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TuesdayMarch 20, 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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Ecuardorian Shoe Designer Paulina Anda at Miami Beach Fashion Week

Ecuardorian Shoe Designer Paulina Anda at Miami Beach Fashion Week

Photo: Designer Paulina Anda at Miami Beach Fashion Show

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Paulina Anda wants her “Urban Romanticism” shoe line to leave a mark “of fashion talent by Ecuadorians” at Miami Beach’s International Fashion Week, which begins on Tuesday.

“On the catwalk, I want everyone to know that in Ecuador we make fashion, that we have a lot of talent,” said the designer in an interview with Efe in Miami.

Anda will present her Makiatto line for the second time at Fashion Week.

For the Ecuadorian, the event is “a dream (I’ve had) all my life” as well as being an opportunity to display her creations and the talent that did not come to her by chance, given that she grew up in a shoe manufacturing family.

“My aunts made shoes, ... and I was always in contact with them and with the shoes,” recalled the woman who three years ago decided to enter the fashion industry professionally.

She left her job as a securities broker to begin a journey into shoe design because, she said, “in my country there did not exist a different proposal, regarding footwear.”ImageImage

With a degree in footwear design and marketing from Milan, she explained that her strategy was to attack a market niche for women who needed different and comfortable shoes in her country and who were not satisfied with what there was.

Anda shared that she had achieved much more than she had expected and had made her career into a family business where her parents administer a production operation that has about 30 employees.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Friendly International Games Between U.S and Cuba Will Resume in July

Friendly International Games Between U.S and Cuba Will Resume in July

Photo: Friendly International Games Between U.S and Cuba Will Resume in July

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Cuba and the United States in July will resume in Havana an annual series of friendly baseball games that will serve to prepare both countries for international events.

The last friendly encounter between the two teams was in 1996.

The first series of five games will take place July 5-9 in the Latin American Stadium in Havana, and it is expected that in 2013 the Cuban national team will travel to the United States for the next series.

The head of the Cuban Baseball Federation, Higinio Velez, and the president of USA Baseball, Paul Seilar, on Tuesday in Havana signed a letter of intent to begin the games.

In a later press conference, Seiler hailed the “resurrection” of the bilateral event and said that for the U.S. squad Cuba is a “meter” for evaluating its performance.

The vice president of the International Baseball Federation, Cuba’s Antonio Castro, said that the talks with Seiler to resume the sports series began within the framework of the international organization’s meetings, adding that the series will be “a success.”

Castro, the son of former Cuban leader Fidel Castro, emphasized that the meeting “is very important for U.S. baseball” and its Cuban counterpart, and he emphasized that holding the series will be “fascinating” and “stimulating” for U.S. players and fans.

Referring to the expectations of Cuban baseball, he said that it is “exciting” for the island that the point of departure on its road to prepare for the 2013 World Baseball Classic will be with a U.S. team.

“Our baseball demands this type of confrontation, it demands playing at a higher level,” said Castro.

He said that Cuba was seeking “all possible formulas” so that its athletes “face quality baseball and raise their level, become more competitive each day and be able to provide greater happiness to our people.”

The Cuba-U.S. series in July will also serve as preparation for Haarlem Baseball Week, set for later that month in the Netherlands, and in which both countries will participate.

Currently, Cuba is holding talks with the Caribbean Confederation of Professional Baseball regarding its possible return to that organization.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Citizen’s Twins Born Abroad Denied U.S. Citizenship Because They were Conceived Through In Vitro

Citizen’s Twins Born Abroad Denied U.S. Citizenship Because They were Conceived Through In Vitro

Photo: Ellie Lavi and her twins Maya and Shira

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When Chicago native Ellie Lavi gave birth to twins while visiting Israel she was excited about being a mother, but when she attempted to apply for citizenship for her children at the U.S. embassy, some of that excitement vanished.

An American citizen herself, Lavi, who is also an Israeli citizen, assumed that her twin girls would still be American citizens despite having been born in Israel, but when she arrived at the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv, she learned otherwise.

According to the U.S. State Department, any children born to U.S. citizens via in vitro fertilization (IVF) are not considered citizens unless it can be proven that the egg or sperm used in the procedure was donated by an American citizen.

