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WednesdayDecember 26, 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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Hugo Chavez has “Giant Will to Live,” says Venezuelan Vice President

Hugo Chavez has “Giant Will to Live,” says Venezuelan Vice President

Photo: Hugo Chavez

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Venezuela’s vice president said Wednesday that head of state Hugo Chavez, now recovering in Cuba from his fourth cancer surgery in 18 months, remains undaunted by his illness.

“He has a complex, difficult health situation and a gigantic will to live,” Nicolas Maduro said at an official event in the northwestern state of Falcon.

The vice president also reacted angrily to opposition accusations that the leftist government is manipulating information about Chavez’s condition.

“We reject, we repudiate in every part those ill-intentioned stories,” Maduro said.

The vice president told state television earlier this week that Chavez is already walking, exercising and dealing with official matters.

Chavez telephoned him on Christmas Eve from his Havana hospital room to issue a “set of work orders,” Maduro said.

It was the vice president’s first direct conversation with Chavez since the 58-year-old head of state’s Dec. 11 operation in the Cuban capital.

Most of their 20-minute phone call was devoted to government business, Maduro said, adding that Chavez has a “very clear agenda” for his next term, which starts in January.

Venezuela’s opposition said Wednesday the official reports on Chavez’s condition are ambiguous and demanded the appointment of a board of physicians to certify that the president is fit to begin a new mandate.

Chavez, who took office in 1999, was re-elected in October for another six-year term.

He was first diagnosed with cancer after complaining of pain in his pelvic region during a June 2011 official visit to Cuba. Since then, the former paratrooper has undergone four surgical procedures and courses of chemotherapy and radiation.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Spain’s Bankia Bank has Value of -$5.49 Billion

Spain’s Bankia Bank has Value of -$5.49 Billion

Photo: Spain's Bankia Bank has Value of -$5.49 Billion

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Bankia, which was nationalized in May at its own request, has a negative value of 4.148 billion euros ($5.49 billion), Spain’s state-backed FROB bank restructuring fund said Wednesday.

The ailing bank’s parent, BFA, has a negative value of 10.4 billion euros ($13.8 billion), the FROB said in a statement.

BFA-Bankia will receive nearly half of the 39.5 billion euros ($51 billion) the European Stability Mechanism provided Spain to recapitalize four nationalized banks and help fund a “bad bank” set up to absorb toxic assets.

Early next year, Bankia, Spain’s fourth-largest bank and No. 1 mortgage lender, will carry out a capital reduction to bring the value of the shares into line with the bank’s net worth and to ensure, in the FROB’s words, that “shareholders are the first to bear losses or restructuring costs.”

The Spanish government will also inject European-provided funds into three other nationalized banks: Novagalicia, CatalunyaCaixa and Banco de Valencia, the last of which is to be sold to Caixabank SA.

The Spanish economy remains hampered by the fallout from the collapse of a long-building housing bubble, which left many of its banks saddled with toxic assets.

The Iberian nation’s unemployment rate currently stands at 25.02 percent overall and more than 50 percent among young people.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Mexican Group Jesse and Joy Reflect on Their Success in 2012

Mexican Group Jesse and Joy Reflect on Their Success in 2012

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Mexican sibling duo Jesse and Joy are closing out 2012 as the Latino group having the best success after winning four Latin Grammys and their first Grammy nomination for the album “Con quien se queda el perro?”

Jesse and Joy Huerta Vecke are the children of a Mexican father and a U.S. mother and grew up listening to artists such as Johnny Cash, Aretha Franklin and Neil Young. While the music played, the pair pretended that they were part of the bands using buckets, pots and tennis rackets.

Their latest album gathers together that musical enjoyment and inheritance and already has had three hits: “Corre!” with more than million viewings of its video on YouTube, “La de la mala suerte” and “Me voy.”

After winning two Latin Grammy’s in 2007 for best new artist and best pop vocal album by a duo or group for “Esta es mi vida,” Jesse and Joy received five nominations this year.

“We never thought that so many nominations would come (our) way,” said Jesse in an interview with Efe in September.

But it was an even bigger surprise when they took home four awards that night, among them Best Recording and Song of the Year for “Corre!”

