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TuesdayMarch 13, 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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Guatemalan Involved in 1982 Massacre Sentenced to 6000 Years in Prison

A veteran of a notorious army unit was sentenced to 6,060 years in prison for his part in the 1982 massacre of 201 peasants in northern Guatemala.

The three-judge panel gave Pedro Pimentel 30 years for each of the victims, plus an additional 30 years for crimes against humanity, though Guatemalan law establishes a maximum prison term of 50 years.

The bloodbath took place on Dec. 7, 1982, in Dos Erres, a rural community in Peten province, during the rule of Gen. Efrain Rios Montt, who has been under house arrest since January pending possible trial for genocide.

Two admitted perpetrators of the massacre identified Pimentel as one of the killers, but the defendant insisted he was in Guatemala City on the day of the slaughter.

“I come to deny that I participated,” the 55-year-old told the court.

Pimentel, who was extradited from the United States to stand trial for the Dos Erres massacre, belonged to Los Kaibiles, an elite counterinsurgency unit of the Guatemalan army. The court heard one expert witness, Peruvian retired Gen. Rodolfo Robles, describe members of that unit as “killing machines.”

Four other former Kaibiles were convicted and sentenced last August for Dos Erres, one of the 660 massacres documented by a truth commission that examined Guatemala’s 1960-1996 civil war.

Most of the conflict’s estimated 250,000 fatalities were indigenous peasants slain by the army and its paramilitary allies.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Police in Taubaté, Brazil Hire Batman to Help Fight Crime

Police in Taubaté, Brazil Hire Batman to Help Fight Crime

Photo: Police in Taubaté, Brazil Hire Batman to Help Fight Crime

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Though we have a feeling he won’t have the really cool gadgets associated with the caped superhero, Batman will now be helping to keep Taubaté, Brazil a safer place.

Taubaté’s military police have hired a 50-year-old local Batman impersonator, André Luiz Pinherio to patrol the city’s crime-filled neighborhoods.

According to Brazilian new source O Vale, Pinherio, a retired military man, will be part of the Movement of Peace and will hopefully be seen as a sign of hope for the children in the troubled area.

Police say they hope Pinherio can “help to combat crimes such as murder and drug trafficking which have increased in Taubaté,” and hope to have him begin patrols on March 17.

Read more at O Vale →

Check Out Will Ferrell Singing in Spanish for ‘Casa de Mi Padre’ (VIDEO)

Check Out Will Ferrell Singing in Spanish for ‘Casa de Mi Padre’ (VIDEO)

Photo: Check Out Will Ferrell Singing in Spanish for 'Casa de Mi Padre'

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Will Ferrell sings in Spanish for “Casa de Mi Padre” which opens in theaters on March 16.

Check out him singing “Yo No Se”.

Read more by HS News Staff →

LATINO BLOTTER: North Carolina Man Arrested After Teen he Allegedly Raped Gives Birth in Bathroom

LATINO BLOTTER: North Carolina Man Arrested After Teen he Allegedly Raped Gives Birth in Bathroom

Photo: Juan Martinez Hernandez Arrested After Teen he Allegedly Raped Gives Birth in Bathroom

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North Carolina police have arrested Juan Martinez Hernandez on rape charges after a 14-year-old girl identified him as the father of her child.

Though police are still investigating the case, Juan Martinez Hernandez, 35, is currently being held at the Mecklenberg County Sheriff’s Office on $250,000 bond after be was questioned and admitted to “engaging in sexual intercourse with the victim on several occasions.”

The alleged victim gave birth to a child in an apartment bathroom on Sunday and family called 911. When officers arrived, the girl told them that Martinez Hernandez, who also lived the apartment complex, was the father of the baby.

Martinez Hernandez has been charged with four counts of statutory rape and two counts of indecent liberties with a child. He reportedly has a criminal record stating he is not in the country legally.

Also, in 2010 he was arrested for driving drunk, speeding, reckless driving, and having no operator’s license. He was placed on immigration hold, according to jail records, but was released two weeks later.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Spanish Astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria Retires after 20 Years at NASA

Spanish Astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria Retires after 20 Years at NASA

Photo: Spanish Astronaurt Michael Lopez-Alegria Retires

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Spanish astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria has left NASA after 20 years with the U.S. space agency.