Embassy officials went as far as asking Lavi if the twins were hers.

She told USA Today, “I was humiliated and horrified. We’re talking about the children I gave birth to. Of course they’re my children.”

Now being told that her girls can only be granted citizenship if she can prove the donor is American, Lavi says she has given up actively persuing the matter and remains in Israel, telling USA Today, “If I’d gone back to the States to give birth, my children would have automatically received American citizenship, but I don’t love there. I live here.”

The U.S. State Department maintains that it has properly interpreted the law, but says it is studying whether or not the Immigration and Nationality Act can be interpreted to allow U.S. citizen parents like Ellie Lavi “to transmit American citizenship to their children born abroad through artificial reproductive technology in a broader range of circumstances.”

Read more at USA TODAY →

New Mexico Tourism Ad Causing Controversy with “Light-skinned” Casting Call

New Mexico Tourism Ad Causing Controversy with “Light-skinned” Casting Call

Photo: New Mexico Tourism Ad Causing Controversy with "Light-Skinned" Casting Call

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A tourism ad that hasn’t even been seen yet is causing quite a stir for a few reasons.

Residents were annoyed that an ad promoting New Mexico was not being produced by a New Mexico company, but instead the job was outsourced to California.

And then came the casting call. If people didn’t care about he upcoming tourism ad before they certainly cared after a the state’s tourism board held a casting call for “Caucasion and light-skinned Hispanics” to star in the ad.

“We don’t know, of course, who made it into the shoot and how New Mexico will be presented to the world once the campaign is unveiled,” read an editorial in the Santa Fe New Mexican.”But really, light-skinned only? What were they thinking?”

The ad is scheduled to be revealed in April and many New Mexico residents are eager to see how they are advertised to the world.

Read more by HS News Staff →

N. Carolina Professor Facing Cocaine Smuggling Charges in Argentina

N. Carolina Professor Facing Cocaine Smuggling Charges in Argentina

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A North Carolina physicist and professor has been arrested in Argentina for allegedly attempting to smuggle cocaine into the United States.

Professor Paul H. Frampton of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill reportedly told The Raleigh News & Observer that though he does not wish to share too many details on the case, he believes “there is easily enough evidence” to prove he is innocent and says he “will not be convicted.”

Professor Frampton remains at Villa DeVoto Prison in Buenos Aires since being arrested after cocaine was found in a hidden compartment in his luggage. He maintains that he had no idea he was carrying drugs.

Since being “locked up” on January 23 the professor continues to work and says he had written four academic papers and continues to advise two of his students, one of which said he didn’t even know Frampton was in jail until recently, having only known that he was out of the country.

Though he remains in jail, McClatchy is reporting that Prof. Frampton, who has three degrees from Oxford University, is more concerned with the way he is being treated by his university. Since being arrested, his pay has been suspended. He chalks it up to “petty academic jealousy.”

McClatchy:

Frampton said that Provost Bruce Carney had his pay improperly stopped, and that he needs the money for his defense and his bills back in Chapel Hill.

Also, the university should have sent someone who knows him and can attest to his character to talk with the judge. Instead, it sent an associate dean who doesn’t know him, but happened to be coming to Argentina on business.

“The university has done nothing, absolutely nothing, to help me,” he said. “You would expect a university of that caliber would do everything possible to get me out of prison.”

Read more at McClatchy →

Guilty Pleas for Smugglers Trafficking Mexican Women to Work in Houston Bars

Guilty Pleas for Smugglers Trafficking Mexican Women to Work in Houston Bars

Photo: Human Trafficking of Mexican Women Revealed

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The last person in a 10‐defendant indictment has pleaded guilty for his role in an organization involved in the trafficking of Mexican females for compelled service at Houston area bars and restaurants through force, fraud, and coercion, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today. Javier Belmontes, 46, entered a guilty plea before U.S. District Judge Lynn Hughes for conspiring to harbor Mexican nationals.

Belmontes was charged along with nine others in a conspiracy involving the recruitment of Mexican women and girls to travel to the United States with the false expectation of legitimate jobs in bars and restaurants. The indictment, returned February 15, 2011, alleged that the conspirators further relied on the services of pimps to supply the women for use as prostitutes to maintain control of the women.

