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ThursdayMay 24, 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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,Pitcher Aroldis Chapman Sued for Causing Cuban-American’s Imprisonment in Cuba

,Pitcher Aroldis Chapman Sued for Causing Cuban-American’s Imprisonment in Cuba

Photo: Aroldis Chapman First Arrested, Now Being Sued

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Two Spanish-language newspapers in Miami, Florida are reporting that Cincinnati Reds closer Aroldis Chapman is being sued for $18 million dollars for causing the imprisonment of a Cuban-American in Cuba.

The two newspapers, Cafe Fuerte and El Nuevo Herald are reporting that the suit was filed by the family of a Cuban-American named Danilo Curbello Garcia, claiming that Chapman is the one responsible for Garcia’s arrest.  The suit claims that Chapman falsely accused Garcia of human trafficking.  Garcia was convicted in 2008 and is currently serving a 10 years in a Cuban prison.  The suit goes on to claim that Chapman did this to curry favor with the Cuban government to regain his spot on the Cuban National Baseball team so he could eventually defect when the team traveled abroad.

It has been a very rough week for the flame thrower, on Monday he was arrested in Kentucky for speeding and driving on a suspended license. 

Chapman was suspended from the Cuban National Team as a result of him trying to defect.  He in essence accused Garcia of trying to get him out of Cuba and then expecting to be paid when Chapman hit it big in the U.S.  Garcia maintains his innocence and said he was visiting family in Cuba from Florida and only met Chapman once.

Chapman signed a six year contract with the Reds in 2010 worth $30.25 million dollars.

Written by Tim Horodyski, HS-News Sports Writer


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Three Arrested With 1.6 tons of Marijuana in Argentina

Three Arrested With 1.6 tons of Marijuana in Argentina

Photo: 1.6 tons of Marijuana were confiscated

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Two Paraguayans and an Argentine were arrested Thursday outside Buenos Aires when they were caught unloading 1.6 tons of marijuana from a boat, police said.

The marijuana, which was in 40 bales, was seized during an operation in the city of Escobar, police spokesmen said.

The suspects were turned over to prosecutors.

The marijuana was going to be distributed in the urban areas around Buenos Aires, police said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Mexico’s PRI Party Disavows Politician With Links to Cartels

Mexico’s PRI Party Disavows Politician With Links to Cartels

Photo: Tomas Yarrington

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Mexico’s PRI, poised to retake the presidency this year after more than a decade in opposition, sought on Wednesday to distance itself from a prominent party member accused by U.S. authorities of taking bribes from drug cartels.

Tomas Yarrington, who governed the border state of Tamaulipas from 1999-2004, “should face his individual responsibility before the courts,” the Institutional Revolutionary Party said in a statement.

Steps are being taken to suspend Yarrington from the party, the statement added.

The party spoke out a day after U.S. federal prosecutors filed forfeiture cases involving two properties in Texas they say were purchased by Yarrington using funds he received from drug traffickers.

“The PRI exhorts Mr. Yarrington to fully cooperate with the competent authorities to clarify the deeds imputed to him,” the party said.

The statement was issued hours after the coordinator of the campaign of PRI presidential candidate Enrique Peña Nieto urged Yarrington to “explain what he has to explain.”

“As PRIistas we make the most energetic condemnation and a clear and complete separation in regard to those activities,” Luis Videgaray told MVS radio. “We won’t defend someone who is in this inexplicable situation.”

Peña Nieto, a photogenic former governor of the central state of Mexico, enjoys a wide lead in the polls ahead of the July 1 presidential election.

Running a distant second is the standard-bearer of the governing conservative National Action Party, Josefina Vazquez Mota, who said Wednesday that the Yarrington case “shows the face of that corrupt Institutional Revolutionary Party which has not gone away.”

Investigations by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, she said, indicate that Yarrington “made his fortune betraying the families of Tamaulipas, making deals with criminals, allowing them to injure with kidnappings, extortion, in exchange for money for him and, certainly, for others.”

“That is what we cannot permit to happen again in the country and, well, these are the allies they have in the candidacy of the present PRI,” Vazquez Mota said in an interview with Radio Formula.

The PRI governed Mexico without interruption from 1929-2000, a regime described by Nobel Prize-winning novelist Mario Vargas Llosa as “the perfect dictatorship.”

That era ended with the election in 2000 of National Action’s Vicente Fox, who was succeeded six years later by party colleague Felipe Calderon after the closest contest in Mexican history.

Last October, Calderon suggested in an interview with The New York Times that some PRI members would be susceptible to making deals with organized crime if the party regained power.

It is generally accepted that PRI administrations brokered agreements among rival drug cartels to prevent bloody turf battles of the kind that have become routine in Mexico over the last five years.

