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WednesdayJanuary 4, 2012

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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Narco Boat Loaded with Marijuana Seized Off California Coast, 10 Arrested

Narco Boat Loaded with Marijuana Seized Off California Coast, 10 Arrested

Photo: Tons of Marijuana Seized Off California Coast

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Ten people are in custody following the predawn interdiction Wednesday of a Mexican “panga” boat loaded with more than a ton of marijuana along the Ventura County coast north of Los Angeles.

California National Guardsmen initially spotted the vessel offshore and relayed the information to the U.S. Border Patrol. Border Patrol agents responded to the beach near Deer Creek road shortly after 2 a.m. There they discovered the 27-foot boat along with numerous bales of marijuana totaling approximately 2,500 pounds. In addition to the marijuana, authorities also seized two vehicles located in the landing area believed to be linked to the smuggling scheme.

According to agents at the scene, four of those taken into custody arrived on board the boat. The remaining arrestees were found in the landing area. The ongoing probe is being spearheaded by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

In response to the escalating number of maritime smuggling incidents in the Los Angeles area, authorities have intensified efforts to target the illegal activity, expanding the use of marine patrols, land-based surveillance and collaboration with the Government of Mexico.

Read more by HS News Staff →

STUDY:  Hispanics Holiday Shopped on Their Mobil Devices to The Tune of $5.15 Billion

STUDY:  Hispanics Holiday Shopped on Their Mobil Devices to The Tune of $5.15 Billion

Photo: Hispanics Shopping on Mobiles During Holidays

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U.S. Hispanic Consumers spent more than $5.15 billion during this year’s holiday season on mobile devices, illustrated in a new INFOgraphic, Hispanic Holiday Mobile Survey 2011 by Zpryme.

Online sales this year experienced a dramatic increase in holiday purchases by Hispanics of tablets, smart-phones and digital content. A significant gauge for 2012 spending trends, as many Hispanic consumers that purchased their first smart-phone and/or tablet for the holidays, will be fixated on downloading related apps.

With holiday shopping making up to 40 percent of retailers’ annual revenue in the U.S., attracting new consumers is vital; the $5.15 billion holiday figure points to Hispanics growing comfort with not only mobile devices but also welcoming online advertising marketing that engages their cultural palate.

Zpryme findings from the Hispanic Holiday Mobile Survey 2011 by:

1) Finding: 1 out of 4 Hispanics intend to spend $251 to $1,000 on mobile devices.

2) Finding: 28% of 2nd generation Hispanics intend to spend $251 to $1,000 on mobile devices.

3) Finding: 1 out of 3 Hispanics that mainly speak Spanish at home intend to spend $251 to $1,000 on mobile devices.

4) Finding: Hispanics are most likely to purchase tablets (19%) and smart-phones (19%).

5) Finding: 1st generation Hispanics are most likely to purchase tablets (29%).

6) Finding: Hispanics that speak both Spanish and English at home are most likely to purchase tablets (27%) and smart-phones (27%).

Read more by HS News Staff →

Auto Sales in Brazil Reach Record High

Auto Sales in Brazil Reach Record High

Photo: Auto Sales in Brazil Reach Record High

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More than 3.63 million new cars, pick-up trucks, vans, large trucks and buses were sold last year in Brazil, an increase of 3.63 percent over 2010 and a new record, the Fenabrave distributors’ association said Wednesday.

The tally marked Brazil’s fifth-straight record-setting year for auto sales, according to Fenabrave, whose figures took into account both Brazilian-made and imported vehicles.

While sales of automobiles and light commercial vehicles (pick-up trucks and vans) grew a modest 2.9 percent last year to 3.43 million units, truck sales climbed by 9.69 percent to 172,661 units and bus sales soared 21.72 percent to 34,749 units.

Including motorcycles, 1.94 million of which were sold in 2011, overall vehicles sales grew 4.79 percent last year.

Fenabrave said it expects auto sales to rise by an estimated 5.76 percent in 2012. By vehicle type, sales of cars are expected to rise by 4.5 percent relative to 2011, trucks by 9.6 percent and buses and motorcycles by 14.3 percent and 7.5 percent, respectively.

Brazil suffered the effects of global financial turmoil and a reduction in foreign demand in 2011 but it managed to post another year of economic growth thanks to a growing domestic market.

