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FridayJanuary 6, 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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Earthquake in Dominican Republic Triggers Heart Attack in 47-Year-Old Man

Earthquake in Dominican Republic Triggers Heart Attack in 47-Year-Old Man

Photo: Earthquake in Dominican Republic Triggers Heart Attack in 47-Year-Old Man

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A 47-year-old Dominican died of a heart attack brought on by his reaction to a magnitude-5.3 earthquake that struck the Caribbean nation, the press said.

Maximo Ramirez Rodriguez suffered the fatal cardiac arrest while in front of the television in their bedroom, his wife, Maria Victoria Cuevas, said.

Ramirez lived in the Las Cañitas district on the north side of Santo Domingo, and was the father of four children.

His family said he had not been suffering from health problems.

The quake that shook several regions of the Dominican Republic occurred at 5:36 a.m. Thursday at a depth of 10 kilometers (6 miles) and had its epicenter at 50 kilometers (31 miles) from Santo Domingo, according to the U.S. Geological Service.

Read more by HS News Staff →

No Wedding: Ricky Martin Not thinking of Marriage But Plans a Bigger Family

No Wedding: Ricky Martin Not thinking of Marriage But Plans a Bigger Family

Photo: Ricky Martin With Children

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Puerto Rican singer Ricky Martin told Latina magazine that he currently has no plans to marry despite rumors to the contrary, but that he would like to have a baby girl this year, according to an excerpt of the interview.

The “Livin’ La Vida Loca” singer denied that he was about to say “I do” to his companion, Carlos Gonzalez Abella, in a New York ceremony on Jan. 28, as his agent had already denied this week after news stories reported the artist’s engagement as a fact.

“We are not talking about it, we’re not thinking about it. But I’m so happy that in Europe we have the option. It’s amazing to think that we can say, ‘I feel like it. I’m ready. Let’s go,’ ” Martin said, who last November obtained Spanish nationality.

The singer at age 40 is the father of 3-year-old twin boys, Matteo and Valentino, and said he wants to have more kids soon.

“I think that I’ll do it later on this year, so that (the kids) are not too far apart in ages. A little girl! Dios mío, me muero… But we’re going to talk about that later on. It would be irresponsible to do it now,” said Martin, who in March premieres the musical “Evita” on Broadway playing the part of “Che” Guevara.

“The people, the critics, are going to be expecting a lot. It has to be the best. You have to have the attitude that, ‘You know what? No one will stop me.’ It’s going to be a magical year,” he said.

Ricky Martin is the cover model of the February edition of Latina magazine that will hit the newsstands on Jan. 10.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Alex Rodriguez Confirms Relationship with Wrestling Diva Torrie Wilson With a Courtside Smooch

Alex Rodriguez Confirms Relationship with Wrestling Diva Torrie Wilson With a Courtside Smooch

Photo: Alex Rodriguez Confirms Relationship with Wrestling Diva Torrie Wilson With a Courtside Smooch

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Though it had been rumored that the New York Yankees’ Alex Rodriguez was dating former WWE star Torrie Wilson, it was confirmed earlier this week when the pair was seen smooching at the Staples Center.

A-Rod and Wilson sat with supermodel Cindy Crawford and her husband Rande Gerber at the L.A. Lakers game against the Houston Rockets on Tuesday.

Since his 2008 divorce, the third baseman has been linked to a number of famous beauties over the years, including Kate Hudson and Cameron Diaz.

Wilson, 36, was once an American professional wrestler in the former World Championship Wrestling (WCW) and World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). Before retiring from that line of work in 2008, Wilson was a WWE Diva. Aside from her time with the wrestling organizations, she won the Miss Galaxy fitness competition in 1998. She has also been on the cover of FHM and Playboy (twice).