The 53-year-old engineer and former U.S. Navy pilot has dual Spanish-U.S. citizenship and holds two records: the first as the NASA astronaut with the most experience on spacewalks, 10, and the second for being a member of the longest spaceflight mission.

During his career, NASA said, Lopez-Alegria spent more than 257 days in space, including 215 days as commander of the 14th expedition to the International Space Station.

His 67 hours of spacewalks have only been exceeded by Russian cosmonaut Anatoly Solovyev.

“Mike has faithfully served the Flight Crew Operations Directorate for many years,” Janet Kavandi, NASA director of Flight Crew Operations at Johnson, said of the departing astronaut.

“Mike has been a huge asset to the astronaut office during the course of his career,” said Peggy Whitson, chief of the Astronaut Office at Johnson. “His contributions in spacewalking, shuttle, space station and Soyuz operations are notable and very distinguished. Personally, we will miss his humor and insights and wish him all the best.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Lucci and the Latinas: Soap Star Joins Judy Reyes in Cast of ‘Devious Maids’

Lucci and the Latinas: Soap Star Joins Judy Reyes in Cast of ‘Devious Maids’

Photo: Susan Lucci to Join Judy Reyes in Cast of ABC Pilot for 'Devious Maids'

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Known mostly for her work on ABC’s long-running soap opera All My Children, Susan Lucci has reportedly signed on to co-star in the pilot for Devious Maids.

According to Deadline, Judy Reyes, Ana Ortiz, Dania Ramirez, and Roselyn Sanchez will now be joined by iconic daytime soap star Susan Lucci in the pilot for Devious Maids, which follows the lives of fours maids in the service of the Beverly Hills elite.

Lucci will play, Genevieve Delacourt, one of the maid’s employers. She’ll play a “nuts” woman of wealth, who has fallen from grace after a life spent chasing powerful men.

Devious Maids is an adaptation of the Spanish-language telenovela Ellas son…la alegría del hogar from Desperate Housewives creator Marc Cherry.

Read more by HS News Staff →

LATINO BLOTTER: Cop Arrested for Assaulting Girlfriend he Says Attacked him With Justin Bieber Doll

LATINO BLOTTER: Cop Arrested for Assaulting Girlfriend he Says Attacked him With Justin Bieber Doll

Photo: Arrested for Assaulting Girlfriend he Says Attacked him With Justin Bieber Doll

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A Colorado cop is now on desk duty after he reportedly assaulted his girlfriend allegedly in self-defense after a ‘Justin Bieber’ doll attack.

According the Adams County Sheriff’s Office affidavit, Denver Police Officer Michael James Nuanes Jr., 37, was not allowing his live-in girlfriend to have her cell phone so she could leave their home during an argument.

According to The Smoking Gun, the girlfriend, identified as Christine Polliard “had notified a friend of Michael’s via a Facebook private message that she wanted to leave the residence and that Michael would not give her cell phone so that she could. Chirstine also wrote to Michael’s friend, who is also a Denver Police officer and later identified as Denver Police Officer Anita Gomez, that Michael Nuanes had pulled her hair, she had a knot on her head and was hit in the stomach, causing kidney pain.” She also said he kicked in the door to the bathroom she was hiding in and assaulted her with the broken door.

After convincing from the friend, Nuanes gave the phone to Polliard and she left. Upon hearing of the alleged incident, Officer Gomez felt it necessary to notify Internal Affairs of the situation. She also “expressed concern” for Nuanes’ safety.

When an officer arrived at Nuanes’ residence, he told the officer that he “did not want to make any derogatory statements” regarding Polliard, but he would later say she had thrown a “Barbie Doll” at him, bruising his foot. He said she threw things, bit, grabbed, slapped, and attempted to strangle and beat him. He pointed out a Justin Bieber doll with the foot broken off that she had beaten him with as well.

Polliard later told investigators that the argument started because Nuanes was angry she hadn’t changed her Facebook relationship status to show she was “in a relationship” with him.

What the hell are these two doing with a Justin Bieber doll in their love nest???