The government estimates that the country’s gross domestic product rose by 3 percent in 2011, far below the 7.5 percent GDP growth in 2010.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Dying Man Ignored by People in Mexican Bank- Business Goes on as Usual

Dying Man Ignored by People in Mexican Bank- Business Goes on as Usual

Photo: Heart Attack Victim

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A 65-year-old man died from an apparent heart attack while standing in line in a Mexico City bank as other customers and most of the employees ignored what was happening, officials said.

Julian Vives Leon, who was identified by his brother, died on Tuesday, the Federal District Attorney’s Office said.

An ambulance was finally summoned, but Vives was dead when paramedics arrived, the DA’s office said.

Vives was standing in line when he suddenly placed his hands on his chest and collapsed, media reports said, citing eyewitnesses.

A security guard went over to the dying man, but the other customers continued going about their business without paying attention to him, media reports said.

Vives’s body was covered with a blanket until coroner’s office personnel arrived to remove it from the bank, where business continued uninterrupted.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Gloria Estefan First Female to Debut on No. 1 Spot on Latin Billboard

Gloria Estefan First Female to Debut on No. 1 Spot on Latin Billboard

Photo: Gloria Estefan Makes Music History

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Singer Gloria Estefan has become the first female artist to debut in the No. 1 spot on Billboard Latin Songs in the 25 years since the chart was created, Billboard said Wednesday.

The tune is “Hotel Nacional,” from the diva’s latest album, “Miss Little Havana.”

Until now, only male artists have entered the Latin Songs chart in the top position: Ricky Martin, Juanes, Mana (twice), Juan Gabriel, Enrique Iglesias (twice), Marco Antonio Solis, Los Temerarios and Romeo Santos.

Estefan, who has notched more than 90 million in sales since bursting onto the music scene in 1977 with the Miami Sound Machine, has topped Latin Songs 15 times, trailing only Enrique Iglesias and Luis Miguel.

The singer is at work now on the video for “Hotel Nacional,” with choreographer Kenny Ortega directing.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Arredondo Family Loses 2nd Child After He’s Unable to Cope With Loss of Brother Killed in Iraq

Arredondo Family Loses 2nd Child After He’s Unable to Cope With Loss of Brother Killed in Iraq

Photo: Arredondo Family Loses 2nd Child After He's Unable to Cope With Loss of Brother Killed in Iraq

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In 2004, the Arredondo family lost 20-year-old Alexander to the war in Iraq.

Seven years later, Lance Corporal Alexander Arredondo’s father has been struck with another devastation, as he now has to bury a second son.

When Alexander was killed in action in Iraq, his younger brother Brian struggled with depression and drug addiction. Never fully recovering from the loss of his brother, Brian took his own life just before Christmas on December 19, 2011.

Carlos Arredondo, 51, the boys’ father told the Boston Herald, ‘We are broken hearts.’

At just 24 years old, Brian took his own life just as the last troops in Iraq were being brought home, something his father had hoped for for many years.

On August 25, 2004, Carlos was met in his front yard by a van carrying Marines. They informed him that his son had died while serving his country. It was the father’s 44th birthday.

Since Alexander’s death, the Costa Rican-born father has been a vocal anti-war proponent and has seen holding his son’s belongings and photos in protests outside the White House, in New York, and various other cities around the U.S.

Brian was buried next to his brother in Walpole’s Rural Cemetery after his funeral at St. Thomas Aquinas Parish on December.

Though it is not clear why Brian took his life now, his stepmother believes it may have been to the fact that the troops were finally being brought back from Iraq, but his brother would not be among them.

Alexander was recruited for the military right out of high school. He is said to have joined in order to pay for college. Sadly, after finishing basic training in California, he would be deployed to Iraq in 2004 and never return.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Man Convicted of Killing Carlos Acosta Gets Retrial After Court Stenographer Loses Transcript

Man Convicted of Killing Carlos Acosta Gets Retrial After Court Stenographer Loses Transcript

Photo: Man Convicted of Killing Carlos Acosta Gets Retrial After Court Stenographer Loses Transcript

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The family of Carlos Acosta, who was killed in September 2005, will have to suffer through another trial despite a man being convicted of the murder in 2009, all because of a computer virus.

In 2009, a Miami court convicted 26-year-old Randy Chaviano of killing Carlos Acosta following a drug sale gone awry.

It was determined that Acosta had gone to Chaviano’s home to buy drugs and that an argument erupted and Chaviano shot and killed Acosta, planting a gun on Acosta to make it appear that Acosta was the one who was armed.

A juror found Chaviano guilty of second-degree murder with a weapon and or armed drug dealing. He was sentenced to life in prison, though that may all change.