But, as if these prizes were not enough, several weeks ago the duo was nominated for their first Grammy in the Best Latino Pop Album category.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Broadcasting & Cable Name Univision “Multiplatform Broadcoaster of the Year”

Broadcasting & Cable Name Univision “Multiplatform Broadcoaster of the Year”

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Univision Communications has been named “Multiplatform Broadcaster of the Year” by leading trade publication Broadcasting & Cable (B&C).

This recognition comes as Univision celebrates its 50th anniversary and in a year of rapid expansion.  It is the latest honor received by Univision from leading industry publications to wrap up 2012 joining others including Company President, Distribution Sales & Marketing Tonia O’Connor being included on The Hollywood Reporter’s Women in Entertainment Power 100 list; the naming of Univision Radio President Jose Valle as Radio Ink Executive of the Year; EVP and Chief Human Resources Officer Roberto Llamas being honored as one of Hispanic Executive’s inaugural “Top 10 Líderes” list; and inclusion of Univision Communications President & CEO Randy Falco, Univision Networks President Cesar Conde and O’Connor in the annual CableFAX 100 issue.  Earlier in the year, Conde was also named one of the top 10 young business stars under 40 by FORTUNE while Executive Vice President, Program Scheduling & Promotions Jessica Rodriguez was recognized as one of People en Español’s “Las 25 Mujeres Más Poderosas” (25 Most Powerful Women). Lastly, worldwide TV icon and star of Univision’s “Sábado Gigante,” Don Francisco (Mario Kreutzberger), was inducted into the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Hall of Fame, and news anchors Maria Elena Salinas and Jorge Ramos received the NATAS Lifetime Achievement Award.

In the latest edition of B&C, Univision is praised for the Company’s “efforts to expand its programming on TV, online, social media and mobile,” making its content – including 2012 Presidential Election coverage – available across all platforms. This is a result of the Company greatly increasing the number of linear channels offered, expanding the number of digital subchannels being used (via an agreement with Bounce TV), launching the bilingual UVideos Digital Network, and growing its TV Everywhere efforts.

“Being named Multiplatform Broadcaster of the Year speaks to the innovative spirit at Univision and is a testament to the passion, drive and commitment that each and everyone here has for Univision to be the Hispanic Heartbeat of America, entertaining, informing and empowering our audience across platforms – everywhere they live,” said Falco. “It is even more significant that we received this honor to cap off an amazing year filled with achievements, not the least of which is the celebration of a 50-year legacy of serving Hispanic America.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

ICE Deports Man Wanted for Killings in Mexico and U.S.

ICE Deports Man Wanted for Killings in Mexico and U.S.

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A man from Mexico with a U.S. manslaughter conviction, who is also wanted in his home country for homicide, was deported and turned over to Mexican law enforcement authorities last Wednesday by officers with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO).

Jorge Gonzalez-Acosta, 46, first illegally entered the United States in August 1982. He pleaded guilty in 1987 to voluntary manslaughter in the Southern District of Texas, and was sentenced to 30 years in prison. While serving this sentence, a federal immigration judge ordered his deportation. He was released from prison and removed to Mexico in June 1996.

Afterwards, and on various occasions, Gonzalez-Acosta illegally re-entered the United States, which is a felony. He was twice prosecuted for this crime, and was sentenced to 37 months in prison and 57 months in prison in December 2004 and March 2009, respectively.

Gonzalez-Acosta was released from his latest prison sentence into ICE custody Dec. 11, 2012. ICE officers worked with Mexico’s Procuraduría General de la República (PGR) to identify that Gonzalez-Acosta was wanted for homicide in Mexico. PGR’s attaché to ICE assisted with providing copies of the warrant and assisted with coordinating the removal with PGR authorities at the U.S./Mexico International Border at Laredo, Texas, Dec. 19.

“This particularly egregious case shows how our ERO officers help protect public safety on a daily basis,” said Simona Flores, field office director for ERO Dallas. “We work closely with our law enforcement partners to remove dangerous criminal aliens from our local communities, and then remove them from the country.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Immigration News: Help Coming to Hundreds of Deported Hispanic Veterans

Immigration News: Help Coming to Hundreds of Deported Hispanic Veterans

Photo: Deported Latino Vets to Get Help

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Brothers Valente and Jesus Manuel Valenzuela, war veterans with suspended deportation orders, announced Wednesday the launching of a campaign to help Hispanic former U.S. soldiers in their same situation or who have already been deported.

