A model from Belarus who was arrested during a "sex training seminar" in Thailand and then claimed to have evidence of Russian interference in U.S. President Donald Trump's election was deported on Thursday. Thai authorities said Anastasia Vashukevich, 27, two other Belarussians and five Russians were being sent to their home countries two days after they pleaded guilty to charges including conspiracy and soliciting. Vashukevich drew world attention last February when she said she had hours of audio recordings that could shed light on links between Russian officials and Trump's election in 2016.
Ford Motor Co. has confirmed plans to build a fully electric F-Series pickup, which industry observers called an unexpected move that protects the truck franchise against Tesla and other competitors. We're going to be electrifying the F-Series — battery electric and hybrid,” Jim Farley, Ford president of global markets, said this week during a presentation at the Deutsche Bank Global Automotive Conference in Detroit. In framing the company's redesign, Farley said a move toward all-electric and hybrid would “futureproof” the billion-dollar F-Series franchise, which he called a “global juggernaut.
Blizzard conditions blanketed the higher elevations of the Sierra Nevada, prompting a blizzard warning for much of the Sierra Nevada and Lake Tahoe on Wednesday night. Heavy snowfall, multiple spin-outs and a jack-knifed big rig led to the closure of a major Northern California freeway in the Sierra Nevada, AP News reports. The heavy snowfall also prompted an avalanche warning in the Sierra Nevada on Wednesday.
Taiwan held live-fire exercises along its east coast Thursday amid renewed threats from China to bring the island under its control by force if deemed necessary. Artillery and assault helicopters fired at targets off the west coast city of Taichung, while French-made Mirage fighter jets took off amid rainy conditions from the air base at Hsinchu to the north. The drills are Taiwan's first since Chinese President Xi Jinping on Jan. 2 reasserted Beijing's willingness to use military force to bring self-ruling Taiwan under Chinese control.
Jávea (Spain) (AFP) - On the sun-drenched eastern coast of Spain where British pensioners and business-owners are uncertain for their futures as Brexit ticks closer, the crushing parliamentary defeat of Theresa May's EU divorce deal has sparked a glimmer of hope. "This might not happen," Lyle Starritt told AFP, the day after May suffered a historic drubbing in the House of Commons on Tuesday, when MPs rejected the deal she struck with the European Union. Britons interviewed by AFP, all of whom were keen on Britain staying in the EU, also said they were confident that even if Brexit takes place Madrid would preserve their rights, providing London reciprocates for Spaniards living in Britain.
Michael Cohen was sentenced to three years in federal prison in December after pleading guilty to tax evasion, campaign finance violations and making false financial statements. According to a Thursday report in the Wall Street Journal, Cohen not only hired RedFinch Solutions — a small IT firm owned by Liberty University chief information officer John Gauger — to rig online polls in Trump's favor ahead of his presidential campaign, but also paid Gauger to enlist a female friend to create and run the Twitter account @WomenForCohen. The purpose of the account, which is still active as of Thursday, was to paint Cohen as a “sex symbol” and “pit bull” by posting tweets that “praised his looks and character, and promoted his appearances and statements boosting Mr. Trump's Candidacy,” the Journal reports.
Turkish prosecutors are seeking the arrest and extradition of New York Knicks enter Enes Kanter, accusing him pf being a member of an "armed terrorist group". Mr Kanter is accused of ties to Fethullah Gulen, who Turkish authorities allege is behind the failed coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in 2016, the Daily Sabah reported. Mr Gulen has repeatedly denied any involved in the failed coup.
Rep. Steve King's base of support, including in his home state of Iowa, continues to erode after comments he made appearing to praise white supremacy were published in the New York Times. The latest salvo came as the Sioux City Journal, a conservative newspaper in Iowa's Fourth District that had previously endorsed the Republican congressman, called on him to resign. “It's hard for us to summon words that will properly convey how repugnant we view that remark,” said the paper in response to King asking, “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?” earlier this month.
President Trump and Democrats at impasse as shutdown continues; reaction and analysis from the 'Special Report' All-Stars.
All the better to listen to its top-exit exhaust pipes. From Car and Driver
Ford's alliance with Volkswagen appears to be carefully crafted to protect and potentially promote the U.S. automaker's strengths and limit risk. There's no sign of any immediate impact on Ford's U.S. employment or manufacturing, but no likelihood of a hollowing out of Ford's core capabilities. Perhaps most important, Ford Chairman Bill Ford and CEO Jim Hackett protected the crown jewels: VW and Ford are not merging, today or probably ever, and the F-150 pickup remains solely and 100 percent a Ford.
Two Republican U.S. lawmakers are turning to a World War I-era financial tactic to break the impasse over President Donald Trump's demand for money to build a wall along the Mexican border. Representatives Steven Palazzo of Mississippi and Andy Harris of Maryland, both members of the House Appropriations Committee, introduced the Border Bonds for America Act of 2019 -- a law that would allow Americans to buy such securities from the U.S. The money would be put in a trust fund and used just to build a wall along the nearly 2,000 mile (3,200 kilometer) border.
The senior U.S. defense intelligence official, who spoke to reporters on condition of anonymity, did not predict that China's military, known as the People's Liberation Army (PLA), would take such a step but said such a possibility was the top worry as China expands and modernizes its military capabilities. "The biggest concern is that ... they are getting to a point where the PLA leadership may actually tell Xi Jinping that they are confident in their capabilities," the official said, referring to China's president. Pressed on whether the official was referring to Chinese confidence in its capabilities to be able to successfully win a battle with Taiwan, the official said, "Well, specifically that would be the most concerning to me." Taiwan is only one of a growing number of flashpoints in the U.S.-China relationship, including a trade war between the countries, U.S. sanctions on the Chinese military, and China's increasingly muscular military posture in the South China Sea.
