part of an international pipeline of ingredients for medical and dental products that are routinely implanted into people around the world.

The seized documents suggested that the remains of dead Ukrainians were destined for a factory in Germany belonging to the subsidiary of a US medical products company, Florida-based RTI Biologics.

RTI is one of a growing industry of companies that make profits by turning mortal remains into everything from dental implants to bladder slings to wrinkle cures. The industry has flourished even as its practices have roused concerns about how tissues are obtained and how well grieving families and transplant patients are informed about the realities and risks of the business.

Bizarro Earth

Republican Convention Hires 'Sarah Palin' Stripper

Sarah Palin fans who are disappointed that the former vice presidential candidate won't be speaking at the GOP convention in Tampa next month won't be left hanging because her stripper look-alike will be entertaining hard-working Republicans at a local "gentleman's club."

WFLA learned last week that a "dead ringer" for Palin will stripping at Tampa's Thee Doll House, only 5 miles from the the Tampa Bay Times Forum convention site.

Owners of Thee Doll House and 2001 Odyssey strip club both told the WFLA that they expect business to quadruple during the convention.


A Second 'Person of Interest' Was Interviewed in Aurora

© The Atlantic Wire
News broke Saturday night that Aurora police were sent a message electronically threatening more violence if James Holmes wasn't released from prison. Police found and interviewed him on Saturday, but he hasn't been charged with anything in connection with the crime.

This Fox Denver affiliate reports police received a message electronically that threatened more violence if Holmes wasn't released from prison. No one has released his name because he hasn't been charged with anything. But, according to the person's Facebook page, he has a master's in biomedical science, and Anshutz Medical Center confirmed he was in the same program Holmes withdrew from a month ago. ABC News Denver reports authorities traced the message to a router in Aurora, but it's uncertain whether the message was sent natively or whether someone routed it through there. He was picked up by police and interviewed Saturday afternoon.

Aurora police said there's "no reason to believe" the person was involved with the crime at all, but that they did learn more information about James Holmes from the interview. Police were able to get past the first line of defenses in Holmes' booby-trapped apartment yesterday. "This apartment was designed to kill. If you think we're mad, we're sure as hell angry," police said at a press conference on Saturday. The trip wire set when you enter the apartment was designed to kill the first person to enter the room. Police said there was evidence of "some calculation and deliberation," in the apartment.

Comment: FBI and DHS Warned in May of Terrorists Planning to Attack Movie Theaters


Police State: Humarock Residents Angry over Excessive Policing During 4th of July Celebrations

© unknown
Scituate, Massachusetts - The anger hasn't subsided in Humarock after 4th of July celebrations were cut short due to safety concerns.

The neighborhood met Sunday morning to plan their next move in a quarrel with the Town of Scituate.

Nearly 100 people attended a meeting at the South Humarock Civic Association Clubhouse. At the meeting, some residents went so far as to call Scituate town officials "Fascists," and say Humarock needs to break away.

The latest aggravation began earlier this month, when residents claim the town was heavy-handed in enforcing a ban on bonfires.

"That was a full military operation... I mean hummers up and down the beach, state police helicopters, horseback, bomb squad, [and] a command post up the center," said Fred Hayden, who owns a summer home in Humarock.

Eye 1

'Jumpy' Audience Members Flee Batman Showing After Fight Breaks Out

© Agence France-Presse/Getty Images/Jewel Samad
Photo of The Dark Knight Rises movie poster.
West Homestead, Pennsylvania - Police say nobody was arrested when a fight broke out during a Pittsburgh-area showing of The Dark Knight Rises prompting audience members to flee the theater.

Homestead police Chief Jeffrey DeSimone says his officers were called to handle crowd control at the AMC Loews Waterfront 22 theater during the incident shortly after 6 p.m. Sunday. DeSimone suspects patrons ran out of the theater because they were a little "jumpy" in the wake of a shooting that left 12 dead during a midnight premiere of the movie last week in Aurora, Colo.

Police say two people suffered minor injuries, but say nobody was charged with a crime. It wasn't immediately clear if the injured were those fighting or patrons hurt leaving the theater.

A spokesman for Atlanta-based AMC did not immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment Monday.

Bizarro Earth

30,000 Villagers Flee Clashes in Northeast India

© The Associated Press/Mahesh Kumar
Indian policemen fire teargas in Hyderabad, India.
Guwahati, India: About 30,000 villagers have fled their homes in northeast India amid clashes between Bodo tribal groups and Muslim settlers that have seen 19 people killed so far, police said on Monday.

