The head of an armed group that stops migrants who cross the U.S.-Mexico border illegally allegedly boasted of training volunteers to kill former President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, an FBI agent said in court papers. Larry Hopkins, leader of the United Constitutional Patriots, appeared in court in Las Cruces, New Mexico, on Monday to face charges of being a felon in possession of a firearm. The FBI said it found guns during a 2017 visit to his home.
More than 350 people were killed in bombings of churches and hotels in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday. Some details on the victims: SRI LANKA The vast majority of victims were Sri Lankan, many from the nation's Christian minority. Their names and details of their lives were slow to trickle in and difficult to report, in part because authorities blocked most social media after the blasts.
Senator Kamala Harris vowed to use executive actions to tighten rules on firearms sales if she's elected president and Congress fails to act on gun control in her first 100 days in office. The California Democrat's proposals to bypass Congress with actions that include expanding requirements for background checks and revoking licenses for gun manufactures and dealers found to have broken the law would almost certainly face legal challenges. But they represent her attempt to lean into a cause that has gained strong support in the Democratic Party following a wave of mass shootings over the past several years.
Washington is expected to become the first state to legalize an environmentally-friendly burial alternative that turns bodies into soil within weeks. A bill allowing “natural organic reduction," sometimes called "human composting," has passed the legislature and is headed to Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee's desk. Inslee, who has staked his 2020 presidential campaign on climate change, is reviewing the bill.
In seeking to reduce Iran's oil exports to zero, the Trump administration is targeting the country's top revenue maker in its latest no-holds-barred move to crush the economy and scale back the clerical regime's influence. "The Trump administration and our allies are determined to sustain and expand the maximum economic pressure campaign against Iran to end the regime's destabilizing activity threatening the United States, our partners and allies and security in the Middle East," the White House announced. Eight governments were initially given six-month reprieves from the unilateral sanctions on Iranian oil imposed last year by the United States.
NASA's robotic probe InSight has detected and measured what scientists believe to be a "marsquake," marking the first time a likely seismological tremor has been recorded on another planet, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California reported on Tuesday. The breakthrough came five months after InSight, the first spacecraft designed specifically to study the deep interior of a distant world, touched down on the surface of Mars to begin its two-year seismological mission on the red planet. The faint rumble characterized by JPL scientists as a likely marsquake was recorded on April 6, the lander's 128th Martian day, or sol.
Now two Google employees, Meredith Whittaker and Claire Stapleton, are alleging that Google is retaliating against them and other employee activists. “Google has a culture of retaliation, which too often works to silence women, people of color, and gender minorities,” reads a letter from Whittaker, Stapleton and 10 other employees that was published internally on Monday and seen by the Guardian. Stapleton, a nearly 12-year veteran at Google, wrote that two months after the walkout, she was demoted, had a previously approved project cancelled, and was “told to go on medical leave, even though I'm not sick”.
The final day to take advantage of 100,000-point offers on the newly christened Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card and the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card is coming up fast, with new card owners only having until Apr. 24 to earn 100k points after spending $5,000 in the first 3 months. As a reminder, the introduction of the Bonvoy card branding (which led to new offers like this one) is a result of Marriott combining and retiring its old Marriott Rewards, Ritz-Carlton Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest branding. Based on a valuation from The Points Guy, 100,000 Marriott points are worth $800 (or 0.8 cents for each point).
Two teenage neo-Nazis, linked to a group that called Prince Harry a "race traitor" for marrying Mehgan Markle, are facing jail after admitting terror charges. Polish national, Michal Szewczuk, 19, admitted two counts of encouraging terrorism and five of possessing documents that could be useful to a terrorist, when he appeared at the Old Bailey. The charges relate to a neo-Nazi group called the Sonnenkrieg Division, which posted extreme racist material on the GAB social media platform.
The U.S. had no prior knowledge of the Easter bombings in Sri Lanka that killed over 350 people, the American ambassador said Wednesday, despite local claims that foreign officials had been warned an attack was looming. As the investigation into Sunday's Islamic State-claimed attack continues, FBI agents and U.S. military personnel are in Sri Lanka assisting the probe, Ambassador Alaina Teplitz said. While declining to say whether U.S. officials had intelligence on the local extremists and their leader who allegedly carried out the assault, Teplitz said America remained concerned over militants at large.
Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren's new student-loan forgiveness plan includes specific policies that would help black and Latino students, two groups that tend to carry disproportionately high levels of educational debt. Her proposal, which is estimated to cost $1.25 trillion over a decade, creates a minimum $50 billion fund for Historically Black Colleges and Universities and minority-serving institutions to help close gaps in per-student spending. It would also prohibit public colleges from considering citizenship status or criminal history in admission decisions.
A New York college student filed a lawsuit against Apple for $1 billion, claiming the company's alleged use of facial recognition software in its stores falsely linked him to a series of Apple store thefts. Ousmane Bah, 18, claims that he received a summons from a court in Boston saying that he stole $1,200 worth of Apple products in 2018, according to papers filed on Monday in Manhattan federal court. On the day of one of the thefts in Boston, Bah was attending his senior prom in Manhattan, according to the court documents.
