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SaturdayDecember 4, 2010

Latino Daily News: Bringing You the Latest Hispanic Current Events and News Stories 24/7

To reflect the dynamic interests of our audience, Latino Daily News is an online daily news source and virtual cultural center for and about Latinos. We offer the latest news headlines, as well as innovative and insightful Hispanic current events stories, photos, videos, and commentaries from a Latino perspective, 24/7.

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White House Working the Phones to Get Votes for DREAM Act

White House administration members are on their third day of calling legislators to garner support for the DREAM Act, which will most likely be voted on this week.  Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano to Commerce Secretary Gary Locke to high-ranking Hispanic White House member Cecilia Munoz – they are all working the phones to argue for passing the bill that would grant immigrant students citizenship.

The bill has also garnered some unlikely support from Republicans, like former Florida Governor Jeb Bush and former Secretary of State General Colin Powell. 

On Friday several University Presidents also worked the phones to call for passage of the bill.  Dr. Carlos Campo, UCLA Chancellor, Dr. Gene Block, President of Miami-Dade College and Dr. Eduardo Padron were amongst them.  “We’re failing to see the long-term benefits to our economy,” said Dr. Padron.

Read more at First Read/MSNBC →

BREAKING NEWS:  Ecuador’s “Throat of Fire” Erupts, Hundreds are Fleeing

Ecuador’s fabled “Throat of Fire” volcano has erupted forcing hundreds of village residents located 80 miles outside of Quito and in the tourist town of Banos to flee in fear for their lives.

The “Throat of Fire” as it is know in English is actually called the Tungurahua volcano, an Indian Quechuan word.  The volcano has been threatening to erupt for close to decade having eruptions in 2006, 2008 and last May.

The ‘Throat of Fire’ is one of eight active volcanoes in the country.  At the time of eruption it was seen spewing ash, gas and rocks for its core. 

Read more at Reuters →

Brazilian Machine-Gunning-Mass-Murderer Meets Gruesome Death

Marcelo de Jesus Silva, suspected in 20 killings in Brazil has been found brutally murdered in Brazil, his badly beaten body discovered with no arms in a trash bin in Salvador, Brazil.

The 26-year old alleged drug trafficker and robber was implicated in at least 20 killings.  Silva gained infamy because he allegedly machine gunned his victims while perched on top of the shoulder of a taller man – you see Silva was just 4 feet tall. 

Read more at AP →

Endangered Mexican Tarantulas Mailed LIVE to U.S. – Valued at $300,000

U.S. Agents from the Fish and Wildlife Service and U.S. Postal Inspection agents have just concluded ‘Operation Spiderman’ by busting tarantula-smuggler Sven Koppler. 

The ‘spiderman’, not in anyway to be confused with the comic character or the over the top Broadway play, is from Germany and is accused of sending 500 live tarantulas through the mail to the U.S.

Not only is his crime creepy it’s highly illegally.  Amongst the 500 live tarantulas were 22 endangered and protected Mexican red-kneed tarantulas.  Koppler tangled a wicked web by being in the business of smuggling spider’s for profit.  If convicted he faces 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

Agents put the value of his shipment at $300,000.

Read more at AOL News →

Kidnapped Children from Mexico and Central America Found in Arizona Drop House

Eleven children ranging in ages from two to fifteen years old were rescued this week by the FBI and Phoenix, Arizona police after reports surfaced they were either kidnapped or smuggled illegally out of their native country.

The children who were from Mexico, El Salvador and Colombia apparently were being held in a home described by authorities as a “drop house” by unidentified individuals who were demanding ransom from their parents. 

FBI agents contacted the local police in Phoenix working on a tip that several underage girls had been kidnapped out of El Salvador and were being held against their will.  It was this tip that lead the police to discovering the drop house.  The children will be reunited with their families immediately

Read more at MSNBC →

On Eve of DREAM Act Vote – Everyone Being Asked to Do Their Part

DREAM Act supporters are aggressively campaigning on all fronts these last days before the DREAM Act vote goes to Congress next week, as expected.  The bill will create a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrant students if they meet certain criteria.