ImageCourt stenographer Terlesa Cowart had allegedly been documenting the case using an internal disc in her stenography machine to save it on her computer after her machine ran out of paper.

Following the trial she transferred the data from the stenography machine’s internal disc to her computer and erased it from the internal drive. Unfortunately, a virus invaded her computer and all files and notes were wiped clean.

Now, since the transcript has been lost, Cowart has been fired by Goldman Naccarato Patterson Vela & Associates, a retrial is expected, and a “un-convicted” murderer may go free.

Chaviano’s attorney said he’s looking forward to a second chance, telling the Miami Herald, ‘I think I can win it this time. It was an injustice.’

Read more by HS News Staff →

At 1035 lbs, Mayra Rosales Avoids Jail for Nephew’s Death, Defense Claims She’s Too Fat to Murder

At 1035 lbs, Mayra Rosales Avoids Jail for Nephew’s Death, Defense Claims She’s Too Fat to Murder

Photo: At 1035 lbs, Mayra Rosales Avoids Jail for Nephew's Death, Defense Claims She's Too Fat to Murder

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Mayra Lizbeth Rosales of Texas was accused of hitting her nephew over the head, resulting in his 2008 death. However, her defense team claimed that the super morbidly obese woman was incapable of killing him because she’s too fat.

In March 2008, police arrested and charged Rosales, then 27, with capital murder for allegedly striking her sister’s 2-year-old son Eliseo in the head and killing him.

Rosales’ defense team however claimed that due to her immense weight, she would not have had the strength to raise her arm and strike the child hard enough to kill him.

When questioned by police, Rosales said the boy died because she accidentally fell on him. After a doctor’s examination of the boy’s body it was determined that he died as a result of blunt force trauma to the head and not from being crushed to death. She would later say she lied to protect her sister, who was the real killer.

Rosales testified that she saw her 20-year-old sister Jaime hit Eliseo Jr. with a hairbrush just hours before he was taken to the hospital by ambulance.

The mostly bed-ridden woman said she was more of a mother than Jaime, and that her sister would often leave the children in the home with her while she went out.

After being left with Rosales, Eliseo began having trouble breathing so his aunt called an ambulance.

Jaime was called and arrived at the hospital only to be told she could not see her son unless she told police who had hurt him. Rosales claimed Jaime then called her begging that she take the blame for the injuries so she could see her son. Rosales claimed she agreed, but was only trying to help her sister.

She was later arrested and charged with capital murder, but when the medical examiner determined the cause of death, it was revealed that Rosales could not have killed the boy because her obesity prevented her from raising her arms.

Rosales eventually came clean and stated Jaime was behind the abuse that likely killed the toddler.

In the end, Mayra was exonerated and her sister Jaime Rosales was found guilty of causing injury to the child and sentenced to 15 years in jail.

Mayra Rosales, now 31, said the stress of the trial caused some much stress that her health deteriorated even more. She is now in a hospital for the super morbidly obese, where she is again confined to a hospital bed. However, since being admitted, Rosales says she has lost 168 pounds.

Read more by HS News Staff →

60-Year Old L.A. Latino Bishop Resigns After Admitting to Fathering 2 Children

60-Year Old L.A. Latino Bishop Resigns After Admitting to Fathering 2 Children

Photo: Bishop Gabino Zavala Resigns, Fathers children

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Pope Benedict XVI accepted the resignation of Gabino Zavala as auxiliary bishop of Los Angeles after the prelate disclosed he was the father of two teenage children, the Vatican said Wednesday.

The 60-year-old Zavala served as auxiliary bishop for the San Gabriel Pastoral Region of the Southern California archdiocese, the Catholic News Service said.

The official announcement comes about a month after Zavala informed Los Angeles Archibishop Jose Gomez that he had fathered two children now living with their mother in another state.

“The archdiocese has reached out to the mother and children to provide spiritual care as well as funding to assist the children with college costs. The family’s identity is not known to the public, and I wish to respect their right to privacy,” Archbishop Gomez said in an open letter to Catholics in Greater Los Angeles.

Zavala stepped back from the ministry after telling the archdiocese about the children and “will be living privately,” Gomez said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Mario Lopez Announces Engagement to Mother of His Child, Courtney Mazza

Mario Lopez Announces Engagement to Mother of His Child, Courtney Mazza

Photo: Mario Lopez Announces Engagement to Mother of His Child, Courtney Mazza

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Extra host, Mario Lopez proposed to the mother of his daughter over New Year’s weekend while they vacationed in Mexico.