She and Rodriguez have reportedly been together since December 2011. They recently vacationed with George Clooney and his girlfriend and fellow lady wrestler Stacy Keibler in Cabo San Luca, Mexico.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Robbed, Gives Birth Early, Robbed Again – Sad Start to 2012 for Miami Family

Robbed, Gives Birth Early, Robbed Again – Sad Start to 2012 for Miami Family

Photo: After being robbed, Ana Johana Irias gives birth 3 wks early, then gets robbed again

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A Miami family is still trying to deal with the events that unfolded earlier this week.

While waiting in line at an ATM, pregnant Ana Johana Irias, 26, was robbed by a man who took a necklace she had been given by her mother. Not thinking, the very pregnant mother said she got in her car with her young daughter who was with her, and began chasing the thief, who had taken off his bike. Despite her attempt to catch him, he got away and Irias went to the police to report the incident.

While reporting it, officers noticed she was visibly upset and had rescue personnel check on her. Taking their suggestion that she go the hospital, Irias agreed, and once she arrived, it was realized that she was in labor.

The baby was three weeks, but at 12:15 a.m. on January 1st, baby Kimberly was born. Though relatively healthy, just before her birth, doctors discovered that Kimberly had a cleft lip and palate, a condition that will require many years of surgeries to correct.

Still, the mother and her husband Julio were glad to see that other than the left palate, their daughter was in good health.

Sadly, the family’s trouble was not over just yet. When Julio went back to the family’s one-bedroom apartment to get clothes and various personal items for his wife and children, he found the home had been ransacked. While the family was at the hospital for the birth, a burglar had gotten into the home. Among things taken were $600 for rent money, presents the children had gotten for Christmas, a 52-inch plasma screen television, a Wii game system, and Ana’s purse.

Now the mother of three children – Angelina, 4, Alex, 1, and now newborn Kimberly – Ana says she’s just trying to stay positive, because in the end, it’s about being a good mother and taking care of her family.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg Heads From Brazil to Uruguay

Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg Heads From Brazil to Uruguay

Photo: Facebook Found Mark Zuckerberg Heads From Brazil to Uruguay

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In the last few weeks, Facebook found Mark Zuckerberg has gone from the U.S. to Vietnam to Brazil and is now in Uruguay with his girlfriend and a reported group of seven friends.

Zuckerberg and friends spent New Year’s in the luxurious Brazilian beach town of Folorionopolis, but have since headed down to Uruguay where local news is having a field day with the posse and their interesting requests.

For Zuck’s 8-day vacation in Punta del Este in southeastern Uruguay all animals had to be removed from the home being used by the mogul, as some in his group are very allergic.

All furniture in the house was sent away as well and replaced with new items.

A number of guards were and servants were also hired. So many in fact, that it appears there are as many staff workers as there are visitors.

Local news source El Pais has also reported that everything in the home was scrubbed down with special chemicals.

And though it is unclear whether or not they’ll be hanging out together, Gawker is reporting that former Napster creator, Sean Parker, has arrived in Uruguay as well.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Bobby Martinez: Using F-Bombs to Keep the Soul in Surfing

Bobby Martinez: Using F-Bombs to Keep the Soul in Surfing

Photo: Bobby Martinez: Using F-Bombs to Keep the Soul in Surfing

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Meet the professional surfing world’s headline-making bad boy Bobby Martinez.

The surfer has rejected any claims that he should be the face of Latino surfers, even if he is the first Mexican-American to ever qualify for the World Championship Tour (WCF).

Since his surfing start at the age of 6, Martinez had made quite a name for himself, being called a few names as well.

The outspoken 29-year-old athlete has been praised for his surfing abilities, but it seems he’s more likely to be criticized for his antics these days.

After joining the National Scholastic Surfing Association (NSSA) the moment he was old enough, Martinez would score a record seven national titles, the first of which was earned when he was only 12. After going pro, it seemed the surfing world was willing to make him the next surfing superstar after Kelly Slater. Martinez wasn’t having it however, saying that that kind of notoriety means nothing, because it’s the talent that matters. Sponsors and money only serve to take the soul out of surfing.

He would go on to cut ties with many of his sponsors and self-fund his run in the World Qualifying Series in 2005, from which he’d walk away with 5th place and the 2006 Rookie of the Year title from the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP).

