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Italian PM Berlusconi laughs off sex crime trial

MILAN — Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi on Monday accused Italy’s judges of being out to get him and laughed off his ongoing sex crime trial as he returned to court on fraud charges in a separate trial. “The prosecutors are working against the country,” Berlusconi told reporters in the courtroom,…

White House dragging its feet on wiretapping rules

Citing the need to protect intellectual property and consumer information like the emails that were leaked in this week’s massive Epsilon hack, the Senate Judiciary Committee called a hearing Wednesday to update the Electronic Communications Privacy Act. Committee member Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) emphasized that while amending the law and…

WikiLeaks’ Assange to appeal extradition in July

LONDON — WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will fight a British judge’s decision to extradite him to Sweden over allegations of sexual assault in a two-day hearing in July, it was announced on Wednesday. The hearing at the High Court in London will take place on July 12-13, the court said.…

Jon Kyl: Christians are as victimized by hate crimes as Muslims in America

WASHINGTON – Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-AZ) implied Tuesday that Christians are as victimized by hate crimes as Muslims in the United States. Speaking at a hearing called by Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) about the civil rights of Muslim Americans, Kyl said, “I’m a bit perplexed by…

Italian PM Berlusconi makes first court appearance in 8 years

MILAN, Italy (AFP) – Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi attended a legal hearing on Monday for the first time in eight years, over allegations of fiscal fraud and breach of trust in his business interests. The hearing in judges’ chambers in Milan was part of a process to decide whether…

US soldier pleads guilty over Afghan killings

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Washington (AFP) – A US soldier pleaded guilty to targeting Afghan civilians for execution, under a plea bargain for his part in a rogue US Army unit in southern Afghanistan. Corporal Jeremy Morlock, who is set to testify against four co-accused, admitted murdering or helping to kill…

US Senate to hold hearing on Muslim rights

WASHINGTON (AFP) – A US Senate committee said Tuesday it will hold a hearing next week on protecting the civil rights of American Muslims, two weeks after another panel hotly debated the threat posed by homegrown Islamists. The US Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights…

House panel votes to defund NPR after emergency GOP hearing

WASHINGTON – The House Rules Committee on Wednesday voted 6-5 to defund National Public Radio after an emergency hearing called by Republicans, sending the measure to the floor for debate Thursday. The committee examined and approved H.R. 1070, a bill designed “to prohibit Federal funding of National Public Radio,” the…

DeLay judge abruptly steps aside after suggesting plea bargains

A Texas judge who’s spent years overseeing the high-profile trial of former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX) has recused himself from the trials of two DeLay co-defendants, abruptly stepping aside after he reportedly suggested plea bargains to attorneys for the defense. District Judge Pat Priest made the suggestion while…

The 6 dumbest things said at Rep. Peter King’s Muslim radicalization hearing

House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Peter King’s (R-NY) hearing on American-Muslim radicalization Thursday was destined to have its fair share of dumb statements, especially since a majority of conservatives believe Muslims are more prone to violence than adherents to other religions. Here’s a roundup of some of the strangest comments…

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