Former Beijing multimillionaire Xia Keming and his three companions were executed on Tuesday for killing eight people between 1999 and 2007, the Beijing Times observed on Wednesday.
Xia once served as a civil servant in Beijing. He was sentenced in 1988 to three years in prison for the illegaldealingof train tickets. After being released, Xia started a business in Shenzhen, and also owned 19 percent of shares in a Beijing-based company valued at more than 100 million yuan ($16 million).
The murder spree began when Xia asked his brother Xia Kezhi and two of his ex-cellmates to kill a business partner surnamed Liu.
In the following eight years, the four killed seven other people, including Xia Keming’s business partners, mistress and acquaintances.
To cover up their crimes, the gang bribed officials with cash, cars, luxury watches and expensive rosewood furniture. Read the rest of this entry »
SEATTLE — For KOMO News, Michael Harthorne writes: Like some sort of real-life Legion of Doom, a group of six suspected criminals with colorful monikers have been arrested* after teaming up to rob 16 banks, according to the FBI.
Various law-enforcement agencies have been looking for a suspect they were calling the Rabid Fan Bandit because he always wore a different sports team’s hat since March and a group of suspects dubbed the Buddy Bandits because they worked in a team since the beginning of April.
As of Monday, all six suspects have been arrested, according to the FBI.
Jeff Black, 27, was arrested April 11 in Kent on an unrelated warrant. Vincent Thompson, 31, was arrested April 16th in Spanaway. Robert Adams, 31, was arrested April 21 in Des Moines.
Three other juvenile suspects were arrested in Federal Way April 12 through April 14.
According to the FBI, it is believed Adams, probably the Rabid Fan Bandit, was teaching the Buddy Bandits, likely the juveniles and Black, how to rob banks and then driving them to the crimes.
All six suspects have been charged with robbery.
The Rabid Fan Bandit is suspected in the following robberies:
- Auburn Chase Bank on March 3
- Spokane Banner Bank on March 10
- Covington Chase Bank on March 13
- Renton Chase Bank on March 19
- Lakewood Wells Fargo on March 24
- Tacoma Chase Bank on March 31
- Puyallup Chase Bank on April 14
- Des Moines US Bank on April 21
…Phelim McAleer and Ann McIlhenny, filmmakers of Not Evil Just Wrong and Frack Nation want to tell the story of Kermit Gosnell, whom they describe as “the worst serial killer in American history,” but they need to raise funds to shoot the TV movie. Phelim and Ann are halfway through their IndieGoGo crowdfunding push for their Gosnell Movie project, and passed the $1 million level in fundraising yesterday:
We have just passed $1,000,000 and want to say very special thank you to all of you who have contributed to get us this far, it’s a really big milestone. We are so grateful to you.
Thank you and a Happy Easter
Just to remind everyone about the Gosnell case, here’s Ann reading part of the grand jury report:
For Breitbart.com, William Bigelow reports: California State Senator Leland Yee, who has been charged with wire fraud and conspiring to import firearms, may be facing new charges from the federal government.
Although U.S. Attorney Susan Badger said that the government “is anxious to start discovery,” the government stated that there will be additional charges in a superseding indictment. Senior U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer gave the government until July to file the charges.
Without naming names, the government stated, “Of particular note, the government is continuing to pursue its investigation of RICO violations as well as additional substantive criminal violations.”
Bundy family reports cell towers near ranch have been shut down, preventing communication & video uploads. #BundyRanch
— Paul Joseph Watson (@PrisonPlanet) April 11, 2014
This is one of those days where I think Matt Drudge is imitating my obsessions, rather than the other way around. Wishful thinking, I know. But readers here know, Lois Lerner is our favorite voodoo doll. At punditfromanotherplanet, a day without Lois Lerner is a day without sunshine.
