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Planned Parenthood Employee Admits She Tried to Facilitate Sale of Fetal Livers in Court Testimony

Tue, 12/10/2019 - 09:46

A Planned Parenthood employee told a San Francisco court that she had planned to "move forward" with the sale of fetal livers at $750 each.Tram Nguyen, a healthcare administrator at Planned Parenthood of the Gulf Coast, testified in March that she wanted to sell fetal livers for $750 each as well as combinations of fetal livers and fetal thymi at $1,600 each, the Daily Caller reported Monday.Her testimony came as part of the ongoing lawsuits against pro-life investigator David Daleiden, who who went undercover several years ago to record abortion industry executives discussing and haggling over their procurement fetal body parts for researchers. Planned Parenthood sued Daleiden and his organization, the Center for Medical Progress, in 2016.Nguyen, who said she performed administrative duties but would also assist abortionists in the operating room, forwarded an email to her supervisor regarding her Planned Parenthood affiliate's offer to provide Daleiden's fake fetal research company with fetal livers for $750 each and a fetal liver and a thymus for $1600 each.“FYI, we are still trying to move forward with this,” Nguyen wrote in an email to her supervisor, Dyann Santos, according to Attorney Paul Jonna's statement in court.“Do you want to do this,” Santos responded.“Yes, ma’am,” Nguyen wrote back.“I know I wanted to move forward with it,” Nguyen told the court. “There were emails — from what I recall earlier, there were emails in between. Again, I’m not — I don’t make decisions on the agreements. So I  can’t tell you that I saw this and agreed with the compensation or agreed with the agreement that was sent.”On Friday, a San Francisco judge ruled that the criminal trial may move forward against Daleiden, 30, and Sandra Merritt, 64, who are charged with nine felony counts, one count of conspiracy and eight counts of illegal taping.Last month, the jury in the separate civil case against Daleiden and Merritt handed Planned Parenthood a win under federal racketeering statutes, awarding the abortion giant over $2.2 million.


Russian court sentences 11 for Saint Petersburg bombing

Tue, 12/10/2019 - 09:30

A Russian court on Tuesday sentenced 11 people to terms including life in prison after finding them guilty of a deadly bomb attack on the Saint Petersburg metro in 2017. Abror Azimov, a 29-year-old from Kyrgyzstan, was sentenced by a military court in Russia's second biggest city to life in prison for organising and participating in a terrorist group. The bomb blast in April 2017 killed 15 people in the Saint Petersburg metro and wounded dozens more.


Fact check: Combative impeachment hearing draws too-simple answers

Tue, 12/10/2019 - 07:26

Debating the grounds for impeachment, Republicans said there's nothing here. Democrats said it's a slam dunk.


The mystery of Rudy Giuliani's spokeswoman

Tue, 12/10/2019 - 05:00

Meet Christianné Allen, the 20-year-old college student who speaks for President's Trump's personal lawyer.


Missile Race: Does America or China Dominate the South China Sea?

Tue, 12/10/2019 - 04:25

Here's how they compare.


China hints at national security trials for 2 Canadians

Tue, 12/10/2019 - 04:15

China is hinting at upcoming trials for two Canadian citizens held for a year on vague national security charges in what is widely believed to be an attempt to pressure Canada to release Meng Wanzhou, a top executive at Chinese tech giant Huawei. Foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told reporters on Tuesday that the cases of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor have been transferred to prosecutors for “review and prosecution in accordance with the law." Such trials are usually carried out behind closed doors and convictions are virtually assured. Beijing detained Kovrig and Spavor last December, days after Meng, whose father is Huawei's founder, was arrested in Canada on Dec. 1 at the request of U.S. authorities who want her on fraud charges.