Curt Mills Iran, Middle East Combined with April's IRGC designation, Monday's sanction waiver announcement effectively criminalizes the Islamic Republic. The Trump administration—namely, the hardline faction led by National Security Advisor John R. Bolton—furthered its de facto criminalization of Iran on Monday, announcing the cessation of sanctions waivers for major petrol importers. This decision is intended to bring Iran's oil exports to zero,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said.
President Donald Trump said he won't nominate Herman Cain for a seat on the Federal Reserve Board after opposition from his own Republican party appeared to sink the former pizza company executive's hopes for Senate confirmation. “My friend Herman Cain, a truly wonderful man, has asked me not to nominate him for a seat on the Federal Reserve Board,” the president said in a tweet on Monday. My friend Herman Cain, a truly wonderful man, has asked me not to nominate him for a seat on the Federal Reserve Board.
A Nevada Democrat who accused Joe Biden of touching her without permission says the former vice president has been "so incredibly disrespectful" by joking about the matter. Lucy Flores leveled her criticism Monday on Fox News as Biden nears an announcement of his 2020 presidential campaign.
PG&E Corp can pay employees up to $350 million in bonuses this year to spur them to help meet the bankrupt California power provider's safety goals to prevent wildfires, a judge said on Tuesday. PG&E's management has said the company needs to implement the bonus plan to carry out tasks such as clearing trees and branches around power lines to avert contact that triggers wildfires. While the maximum cost of the plan is $350 million, PG&E has said it expects the likely cost will be around $235 million.
NASA's Mars rovers have provided breathtaking images from the surface of Mars for many years, but listening to Mars is a whole other story. The InSight lander, which touched down on Mars in late 2018, is designed to listen closely to the inner workings of the planet, and it may have just nailed a huge milestone. In a new blog post, NASA reveals what appears to be a recording of audio from the first Marsquake observed by the lander.
Cardi B, charged with multiple counts of assault and reckless endangerment in connection with a brawl in a Queens strip club last summer, appeared in court in New York on Friday and rejected a plea deal that would have kept her out of jail. The Queens District Attorney's Office said the platinum-selling and Grammy-winning rapper rejected a deal that would have allowed her to plead guilty to one misdemeanor count and be released under certain conditions instead of serving time in jail. It was not clear why she rejected the deal.
Iranian lawmakers on Tuesday overwhelmingly approved a bill that labels all U.S. military forces as terrorist, state TV reported, a day after Washington ratcheted up pressure on Tehran by announcing that no country would any longer be exempt from U.S. sanctions if it continues to buy Iranian oil. The bill is a step further from the one last week, when lawmakers approved labelling just U.S. troops in the Middle East as terrorist, in response to the U.S. terrorism designation for Iran's Revolutionary Guard earlier this month.
Sri Lanka's decision to block social media following deadly suicide attacks highlights a growing distrust of online platforms, but critics said the move is likely to restrict the flow of important news and information as well as abusive content. The move comes amid growing frustration by governments around the world with internet platforms over the propagation of misinformation and incitements of violence. According to the digital rights group NetBlocks, Sri Lanka blocked Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, Snapchat, Viber, WhatsApp and YouTube following the Easter bombings targeting churches and hotels.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un arrived in the Russian city of Vladivostok on Wednesday for a summit he is likely to use to seek support from Russian President Vladimir Putin, as Pyongyang's nuclear talks with Washington remain in limbo. The armoured train carrying Kim on his first official visit to Russia pulled into the quayside station in Vladivostok, on the Pacific Ocean, a few hours after crossing from North Korea into Russia. After a brief delay while the door of Kim's carriage was lined up with a red carpet laid out on the platform, the door opened and a smiling Kim stepped out.
President Donald Trump's decision Monday to end six-month waivers from U.S. sanctions for five countries that have continued buying Iranian oil — the latest turn of the screw in his Administration's “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran — was met with predictable outrage from Tehran. In response to the sanctions, Greece, Italy and, Taiwan had stopped buying Iranian oil, but China, India, Japan, South Korea, and Turkey have continued to import Iranian oil. The economic pressure has reduced Iranian oil exports from more than 2.5 million barrels a day to less than 1 million, discouraged foreign investment, and sent the value of Iran's currency plummeting and inflation soaring.
Elizabeth Ross "Libet" Johnson, great-granddaughter of the cofounder of Johnson & Johnson, had an impressive real-estate portfolio during her lifetime, which included a townhouse and condo in New York City as well as several California homes. Two parcels of land are available for just under $1 million each, and the third, priced at $12.95 million, is a 372-acre chunk of the estate which comes complete with an 18,000-square-foot mansion, a limestone pool, a poolhouse, two garages, a guest cottage, a caretaker's apartment, stables, a riding ring, and a private helipad. The decor is everything you'd expect from a storied home, with classical architecture, detailed ceiling moldings, a master suite with views of the grounds, a grand dining room for over a dozen guests, marble bathrooms, and a grand staircase.