“There are many in the PRI who think the deals of the past would work now. I don’t see what deal could be done, but that is the mentality many of them have. If that opinion prevails, it would worry me,” Calderon told the Times last year.

Peña Nieto’s frontrunner status in the presidential race is due in part to Mexicans’ frustration over persistently high levels of drug-related violence throughout Calderon’s term.

Calderon militarized the struggle against Mexico’s heavily armed, well-funded drug mobs shortly after taking office in December 2006, deploying tens of thousands of troops across the country.

The strategy has led to headline-grabbing captures of cartel kingpins, but drug violence has skyrocketed and claimed more than 50,000 lives.

Peña Nieto complained earlier this year that National Action was carrying out an international smear campaign against the PRI.

Speaking to journalists in February, Peña Nieto said “people who are abroad, particularly in the United States,” have told him that Calderon administration officials “repeatedly say that if the PRI (recaptures the presidency), that would lead to supposed arrangements (with drug traffickers).”

Read more by HS News Staff →

America Ferrera Launching “America4America” Campaign for Voto Latino

America Ferrera Launching “America4America” Campaign for Voto Latino

Photo: America Ferrera

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Voto Latino, is announcing the launch of the “America4America” on Thursday May 31st, spearheaded by America Ferrera.  The campaign is a media, grassroots, and online effort to reach people across the country to deliver the message that united we build a better America.  The goal is to start a dialogue with young leaders through video, social media and forums bringing attention to the issues that impact the community.

Voto Latino is a next-generation, constituency based organization that empowers American Latinos to claim a better future by engaging in the political process. United by the belief that Latino issues are American issues and American issues are Latino issues, Voto Latino is dedicated to bringing new and diverse voices into the political process through engaging youth, media, technology and celebrities.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Mexican Bus Passengers Kill One Would Be Robber and Injure Another

Mexican Bus Passengers Kill One Would Be Robber and Injure Another

Photo: Mexican bus

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A group of bus passengers overpowered two would-be robbers, beating one to death and leaving the other badly injured, Mexican police said Thursday.

The incident took place before dawn on the highway linking the northern cities of Monterrey and Durango.

Before the bus reached Saltillo, according to the passengers, one of the assailants rose from his seat and walked toward the back of the vehicle, brandishing a large wrench, while his partner approached the driver with knife in hand and demanded the riders’ belongings.

When the man with the wrench began to move toward the front of the bus, several passengers jumped him, grabbed the wrench and beat him to death with it.

“The accomplice, when he saw what happened, threatened the driver to stop and let him escape, but as they were in a uninhabited area, he said to keep going to the nearest town,” a police source said.

He said the passengers seized on the opportunity to attack the accomplice, “leaving him gravely injured.”

The driver reported the incident to federal police when the bus reached the Monterrey suburb of Santa Catarina.

The Red Cross took the injured robber to University Hospital in Monterrey and personnel from the medical examiner’s office removed the body of the dead man.

The bus was ordered to the Santa Catarina police station, where the passengers are being questioned, a spokesman for the municipal government told Efe.

Highway robbery is surging in Mexico and the roads of the northern states of Tamaulipas and Nuevo Leon - which includes Monterrey - are among the most dangerous in the country.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Spanish Fishing Boats at Gibraltar Reportedly Being Harassed by Police

Spanish Fishing Boats at Gibraltar Reportedly Being Harassed by Police

Photo: Spanish Fishing Boats at Gibraltar Reportedly Being Harassed by Police

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Gibraltar police mobilized on Thursday for the second consecutive day to prevent Spanish fishing boats from casting nets in waters near the Rock.

Accompanied by two Spanish Civil Guard vessels, five fishing boats set out from this southern city at around 9:30 p.m. and made their way toward the southern entrance of the port of Gibraltar.

The same area was the scene Wednesday night of an incident involving fishing boats, Civil Guard patrols and Gibraltarian police craft.

Almost as soon as the fishing boats arrived at the port entrance Thursday night, the Gibraltarian patrols moved in to prevent the Spanish from deploying their nets.

The Gibraltar police displayed “the same aggressiveness as yesterday,” a crewmember from the fishing boat Union Vazquez Blanco told Efe.

The Gibraltarian craft engaged in “dangerous maneuvers,” darting between the Spanish boats at high speed and apparently hitting one of them, the crewmember said.

“If they continue this way, we’ll have no choice but to leave,” the owner of one fishing boat said. “We haven’t come here to provoke, we have come to see if they have changed their position.”

The current conflict began in March, when Gibraltar Chief Minister Fabian Picardo abrogated a 1999 accord that allowed fishing boats from La Linea and Algeciras to operate in waters near the British Crown Colony.

