The Envoy
  • Madeline Pulver. (Sydney Morning Herald)

    Editor's Note: This post has been updated since publication to reflect news developments.

    Sydney police have determined that the device from which an Australian teenage girl was freed Wednesday was not a bomb, but an elaborate fake, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

    Madeleine Pulver, 18, told police "a stranger wearing a balaclava had placed the device around her neck after breaking into her family's multimillion-dollar" home in the Sydney suburb of Mosman, the Sydney Morning Herald reported. She was freed by a bomb squad some ten hours later.

    New South Wales State Police Assistant Commissioner Mark Murdoch told journalists Thursday however that it had been determined the device was not a bomb, but an "elaborate" fake.

    "A very, very elaborate hoax as it turned out," Murdoch said Thursday, the Sydney Morning Herald reported. "But it was made and certainly gave the appearance of a legitimate improvised explosive device."

    Read More »from Sydney teen freed by bomb squad; police determine bomb fake
  • Mubarak stands trial

    In an astonishing reversal of fortune, Egyptians watched ousted former dictator Hosni Mubarak wheeled on a gurney into a cage to face trial, along with his two sons, in a Cairo courtroom today.

    Mubarak, who was forced from office last February after 31 years in power, denied guilt on charges of ordering attacks that killed anti-government protesters last year.

    "I deny all these charges and accusations categorically," Mubarak said, the Washington Post's Leila Fadel and Ernesto Londono reported from the court room.

    Read More »from Mubarak stands trial
  • It's true that former Soviet republics have unwelcome experience with tanks in the streets of their capitals. But never before, it seems safe to say, has a political leader brought out the heavy artillery to protect the integrity of a bike lane.

    However, that's just what happened recently when Arturas Zuokas, the mayor of Vilnius, Lithuania, declared virtual war on automobiles crowding out bicycles in designated bike lanes.

    Zuokas, who was recently reelected to a second term, climbed into an armored personnel carrier turret to crush a Mercedes parked in a Vilnius bike lane. The resulting mayhem was, of course, captured for posterity on YouTube, in the video below.

    "In the past few days, expensive cars have been illegally parked in almost this exact place," the mayor says on the video.

    "What should the city do about drivers who think that they are above the law?" the narration continues. "It seems that a tank is the best solution."

    "Mayor Zuokas wanted his message to be loud and clear

    Read More »from Vilnius mayor mounts a tank to crush car parked in bike lane


(679 Stories)
  • NYSE stocks posting largest percentage decreases

    A look at the 10 biggest percentage decliners on New York Stock Exchange at the close of trading: Invacare Corp. fell 14.9 percent to $14.96. Kemet Corp. fell 14.9 percent to $5.15. Demand Media Inc wi ...

  • Early Glance: Railroad companies

    Shares of some top railroad companies are mixed at 10 a.m.: CSX rose $.05 or .2 percent, to $31.18. Canadian National Railway Co. fell $.48 or .7 percent, to $68.61. Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. fell ...

  • Baldwin, LaBeouf share a role _ defendant_ in NYC
    Baldwin, LaBeouf share a role _ defendant_ in NYC

    NEW YORK (AP) — Alec Baldwin and Shia LaBeouf never ended up sharing a Broadway stage as planned last year, but real-life dramatics landed both of them Thursday in a distinctly less celebrated venue: Manhattan criminal courts.

  • Shemar Moore to return to 'Young and Restless'

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — Shemar Moore is returning to his daytime roots with a two-day guest appearance on "The Young and the Restless."

  • French warplanes search Mali desert for crashed Air Algerie plane
    French warplanes search Mali desert for crashed Air Algerie plane

    By Hamid Ould Ahmed ALGIERS (Reuters) - French warplanes and U.N. helicopters scoured the north of Mali on Thursday for the wreckage of an Air Algerie flight after it crashed carrying 110 passengers, nearly half of them French, from Burkina Faso to Algiers. French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said authorities believed flight AH5017 may have encountered bad weather after the pilot requested to change direction shortly after takeoff due to a storm. Officials in Mali and Burkina Faso gave conflicting accounts of locating the crash. Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita said wreckage of the flight had been spotted in his country's far north, toward the Algerian border between the towns of Aguelhoc and Kidal.

  • Facebook soars as Zuckerberg’s cash-machine kicks into gear
    Facebook soars as Zuckerberg’s cash-machine kicks into gear

    Facebook shares are bounding higher this morning after the company posted its fifth straight better-than-expected quarter. The metrics were beyond reproach

  • Wreckage of missing Algerian airliner found in Mali
    Wreckage of missing Algerian airliner found in Mali

    The wreckage of an Air Algerie plane missing since early Thursday with 116 people on board has been found in Mali near the Burkina Faso border, an army coordinator in Ouagadougou said. The wreck has been located ... 50 kilometres (30 miles) north of the Burkina Faso border" in the Malian region of Gossi, said General Gilbert Diendiere of the Burkina Faso army. Flight AH5017, which took off from Ouagadougou bound for Algiers with 51 French nationals aboard, according to Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, went missing amid reports of heavy storms, company sources and officials said.

  • U.S. judge won't void five ex-Madoff employees' convictions

    By Jonathan Stempel NEW YORK (Reuters) - The federal judge who oversaw the trial of five associates of imprisoned swindler Bernard Madoff on Thursday refused to overturn their convictions for helping their former boss run one of the world's biggest Ponzi schemes. U.S. District Judge Laura Taylor Swain found sufficient evidence for jurors on March 24 to have convicted back-office director Daniel Bonventre, portfolio managers Annette Bongiorno and Joann Crupi and computer programmers Jerome O’Hara and George Perez after the five-month trial. Swain also said the defendants were not entitled to a new trial, rejecting arguments that prosecutors had made prejudicial remarks during their opening and closing statements, including referring to their defenses as "ridiculous" and "absurd." "Although the court had expected the government to take a higher and less rhetorical road," Swain wrote, "the government's summation – when considered in the context of the meticulous presentation of all of the evidence, arguments in the trial as a whole and the curative instructions – did not so taint the trial so as to make it fundamentally unfair." Judges give jurors curative instructions to eliminate the risk of prejudice from tainted statements or evidence.

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