The 38-year-old Saved By the Bell alum proposed to Courtney Mazza, 28, on a beach in Ixtapa, Mexico.

They have been together since 2008, and have a 2-year-old daughter named Gia together.

Mazza, a Broadway dancer, and Lopez plan to marry in Mexico later this year.

The couple met while working on the Broadway production of “A Chorus Line”.

This will be Lopez’s second marriage, as he was married to actress Ali Landry in 2004 before being granted an annulment just two weeks later.

Read more by HS News Staff →

California Business Extradited from Panama in Multi-Million Dollar Fraud Case

California Business Extradited from Panama in Multi-Million Dollar Fraud Case

Photo: Panama Extradition of Joseph Randall Medcalf

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Joseph Randall Medcalf, 55, was deported over the weekend by Panama to the United States after being arrested late last week in Panama, announced U.S. Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner.

On March 24, 2011, a federal grand jury in Fresno indicted Medcalf, charging him with defrauding investors of $3.2 million.

According to the indictment, from May 2002 to October 2007, Medcalf, a financial advisor, defrauded his clients by encouraging them to invest in bogus investment opportunities, primarily two that he had formed himself: All Valley Holdings LLC and CenCal Value Investments LLC. The indictment alleges that Medcalf did not invest the clients’ money as promised but used it for his own personal expenses and enjoyment.

In October 2007, Medcalf filed for personal bankruptcy in order to discharge his debts related to this scheme. According to the indictment, he fled the United States in 2008.

If convicted, Medcalf faces the maximum statutory penalties for the mail and wire fraud counts of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Read more by HS News Staff →

YouTube Favorites Jorge and Alexa Narvaez in 2nd Hyundai Commercial Singing “Home” (VIDEO)

YouTube Favorites Jorge and Alexa Narvaez in 2nd Hyundai Commercial Singing “Home” (VIDEO)

Photo: YouTube Favorites Jorge and Alexa Narvaez in 2nd Hyundai Commercial Singing "Home"

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The darling duo of Jorge Narvaez, 24, and his daughter Alexa, 6, are back, having landed themselves a second Hyundai commercial.

This time the father/daughter YouTube sensations are singing “Home” while Jorge drives daughter Alexa around in the 2012 Hyundai Santa Fe.

ImageThe pair became internet celebrities after Jorge began uploading videos of him and his daughter Alexa singing while he played the guitar. Loving the heartfelt belting of little Alexa, viewers quickly shared the videos, which ultimately caught the eyes of those at Hyundai.

Though now a pseudo-celebrity, Jorge remains just a single father trying to do right by his daughters Alexa and Eliana, 3, while attending college and continuing to play music.

“Every single thing I do is for them,” he told the Man of the House website in 2011.

“Home” was originally sung by Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros.

To see Jorge and Alexa sing the full song back in 2010, click here


Related Videos

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JUST IN: Cancer Removal Surgery a Success for Argentine President, Cristina Fernandez Now Awake

JUST IN: Cancer Removal Surgery a Success for Argentine President, Cristina Fernandez Now Awake

Photo: Cristina Kirchner Out of Surgery

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Government officials from Argentina are announcing that President Cristina Fernandez Kirchner has successfully completed thyroid cancer removal surgery.  It is reported she is awake after the 3 ½ hour surgery and encountered no health complications during the procedure.

Many supporters were outside the hospital waiting for the good news.  Many others around the country had started a prayer vigil for her last night and numerous masses were held for Fernandez Kirchner.  Pictures of the patron saint of Argentina, Virgin de Lujan, could be seen through the Hospital Austral grounds in Pilar, Argentina.

The 58-year old President will be taking a 20 day leave of absence in which time Vice President Amado Boudou will lead the country. 

The cancer was diagnosed shortly before Kirchner took over her second Presidential term.  She is expected to make a full recovery and will not require chemotherapy.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Spain Launches Some of the Strongest Anti-Piracy Laws

Spain Launches Some of the Strongest Anti-Piracy Laws

Photo: SINDE, Spains Sopa Becomes Law

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While the U.S. is debating implementing the ‘Stop Online Piracy Act’ also known as SOPA, Spain has enacted some of the strongest anti-piracy laws around that will go in effect in March and in spite of much protest from open web activists. 

The new law known as ‘Sinde’ will result in any web site thought to be using pirated material to be legally shut down within days of posting that material.

The Spanish government has created a oversight committee where piracy complaints will be reviewed and passed along to the judiciary if it’s merited.  The judge can then order the site with the alleged pirated content to be shut down.