The Latest on the kidnapping of 13-year-old Jayme Closs (all times local): 6:30 p.m. The grandfather of a 21-year-old Wisconsin man accused of kidnapping 13-year-old Jayme Closs and killing her parents during a home invasion says his grandson was "quiet and shy." Jim Moyer told ABC News on Tuesday that his grandson, Jake Thomas Patterson, is a "nice boy, polite" who often "backed off from crowds."
Venezuela's opposition-controlled but powerless National Assembly stepped up its battle with President Nicolas Maduro on Tuesday by offering an amnesty to anyone from the military who joins it in disavowing the socialist leader. The "amnesty law" would extend also to civilian government officials who collaborate "in the restitution of constitutional order," parliament said. The row between the legislature and Maduro has intensified since the socialist leader was sworn in last week for a second term of office in the crisis-hit country, after he won snap elections in May that were boycotted by the opposition and dismissed by the United States, European Union and Organization of American States as a fraud.
Turkish prosecutors are seeking the extradition of New York Knicks center Enes Kanter over his links to the U.S.-based cleric accused of orchestrating a failed coup in 2016, state-owned Anadolu news agency said. Kanter, a vocal critic of President Tayyip Erdogan, was indicted by a Turkish court last year over alleged membership of an "armed terrorist group" after being contacted repeatedly by people close to Islamic preacher Fethullah Gulen. Anadolu said on Tuesday prosecutors had sought the issue of a "red notice" for Kanter, an Interpol request to locate and provisionally arrest an individual pending extradition.
Yet another migrant caravan is making the long and dangerous journey to the United States, with the situation on the US-Mexico border having already contributed to the longest government shutdown in American history. Honduran Deputy Foreign Minister Nelly Jerez said that between 800 and 1,000 people were travelling together and headed towards the Agua Caliente border crossing into Guatemala. Hundreds of Honduran refugees and migrants also left a bus station in the northern city of San Pedro Sula and moved along to join the caravan.
Recognized around the world as a symbol of manly civility for more than a century, Gillette will now be remembered as the company that did itself in by sacrificing a massive consumer base at the altar of progressivism. In case you hadn't seen or heard: Parent company Procter & Gamble launched a Gillette ad campaign blanket-demonizing men as ogres and bullies. At home and at work, in the boardroom, on the playground, and even while barbecuing in the backyard, Gillette sees nothing but testosterone-driven trouble.
This included SPG (Starwood Preferred Guest), Marriott Rewards and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards — three previously unrelated loyalty programs that existed with separate point-value systems and benefits. The merger essentially unified the currency for all three separate rewards programs and allowed for members of any of the three programs to use their points across Marriott's entire combined portfolio of 29 brands and 6,700 participating resorts and hotels. Today, Marriott has solidified the mega-merger under the new name and introduction of Marriott Bonvoy, the new travel-focused loyalty program that will be taking the place of the three merged programs.
A four-hour Southwest Airlines computer glitch on Tuesday caused delays and cancellations for passengers traveling to and from Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport. The exact number of delayed and canceled flights isn't clear, though 37 Southwest flights were canceled leaving the airport Tuesday out of 174 scheduled. It's also not yet clear what caused the four-hour glitch between 10 a.m.
Children playing Fortnite were exposed to a potential “massive invasion of privacy” thanks to an oversight in the game's security, researchers have revealed. The popular shooting game enjoyed by more than 80 million people around the world left users vulnerable to a flaw that if exploited, allowed hackers to steal virtual currency and read private conversations online. The bug was fixed in mid-December, according to researchers who shared their findings with Fortnite's developer, Epic Games.
Vice President Mike Pence issued a statement Wednesday that sought to clarify remarks he delivered earlier in the day in which he claimed that “ISIS has been defeated” — several hours after the radical Islamic group set off a bomb that killed at least two U.S. service members and two American civilians in Syria. In a speech at the U.S. State Department Wednesday morning, Pence credited President Trump and the U.S. military with vanquishing Islamic State terrorists in Syria. “Thanks to the leadership of this commander in chief and the courage and sacrifice of our armed forces, we are now actually able to begin to hand off the fight against ISIS in Syria to our coalition partners,” Pence said, “And we are bringing our troops home.
The BMW flagship sedan also gets revised engines and plenty of new tech. From Car and Driver
A Colombian drug trafficker testified Tuesday that Mexican cartel leader Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman boasted about paying a $100 million bribe to the former president of Mexico to call off a manhunt for the notorious kingpin. Alex Cifuentes spoke about the alleged bribe to former President Enrique Pena Nieto while being cross-examined at Guzman's murder and drug conspiracy trial in New York. A spokesman for Pena Nieto, who left office last year, called the bribery claim "false and defamatory" when it first came up earlier in the trial.
Millions of people took part in the women's marches in Washington and other cities in the United States and abroad on Jan. 21, 2017, the day after the Republican president was sworn in. Vanessa Wruble, a co-founder of the original Women's March on Washington who left to start March On, a separate grassroots coalition, said the movement has evolved from being a reaction to Trump's presidency. Women's March, a national nonprofit organization that evolved from the initial Washington march, is using its #WomensWave marches in Washington and elsewhere on Saturday to roll out a 10-part policy platform that includes raising the federal minimum wage and protecting reproductive rights.