Qatar Sends Premier to Riyadh Summit in Sign of Diplomatic Thaw

Tue, 12/10/2019 - 03:56

(Bloomberg) -- Qatar sent its prime minister to an annual gathering of Gulf Arab monarchs in the Saudi capital Tuesday, signaling progress in ending the 30-month regional rift though not enough for the country’s ruler to attend.Sheikh Abdullah Bin Nasser Al Thani will lead Qatar’s delegation at the request of the emir, Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani, according to a statement carried by the state-run Qatar News Agency.Speculation that a breakthrough in the unprecedented showdown in the Gulf was imminent swirled after Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain agreed to take part in a regional soccer tournament in Doha earlier this month. Qatar’s foreign minister also said talks with Saudi Arabia may yield positive results.The three Gulf monarchies and Egypt severed diplomatic and trade ties with Qatar in 2017, accusing Doha of supporting terrorist groups, a charge it has repeatedly denied.While the prime minister attended an emergency Gulf summit in Saudi Arabia this year to discuss attacks on oil targets, the country has mostly sent lower-level representatives to regional meetings since the embargo.Read: Qatar’s Emir Said Unlikely to Attend Gulf Summit in Riyadh (1)Prince Turki Al-Faisal, former head of Saudi Arabia’s intelligence service, said he’s “personally disappointed” that Sheikh Tamim decided to skip the meeting, but said the kingdom was working to engage with Qatar.“The initiative to bring the Qatar dispute to an end has been Saudi Arabia’s,” he told Bloomberg TV’s Anna Edwards and Matthew Miller in an interview. “We are the ones who are pushing for Qatar to come back to our fold.”The recent participation by Saudi Arabia, the U.A.E. and Bahrain in the Gulf Cup soccer tournament in Doha “was a sign that these three countries are willing to engage with Qatar,” Prince Turki said.Still, a series of tit-for-tat Twitter exchanges between officials from Qatar and the U.A.E., which has been a staunch proponent of the embargo, showed that deep differences remained.On Tuesday, in an apparent response to a tweet by the Qatari emir’s brother, U.A.E. Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash suggested that Qatar would have to “reverse incorrect policies” and “abide by covenants, regain its credibility and stop supporting extremism.”(Updates with details throughout)\--With assistance from Alaa Shahine.To contact the reporters on this story: Simone Foxman in Doha at sfoxman4@bloomberg.net;Abbas Al Lawati in Dubai at aallawati6@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Lin Noueihed at lnoueihed@bloomberg.net, Alaa Shahine, Amy TeibelFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


Pete Buttigieg's real 'black problem': He has been convicted of white privilege

Tue, 12/10/2019 - 03:15

Acknowledge the original sin, but also that white men risked their lives to end slavery and a black man led the way to gay marriage equality.


Suu Kyi in court as genocide case set out against Myanmar

Tue, 12/10/2019 - 01:37

Mass rapes, the burning alive of Muslim Rohingya families in their homes and the killing with knives of dozens of children were described by Gambia's legal team as it set out its genocide case against Myanmar at the U.N.'s highest court on Tuesday. Myanmar's leader Aung San Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace laureate, looked on impassively as the alleged atrocities were detailed on the first of three days of hearings at the International Court of Justice in The Hague. The case was instituted by Gambia against Buddhist-majority Myanmar in November.


Kentucky's new governor reorganizes school board on day one

Tue, 12/10/2019 - 00:08

Delivering on a campaign promise to teachers who helped elect him, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear used his first day in office Tuesday to overhaul the state school board. In his inaugural address outside the state Capitol, the new Democratic governor proclaimed his support for public education and expanding health care coverage.


Hong Kong's leader unbowed after massive weekend protest

Mon, 12/09/2019 - 22:17

Hong Kong's leader on Tuesday again ruled out further concessions to protesters who marched peacefully in their hundreds of thousands this past weekend, days before she is to travel to Beijing for regularly scheduled meetings with Communist Party leaders. The six-month protest movement has five demands, including that the leader of the semi-autonomous city and lawmakers all be directly elected and that police actions against protesters be independently investigated. “As for other demands, we really have to stick by certain important principles," she said.


Rick Gates Seeks to Avoid Jail at Sentencing for Conspiracy

Mon, 12/09/2019 - 21:21

(Bloomberg) -- Former Trump campaign official Rick Gates asked a judge to spare him from prison, put him on probation and order him to do community service for his crimes of conspiracy and lying to federal investigators.In a court filing Monday, Gates said he has accepted responsibility “in every way possible.” He’s scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson in Washington on Dec. 17.Gates was a critical witness in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election. He was the star prosecution witness in the trial of his former boss Paul Manafort, who was convicted of bank and tax fraud in August.Gates was Manafort’s right-hand man in his political consulting firm and worked with him for a decade, lobbying on behalf of Ukraine before joining him on Trump’s presidential campaign. Gates remained on the Trump campaign after Manafort resigned in August 2016.He also testified in the trials of one-time White House counsel to Barack Obama, Gregory Craig, and Republican operative Roger Stone.Gates said his “cooperation likely represents the most extensive undertaking by any cooperating defendant in the work of the OSC or any matters arising out of, or related, to the activity of that office.”Additional and specific details of Gates’s cooperation are under seal, according to the filing.Nine letters of support from family and friends, urging Berman to show leniency, were included with the filing. Many described him as a religious man, committed to his family. One letter was filed under seal.Gates also asked that the judge doesn’t impose a fine.“Mr. Gates has remained unemployed since his indictment, and in lieu of any income with which to support his family and maintain their home, he has had to deplete savings and investment accounts, including college savings plans for his children,” according to the filing.The case is U.S. v. Richard W. Gates III, 17-cr-201, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia (Washington).(Updates with letters of support)To contact the reporter on this story: Joe Schneider in Los Angeles at jschneider5@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: David Glovin at dglovin@bloomberg.net, Joe Schneider, Peter BlumbergFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


Trump reacts to DOJ watchdog report during school choice roundtable

Mon, 12/09/2019 - 20:58

The president's roundtable is taking place during an impeachment hearing on the hill and as the Justice Department watchdog report on the origins of the Russia investigation is released.


