WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump on Thursday disputed claims by former lawyer Michael Cohen that he engaged in "dirty deeds" that include hush payments to two women to keep them quiet during the 2016 election. "I never directed Michael Cohen to break the law," Trump tweeted. Trump spoke a day after a federal judge sentenced Cohen to three years in prison for pleading guilty to campaign finance violations, tax evasion and lying to Congress, including a hush money scheme that prosecutors have said was authorized by Trump himself.
Kelsey Berreth was last seen on Thanksgiving Day, captured on surveillance video entering a grocery store with what appears to be her 1-year-old daughter in a baby carrier. Weeks later, investigators don't know what happened to the 29-year-old Colorado mother. Her fiance has told police the couple, who did not live together, met sometime on the holiday to exchange their child.
Technology researchers in China have been ordered to not travel to the US unless it is absolutely necessary, amid rising tensions between the two countries. Staff working in sensitive tech sectors were given the warning following the arrest of a Chinese tech executive in Canada, a source told the South China Morning Post. Workers at a research agency were also told to remove any sensitive data from laptops, mobile phones and other devices if travel to the US was essential.
Insurance claims from the recent devastating California wildfires that killed at least 89 people and destroyed 19,000 homes and businesses have reached at least $9 billion, the state's insurance commissioner said Wednesday. "The devastating wildfires of 2018 were the deadliest and costliest wildfire catastrophes in California's history," said California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones. Most of the insurance payouts -- some $7 billion -- concern the Camp Fire in Northern California, which wiped out the town of Paradise and killed 86 people, making it the deadliest wildfire in recent California history.
SHANGHAI/BEIJING (Reuters) - Canada should distance itself from U.S. "hegemonism" and grant unconditional freedom to Meng Wanzhou, a top executive of China's Huawei detained in Vancouver on Washington's request, state-owned tabloid Global Times said in a Thursday editorial. Meng, the chief financial officer of Huawei Technologies, has been accused by U.S. prosecutors of misleading banks about transactions linked to Iran, putting the banks at risk of violating sanctions. The United States needs to make a formal extradition request within 60 days of her arrest, which a Canadian judge will weigh to determine whether the case against Meng is strong enough.
Luxury retailer appears to be first casualty as calls for a boycott spread on social media Weibo and echoed on state-run media Growing tensions between Beijing and Ottawa over the arrest of a senior Huawei executive have inflicted damage on the luxury clothing retailer Canada Goose, as Chinese consumers call for a boycott of the brand. Shares in the company have plunged nearly 20% since the arrest last week of Huawei’s chief financial officers Meng Wanzhou in Vancouver. A Canadian judge granted bail to Meng on Tuesday evening.
The Geminid meteor shower, which peaks late at night on Thursday into the wee hours of the morning Friday, could bring more than 100 meteors per hour to light pollution-free skies in dark areas around the world, according to NASA. "If you can see the familiar winter constellations Orion and Gemini in the sky, you'll see some Geminids," NASA explained in a skywatching video. Perhaps the best thing about a meteor shower is you don't need any special gear to see it.
Three people missing since last weekend were found alive Wednesday in an underground coal mine in West Virginia, authorities said. The three were located Wednesday inside Elk Run Coal's Rock House Powellton mine near Clear Creek, the state Office of Miners' Health, Safety and Training said in a statement. The mine was described as nonoperational.
A former Baylor University fraternity president accused of rape who will serve no jail time has been banned from the University of Texas at Dallas' campus and graduation activities. Jacob Anderson, 24, accepted a deal to plead no contest to a charge of unlawful restraint earlier this week. According to an arrest warrant, Anderson led a 19-year-old woman behind a house in 2016 where he repeatedly sexually assaulted her until she blacked out.
President Trump said Thursday that his former lawyer and longtime fixer Michael Cohen should have known the hush-money payments — that U.S. prosecutors say Trump ordered — were illegal. “I never directed Michael Cohen to break the law,” Trump tweeted. On Wednesday, Cohen was sentenced to 36 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to tax and fraud charges related to his personal business dealings, and to campaign finance violations stemming from his role in arranging payments on the eve of the 2016 presidential election to two women who claimed they had affairs with Trump.
UPDATE 12/13/18: The embattled former leader of Renault, Nissan, and Mitsubishi, still in jail in Japan over financial irregularity charges from Nissan, is retaining his status as chairman and CEO at Renault. The French automaker's board of directors met today and made that announcement, stating that it finds Ghosn's compensation reports were "in compliance with applicable law" in France. Japanese prosecutors have formally charged Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn for making "false disclosures" about his income with Nissan, the automaker said on Monday.