Picardo deemed the pact invalid because it clashed with a 1991 Gibraltar law banning all fishing with nets.

Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo said Wednesday that he will convey an offer of dialogue with Britain over the future of Gibraltar when he travels to London next week for talks with British counterpart William Hague.

He also stressed that Spain will defend its fishing rights in the Bay of Gibraltar, known to Spaniards as Bahia de Algeciras.

The 1713 treaty that is the basis for Britain’s claim to sovereignty over the Rock limits British maritime control to the port of Gibraltar, Garcia-Margallo said.

He urged a return to the terms of the 1999 accord between Gibraltarian authorities and Spanish fishermen.

Renewed conflict over fishing rights and the forthcoming visit to Gibraltar by Britain’s Prince Edward have led to tensions between Madrid and London.

The question of sovereignty over Gibraltar must be resolved “exclusively” by Spain and Britain, “without intervention” by the Rock’s elected officials, Garcia-Margallo said, insisting that the Gibraltarians will not have the power to veto a prospective accord.

Gibraltar is a territory of 5.5 square kilometers (2.1 square miles) on the southern tip of the Iberian Peninsula at the entrance to the Mediterranean Sea. It has been held by Britain since 1704 and became a British Crown Colony in 1713 in accord with the Treaty of Utrecht.

The Rock currently has some 30,000 residents, who overwhelmingly rejected a 2002 proposal for Britain to share sovereignty over the territory with Spain.

Read more by HS News Staff →

President Obama to Deliver Speech At NALEO Conference

President Obama to Deliver Speech At NALEO Conference

Photo: Obama at the NALEO conference in 2008

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The National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) announced today that President Barack Obama will address the nation’s Latino leadership at the organization’s 29th Annual Conference on Friday, June 22, in Orlando, Florida.

“We’re pleased that the President of the United States will be joining our nation’s Latino leadership at this historic event,” said Sylvia R. Garcia, NALEO President. “With the changing demographics and the growing Latino population, this conference is an opportunity for the President to address key elected officials and leaders regarding the Administration’s efforts to address the unique issues and challenges facing the Latino community today.”

The address will occur during a three-day convention of nearly 1,000 Latino public officials working at all levels of government in communities across the nation. Conference participants will join political and policy leaders for panel discussions on education, health, financial empowerment, broadband adoption and the growing clout of Latino voters in American politics.

“Our Hispanic officials represent millions of Americans across the country,” said Juan C. Zapata, NALEO Educational Fund Chairman. “With so much at stake this year, the NALEO membership is eager to hear from the President about his priorities and the actions his administration has taken on behalf of Hispanics and all Americans.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Innovative Program for Latino Students: 100 Role Models in 100 Hours

Innovative Program for Latino Students: 100 Role Models in 100 Hours

Photo: HISPA.org

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A tried and tested role model program for Hispanic middle school students will begin in San Antonio, Texas with an initiative to recruit 100 role models in 100 hours. The HISPA Role Model Bureau, a national non-profit organization that provides professional Hispanic role models for young students, is hosting a recruiting event on May 25 at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA).

HISPA is the acronym for Hispanics Inspiring Students Performance and Achievement.  One of HISPA’s key strategies is to support educational programs in institutions wherein at least half of the students are Hispanic.  It also partners with organizations that have mentoring programs.

HISPA, has recruited more than 700 role models and reached thousands of students through year-round programs in New Jersey where it is based. The majority of the role models are in STEM fields: Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.  It has also conducted programs in New York City and Chicago.

“We’re excited to extend our programs to San Antonio,” said Dr. Ivonne Díaz-Claisse, president and founder of HISPA, which will mark its fifth year in October.  “Our goal is to recruit 100 role models to hit the ground running and build the program over the coming years. This is an excellent opportunity for Hispanic professionals to come together and contribute to the academic success and careers of our youth.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Did an Embezzlement Scandal Put an End to Cuba’s Internet Plans or Was it Fear of An Uprising?

Did an Embezzlement Scandal Put an End to Cuba’s Internet Plans or Was it Fear of An Uprising?

Photo: Did an Embezzlement Scandal Put an End to Cuba's Internet Plans?

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In February 2011, a ceremony was held to announce an undersea fiber-optic project that was said would boost the island nation’s internet capacity 3000-fold.

However, more than a year later, the cable has not been placed and subsequently the country is still having to deal with internet speeds that would make many in the U.S. throw their monitors out the window or at the very least sigh loudly or grunt.

So what happened?

The answer seems to be that no one really knows. Two months after the big ceremony, the system was supposed to have gone on line, but that clearly did not happen, and what happened to the $70 million intended for the project?