India's lower house passes contentious nationality bill

Mon, 12/09/2019 - 20:41

India's lower house passed controversial legislation early Tuesday that will grant citizenship to religious minorities from neighbouring countries, but not Muslims, amid raucous scenes in parliament and protests in the country's northeast. "This bill is in line with India's centuries old ethos of assimilation and belief in humanitarian values," Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted, adding that he was "delighted" about its passage. "This is not a bill that is discriminatory," Home Minister Amit Shah said.


Baltimore County Police Officer Charged With Sexually Assaulting Three Women

Mon, 12/09/2019 - 17:09

A Baltimore County cop has been charged with sexually assaulting at least three women, including one he allegedly tricked into going to his house after claiming he was ordering her a car to her friend’s home, court documents state. Baltimore County Police Officer Michael Westerman, 25, was charged Sunday with two counts of second-degree rape and three counts of second-degree assault. He is currently being held at the Baltimore County Detention Center after he was denied bail on Monday.According to charging documents obtained by The Daily Beast, Westerman is accused of sexually assaulted three women using a series of predatory tactics to isolate them. One woman said she was scared to report the alleged serial rapist because he was a police officer. Dallas Police Up Charges Against White Bartender Who Brutally Beat Black Woman“The allegations made in this case are reprehensible and are not representative of the values and ethics of the Baltimore County Police Department," Baltimore County Police Chief Melissa Hyatt said in a Sunday statement, adding Westerman “has been suspended without pay.”Authorities said an investigation into Westerman, who joined the force in 2013, began on Oct. 16 after the special victims unit received “information concerning the allegations.” One 22-year-old woman, according to the charging documents, said she met Westerman on Oct. 4, 2017, outside a bar called White Marsh, according to the charging documents.The woman, who was not identified, said she left the bar to pass out in her car after Westerman bought shots for a crowd. She told police that she planned to stay in her car until she was sober enough to drive home. Instead, the woman said she woke up to the police officer and one of her female friends knocking on her car window.Westerman allegedly stated he was going to order her an Uber to take her to her friend’s house, the women said.“You are going to Uber us back to my house, right?” the woman asked Westerman, who allegedly responded, “Yes.”  Illinois Police Chief Shared Photos From Secret Recordings of Sexual Encounters: ProsecutorsInstead, Westerman drove the trio back to his house, where he allegedly raped one of the women, the charging documents state. The woman stated she tried to stop Westerman when he got on top of her, but he “told her that he liked it when she pushed at him and when she told him to stop.”After the assault, the 22-year-old said she woke up to find “her pants were on the floor,” according to the document. She then told her friend what had happened and the two left immediately, according to police. Another 20-year-old woman told authorities she was drinking at the officer’s home on June 8, 2019 when she fell asleep in his guest bedroom. She alleged the cop woke her up and forced her to have sex with him—but she didn’t initially report the incident because “she knew Defendent Westerman was a Baltimore County Police Officer.”Two weeks later, authorities allege Westerman sexually assaulted another 22-year-old woman at a birthday party. That woman, who described herself as the officer’s friend, said he took her to a “secluded area” in Middle River, where “he wanted to show or tell her something.” Instead, the cop allegedly grabbed and tried to kiss her twice before she left with a relative, charging documents state.Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.


Look Out Russia, The U.S. Army's M-1A2C Abrams Tanks Are Getting An Upgrade

Mon, 12/09/2019 - 17:00

The latest Abrams is here.


Photo shows Jeffrey Epstein went to royal party dressed as a Navy SEAL

Mon, 12/09/2019 - 16:45

Jeffrey Epstein attended Prince Andrew's costume party in a US Navy SEAL officer's uniform. Some of the medals appear to be fictional.


Syria's Assad: OPCW faked a report on attack near Damascus

Mon, 12/09/2019 - 15:47

Assad's comments to Italy's Rai News 24 came after the director-general of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons expressed confidence in the report into the deadly attack in Syria. OPCW's chief Fernando Arias supported the report issued in March by a fact-finding mission from the watchdog that found "reasonable grounds" that chlorine was used in a deadly attack on the eastern Damascus suburb of Douma.


'Old man' Trump is 'bluffing,' says North Korea: KCNA news agency

Mon, 12/09/2019 - 15:18

North Korea on Monday accused President Trump of “bluffing” and called him “an old man bereft of patience” as Pyongyang ramps up pressure on Washington over stalled nuclear talks.


Erdogan says Turkey aims to settle 1 million refugees in Syria offensive area

Mon, 12/09/2019 - 15:08

Turkey aims to settle one million Syrian war refugees in the area of northern Syria where it carried out a military incursion in October, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday. Turkey and its Syrian rebel allies launched the offensive against the Kurdish YPG militia, which Ankara views as a terrorist group. After seizing a strip of land inside Syria 120 km (75 miles) long and around 30 km (18 miles) wide running from the town of Ras al Ain to Tel Abyad, Turkey signed separate deals with the United States and Russia to halt its assault.


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