On Tuesday, December 7, the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) has called for a national day of action for the “DREAM Act” by holding vigils in different cities and towns in a show of solidarity with immigrant youth.

Where as the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) are busy telling U.S. legislators what the facts are on costs associated with the DREAM Act.  In response to various anti-immigration organizations and several Republican’s assertions that the DREAM will cost tax payers billions, NALEO is touting the Congressional Budget Office non-partisan numbers:  the DREAM Act will increase revenue by $2.3 billion and slash deficit by $1.4 billion over the next ten years.

The Catholic Church is also doing their part by preaching tolerance and acceptance at the pulpit this weekend.  It is also making a “CALL TO ACTION” by imploring Catholics to call their elected officials at the U.S. Capital switchboard to notify them of their DREAM Act support.  They are also providing talking points on how most effectively to get the point across on the benefits of the DREAM Act. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

U.S. State Officials to Visit Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador

Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Arturo A. Valenzuela will travel to Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador December 5-9 in a visit designed to discuss ongoing security cooperation, strengthening of democratic governance and renewed efforts to advance coordination on citizen security.

In his first stop in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, on Sunday, December 5, and Monday, December 6, he will meet with Honduran President Lobo and other government officials and political, business, and civil society leaders; in Guatemala City, Guatemala, on Monday, December 6, and Tuesday, December 7, Dr. Valenzuela will meet with President Colom and Francisco Dall’Anese of the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala as well as members of civil society and the business community.

In San Salvador, El Salvador, on Wednesday, December 8, and Thursday, December 9, he will discuss with President Funes and other officials the broad range of bilateral issues of interest to both countries. Additionally, in each country, he will meet with officials and community leaders to discuss bilateral and regional issues, such as our cooperation to promote inclusive economic opportunity.

Read more by HS News Staff →

13 Arrested in Puerto Rico over Money Laundering Charges

Thirteen individuals charged by a federal grand jury with money laundering were arrested this morning by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) working jointly with officers of the Puerto Rico Police Department.

According to the ICE the defendants allegedly attempted to launder approximately $8 million of which $4 million were seized. The investigation also revealed that the defendants utilized a money laundering scheme called the Black Market Peso Exchange to launder the illegal proceeds of drug trafficking organizations through electronic transfers to China, Hong Kong, Colombia, Sweden, Panama, Spain, United Arab Emirates and the United States.  If convicted, the defendants face a sentence of up to 15 years in federal prison.

“In recent years ICE has encountered an increasing number of major financial crimes, frequently resulting from the needs of drug trafficking organizations to launder large sums of criminal proceeds through legitimate financial institutions and investment vehicles,” said Roberto Escobar-Vargas, special agent in charge of ICE’s Office of Homeland Security Investigations in San Juan. “We are committed to continue working with our law enforcement partners in our efforts to detect and close down weaknesses within our financial, trade and transportation sectors that can be exploited by criminal networks.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Spain’s Airspace on Hold for Second Day- Considering Declaring State of Emergency

Spain is threatening to declare a state of emergency if air traffic controllers do not return to work. The Wildcat strike has paralyzed air traffic for a second day on Saturday and is threatening to worsen current economic issues.
“If the situation doesn’t normalize, the government will declare a state of emergency,” Deputy Prime Minister Alfredo Rubalcaba said ahead of a hastily assembled cabinet meeting in Madrid.
“The controllers will be mobilized and if they don’t get back to work, their cases will be passed immediately to the judiciary and they will be accused of a crime which could mean a prison sentence.”

The air traffic controllers walked out over a long running dispute over pay with the state run AENA. The government had just recently approved some changes that define the number of hours a controller may work a year, and allowing for the military to cease Spain’s air space in times of emergency.  The Unions had not supported these moves.

The controllers gave no warning as they began to walk off the job claiming they were sick.
“I was inside the plane with my kid and they told us the plane was not flying as controllers had decided to strike…” Ramon, a Madrid resident who was flying to Mallorca for his mother’s funeral, told Reuters.

During a time when Spain is implementing some tough reform, the air traffic controller’s high salaries and short working hours have come under attack.

Read more at Yahoo News →

SaturdayDecember 4, 2010