And though his sponsorship status has changed since then, he has not, with his vocal criticism of the ASP and “don’t give a sh*t” attitude getting him into trouble.

On September 7, 2011, Martinez was suspended from the ASP after he blasted the ASP during the Quiksilver Pro New York 2011 competition.

After finishing his first heat, the surfer was asked by one of Quiksilver’s marketers to do an interview. Martinez warned him that he wouldn’t like what he had to say, but the marketer ignored the warning.

In an interview that would be seen live by many, Martinez’s f-bomb-filled interview made the ASP furious. He criticized not only the governing body, but fellow surfers and the World Tour.

“Fucking surfing’s going down the drain, thanks to these people,” Martinez spewed. “I don’t want to be a part of this dumb fucking wannabe tennis tour.”

He was referring to the fact that the tour had recently adopted a rolling world ranking system similar to that used in tennis. Under the new system, the tour’s top 34 surfers could conceivably end up outranked by athletes they’d never surfed against.

After surfing for more than two decades, Martinez has given some the impression that he’s simply an angry loudmouth, but there are many who stand by him, saying he’s only speaking the truth.

Among those that understand where he’s coming from are fellow pro surfers Pascal Stansfield and Allen Sarlo, and even the co-founder of the Von Dutch brand, Bobby Vaughn, who now runs the FTW clothing company in New York.

Vaughn told LA Weekly News Martinez is “not about the money … he’s about the surfing,” and those running the surfing world seem to to have made it entirely about money and sponsors and have put the actual soul of the sport lower on the list of importance.

Surfing has become a major money-maker over the years and it would seem Martinez is one of the only people willing to stand up and say that’s just not what this sport is supposed to be.


To see Bobby talk to FTW about the interview that led to his suspension from the ASP, click here.

Read more by HS News Staff →

No Marijuana Beer for Costa Rica

No Marijuana Beer for Costa Rica

Photo: No Marijuana Beer for Costa Rica

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The Alto Tribunal de Casación Administrativo of Costa Rica has spoken and the eco-friendly nation will be not be offering its citizens and millions of tourists marijuana –flavored beer.

Hanfblüte beer contains hemp leaves and hemp flowers and has a 5% alcohol content with ‘lemony elements’ according to Tasting Beers.com. 

The Swiss beer-maker Nikimar’s Hanfblüte beer had been vying to be on the grocery shelves of Costa Rica for over 3 years.  One of numerous complaints Costa Rica had with the beer was its obvious association with marijuana via its hemp leaf marketing campaign.

Oh and did we also mention the bottle’s label has two Mary Jane farmers cutting pot plants during harvest time. 

The decision by the tribunal is based on the country laws that prohibit any products to include coca, poppy, hemp or marijuana lest it promote consumption of illegal drugs.

The tribunals clear-ban decision this week, ends Nikimar’s effort to enter this Latin American market.

Read more by HS News Staff →

LATINO BLOTTER: Texas Man Arrested for Sexually Assaulting Horses

LATINO BLOTTER: Texas Man Arrested for Sexually Assaulting Horses

Photo: Cirilo Rodriguez Castillo arrested for having sex with horses

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A Texas man has been arrested for allegedly having sex with a number of horses, with at least one incident caught on video.

Cirilo Rodriguez Castillo is being held on $600,000 worth of bonds while he faces criminal charges ranging from animal cruelty to criminal trespassing.

Castillo is said to have trespassed on at least two different ranches where he would tie up female horses and have sex with them.

According to court records, the owner of one of the ranches said he personally saw Castillo having sex with female horses at least four separate times. A second ranch owner presented the court with surveillance footage of Castillo also having sex with her female horse on December 30, 2011.