Start to finish the process could take as little as ten days.  If a site decides not to shut down they will be fined and face other consequences.

Pirated material applies to cultural content not illegal downloads and includes movies, music, written material amongst other media forms.  Free internet activists promise to fight the law and punish artists who have supported the anti-piracy law.

It is estimated that Spain lost close to $9 billion in the first half of 2010. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

New Celebrity Apprentice Includes Two Venezuelan Beauties: Dayana Mendoza & Patricia Velasquez

New Celebrity Apprentice Includes Two Venezuelan Beauties: Dayana Mendoza & Patricia Velasquez

Photo: New Contestants Announced Celebrity Apprentice

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Donald Trump took time off from disrupting the American political landscape by announcing who would be on the new season of ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ and the cast includes two Venezuelan beauties.

The new cast for this season that will premiere on February 12th has a wide spectrum of ‘psuedo’ celebrities from all walks of life. 

There is ‘American Idol’ alumni Clay Aiken, former talk show host Arsenio Hall, bodybuilder Lou Ferrigno and former Miss Venezuela 2007 and Miss Universe 2008 Dayana Mendoza and Venezuelan model Patricia Velasquez.

Both beauties were born in Venezuela, Mendoza in Caracas and Velasquez in Maracaibo.  Velasquez also competed in the Miss Venezuela, almost 20 years before Mendoza, but only came in 7th place. 

Could this be something they will fight about on ‘Celebrity Apprentice’?

Other contestants include model Cheryl Tiegs, singers Debbie Gibson, Aubrey O’Day, Tia Carrere, Star Trekker Geroge Takei, botoxed buxom’s Teresa Giudice and Victoria Gotti, comediennes Lisa Lampanelli, Adam Carolla, magician Penn Jillette, racedar driver Michael Andretti, Paul Teutul from ‘American Chopper’ and hard rocker Dee Snider.

“I just think we have a major group of celebrities, and we have a very iconic group,” says the show’s host, Donald Trump. “This is the best cast we’ve ever had, the biggest cast, and it’s going to be special.”

During the televised announcement on ‘Today’ Trump was not satisfied with talking Apprentice only he continues to threaten us with a run for the Presidency. 

Let’s hope the show keeps him very distracted. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

In Protest of Failed Mexican Airline, Pilot Stages Hunger Strike

In Protest of Failed Mexican Airline, Pilot Stages Hunger Strike

Photo: In Protest of Failed Mexican Airline, Pilot Stages Hunger Strike

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A pilot for Mexicana de Aviacion, which stopped flying in 2010, has gone on an indefinite hunger strike to pressure the government to rescue the bankrupt carrier and put its nearly 8,000 employees back to work.

Capt. Rolando Quintana Frias criticized government officials’ “lack of willingness” to help the airline resume operating.

Mexicana, which had been one of Mexico’s two leading airlines, stopped operating on Aug. 28, 2010, along with sister budget carriers Click and Link.

The Mexicana group of airlines filed for bankruptcy protection after racking up an estimated 12 billion pesos ($863 million) in debt.

Quintana Frias, a 35-year Mexicana veteran, started his hunger strike in the first minute of Jan. 1 and vowed not to end it until “officials satisfy our demands.”

“I will continue my hunger strike until officials pay attention to my request and we have a resolution of the conflict,” the pilot told Efe.

Quintana Frias is camping out at the Mexicana de Aviacion counters in Terminal 1 of the Mexico City international airport.

A group of pilots and other employees held a rally in the terminal and handed out fliers that looked like tickets to travelers, urging them to support the effort to revive Mexicana.

Workers plan to take other “drastic measures” so the federal government will pay attention to their plight, flight attendants union secretary-general Ricardo Del Valle told reporters.

“We have asked them for a meeting for a year and they have not even taken one call from us,” Del Valle said.

In November, negotiations on the potential sale of Mexicana de Aviacion broke down after would-be suitor Ivan Barona failed to meet the conditions to complete the transaction.

After analyzing the letter of credit in support of Barona’s $400 million cash pledge, “the conditions required by his financial backer were not met (and) therefore their partnership for the purposes of this (recapitalization plan) is considered terminated,” Mexicana bankruptcy trustee Gerardo Badin said.

Mexicana needs a group of investors willing to take on its heavy debt load and also inject an initial sum of between $150 million and $200 million to return the airline to the skies.

Read more by HS News Staff →



WednesdayJanuary 4, 2012