If you take money that doesn’t belong to you, it’s theft, but somehow the Franchise Tax Board, the agency that collects your taxes, is getting away with it.
- The Daily Beast
Michael Reaves/GettyAttorneys for Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS) and the NAACP have served former President Donald Trump at his Mar-a-Lago club with a lawsuit filed against him in February. Thompson and the NAACP filed suit against Trump alleging that his incendiary rhetoric and false claims of a “stolen” election amounted to a conspiracy to interfere with civil rights by inciting the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol.The suit names Trump alongside his attorney Rudy Giuliani and the right wing extremist groups, the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers, as co-defendants and builds off the 1871 “Klan Act,” which was “intended to protect against conspiracies, through violence and intimidation, that sought to prevent Members of Congress from discharging their official duties,” according to a complaint.If Jan. 6 Was ‘Domestic Terror,’ Who Was the Terrorist in Chief?Trump advisers did not immediately provide comment on who, if anyone, at this point is representing the former president for this lawsuit. When Trump was served, it was merely signed for by a “Ricky,” according to the court document.Several Trump attorneys who The Daily Beast asked about this said they had no involvement. As of Tuesday, Alan Dershowitz, a member of the Trump legal defense for the ex-president’s first Senate impeachment trial, said “nobody [on the Trump team] has reached out to me yet” regarding this suit, but added that he personally believes Trump’s rhetoric on Jan. 6 is “protected by the First Amendment” and that “I would hope that the ACLU would take on a case like this.”The suit adds to a growing list of legal troubles now facing former President Trump, his family, and his associates, since leaving office.After a victory at the Supreme Court in February, Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance obtained copies of Trump’s tax returns. The paperwork is reportedly part of a city fraud investigation looking into whether the former president lied about the value of his assets in order to gain financial advantages.It’s unclear who will represent Trump, the Proud Boys, and the Oath Keepers in the latest suit but court records show that Austin, Texas-based attorney Joseph D. Sibley IV accepted service of the suit on behalf of Giuliani. Sibley, a graduate of Harvard Law school, is a former U.S. Army Ranger.“I am representing Mayor Giuliani in the Thompson lawsuit, and I will also be representing him in the Smartmatic and Dominion cases,” Sibley told The Daily Beast on Wednesday afternoon.Orange Is the New Orange: Trump Just Might Go to JailSibley handles breach of contract, intellectual property, and other commercial law cases but has also represented clients in defamation cases and provided expert commentary for The Washington Post on defamation suits.He represented far-right blogger Charles Johnson in a 2020 libel lawsuit that was originally filed against Verizon, The Huffington Post, and reporter Andy Campbell for a 2019 article which labeled Johnson a “Holocaust-Denying White Nationalist”—a description Johnson strongly denies. Johnson dismissed the suits against Campbell and Verizon but has appealed a federal judge’s dismissal of his suit against The Huffington Post.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get 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.
Days ahead of Oprah‘s landmark interview with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, people are already spotting significance in the fashion choices made in the clips released. Meghan Markle‘s Oprah interview outfit reportedly sends a strong message, including a touching tribute to the late Princess Diana. Markle and Prince Harry have spent a year away from the spotlight, adjusting to life after stepping back as “senior members” of the royal family.
Turkey is not necessarily aiming to return to the U.S. F-35 fighter jet programme from which it was removed over its purchase of Russian defence systems, the Turkish defence industry chief said on Wednesday. He said the primary goal was for Turkey to get compensated for its losses. Ankara had ordered more than 100 F-35s and has been making parts for it but was removed from the programme in 2019 after it acquired Russian S-400 missile defence systems, which Washington says threaten the jets.
- Associated Press
Kuwait’s new Cabinet was sworn in Wednesday, state-run media reported, weeks after the government quit amid a deepening deadlock with parliament that has blocked badly needed reforms in the tiny oil-rich Gulf Arab state. Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al Hamad Al Sabah swapped out four ministers whose selections had angered various lawmakers for less contentious, veteran politicians, an apparent gesture to appease parliament. The worsening rift between Kuwait’s emir-appointed government and elected parliament presents the first significant challenge to Sheikh Nawaf Al Ahmad Al Sabah, who ascended the throne last fall.