The alleged horse abuser has been charged with two counts of animal cruelty as well as two counts of criminal trespassing.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Unemployment Dips to 8.5%, Latino Rate Also Falls Now at 11%

Unemployment Dips to 8.5%, Latino Rate Also Falls Now at 11%

Photo: Latino Unemployment Rate Drops

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The U.S. economy gained 200,000 net new jobs in December, bringing the unemployment rate down a tenth of a percentage point to 8.5 percent, its lowest level since February 2009, the Labor Department said Friday.

Median hourly earnings climbed 0.2 percent last month to $23.44.

The 1.64 million jobs added in 2011 made it the best year for U.S. workers since 2006, the Labor Department said. Yet, the advance is modest compared with the 8.4 million jobs lost between December 2007 and June 2009, when the recession officially ended.

Meanwhile the unemployment rate for Latinos also dropped from 11.4% to 11% in December. 

So while the general market enjoyed a .3% drop in unemployment from 8.7% to 8.5% the Latino unemployment decrease was bigger at .4%.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Chicago Cubs’ Dominican Shortstop Starlin Castro Being Accused of 2011 Sexual Assault

Chicago Cubs’ Dominican Shortstop Starlin Castro Being Accused of 2011 Sexual Assault

Photo: Chicago Cubs' Dominican Shortstop Starlin Castro Being Accused of 2011 Sexual Assault

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Police are reportedly looking to ask Chicago Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro some questions about an incident that allegedly happened in the fall.

An unidentified woman in her 20s has alleged that on the night of September 29, 2011, after drinking with friends and meeting Castro at a River North nightclub, she and a friend went to the ball player’s State Street apartment around 3 a.m.

According to the police report, the woman says she blacked out at Castro’s home and when she awoke, he was raping her. She screamed, then yelled at her attacker before leaving the apartment at 5:30 a.m. with her friend. The friend drove the victim home and it would be 12 hours before she would go to the hospital. At this point, the police became involved, but Castro was already on a plane to the Dominican Republic to be with his family during the off-season. The police have reportedly spoken to the victim’s friend, but it is unclear if anyone else has been questioned.

Friday morning, Castro’s attorney released a statement:

We are aware of certain allegations that have been made against our client, Starlin Castro. We have thoroughly investigated this matter, and we are confident that these allegations are baseless.  Given the sensitive nature of this matter, we cannot comment any further.

Though it is unclear why an incident that allegedly happened in the fall is only coming to light now, it will likely hang a shadow over the Cubs, as Starlin Castro is one of the few bright spots for the club.

It is believed that Castro has not spoken with police in person, as he’s been in the Dominican Republic since the night of the alleged attack. He has neither been arrested nor had charges filed against him.

The Cubs released a statement as well, saying, “We are aware that a police report was filed regarding an incident involving Starlin, but we have received limited information. While this is something we take very seriously, there is not enough information to make any further comment or take action at this time. We are hopeful when the facts are brought to light, Starlin will be cleared of any wrongdoing.”

The 21-year-old player was born in Monte Cristi in the Dominican Republic in 1990. Castro was called up to the majors in 2010 by the Cubs. He has a career batting average of .304, with 346 hits. During his first at-bat in the majors, Castro hit a 3-run home run.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Sen. Rubio Sends Letter to Obama Letting Him Know America’s Becoming a Deadbeat Nation

Sen. Rubio Sends Letter to Obama Letting Him Know America’s Becoming a Deadbeat Nation

Photo: Marco Rubio Sends Obama Critical Letter

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With news reports suggesting that President Barack Obama and his administration will soon ask Congress to raise the debt limit for the sixth time in his Presidency, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) challenged him to present a real plan to tackle America’s debt in 2012.

In a letter sent today, Rubio said, “It’s a tragic reality but, on your watch, more and more people have come to believe that America is becoming a deadbeat nation inevitably heading toward a European-style debt crisis.”

The junior senator from Florida concluded by saying:  “America deserves leaders who will stand front and center, level with the American people about our challenges and offer real solutions to solve them.  Instead of simply asking for another debt ceiling increase, I urge you to come forward with a real plan to tackle our debt in 2012.”