Maria Rojas, aka “Nancy,” 46, was the owner of La Costenita, formerly Playa Sola, as well as El Club Restaurante, formerly La Cueva Restaurante Bar, both located on Clinton Drive in Houston. Belmontes owned, controlled, and operated La Costenita and El Club Restaurante, while Jose Luis Rojas, 38, operated La Costenita. Seven others were charged in the indictment with conspiracy to harbor illegal aliens. Maday Martinez, 34, and Evelin Carolina Aguera, 37, worked as managers; while Claudia Perez Ramirez, Silvano Santos, aka “Chivas,” Francisco Maradiaga Jimenez, aka “Pancho,” and Olvan Ramirez Caceres worked at La Costenita as lookouts alerting police presence.

The final defendant, Aleyda Juarez, passed out condoms and charged the females $15 for the condom as well as use of the rooms.

Belmontes is set for sentencing on June 18, 2012, at which time he faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Aguera, Santos, Perez Ramirez, Maradiaga Jimenez, Ramirez Caceres, and Juarez have pleaded guilty and have been sentenced. Their sentences for their roles in conspiracy to harboring illegal aliens has ranged from eight to 11 months and all will be deported upon completion of their sentences. Martinez has also pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing.

The United States is also seeking the forfeiture of money, two bars, one restaurant, and several properties, which the government alleges were the proceeds of ill gotten gains and/or used to facilitate these crimes.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Houston “Enchilada Queen” Sylvia Caseras Shot, Police Looking for her Boyfriend

Houston “Enchilada Queen” Sylvia Caseras Shot, Police Looking for her Boyfriend

Photo: Houston "Enchilada Queen" Sylvia Caseras Shot, Police Looking for her Boyfriend

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Houston police are on the lookout for taco truck driver Michael Warren, after his girlfriend, known as the “Enchilada Queen,” is recovering from a gunshot wound to the abdomen.

Sylvia Casares, 59, is believed to have been shot by 58-year-old Warren, her boyfriend of three years during a domestic dispute. After shooting Casares, Warren allegedly fled their Fulshear, TX home in a black SUV. A spokesman for the Fort Bed Sheriff’s office said authorities believe Warren was heading for the his hometown of Lafayette, Louisiana.

Over the years, Casares has become a local celebrity for keeping the Tex-Mex cuisine alive with her two restaurants both named “Sylvia’s Enchilada Kitchen”.

She has also lent her talent, recipes, and face to the cooking classes, DVD tamale-making guides, a cook book, and a taco truck. The truck is run by Warren.

Casares is expected to make a full recovery and authorities remain on the lookout for Warren.

Read more by HS News Staff →

JUST IN:  7.9 Magnitude Earthquake Hits Mexico in Guerrero

JUST IN:  7.9 Magnitude Earthquake Hits Mexico in Guerrero

Photo: 7.9 Earthquake Hits Guerrero, Mexico

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The United States Geological Survey (USGS) is reporting 7.6 magnitude earthquake has hit Mexico 15 miles east of Ometepec in Guerrero, Mexico and 108 miles east-southeast of Acapulco.

The earthquake hit at 12:02 pm with a 4.0 mile depth.  New reports have the magnitude closer to 7.9.

Reuters is reporting that the quake was so strong that buildings shook in Mexico City.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Rumor Mill Says Enrique Iglesias Bankrupt?  He says NO!

Rumor Mill Says Enrique Iglesias Bankrupt?  He says NO!

Photo: Enrique Iglesias Broke Rumors

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Rumors have been spreading that the Spanish singer Enrique Iglesias is facing possible bankruptcy, yet Iglesias himself as well as his publicist claim these rumors to be false.  In spite of his 2011 tour and record success, many critics are eyeing the purchase of his five million dollar Miami mansion as well as its $15 million renovation as cause for alarm. 

Yet, Enrique has only responded with laughter and sarcasm, while his publicist, Joe Bonilla, responded that the news is just more false gossip.  According to “Billboard” magazine, Iglesias was the highest grossing latin artist of 2011.  In the U.S. alone he generated $7 million dollars during his Euphoria World Tour.  Two concerts at Madison Square Garden, in New York City, grossed $1.7 million dollars. 