Read more by HS News Staff →

Medical Convention Cancels in Response to Alabama Immigration Law

Medical Convention Cancels in Response to Alabama Immigration Law

Photo: Medical Convention in Mobile Cancels in Response to Alabama Immigration Law

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The state of Alabama’s controversial immigration laws have caused a medical association to cancel its 2012 convention in Mobile, for fear that some of may be harassed if they attend.

Recently, Mobile’s Press-Register reported that the Association of Departments of Family Medicine had planned to book 500 to 600 rooms at The Battle House Renaissance Mobile Hotel & Spa, at a cost of about $100,000.

The convention was expected to bring in about $700,000 worth of business to Mobile according to an estimate from the Mobile Bay Convention and Visitors Bureau.

The state’s harsh immigration law bars undocumented immigrants from seeking work, calls for public schools to obtain residency information from news students, and allows local law enforcement officials to enforce immigration laws.

According to a University of Alabama analysis, the benefits of the law, also known as HB 56, are overshadowed by the negative economic impact on the state. In all, the analysis predicts a reduction of statewide output by $11 billion.

Supporter of HB 56, Sen. Rusty Glover (R-Mobile), said he and other supporters had not considered the loss of convention visitors as a possible outcome of the law, saying they focused on the potential benefits of the law when passing it.

Read more by HS News Staff →

EXTREME TRAFFICKING: In 24-Hour Period Close to $1 Billion Worth of Cocaine Seized

EXTREME TRAFFICKING: In 24-Hour Period Close to $1 Billion Worth of Cocaine Seized

Photo: Nearly $1 Billion in Cocaine Seized, early March

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In two separate incidents in a 24-hour period, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) operating out of Corpus Christi, Texas, detected two go-fast vessels carrying more than 10,000 pounds of cocaine with a combined value of more than $779 million.

On March 2, a CBP operating in the Western Caribbean spotted a go-fast vessel loaded down with suspicious bales. The 35-foot twin-engine vessel was spotted speeding north off the coast of Colombia and appeared to be loaded with numerous packages when the vessel was tracked.

The U.S. Coast Guard inspected and found 4,400 pounds of cocaine worth more than $329 million.

The next day, during routine patrols in the Western Caribbean a four-engine, open-hull go-fast vessel loaded with rectangular bales off the coast of Costa Rica, was detected.

Local law enforcement officials were called in to pursue, and the vessel ran aground in Nicaragua, where the four crew members fled into the jungle, leaving behind approximately 6,000 pounds of cocaine worth more than $450 million.

These two seizures are in addition to an $82 million seizure detected out of Jacksonville, Fla. In the last week, CBP have accounted for $861 million in cocaine seizures.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Mexico to Deploy over 5,000 Federal Police as Security during Papal Visit

Mexico to Deploy over 5,000 Federal Police as Security during Papal Visit

Photo: Mexico prepares for Papal Visit

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At least 5,700 federal and state law enforcement agents will provide security during Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to Mexico’s Guanajuato state later this month, state emergency management chief Laura Gurza said.

Gurza toured the city of Silao’s Guanajuato Bicentenario Park, where some 600,000 people are expected to attend an open-air Mass in the morning on March 25, to get a firsthand look at security.

The security operation is well designed and covers all possible contingencies that could arise during the pope’s visit, Gurza said.

“As of now, we have confirmed the participation of 5,700 officers from different agencies, who will be joined by presidential security service and Public Safety Secretariat personnel,” Gurza said.

“Several command centers, first aid stations, medical centers and mobile hospitals will be deployed strategically,” the official said.

Roads will only be closed temporarily while the pope is being transported to the different cities he is scheduled to visit in Guanajuato, Gurza said.

People planning to attend the Mass and other events expected to draw large crowds should leave children and the elderly at home, the state emergency management chief said.

Umbrellas and food that could spoil will not be allowed at public events, Gurza said.

Pope Benedict XVI has events scheduled in three cities in Guanajuato during his March 23-26 visit.

The biggest crowds are expected for the pope’s drives through Leon on the afternoon of March 23, when he will arrive in the city, and on March 26, the day that he will leave for Santiago, Cuba.

Pope Benedict XVI is scheduled to stay at Leon’s Colegio Miraflores during his visit to Mexico.

No details have been released on the route to be taken by the Popemobile during Benedict XVI’s visit and officials have not said how many volunteers have been recruited to form the human wall planned along the route.