Senator America and Florida also deserve an elected official that doesn’t grand stand or puts his issues (isolating Cuba) before the interests of the nation. 

Click here to read the entire letter. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

Buenos Aires Now a Smoke-Free City

Buenos Aires Now a Smoke-Free City

Photo: Buenos Aires Now Smoke-Free

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Buenos Aires, starting Thursday, is now a smoke-free city after the entry into force of an ordinance prohibiting smoking in closed areas, such as bars, restaurants and rooms where the public gathers.

The regulation establishes that “closed spaces ... will no longer be able to have smoking zones,” said municipal legislator Paula Bertol, the sponsor of the measure.

“The effectiveness of 100 percent smoke-free spaces has been proven all over the world for taking care of people’s health,” she said.

The measure had established that bars and restaurants could continue to maintain smoking zones up until Thursday.

The law does not include “backyards, terraces, balconies and other open-air spaces in places closed to public access” or “areas specifically and exclusively for the enjoyment of tobacco products in clubs for tobacco smokers and tobacco stores, mental health centers and detention centers.”

Last June, the Argentine Congress passed a law giving local and regional jurisdictions the authority to establish “public environments 100 percent free of smoke,” as well as to prohibit cigarette advertising at “all kinds of activities or events.”

Argentina is the only country in Latin America that did not ratify the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, which has been approved by 173 countries.

According to a study recently released by the American Cancer Society, Argentina ranks third in the Western Hemisphere in per capita tobacco consumption.

Read more by HS News Staff →

PUERTO RICO: Mother Hands Son Over to Police

PUERTO RICO: Mother Hands Son Over to Police

Photo: Puerto Rican mom hands troubled son over to cops

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A Puerto Rican mother turned in her 15-year-old son to the police out of fear that he would be murdered, the press reported.

The woman, identified as Brenda Olmedo, said she decided to turn in her son after her home in the east-central town of Gurabo was fired upon several days ago by unknown gunmen looking for her son, known as “Raelo.”

“The boy needs a lot of psychiatric help. Good or bad, he’s my son. Jail is not the best thing. It’s going to make him more rebellious, but I’m not going to have him in my home. I love him, but I don’t want to put us at risk,” Olmedo said.

Olmedo added that her son has been a psychiatric patient since he was 3, suffers from attention deficit disorder, acts defiant and is schizophrenic, for which he needs to take medications, but he refuses to take them and uses drugs, which aggravates his condition.

Apparently, the boy stole a weapon from a neighbor and that was the reason the unknown gunmen decided to target the home, she added.

Olmedo, however, said that she feels calm about having turned in her son to the police so that they may lock him up, preferring to have her conscience at peace rather than having to bury one of her children.

“Better a pain in your arm than a pain in your heart. Now I feel calm. I could sleep well for the first time in a long time, without fearing that they will kill me. I heard firecrackers and thought: ‘They’ve killed me,’” she said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Hispanic Institute to Hold Supreme Court Rally on Texas Voter Redistricting

Hispanic Institute to Hold Supreme Court Rally on Texas Voter Redistricting

Photo: Supreme Court to Hear Texas Redistricting Case

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On Monday, January 9, 2012, The Hispanic Institute will hold a rally at the United States Supreme Court for Fair Re-districting in the state of Texas.

All states are required to redo their voting boundaries after the recently completed nationwide census, conducted once every ten years. Texas is getting four new congressional seats after the latest census showed its population grew by 4 million people. The plan drafted by the three-judge panel would give minorities the majority in three of those congressional districts.

Ninety percent of the population growth in Texas during the last ten years has actually been growth in the minority population, and of that, sixty-five percent has been Latino. You would think that any decision rendered by the court would reflect these changes in population.

Gus West, President of the Hispanic Institute stated, “We must be vigilant in guarding our voting rights. We can never condone attempts to suppress the voting power of any American citizen.”

The decision will impact voting for Latinos for the next ten years. 

The rally is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. in front of The United States Supreme Court.

Read more by HS News Staff →



FridayJanuary 6, 2012