Theories of what went wrong range from telecommunications execs cutting corners and pocketing the money to the government worrying about the rise of a Cuban Spring, similar to that of Arab countries who used have been successfully using the internet, specifically social media, to spread news of their causes and support.

“Secrets are over … We are facing the most powerful weapon that has ever existed, which is communication, Fidel Castro told Mexican daily news source La Jornada during an August 2010 interview.

Some have even suggested the cable is online, but with only a selectively chosen few being permitted use.

The Wall Street Journal writes:

According to government statistics, 16 % of islanders were online in some capacity in 2011, mostly through work or school, and often just to the intranet. The National Statistics Office said last year that just 2.9% reported having direct Internet access, though outside experts estimate the real figure is likely 5% to 10% accounting for black market sales of dial-up minutes. For a variety of reasons including the 50-year-old U.S. economic embargo, Cuba is the last country in the Western Hemisphere to get a fiber-optic connection to the outside world, and has relied instead on costly and slow satellite linkups.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Carlos Beltran Proving Baseball Critics Wrong

Carlos Beltran Proving Baseball Critics Wrong

Photo: Cardinal's Carlos Beltran

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On January 13, 2010, Carlos Beltran had surgery on his knee and was originally expected to miss 8–12 weeksof the baseball season. This was the exact moment when most baseball insiders said that Beltran’s best days are behind him. 

After splitting the 2011 season with the New York Mets and the San Francisco Giants, Beltran signed a two-year contract worth $26 million dollars with the St. Louis Cardinals. 

When the Cardinals failed to sign Albert Pujols, they asked more of the 35-year-old outfielder.  So far Beltran has shown to be a leader in the clubhouse as well as on the field.  He has helped the Cardinals to a 25 in 19 record; which is enough for first place in the National League Central.

In last night’s game against the San Diego Padres Beltran’s league leading 14th homerun proved to be the winning hit.  In the bottom of the fifth inning with the score tied at 3, Beltran came to the plate with a runner on first, and on a 0-1 count Beltran blasted a Jeff Suppan fastball into the right field seats. 

His hit helped the Cardinals to complete the sweep of the Padres 6-3.  David Freeze contributed a solo homerun his 9th of the season.

Beltran is proving his critics wrong with every hit.

Written by Tim Horodyski, HS-News Sports Writer


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Undocumented Law Graduate Awaits California Supreme Court Decision

Undocumented Law Graduate Awaits California Supreme Court Decision

Photo: The California Supreme Court will receive the arguments on June 18

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Sergio Garcia graduated from law school three years ago, but he cannot practice his profession because he is undocumented, and so the California Bar Association is asking the state Supreme Court to make an exception and approve his license.

“The Supreme Court of California should give an answer to the bar association’s main question, which is: May an undocumented person practice law in California?” Garcia told Efe.

“The request to the Supreme Court for a response to that question is the first case (of its kind) in the entire history of California,” said Garcia in a telephone interview from his home in Chico.

Born on March 1, 1977, in Villa Jimenez, Mexico, Garcia was only 17 months old when his parents brought him to the United States.

He currently works with his father caring for bees in a honey-production operation where the insects also pollinate fruit trees on farms in northern California.

“My case is that I’m waiting to adjust my immigration status, but I’ve been waiting for a request that has been pending and approved since 1994,” Garcia said.

“And during that entire time I studied, I graduated as a lawyer and I can’t work on that because I don’t have the license,” he emphasized.

The Mexican man said that on June 18 the Supreme Court of California will receive the arguments sent by his attorney, Jerome Fishkin, explaining why Garcia deserves to be able to practice the profession for which he studied in the United States.

“The Supreme Court also gave the opportunity to the public to issue their opinion whether they are in agreement or against my working as a lawyer and that they can do so by calling or sending emails,” Garcia said.

He said that if the state high court rules that he does not have the right to earn a living in California in the same way as his classmates who graduated from the California Northern School of Law or simply “believes that it cannot handle the matter,” then the debate will be taken up by the U.S. Supreme Court.

“A positive resolution would create hope for so many young people who really are afraid or are depressed because they believe that without documents, although they may be studying hard, they are never going to manage to get ahead,” he said.

Garcia said that he is sad to see that the higher the level of the educational centers in the United States, the fewer Hispanics attend them to prepare themselves to be part of the corps of professionals in a country where more than 16 percent of the population is Latino.

“I would like to see the day that that changes. I would like to see the day when it’s not just one Hispanic who graduates among a large group from a university, but rather 10 or even 50,” Garcia said.