It’s evident that with this past success as well as an upcoming tour in the works, he should be living comfortably in his Miami mansion. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

LATINO BLOTTER: 19-Year-Old Briana Rios Ran Illegal Bookie Business, Made $300K a Year

LATINO BLOTTER: 19-Year-Old Briana Rios Ran Illegal Bookie Business, Made $300K a Year

Photo: Police say 19-Year-Old Briana Rios Ran Illegal Bookie Business

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Florida investigators say they have uncovered evidence that 19-year-old Briana Rios was heading an illegal gambling operation in Miami, which was making her roughly $300,000 a year.

The Miami Senior High School graduate was charged with bookmaking and running a gambling house. She reportedly ran it out of Transfer Xpress in Hollywood, Florida.

Rio’s ex-boyfriend, Jose Solis told NBC Miami that Rios brought in about $10,000 a day. Since bookies generally take in about 10 percent of the wager for themselves, which means Rios would have been making about $300,000 a year had she continued. The gambling operation was reportedly running from October to December 2011.

A Broward County Court judge did not believe that Rios was just a clerk in the operation as the defense and Solis had said. Rios’ ex-boyfriend said the person in charge left the teenager to run things and ran to the Dominican Republic.

Rios’ bond was set at $20,000 for each of the two counts against her and as of Friday night, she was still behind bars.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Dancing With the Stars- Telenovela Star William Levy Steams up the Screen -VIDEO

Dancing With the Stars- Telenovela Star William Levy Steams up the Screen -VIDEO

Photo: William Levy on Dancing With the Stars

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Cuban-born actor William Levy is part of the group competing in the 14th season of ABC network’s “Dancing With The Stars” TV show that premieres Monday in primetime.

Levy and another 11 celebrity contestants will compete before a jury doing different styles of dancing that range from cha cha cha to fox-trot.

The telenovela leading man will partner professional dancer Cheryl Burke, and for today’s debut the contestants have engaged in some incredibly exhaustive training, ABC said on its Web site.

Also competing this season are singer Gavin DeGraw, NFL player Donald Driver, actor Roshon Fegan, “Little House on the Prairie” star Melissa Gilbert, as well as opera singer Katherine Jenkins and soul icon Gladys Knight.

Completing the list of participants are “Extra” host Maria Menounos, former tennis player Martina Navratilova, “The View” co-host Sherri Shepherd and actors Jack Wagner and Jaleel White.


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Gael García Bernal Admits to Smoking Pot - Occasionally

Gael García Bernal Admits to Smoking Pot - Occasionally

Photo: Gael Garcia Bernal Likes Pot

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At a conference discussing the legalization of drugs in Sao Paolo, Brazil Gael García Bernal announced his support of legalizing marijuana, while stating he enjoys smoking an occasional joint.  Although the Mexican actor says that he is not an addict, he added quite honestly that he enjoys smoking the illegal substance once every three or four months.  A shocking memory he has is when he realized that his parents also enjoyed smoking the drug. 

Although Bernal supports the legalization of marijuana, he does not condone cocaine.  The actor stated that cocaine is too dangerous and it would be more important to educate the youth on how to say no.  Yet, he does not believe that marijuana poses the same threat as cocaine and believes in legalizing it. 

García Bernal is well known for his starring role in the “Motorcycle Diaries” where he portrayed a young Ernesto “Che” Guevara.  He can also be seen in the 2012 film “Casa de mi Padre” with Will Ferrell.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Assasins in Puerto Rico Leave 18-month-old On Top of Father’s Bullet Ridden Body

Assasins in Puerto Rico Leave 18-month-old On Top of Father’s Bullet Ridden Body

Photo: Rio Grande, Puerto Rico Murder

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An 18-month-old boy was left on the body of his father after hired killers gunned the man down Monday in the eastern town of Rio Grande, the Puerto Rico Police Deparment said.

Authorities were working to identify the assailants who shot Jose Gaztambide, 23, while he was sitting in his car in front of the home of his friend Dan Joel Robledo Figueroa in the Rio Grande neighborhood of Malpica.