A disgruntled employee at a Canadian Walmart decided that he wasn’t going to quit quietly. In a video posted to Facebook on Friday, a 17-year-old worker named Jackson Racicot grabbed the PA mic and told everyone in the store what he really thought about working there. Racicot then dove into individual grievances, starting with his manager who apparently had called him “a waste of time.” He goes on to say that promises had been made and not kept, and details the story of how he was given only benefits of a part-time employee even though he worked full-time.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Wednesday urged the United Nations to tighten restrictions on Iran's missiles, which he warned could strike US allies, but other powers called instead for dialogue. Pompeo headed to New York for a Security Council meeting on Iran, which recently confirmed a medium-range ballistic missile test, arguing it is legal and necessary for its defense. "We risk the security of our people if Iran continues stocking up on ballistic missiles," Pompeo told the Security Council.
The artists' first solo museum exhibition premiered during Miami Art Week.
Insurance claims from the recent spate of California wildfires, including one ranked as the most deadly and destructive in state history, have topped $9 billion and are expected to grow, the state insurance commissioner reported on Wednesday. The claims, so far, fall short of the record $12 billion in wildfire-related insured losses sustained in California in 2017, most of that from more than a dozen blazes that swept a large swath of wine country north of San Francisco Bay, killing 46 people. This year, the Camp Fire that erupted on Nov. 8 has accounted for the bulk of the claims, just over $7 billion of the total.
Nelson Martinez, the jailed former head of Venezuela's state-run oil giant PDVSA who was arrested last year as part of anti-corruption purge, died in state custody Wednesday, authorities said. The chief prosecutor's office said Martinez suffered from a serious and chronic illness that led to his death at a medical facility where he was undergoing treatment. The death is likely to focus attention on the conditions in which authorities are holding key opponents and former government officials.
Three people who disappeared in a closed West Virginia mine last weekend have been rescued and taken to a hospital in what Gov. Jim Justice called a "Christmas miracle." Kayla Williams, 25, Erica Treadway, 31, and Cody Beverly, 21, were found Wednesday inside the Rock House Powellton Mine near Clear Creek, Justice announced. They emerged within hours, and video from the scene showed the group walking toward medical personnel to big applause.
Michael Cohen, the former lawyer and fixer for President Donald Trump, is willing to reveal publicly what he knows about his former client once Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation is complete and findings are released, Cohen’s lawyer said Wednesday. There will come a time after Mr. Mueller is done with his work that Michael Cohen will be sitting in front of a microphone before a congressional committee and what he has to say about the truth will be judged by the members of Congress listening and then will be up to people to decide whether he has got the facts or not,” Cohen attorney and spokesman Lanny Davis said in an interview on Bloomberg Radio’s “Sound On.
A Florida man testified this week about fatally shooting his best friend ― who was long suspected of falling victim to alligators ― because he was having an affair with the friend’s wife. Brian Winchester told a courtroom in Tallahassee that he killed his best friend, Mike Williams, in 2000 and hid his body because he was having an extramarital relationship with Denise Williams, who is now on trial for first-degree murder, the Tallahassee Democrat reported. Winchester’s remarks came as the prosecution presented its case against Williams on Wednesday, the second day of testimony.
Japan is planning to tighten regulation of tech giants like Google and Facebook after an expert panel called for better oversight on competition and privacy, an official said Thursday. Japan has followed in the footsteps of other countries in scrutinising the dominant role played by the world's largest information technology companies, including Big Four tech firms Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon. Despite bringing benefits, tech giants "tend to monopolise the market through their features such as... low costs and economies of scale," the report said.
Many critics have suggested that new American pressure is harmful to both the people and the regime, perhaps sending many Iranians into the arms of the mullahs in protest. In reality, the protests and strikes in Iran’s cities have made it clear that the people recognize their economic hardships are rooted in the self-serving priorities of the mullahs, not international pressures. The enemy is right here,” protesters are chanting.
UPDATE 12/13/18: Toyota says the first production 2020 Supra will be auctioned off January 19, 2019, at the Barrett-Jackson auctions in Arizona to benefit the American Heart Association and the Bob Woodruff Foundation. Its VIN will be #20201 and it will feature a special paint scheme (teased below) including matte gray exterior paint, matte black wheels, red mirror caps, and a red leather interior featuring a carbon-fiber plaque denoting it as the first 2020 Supra. The new Toyota Supra sports car is almost here-and we mean it this time.
Flyers traveling through UK airports are more likely to suffer flight delays and cancellations compared to other transit hubs in Europe, says a new report on the 50 most disrupted flight routes in the region. That's according to the number crunching of flight compensation company AirHelp, which released "Europe's 50 Most Disrupted Flight Routes." The flight route to take the dubious distinction of topping the list?
Turkish forces will enter the Syrian town of Manbij if the United States does not remove YPG Kurdish fighters, and it will also target Kurdish-controlled areas further east, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday. Erdogan said this week that Turkey would launch a new operation within days against the U.S.-backed Syrian Kurdish YPG militia which controls swathes of Syria's northern border region, in what will be Turkey's third military campaign in Syria in two years. Ankara and Washington have long been at odds in Syria, where the United States has backed the YPG in the fight against Islamic State.