“My message for those who are studying to be professionals one day is to keep going forward, don’t despair, don’t get depressed, please never stop dreaming and don’t drop out of school,” he said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Jennifer Lopez Snags a Reality Show for Boy Toy Casper Smart

Jennifer Lopez Snags a Reality Show for Boy Toy Casper Smart

Photo: Jennifer Lopez Snags a Reality Show for Boy Toy Casper Smart

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Oh what life must be like dating Forbe’s most influential celebrity.

It looks like Jennifer Lopez’s boy toy, Casper Smart is living up to his surname. (For now, we’ll ignore the “Jennifer Lopez” tattoo he is said to have.) The back-up dancer has reportedly snagged his own reality show thanks to Jenny from the block.

The New York Post is reporting J.Lo has presented and sold Smart’s reality show to the Oxygen network.

The show will reportedly follow Smart and his work in keeping Lopez’s back-up dancers on point and focused. It has been clarified however, the show will not be about the couple’s relationship and will solely revolve around their professional relationship, the focus being on the dancers.

Smart began as one of Lopez’s back-up dancers, but was promoted to choreographer for her tour. Since then he was appeared in her video for “Dance Again” and has even directed the music video for “Follow the Leader.”

The reality show will likely premiere in early 2013 and it unknown if or how often Lopez will make appearances.

Smart and Lopez began their personal relationship in 2011, after Lopez and Marc Anthony separated and ultimately filed for divorce (Anthony filed in April 2012). Though Smart was labeled the boy toy rebound, it appears their relationship has showed Lopez how to “dance again.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Pizza Patrón Announces “Pizza Por Favor” Promotion - Order in Spanish, Get a Free Pepperoni Pizza

Pizza Patrón Announces “Pizza Por Favor” Promotion - Order in Spanish, Get a Free Pepperoni Pizza

Photo: Pizza Patrón Announces "Pizza Por Favor" Promotion

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Southwestern pizza chain, Pizza Patrón, which made national headlines when it announced it would be accepting Mexican pesos in lieu of U.S. dollars, is once again garnering attention, this time for their new promotion.

On June 5, between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. at participating locations, for a large pepperoni pizza, customers need just order in Spanish.

In a press release, Pizza Patrón stated that the “Pizza Por Favor” promotional campaign is a way of honoring the “positive force of change immigrants have in communities throughout America.”

Image“Free product promotions have been around for a long time,” said Andrew Gamm, brand director for Pizza Patrón, “but I’ve never heard of any company rewarding guests for speaking Spanish. For us, “Pizza Por Favor” makes great business sense—it is an opportunity for us to strengthen the relationship we have with our core customer.”

Free pizzas are limited to one per customer between 5pm and 8pm, at participating locations, while supplies last.

As praise for this deal grows, so too do the negative reactions. On Pizza Patrón’s official Facebook page some have already declared the restaurant has “lost my business,” because this promotion apparently promotes illegal immigration.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Worst Latino Family of the Year?  4-Year-Old Brings Crack Cocaine to Preschool

Worst Latino Family of the Year?  4-Year-Old Brings Crack Cocaine to Preschool

Photo: Mugshots Joshua and Christy Ruiz

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Alert school officials at a Dallas charter school noticed a four-year-old playing with a bag of crack cocaine and called authorities immediately.  When Dallas, Texas officials arrived at the child’s home they arrested the boys mother, father and uncle.

Joshua and Christy Ruiz both 26-years-old were arrested for child endangerment.  The boys uncle 21-year-old Moses Ruiz and the dad were accused of distributing a controlled substance. 

Texas authorities removed the 4-year old and his 5-year-old sibling and placed them with Child Protective Services.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Bats Killing Children in Peru, 6 Dead So Far (VIDEO)

Bats Killing Children in Peru, 6 Dead So Far (VIDEO)

Photo: Rabied Bats Killing Children in Peru

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The rural province of La Convención in Peru, near the tourist area of Cusco, has seen six children killed by bats. 

The children are Machiguenga Indian who are indigenous to the Amazon Basin jungle of Peru and tend to live in agriculturally rich areas near the Amazon.  Reports are now coming out that several weeks ago children starting dying after contracting rabies from bat bites, starting on May 8th, while 13 adults were in critical condition from bites.

Unfortunately bat bites are not unusual in the area with many homes not having enough protective windows to keep bats out.  Children also tend to be bitten more because bats prefer the thinner skin of youngsters.  If bats can’t find sufficient food they will seek out the blood from humans preferably children. 

It has been 15 years since rabies were found in bats in the area of Cusco.  The case of bat rabies here is in stark contrast to the declining cases of rabies from local dogs.

Related Videos

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iPhone Thief Doesn’t Know About iCloud, Sends Photos to Victim Who Posts on Facebook (PHOTOS)

iPhone Thief Doesn’t Know About iCloud, Sends Photos to Victim Who Posts on Facebook (PHOTOS)

Photo: This is Nelson (see name tag) alleged iPhone thief sent photos to victim

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“This is Nelson,” Katy McCaffrey posts on Facebook. “Nelson has my stolen iPhone.”