The PRPD said that the gunmen opened fire when Gaztambide and Robledo were chatting and hit them both.

After the shooting, the killers noticed the presence of the toddler who was strapped in his car seat, so they took his father out of the car and left his son on top of him until police arrived.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Son of ‘Modern Family’ Latina Sofia Vergara Prepares Documentary

Son of ‘Modern Family’ Latina Sofia Vergara Prepares Documentary

Photo: Son of 'Modern Family' Latina Sofia Vergara Prepares Documentary

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Manolo Gonzalez, the son of actress Sofia Vergara, is preparing a documentary based on his experiences with the star of the hit ABC series “Modern Family.”

The documentary, which will air on April 15, will be broadcast on NuevOn, the new Hispanic-oriented channel on YouTube.

According to the channel, the 20-year-old film student will share in a revealing and entertaining manner the circumstances that brought him and his mother from Barranquilla, Colombia, to Hollywood.

NuevOn will produce 10 episodes of “Mi Vida con Toty” (as Vergara is known to family and close friends) as a humorous documentary in which never-before-seen homemade videos will be included.

“I’m thrilled at this opportunity to work with NuevOn and use all those videos that I was filming for years ... that prove that my mom is more interesting and funny in real life than any show,” said Manolo, who over the past five years has been documenting his life along with that of his mother as a hobby.

In the first episodes, viewers will be able to see the set on which “Modern Family” is filmed and take a vicarious trip to Barranquilla, where they will hear the remarks of his mother’s schoolmates and teachers.

Read more by HS News Staff →

South Carolina Exempts Nannies, Farm Laborers and Pastors from Mandatory Immigration Checks

South Carolina Exempts Nannies, Farm Laborers and Pastors from Mandatory Immigration Checks

Photo: South Carolina Immigration Law Exempts Nannies

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A provision in South Carolina’s SB 20 immigration law exempts farm workers, nannies, fishermen and pastors from immigration checks, which some Hispanic leaders describe as hypocrisy.

The legislation, which went into effect Jan. 1, obliges all companies operating in the state to use the federal E-Verify program to make sure all their new employees are authorized to work in the country.

Last year’s U.S. Supreme Court decision ratifying the legality of enforcing E-Verify shut the door on the possibility of challenging that part of SB 20.

Its most controversial provisions, such as allowing state and local police to ask for the papers of anyone they suspect of being undocumented and making it a felony to transport undocumented migrants, have been suspended until the high court rules on them.

According to Frank Knapp, president of the SC Small Business Chamber of Commerce, the exceptions to the use of E-Verify for certain workers set a “double standard.”

“That part of the law is not even clear in the final document. The exceptions are stated in the definitions that are somewhere else. This was almost kept secret, with little or no discussion by the general public,” Knapp told Efe Monday.

Tammy Besherse, attorney for the South Carolina Appleseed Legal Justice Center, who has followed SB 20 from the beginning and attended all the public discussions, does not recall ever having heard the subject mentioned before.

“I don’t know if they kept it a secret but as far as we’re concerned, we focus on the provisions that incite racial profiling and give local police immigration responsibilities,” Besherse told Efe.

For other defenders of immigrants like Ivan Segura, vice president of the Council of Mexicans in the Carolinas, excluding certain workers and forcing others to be checked is “absurd.”

“It’s like saying we don’t want undocumented people in South Carolina unless they pick fruit and vegetables and look after our kids. This is complete hypocrisy by the legislators of this law,” he said.

Some lawmakers and agribusiness operators argue that the exceptions were necessary because it’s “difficult” to check the papers of laborers in the fields.

“Something that is not perfect doesn’t mean it still doesn’t accomplish something,” a supporter of SB 20, Republican state Sen. Chip Campsen, told The State newspaper, explaining that the farm exemption was necessary to get the bill passed.

Data from the 2010 Census show that South Carolina’s Hispanic community increased by 147.7 percent over the past decade to 235,893, representing 5.1 percent of the state’s total population.

Yet a study by the Pew Hispanic Center revealed that the number of undocumented immigrants in South Carolina fell 21.4 percent, from 70,000 to 55,000, since 2008.

Read more by HS News Staff →



TuesdayMarch 20, 2012