For the Washington Examiner, Joel Gehrke reports: House Ways and Means Committee Republicans aren’t ruling out the use of the chamber’s “inherent contempt” authority if Attorney General Eric Holder refuses to act on the panel’s accusations against former IRS official Lois Lerner.
The committee voted Wednesday to seek an investigation of whether Lerner violated federal law by using her power to ensure Right-leaning groups were targeted for extra scrutiny by the agency, giving misleading information during a probe of the matter by the Treasury Department‘s inspector general and using her personal email to conduct official business, which could have resulted in the disclosure of confidential taxpayer information.
Congress votes Lerner in contempt of Congress, refers prosecution to Attorney General who Congress voted in contempt of Congress
— David Burge (@iowahawkblog) April 9, 2014
“The Ways and Means Committee, led by Chairman [Dave] Camp [R-Mich.], has conducted a serious and thorough investigation of the IRS, uncovering abuses and criminal acts that should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said of the referral. “As I’ve said, if Lois Lerner continues to refuse to testify, then the House will hold her in contempt. And we will continue to shine the light on the administration’s abusive actions and use every tool at our disposal to expose the truth and ensure the American people get the answers they deserve.”
Leland Yee needed cash. CNN needed credibility. Somehow, both lost their way.
(Is LeLand Yee a Democrat? You won’t find out until the fourth paragraph)
CNN‘s Matt Smith and Jason Carroll hot on the scene: First, the ambitious California state senator had to fund his 2011 race for mayor of San Francisco. When he came in fifth, he was stuck with $70,000 in campaign debt that he had to retire before he could mount his next run, for secretary of state — a costly statewide venture.
And that’s how prosecutors say Yee ended up sitting across from an undercover federal agent in a coffee shop in early March, brokering what he was told was a $2 million arms deal that would include the purchase of shoulder-fired missiles from Islamic rebels in the Philippines.
“Do I think we can make some money? I think we can make some money,” Yee told the agent in a conversation recounted in a 137-page arrest affidavit. “Do I think we can get the goods? I think we can get the goods.”
The veteran Democrat, an advocate for gun control and campaign finance reform in Sacramento, is now one of about two dozen people charged in a sprawling racketeering case brought by the U.S. attorney’s office in San Francisco. His co-defendants include a former San Francisco school board president and a previously-convicted Chinatown mobster dubbed “Shrimp Boy.”
He’s accused of putting his public office up for sale, and promising to push donors’ agendas in Sacramento and in his district in exchange for contributions. The allegations have stunned his constituents in San Francisco and its suburbs and cast a shadow over his state Senate colleagues, who have suspended Yee and two other Democrats who have run afoul of the law in recent months. Read the rest of this entry »
Trujillo briefly closed her eyes as the verdict was read, but showed little emotion. Her family, however, left the courtroom in tears.
The Houston trial gained international notoriety because of the weapon — a blue suede closed toe pump, size 9 with 5 inch heels.
Prosecutors alleged Trujillo, 45, fatally bludgeoned her boyfriend, Dr. Stefan Andersson, by hitting him in the head 25 times with the heel of her stiletto shoe.
Trujillo is a diminutive woman, her attorney Jack Carroll said in court, while her boyfriend was much bigger. When an argument allegedly broke out that night, and she tried to defend herself, she grabbed the closest weapon at hand — her high heel.
According to court documents, a trial date has been set for June 12th, 2014, unless another there’s another continuance, for example, if another students steps forward and new charges are added. A jury trial was originally scheduled for April 24th, but was granted a continuance after the 4th student came forward. Today Powell entered a plea to the new count of sexual misconduct in the second degree.
For the record, this is what Meredith Powell was reported to be charged with. RCW 9A.44.096 – Sexual misconduct with a minor in the second degree. (more after the jump) The following is from today’s News Tribune:
Debbie Cafazzo reports: Former Lincoln High School teacher Meredith Powell pleaded not guilty Tuesday to an additional charge stemming from her alleged sexual misconduct with students.