During a Disney Wonder cruise last month, Katy says her iPhone was stolen. At first she had no idea who could have taken, but then the photos started coming in.

You see, iCloud allows those using newer Apple devices like the iPhone to have photos automatically uploaded to Apple’s Photo Stream. The alleged iPhone thief was apparently not aware of this, however.

Known only as Nelson, the alleged thief began taking photos of himself, his friends, buildings in Mexico, his views of Cabo san Lucas, and even his girlfriend.

The photos reveal Nelson is apparently a cruise employee – he wears the standard polo and a crew member nametag, so Katy forwarded the photos to Disney Cruise lines.

That was not all Katy did, however. She created, and made public a Facebook photo album titled, “Stolen iPhone Adventures” and posted 16 photos taken with her iPhone after it was taken.

As of Thursday at noon, Katy’s album has been shared just under 15,000 times since it’s creation at the start of the week.

The now-famous Nelson has reportedly been placed on “administrative leave” by the cruise line but still remains on the Disney Wonder ship.

The iPhone has been recovered and Nelson has been restricted from guest areas.

See additional photos below, and see all 16 in Katy McCaffrey’s Facebook album.

Read more by HS News Staff →

What did Pedro Hernandez Have to Do with Etan Patz’ Disappearance 33-Years Ago?

What did Pedro Hernandez Have to Do with Etan Patz’ Disappearance 33-Years Ago?

Photo: Pedro Hernandez Confesses to Etan Patz Killing

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A picture of Etan Patz was the first to be put on the side of milk cartons, 33-years ago when he disappeared on his way to the school bus two blocks from his house, in New York City and now everyone may find out what happened to him.

Authorities are reporting Pedro Hernandez of New Jersey has confessed to strangling and cutting the 6-year-old into pieces and then putting his body in a bag.  Hernandez who worked in the area where the Patz’ family lived, allegedly lured the youngster with candy and then attacked him. 

There has been a flurry of activity in this 1979 missing child’s case after the case was reopened in 2010.  Just last month New York police evacuated the basement of a Prince Street building where chief suspect Jose Ramos worked.  Ramos, a convicted pedophile, was dating the boy’s baby-sitter.  A body has never been found and Etan was declared legally dead in 2001. 

According to NBC New York news, attention was focused on Hernandez when family members recently recalled hearing Hernandez talking about killing a child and hiding his body in a local bodega.  When police brought him in to discuss those accusations he confessed.  Police are now investigating the confession to see if it is viable. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

Hugo Chavez Vows to Launch Re-election Campaign for ‘Unprecedented’ Defeat Against Opponents

Hugo Chavez Vows to Launch Re-election Campaign for ‘Unprecedented’ Defeat Against Opponents

Photo: Hugo Chavez Back in Public, Venezuela

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Venezuela’s controversial President Hugo Chavez made his first public appearance since returning from his last cancer treatment in Cuba. 

Chavez was speaking at a cabinet meeting where his address was televised on national television.  The ailing President looked the best he has in some time and has grown back all his hair.  He was his usual verbose and confrontational self during the two hour televised governmental meeting.

He told his political adversaries that are seeking to replace him as President to prepare themselves for an ‘unprecedented’ defeat in the October elections.  He reassured his constituents that he plans on seeking reelection and will start his relection campaign shortly.

Chavez avoided touching on the subject of his health, his cancer prognosis and why he has not been seen in public often.  This is only his third appearance since mid-April. 

Read more at Guardian UK →

Fake UPS Van Found to be Carrying 13 Undocumented Immigrants for Border Delivery

Fake UPS Van Found to be Carrying 13 Undocumented Immigrants for Border Delivery

Photo: Fake UPS Truck Found Carrying Undocumented

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This past Friday afternoon, El Centro Sector CBP U.S. Border Patrol agents arrested a 21-year-old male attempting to smuggle illegal aliens using a cloned United Parcel Service (UPS) van.

The incident occurred at approximately 11:30 a.m., after Border Patrol agents observed a UPS van attempting to circumvent the Highway 111 Checkpoint. Agents conducted a vehicle stop and discovered 13 passengers hiding inside the back of the van. After further investigation, agents determined that the van was not a legitimate UPS van.

The driver was identified as a United States citizen. The 13 passengers were identified as Mexican citizens without legal immigration documents. The driver and illegal aliens were arrested and the cloned UPS van was seized.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Mexican Team Has Potential For Success At London Olympics

Mexican Team Has Potential For Success At London Olympics

Photo: Guillermo Perez and his gold medal at the Beijing Olympics

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The Mexican athletes competing in the Summer Olympics have the potential to make a good showing, 2012 London Olympics delegation head and Mexican Olympic Committee member Jaime Cadaval said.