The Catholic Church has called for at least 75,000 young people to serve as volunteers in support tasks.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Bo, the First Family’s Dog, Wants a Little Camera Time with a Univision Reporter (VIDEO)

Bo, the First Family’s Dog, Wants a Little Camera Time with a Univision Reporter (VIDEO)

Photo: Bo, the First Family’s Dog, Wants a Little Camera Time with a Univision Reporter (VIDEO)

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Though there was a lot of hoopla surrounding the dog President Obama’s family bought after moving into the White House, the dog, Bo, hasn’t done too many interviews. However, he may have been trying to catch a few minutes on air with Univision reporter Adriana Arevalo.

The Portuguese Water Dog is seen darting behind Arevalo as she reports out front of the White House.


Related Videos

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Texas Tejano Monument Under Construction in Austin

Texas Tejano Monument Under Construction in Austin

Photo: Texas Tejano Monument Under Construction to Honor Latino Contributions

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The contributions that Mexicans and the rest of the Hispanic community have made to the development of what today is Texas will form part of the Texas Tejano Monument under construction on the grounds of the state Capitol in Austin.

The 10 statues that make up the monument have been cast in bronze, mounted on marble, and portray a variety of figures including a Spanish explorer, a cowboy on horseback and a Texan couple with their baby.

According to architect Jaime Beaman who is directing the work, the statues will represent the true history of Texas and show that Spaniards predated Anglos in the region.

“The proof is in the language - the cities and streets of almost the entire state have Spanish names. And of the 18 permanent exhibitions in the Texas Capitol, none dates to before 1836,” he said, referring to the date marking the beginning of independence from Mexico.

Beaman along with a handful of Texans of Mexican origin have been promoting for more than 10 years the creation of the Texas Tejano Monument, a project that was approved by the state legislature in 2001.

Through Tejano Monument, Inc., they have collected more than $1 million to combine with another $1 million in state funds.

One of those directly managing the collection of funds has been Renato Ramirez, banker and resident of the border city of Laredo.

According to Ramirez, the job of getting the monument started was not easy and many objections had to be overcome from politicians and conservative activists who were not in favor of the project.

“All we wanted to achieve was acknowledgment for what Hispanics did in the original founding of what is today Texas. Hispanics and especially Mexicans form part of the culture and history of the state and that should be made known,” he said.

Ramirez also said that historians define Texans as Hispanics from Mexico who settled what is today Texas as a province of New Spain, and their direct descendents who remained here.

“But this is not just about the history of Mexicans and Texans, but of all Hispanics who have helped improve the land that today is this state. To see the completion of this project that has been in the works for more than 10 years shows we can do great things,” the sculptor Armando Hinojosa, creator of the monument’s figures, said.

“For those of us who have worked hard on it, the reward will be that one of our works, the most important of our lives and to which we applied all our determination, will stand throughout the years,” he said.

According to Austin tourism authorities, more than 1 million people visit the Capitol every year.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Argentine Newspaper Giant’s Subsidiary to Buy Largest U.S. Hispanic Press Group

A subsidiary of Argentina’s S.A La Nacion newspaper group is to take a controlling interest in impreMedia, the largest publisher of Spanish-language newspapers in the United States.

US Hispanic Media has no plans to remodel the management structure nor affect content, impreMedia spokeswoman Mary Zerafa told Efe.

S.A. La Nacion’s former corporate planning director, Francisco Seghezzo, is to join impreMedia as chief operating officer.

Monica Lozano, impreMedia’s CEO, hailed the deal as a “strategic partnership.”

The impreMedia group, with a number of publications targeting Americans of Hispanic origin, see the takeover as a way of growing the company’s digital communications.

“impreMedia has a strong history of quality content that deeply engages audiences, local brands that resonate with the local communities they serve, market knowledge and an entrepreneurial approach,” USHM President Eduardo Lomanto said in a statement.

The impreMedia conglomerate has several Hispanic dailies, such as La Opinion in Los Angeles and New York’s El Diario/La Prensa.

After months of negotiations between the two companies, the accord announced Monday makes USHM the largest shareholder in impreMedia, though the firms did not specify the exact percentage of capital investment nor the price tag of the operation.

Read more by HS News Staff →



TuesdayMarch 13, 2012