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Feds: Indian diplomat not immune from N.Y. charges
Written by Associated Press   
Saturday, 01 February 2014 06:12

NEW YORK (AP) — Federal prosecutors say an Indian diplomat who was strip-searched when arrested on charges she fraudulently obtained a work visa for her housekeeper and lied about the housekeeper's pay isn't covered by diplomatic immunity.

Prosecutors say in papers filed Friday in Manhattan federal court that since Devyani Khobragade (dayv-YAHN'-ee KOH'-bruh-gah-day) is no longer in the U.S., she's not immune from prosecution. The papers further argue the immunity she would have enjoyed at the consular level wouldn't protect against the charges in this case.

Khobragade was the deputy consul general in New York. She complied with a Department of State order to leave the United States earlier this month following her indictment.

Her attorney has filed court papers asking that all charges and arrest warrants be dismissed against his client.


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 
Manslaughter verdict in buttocks-injection trial
Written by HOLBROOK MOHR, Associated Press   
Saturday, 01 February 2014 06:09

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — To hear Natasha Stewart tell it, she was just trying to help an insecure woman when she helped arrange for her to get silicone injections in her buttocks, shots that prosecutors say were deadly. A jury disagreed, convicting Stewart on Friday of culpable negligence manslaughter.

Stewart, of suburban Memphis, Tenn., was found guilty Friday in Jackson, Miss., in the death of 37-year-old Karima Gordon of Atlanta.

Authorities say Stewart, an adult entertainer also known as Pebbelz Da Model, took $200 for a referral to the alleged injector and falsely represented that the injector was a nurse.

Stewart testified Friday that Gordon was insecure about her body and wanted help fixing previously botched buttocks enhancements. Stewart said she connected Gordon with the woman performing the injections to help her out, not for money, but she said Gordon insisted on paying her.

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Lawyer: Evidence contradicts Christie on closures
Written by ANGELA DELLI SANTI, Associated Press GEOFF MULVIHILL, Associated Press   
Saturday, 01 February 2014 06:04

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Gov. Chris Christie made inaccurate statements during a news conference about the lane closures near the George Washington Bridge, according to a letter released Friday by a lawyer for a former Christie loyalist who ordered the closures and resigned amid the ensuing scandal that has engulfed the New Jersey governor's administration.

The letter from David Wildstein's lawyer said evidence exists suggesting the governor knew about the closures as they happened in September — which, if accurate, contradicts some statements Christie made on the matter. The letter, though, does not detail any evidence.

Attorney Alan Zegas' letter focuses on a nearly two-hour televised news conference Christie gave on Jan. 9 where his responses to questions about what he knew about the closures and when could be open to interpretation. But at a Dec. 13 news conference, the Republican governor said definitively he didn't know about the traffic problems until they were over.

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Child who survived deadly Kentucky fire recuperating
Written by DYLAN LOVAN, Associated Press   
Saturday, 01 February 2014 06:06

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — A girl who escaped a western Kentucky house fire that killed her mother and eight siblings is recuperating from burns and communicating with her hospital nurses, a family friend said Friday.

Kylie Watson wrote "I'm hungry" on a dry erase board from her hospital bed, pastor Tim Burden said. Burden said the 11-year-old girl's father, Chad Watson, is also making progress at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville.

Eight of Chad Watson's children and his wife, Nikki, died in a house fire in rural Muhlenberg County early Thursday morning. Investigators say the fire was likely ignited when a combustible material made contact with a baseboard heater.

"The whole community is mourning. This is a tragedy, and it could happen to any of us," said Duane Harvey, a neighbor who was the first person to arrive at the fire just after 2 a.m.

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Couple face new charges of alleged imprisonment
Written by JACQUES BILLEAUD, Associated Press   
Friday, 31 January 2014 15:28

FLORENCE, Ariz. (AP) — A couple accused of imprisoning the wife's daughters in a Tucson home now face new charges in a second Arizona county where they lived previously.

Fernando and Sophia Richter pleaded not guilty Friday in Pinal County Superior Court to child abuse and kidnapping charges. Fernando Richter also pleaded not guilty to charges of child abuse, aggravated assault, sexual abuse and child molestation.

The Richters were arrested Nov. 26 in Tucson and later indicted in Pima County on kidnapping and child abuse charges. The couple moved to Tucson last year from the Pinal County community of Catalina, about 20 miles north of Tucson.

Authorities had discovered that the girls — ages 12, 13 and 17 — were being held captive when the two younger girls escaped in late November through their bedroom window and alerted a neighbor.

Police later discovered the 17-year-old was being held separately from her sisters in another room. The three girls were malnourished and dirty and told officers they hadn't taken a bath in up to six months.

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