“Mexico is on the right track, this generation will satisfy the country and we should be proud of them,” Cadaval told Efe at the end of a London 2012 team management meeting.

Mexico won two gold medals in taekwondo at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, thanks to the performances of Maria Espinoza and Guillermo Perez, as well as a bronze that went to Paola Espinosa and Tatiana Ortiz in 10-meter synchronized platform diving.

Cadaval, however, refuses to make a medal projection even though Mexico now has world-class athletes.

“The idea is to improve the personal marks and make the largest number of finals possible, but we have not yet done an analysis to forecast whether we can reach 20 finalists,” the London Olympics delegation chief said.

In addition to taekwondo and diving, Mexico has its best chances of doing well in racewalking, boxing and archery, but weight lifting could provide some surprises, Cadaval said.

“Sports are making progress in Mexico. We are seeing some results (in international competitions) and also in the mentality. We are qualifying in sports that we were not strong in,” the Mexican Olympics official said.

Mexico has won 55 Olympic medals - 12 golds, 18 silvers and 25 bronzes - since making its debut at the 1900 Paris Games.

The country expects to field a team of more than 100 athletes for the Summer Olympics.

Although Mexican Olympic Committee and National Sports Commission officials have refused to make medal projections, they acknowledge that the country should make about 15 finals, with some medal possibilities.

Olympic taekwondo champ Maria Espinoza and Paola Espinosa, who won a gold at the 2009 World Diving Championships, have already confirmed that they plan to compete in London.

Mexico, in addition to the sports cited by Cadaval, has a shot at doing well in soccer, thanks to a team made mostly of professionals younger than 23 and three high-quality older players.

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Juarez Back on Tourist Attraction Maps for Visitors to U.S.-Mexico Border Area

Ciudad Juarez is returning to maps featuring attractions for visitors to the U.S.-Mexico border region around El Paso after two years of being excluded due to a wave of drug-related violence.

“Ciudad Juarez should never have been excluded from the tourist map of El Paso since it’s our main trade partner and we are all one region that cooperates one with the other,” former city council member and current Democratic congressional candidate Beto O’Rourke told Efe.

During the past two years, the illustrated map distributed at visitor centers in El Paso showed the top destinations for tourists, with the area beyond the border occupied by Ciudad Juarez shown as a desert with just some logos.

The maps, designed by illustrator and current El Paso Business Region Chamber of Commerce president Jose Alejandro Lozano, had always included Juarez, with the exception of 2010, when the Mexican border city was wiped off the regional tourist geography.

The decision to exclude Juarez was made by the Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Chamber of Commerce, which considered it unadvisable to send tourists into such a dangerous city, Lozano said.

“At the time, I agreed, but the situation in Juarez is improving and it’s time to support them by promoting the city,” Lozano said.

Mexico’s Chihuahua state, where Juarez is located, will be the main sponsor this year of the map, which will bring back the border city and its attractions, such as museums, shopping centers, the Paquime archaeological zone and the village of Juan Mata Ortiz, known for its pottery.

“The fact that Juarez is appearing once again on the map of tourist attractions in Texas is like a vote of confidence on the safety in the city,” Chihuahua tourism office director Demetrio Sotomayor said.

The map of the El Paso-Ciudad Juarez area will be published by the El Paso Business Region Chamber of Commerce and Chihuahua, with the Mexican state paying half of the $10,000 cost of printing 60,000 copies of the color brochures, which are distributed at hotels and airports, Lozano said.

El Paso will continue to be the featured destination, but Chihuahua officials can decide which attractions on the Mexican side of the border to include, Lozano said.

The map is not finished, but it currently has the words “El Paso, Texas,” in large letters, along with the slogan “Vacation in two nations ... two worlds apart .... a distance of just minutes.”

The words “Ciudad Juarez, Mexico,” appear in smaller letters at the bottom of the map along with a detailed illustration of the city’s downtown.

This is the way it should always have been and those who designed the 2010 map turned their backs on a neighboring city despite the fact that “it is the reason that we (El Paso) are here,” O’Rourke said.

“I applaud the fact that our neighbor city is once again being included since Mexicans contribute $4 billion to the economy of El Paso each year and both cities together represent one of the largest metropolitan areas in the world with the most interaction and family ties,” O’Rourke said.

Tourism industry and business leaders said they were responding to the travel warnings issued by the U.S. State Department, which has advised people at various times to avoid travel to northern Mexico due to the drug-related violence in the region.

The latest travel warning was issued in February and remains in effect.