- The Telegraph
The British ambassador in Beijing has been attacked by Chinese state media after she posted on social media about the watchdog role of an independent press holding governments and organisations to account. Caroline Wilson cited examples where scrutiny from the British press brought positive change, including the Telegraph’s 2009 investigation into MPs’ expense claims that led to parliamentary reform, while a BBC report exposed in 2019 how patients in a nursing home were being abused by staff. She added that when foreign media turn a watchdog eye toward China, it’s a “good faith” effort to ensure people have access to information, and to support those “who have no voice”. But multiple pieces in Chinese state media accused her of not understanding China and claimed foreign media were “launching an ideological propaganda warfare against the Chinese political system.” Ms Wilson, who was appointed ambassador last September, was previously posted to the British embassy in Beijing before serving as consul-general in Hong Kong, and speaks Mandarin. Chinese state media said that Ms Wilson had yet to learn “how unwelcome some Western media outlets are in China.” Foreign journalists face increasing threats, harassment and scrutiny by many parts of the Chinese state. Foreign journalists have been expelled for coverage that Chinese authorities disliked, assaulted while working, and threatened with long-term detention, according to a recent report by the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of China. The attacks against Ms Wilson are part of a broader campaign by China that has ramped up against the UK, denouncing British officials via the foreign ministry in Beijing, the embassy in London, and in Chinese state media. The two nations have clashed over espionage concerns and human rights abuses, especially in Xinjiang and Hong Kong. The foreign ministry in Beijing rejected Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab’s speech last week to the UN Human Rights Council, urging members to tackle China’s abuses against the Uighur ethnic minority. A Chinese government spokesperson instead claimed that accounts of human rights violations against Uighurs were “rumours and lies fabricated by anti-China forces.” Then, on Tuesday, the Chinese embassy in London warned the UK was “going further down the wrong path” after Mr Raab issued a statement about 47 Hong Kong politicians and activists being charged this week under a sweeping national security law. “It demonstrates in the starkest way the use of the law to stifle any political dissent, rather than restore security which was the claimed intention of the legislation,” said Mr Raab. Chinese state media have continued to single out the BBC in harsh rebukes after British broadcast regulator Ofcom revoked the license for Chinese state broadcaster CGTN to air programmes in the UK. Ofcom announced earlier this month it would cancel CGTN’s license as the organisation was “ultimately controlled by the Chinese Communist Party,” which violated British broadcasting rules that require outlets to exercise editorial oversight over progammes shown, and bar them from being controlled by political bodies. Beijing responded by banning the BBC in China, though in practice the network was only available as a pay channel in some hotels and homes. Censors block broadcast of BBC stories within China that go against the official propaganda narrative, for instance, reports about human rights violations. The Chinese embassy in London and foreign ministry in Beijing routinely reprimand the Telegraph and other British outlets for coverage of China that the authorities find unfavourable.
- USA TODAY
At least 13 people died after an SUV with 25 passengers collided with a semitruck full of gravel near the U.S.-Mexican border in California.
- The Daily Beast
Ben Birchall/WPA Pool/GettyMeghan Markle has denied detailed accusations of “bullying” her former Buckingham Palace staff and accused opponents of conducting a “calculated smear campaign” in advance of her much-hyped CBS interview with Oprah Winfrey this Sunday.If Meghan and Prince Harry had anticipated an open field to criticize the royal family and/or air various grievances, certain Buckingham Palace sources seem determined to torpedo their ambitions prior to Sunday night.Harry and Meghan Are Begged to Delay Oprah Broadcast While Prince Philip Is Gravely IllRoyal aides told The Times of London that Meghan was the subject of an official bullying complaint made in October 2018 by Jason Knauf, Meghan and Harry’s former communications secretary. The Times reported that the complaint detailed how Meghan allegedly “drove two personal assistants out of the household and was undermining the confidence of a third staff member.” Prince Harry asked Knauf not to pursue the complaint, a source told the paper.“Staff would on occasion be reduced to tears” because of the duchess, The Times reported. One aide, anticipating a confrontation with Meghan, told a colleague: “I can’t stop shaking.” Another aide claimed it felt “more like emotional cruelty and manipulation, which I guess could also be called bullying.”Knauf, in an email to Simon Case, then the Duke of Cambridge’s private secretary, said the palace’s head of HR, Samantha Carruthers, “agreed with me on all counts that the situation was very serious.” He added: “I remain concerned that nothing will be done.”Knauf, who is now chief executive of Prince William and Kate Middleton’s Royal Foundation, said in his email: “I am very concerned that the Duchess was able to bully two PAs out of the household in the past year. The treatment of X was totally unacceptable… The Duchess seems intent on always having someone in her sights. She is bullying Y and seeking to undermine her confidence. We have had report after report from people who have witnessed unacceptable behavior towards Y.”Sympathetic sources around Harry and Meghan relayed their frustration and hurt with the attitudes of palace officials in Finding Freedom: Harry and Meghan and the Making of a Modern Royal Family.However, palace sources told The Times that the bullying allegations had not been investigated by the palace and that officials had made Meghan more “welcome” than the couple’s supporters have long claimed. One source said of the bullying complaint: “I think the problem is, not much happened with it. It was, ‘How can we make this go away?,’ rather than addressing it.”Another source