Soldiers were out in force in the restive state of Assam to try to stop the violence over land rights, in which houses have been set ablaze and villagers forced to shelter in government buildings and schools to avoid the fighting.

"Clashes that broke out on Friday night have so far claimed the lives of 19 people and at least 12 (were) also injured," S.N. Singh, Assam inspector general of police, told AFP by telephone. "Police, army and paramilitary troopers have intensified patrols and a curfew has been imposed in many areas," Singh said, adding there were 30,000 people in the government shelters.

Four bodies were recovered by police on Monday from Kokrajhar district, about 220-km west of Assam's main city of Guwahati. The fighting, in regions close to the borders with Bhutan and Bangladesh, is the latest outbreak of violence over long-running territorial disputes.

During the regular bouts of unrest many people from both the Bodo and Muslim communities - particularly women and children - seek safety in designated schools and government offices. They are protected by soldiers and food is provided.


Swiss Police Found Guilty for Abusing Eritrean Teenager

Swiss police
© unknown
Swiss police
A Swiss district court has imposed suspended fines on two Lausanne police officers for their abuse of a teenager from Eritrea.

The substance of the case dates back to New Year's Eve, 2006, when a 16-year-old Eritrean boy was stopped on two separate occasions by police in Lausanne.

The teenager claimed that on the second occasion, a patrol officer drenched him in pepper spray, and abandoned him near a forest.

His attempts to lodge complaints later that night were rejected by police authorities.

The case eventually went to court, and the policeman was acquitted, based on testimony by his colleagues. Some months later, however, a fellow officer who'd left the force accused those colleagues of lying under oath, to cover up police brutality. This lead a Swiss court to look deeper into the matter and investigate all accusations brogught forward against the officers.


Police Brutality Story Heats Up: Anaheim PD Faces Evidence-Buying Claims

Witnesses to the fatal police shooting of an unarmed man in Anaheim, California say officers offered to buy up cell phone footage of the brutality that followed. The circumstances of the shooting are currently under investigation.

A few hours after shooting 24-year-old Manuel Diaz as he ran from police at around 4pm Saturday, officers unleashed rubber bullets and an attack dog on a crowd of witnesses - most of them women and children - who confronted police over the incident as they gathered evidence.

Diaz later died in hospital. Officials have yet to comment on what may have caused one of the officers to open fire.

The incident has resonated through the community, with demonstrations Sunday outside - and briefly inside - the Anaheim Police headquarters, as Police Chief John Welter prepared for a press-only news conference regarding the assault.

Demonstrators chanted "no justice, no peace" and "cops, pigs, murderers" as officers stood by.

And now that the story has gained national attention, the Anaheim PD claims the crowd of witnesses became unruly following the shooting, alleging that they set a fire at an intersection in the neighborhood, while others threw bottles and rocks at officers.


Bizarre Voice Mail, Batman Mask Among Heap of Clues in Colorado Massacre

james holmes
© unknown
James Holmes
A computer, homemade explosives, a Batman mask and other Batman paraphernalia seized at the Colorado apartment of James Holmes could help shed light on the mind, motive and modus operandi of the mass killing suspect, a federal law enforcement official said Sunday.

Holmes is being held without bond on suspicion of multiple counts of first-degree murder after a shooting rampage minutes into a premiere of The Dark Knight Rises early Friday that left 12 people dead and 58 wounded. He is scheduled for an initial hearing this morning, and has been assigned a public defender.

The federal official, who is not authorized to comment publicly, said the computer could aid the effort to determine how long the suspect might have been planning the attack and other details of the massacre.

In addition to the physical evidence, a picture of the suspect is emerging from his encounters with others. Last month, he applied to join a Colorado gun range but never became a member because of his behavior and a "bizarre" message on his voice mail greeting, the range's owner said Sunday.

Comment: FBI and DHS Warned in May of Terrorists Planning to Attack Movie Theaters

Bad Guys

US drops biggest-ever human trafficking case amid evidence doubts

© Unknown
The Justice Department spent millions of dollars on what is considered to be the largest human trafficking case in the US, only to dismiss it on the grounds that the government would be unable to prove the charges beyond a reasonable doubt.

­Federal prosecutors dropped the human trafficking case against the owner of a labor contracting company accused of exploiting hundreds of Thai farm workers.

The workers were subject to threats of deportation, had their passports taken away and were forced into debt by Global Horizons Inc. The company used these forced labor tactics to keep the workers in their service.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) took the company to court for bringing the workers into the country "on the promise of high-paying wages and temporary visas," only to be "forced into vermin-ridden housing, denied the opportunity to leave the premises and subjected to harassment, including physical assault by their overseers," reported the United Press International.