Both Mexican officials and U.S. law enforcement agencies say murders and kidnappings have dropped this year in Ciudad Juarez, located just across the Rio Grande from El Paso.

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Mexican Students Lead Protest Against Political System On The Streets And On the Web

Mexican Students Lead Protest Against Political System On The Streets And On the Web

Photo: Javier Armas, ‏@javierarmas

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Thousands of university students took to the streets of cities across Mexico to protest against the manipulation of the political system by the media and politicians, saying that they will no longer keep quiet about the situation in the country.

“This is a movement that goes well beyond the elections. Whoever wins, wins, but they will have to listen to us because we are not going to shut up,” Rosana Holsch, a 20-year-old student who participated in the march in Mexico City, the biggest gathering, told Efe.

Holsch is one of the 131 students who lit the fuse for the protest movement on May 11, when presidential frontrunner Enrique Peña Nieto, of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, visited the Universidad Iberoamericana and was jeered by students.

Those in Peña Nieto’s inner circle and some members of the media downplayed the incident, accusing the students of being agitators and prompting them to counterattack by making a video that was posted on YouTube.

The criticism led to the birth of the “Somos mas de 131” (We Are More Than 131) movement, which took its name from the number of students who appeared in the video and later evolved into the “Yo soy 132” (I Am 132) movement when students from other universities joined the protests.

The young people also created the Twitter hash tag #LaMarchaYoSoy132 to get their message out to supporters and the public.

Students rallied under the movement’s banner on May 18 at the headquarters of media giant Televisa, rejecting Peña Nieto’s candidacy and calling for balanced coverage in the media.

Thousands of students staged a protest the next day at the Angel of Independence Monument, where they called for the mass march that took place on Wednesday.

Peña Nieto, for his part, responded to the growing movement against him by unveiling a manifesto Monday that calls for freedom of expression and the right to protest.

The protest in Mexico City started at the Estela de Luz Monument, where students carrying banners gathered.

The banners bore messages aimed at the traditional media outlets and politicians, such as “Hace un tiempo perfecto para vivir un momento historico” (This Is the Perfect Time to Live a Historic Moment) and “Bienvenidos al quinto poder, las redes sociales” (Welcome to the Fifth Estate, the Social Networks).

Some criticism was aimed at individuals and political parties, but most of it target the perceived lack of objectivity of the media.

“We are a people and we cannot allow them to manipulate us like this, we are fed up. The time has come for young people to wake up,” movement member Yaiza Bejos told Efe.

This could be the start of what many are calling “the Mexican spring,” the 20-year-old Bejos said, adding that she never imagined that a simple video could have such a big impact.

“It was a big surprise for everybody,” Bejos said.

The time is right for everyone to wake up “and see that manipulation and violence are not the solution for this country, which needs to make a big leap,” Bejos said.

Although the movement was born out of criticism of Peña Nieto’s candidacy, it does not support or oppose anyone, defining itself instead as a nonpartisan, peaceful and leaderless movement, Holsch said.

The students marched to the Angel of Independence Monument, with some protesters continuing down Reforma avenue to the Zocalo, Mexico City’s largest plaza, causing traffic jams in the area.

Other protesters headed to the Televisa headquarters.

Protests drew large numbers of students in other states, such as Puebla, where about 2,500 university students marched from the main plaza to the offices of TV Azteca and Televisa, Mexico’s two largest media companies.

In Guadalajara, about 1,000 students from public and private universities marched to Televisa’s regional office to demand “Mas educacion, menos telenovelas” (More Education, Fewer Soap Operas).

The protesters called on members of society to serve as citizen observers during the July 1 presidential election to prevent fraud.

Marches also took place in cities in Chihuahua, Queretaro, Hidalgo, Baja California and Mexico states.

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Gloria Trevi’s Bodyguards Allegedly Attacked Fan

Gloria Trevi’s Bodyguards Allegedly Attacked Fan

Photo: Gloria Trevi

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A fan filed a lawsuit against Gloria Trevi’s security team for an alleged attack that occurred during one of the Mexican singer’s concerts in Los Angeles, Web site TMZ reported.

The plaintiff, Elvis Navarro, is demanding $1 million for the “mental and physical harm” he says the attack caused him.

The incident, according to documents presented in the Superior Court of Los Angeles County, took place on May 11 at the Nokia Theater.

According to Navarro, Trevi’s bodyguards beat him, threw him to the ground and handcuffed him in front of the 4,000 people attending the concert, a situation that he says was very humiliating.

Navarro did not provide any details regarding how the incident started.

The news of the lawsuit comes on the same day that Trevi launched her live album “Gloria en vivo” in the United States on which she performs some of her best-known songs.

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ThursdayMay 24, 2012