told The Times: “Senior people in the household, Buckingham Palace and Clarence House, knew that they had a situation where members of staff, particularly young women, were being bullied to the point of tears. The institution just protected Meghan constantly. All the men in grey suits who she hates have a lot to answer for, because they did absolutely nothing to protect people.”The paper said the sources were speaking out now in advance of Meghan’s Sunday night interview to give their view of Harry and Meghan’s royal life, presumably anticipating that it may be very different from what the couple may relay to Winfrey. The broadcast of the interview—the result of a reported two years’ worth of planning by Meghan and Winfrey—is being criticized as ill-timed given the illness and hospitalization of Prince Philip.Buckingham Palace declined to comment to The Times.The paper also details how Meghan wore earrings to a formal dinner in 2018 that were a wedding gift from Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who the CIA concluded last week had ordered the assassination of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. The dinner took place three weeks after Khashoggi was killed. At the time Meghan said the earrings were borrowed. “The duchess does not deny this was what she said, despite being aware of their provenance,” The Times reported.In a statement to The Times, a spokesperson for the Sussexes said of the various allegations: “Let’s just call this what it is—a calculated smear campaign based on misleading and harmful misinformation. We are disappointed to see this defamatory portrayal of The Duchess of Sussex given credibility by a media outlet. It’s no coincidence that distorted several-year-old accusations aimed at undermining The Duchess are being briefed to the British media shortly before she and The Duke are due to speak openly and honestly about their experience of recent years.“In a detailed legal letter of rebuttal to The Times, we have addressed these defamatory claims in full, including spurious allegations regarding the use of gifts loaned to The Duchess by The Crown. The Duchess is saddened by this latest attack on her character, particularly as someone who has been the target of bullying herself and is deeply committed to supporting those who have experienced pain and trauma. She is determined to continue her work building compassion around the world and will keep striving to set an example for doing what is right and doing what is good.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Get 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.
- The Independent
Marjorie Taylor Greene claims ‘real’ voter suppression is her having to wait to go through metal detectors at Congress
The For the People Act – also known as HR1 – aims to make voting in federal elections easier
A high-level Chinese study says a massive work scheme is reducing Uighur population density in Xinjiang.
- Associated Press
The chief European Union diplomat in Venezuela left the country on Tuesday, a week after the government of Nicolás Maduro ordered her expulsion following the EU's decision to impose sanctions on several Venezuelan officials accused of undermining democracy or violating human rights. Isabel Brilhante Pedrosa tweeted a photograph of Caracas showing the mountain range that flanks the Venezuelan capital to the north and the message “infinite thanks to all Venezuelans for their affection.” The Venezuelan government’s action against Brilhante Pedrosa came after the European Union’s foreign ministers sanctioned 19 Venezuelan officials, freezing their assets and banning them from traveling to the bloc, citing the deteriorating situation Venezuela faces after December 2020 elections.
- Business Insider
A former firefighter charged in the Capitol riot took a bus organized by Turning Point USA to DC, filing says
TPUSA founder Charlie Kirk has since-deleted tweets that promoted buses to DC as well as free hotel rooms in the Capitol for Trump supporters.
Director Matt Shakman hopes fans who have enjoyed Wanda's journey "will find that the finale is surprising but also satisfying."
If Daryl had to choose between his long-term friend, Maggie, and the man who killed her husband, Negan, Norman Reedus says he's #TeamMaggie.
- The Independent
John Brennan says ‘there are so few Republicans in Congress who value truth, honesty, and integrity’
- Associated Press
An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of at least 6.0 struck central Greece Wednesday and was also felt in neighboring Albania and North Macedonia, and as far as Kosovo and Montenegro. Local officials reported structural damage, mainly to old houses and buildings that saw walls collapse or crack. The quake struck at 12:16 p.m. (1015 GMT), according to the Athens Geodynamic Institute which put the preliminary magnitude at 6.0.
Disneyland's Snow White ride has been scaring kids for decades, but its new makeover should change that
Disneyland updated its Snow White's Scary Adventures ride, which will be known as Snow White's Enchanted Wish once the theme park reopens.
The actor who plays Migs Mayfield on the show said "it's f---ing crazy times" in regards to cancel culture.
Three men and a woman pleaded not guilty on Tuesday to a charge of criminal damage over their alleged role in the toppling of a statue of 17th century slave trade magnate Edward Colston in Bristol in southwest England last year. The statue was pulled down and tossed into Bristol harbour during an anti-racism demonstration on June 7 that was part of a global wave of Black Lives Matter protests. The toppling of the statue led to other memorials of figures linked to the slave trade being taken down or their future being debated, triggering a backlash from government ministers who said this amounted to censoring history.
- Associated Press
Joe Exotic of “Tiger King" fame has found new attorneys who say they plan to file a motion for a new trial in a matter of months. Joe Exotic, whose real name Joseph Maldonado-Passage, was sentenced in January 2020 to 22 years in federal prison for violating federal wildlife laws and for his role in a failed murder-for-hire plot targeting his chief rival, Carole Baskin, who runs a rescue sanctuary for big cats in Florida. Baskin was not harmed.
CrossFit has publicly disavowed Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene over the Republican's previous support for QAnon and other conspiracy theories.