The 24-year-old former Tacoma math teacher pleaded not guilty Feb. 7 to two counts of third-degree child rape and one count of communication with a minor for immoral purposes.
Those charges were based on allegations that she engaged in sexual acts with three of her male students, ages 15 to 17, earlier this year….(read more) The News Tribune
— Robert Stacy McCain (@rsmccain) April 9, 2014
Robert Stacy McCain has posted news and comments about this Tacoma teacher, as well as faithfully tracking similar, less-reported adult female sex predator cases that have been tumbling out in just the last few months, inconveniently interrupting the male-predator #RapeCulture narrative. Here’s McCain’s summary of why this case gets more attention:
Having recently written several items (e.g., “She Craved the Taste of Boy Flesh,” Jan. 12, and “Police: Ex-Teacher Tonya Drueppel, 33, Had Sex With 13-Year-Old ‘Girlfriend’,” Jan. 30) about sex-crime cases involving female teacher, I notice that this latest case in Tacoma is getting more media coverage than most, with reports at the Daily Mail, Daily Callerand NY Daily News. This can be explained simply: (a) the accused teacher is a skinny young blonde with a nice smile, (b) she seems to have had a habit of posting selfies on Facebook and Pinterest, providing lots of photo potential, and (c) the affidavit offers lurid details.
From http://www.loudlabs.com - ISLA VISTA – A UC Santa Barbara police officer was seriously injured and at least five Santa Barbara sheriff’s deputies were hurt after a campus-wide spring break party known as Deltopia turned ugly Saturday night in Isla Vista.
The UC officer sustained a “significant” head injury when a partier hit him with a backpack stuffed with bottles of alcohol at around 9 p.m. Saturday, near the 6700 block of Del Playa Drive, according to the Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Department (SBSD). During the ensuing arrest, some in the crowd of about 15,000 began throwing bottles, rocks and bricks at law enforcement personnel, the department said.
After authorities declared an unlawful assembly, “the situation escalated into a major disturbance,” said the SBSD. It said people ripped up stop signs, lit several small fires and damaged property, including several law enforcement vehicles.
Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, Representative Michael McCaul
“I think a lot of people don’t realize that our military that defends our freedoms abroad . . . when they come home to the military base, they are not allowed to carry weapons,” McCaul pointed out. “We need to talk to the commanders about whether it would make sense for some . . . of our senior leadership officers and enlisted men on the base [to] carry weapons for protection.”
The money shot.
UPDATE: Boy-Crazy Tacoma Math Teacher Meredith Powell: FORTH Student Comes Forward to Allege Sexual MisconductPosted: April 5, 2014
According to the updated charging documents, Powell engaged in a sexual act with a then-17-year-old student in her classroom after he expressed a desire to raise his math grade.
“…he needed help getting his grade up and she asked what he would want to do. He said he would do anything. ‘You’ll do anything?’ …and reached over and unzipped his pants…”
TACOMA, Wash. — KOMO News‘s Michael Harthorne reports: A fourth student has come forward alleging sexual abuse at the hands of a 24-year-old former math teacher at Lincoln High School, according to new charges filed Thursday with Pierce County Superior Court.
Meredith Powell was arrested in February and charged with two counts of child rape and one count of communication with a minor for immoral purposes. According to the original charges, Powell engaged in sexual activity — often in her classroom — with three students between the ages of 15 and 17 and sent inappropriate text messages and photos. Powell’s alleged misconduct came to light when she wrote a letter apologizing to the girlfriend of one of the abused students, according to the charging documents. [NSFW Powell court document detailing confessed abuse] She now faces a fourth charge, sexual misconduct with a minor. According to the updated charging documents, Powell engaged in a sexual act with a then-17-year-old student in her classroom after he expressed a desire to raise his math grade. [The girlfriend letter: "Obviously nothing physical or emotional ever happened between (the boy) and I, nor would it ever..."]