“We’re going to start a trip to begin the year making known many issues related to this odyssey. The people of this country should know what’s happening to the families of our deported veteran brothers,” said the Valenzuelas in a communique.

The initiative is supported by Point Man International Ministries of Colorado Springs, where the brothers live.

“We already did our part by serving this country. Now it’s the people’s turn to do their part and donate (to this project),” the brothers said.

In the past, the pair of siblings turned to the media to tell their story, they showed up in uniform during more than one visit by President Barack Obama to Colorado, they signed a letter to first lady Michelle Obama, traveled to Washington to speak with lawmakers and presented their case to politicians and academicians.

Now, they say, they want to make known the situation of hundreds of Hispanic veterans who have already been deported and the problems that face their families here in the United States.

To do that, during January and February the brothers will travel to Mexico and several Southwestern states accompanied by two independent filmmakers with the aim of shooting a documentary about deported Hispanic veterans or ones on the verge of being expelled.

Valente and Manuel Valenzuela are among the 11 children of a New Mexico woman and her Mexican-born U.S. citizen husband.

Valente joined the U.S. Army in 1967 and Manuel was a Marine from 1971-1974. Both were decorated for their service in Vietnam.

Seven years ago, federal authorities informed the pair that they had never been properly registered as U.S. citizens.

In 2005, Jesus received his deportation order. A year later, Valente was also notified he would be deported. Both deportations were confirmed in 2009, but then they were postponed.

The reason for that, according to what the Valenzuela brothers were told, is that, although the Department of Homeland Security does not accept the documents that they say prove they are citizens, it cannot prove that they are not.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Spanish Bakery Makes World’s Largest Pastry

Spanish Bakery Makes World’s Largest Pastry

Photo: Mantecados La Muralla's polvoron

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A Spanish pastry bakery created a “polvoron” - a type of shortbread - calculated to be the largest in the world and distributed it on Wednesday among 10,000 people at a mall in this southern city.

For the sixth consecutive year, Mantecados La Muralla baked this gigantic Christmas pastry and brought it from its facilities to Malaga.

The polvoron was 5 meters (16.25 feet) long and 2.40 meters wide and weighed 300 kilos (660 pounds).

A total of 120 kilos of wheat flour, 75 kg of almonds, 50 kg of sugar, 50 kg of lard and 5 kg of cinnamon were used in its preparation, the factory manager, Jose Luis Olmedo, told Efe.

The pastry could not be made any larger because “it wouldn’t fit” into the truck that was to be used to transport it, Olmedo said.

The idea arose in 2001 in Seville and since then the company has prepared the world’s largest polvoron for several southern Spanish provinces, as well as for Madrid and Badajoz.

Although it has never officially set a Guinness World Record, the managers of Mantecados La Muralla claim that there is no polvoron larger than the one they make for Christmas.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Arizona Border: Deaths of Undocumented Mar 2012

Arizona Border: Deaths of Undocumented Mar 2012

Photo: Arizona Border: Deaths of Undocumented Mar 2012

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The violence in neighboring Mexico and the deaths of undocumented immigrants at the hands of U.S. Border Patrol agents once more marred the situation along the Arizona border in 2012.

One of those deaths occurred on Oct. 10, when 16-year-old Jose Antonio Elena Rodriguez, who was on the Mexican side of the frontier at the time, was shot and killed by a Border Patrol agent.

According to the federal agency, agents were defending themselves from several individuals who hurled stones at them after abandoning a load of illegal drugs and fleeing back into Mexican territory.

On Dec. 3, Margarito Lopez Morales, a 19-year-old Guatemalan, was also killed by a Border Patrol agent near Sasabe, Arizona.

Two days later, another undocumented immigrant was shot by a Border Patrol agent near Gila Bend.

All these cases are currently under investigation.

“It is our duty to call attention to what is happening on the Arizona border and demand justice for all the victims,” Arizona Human Rights Coalition representative Kat Rodriguez told Efe.

According to figures provided by her organization, over the past two years 19 undocumented immigrants have died at the hands of Border Patrol agents.

“These are 19 people who have died. This is a very serious problem that is occurring on our border. For many years we’ve been demanding that an independent agency investigate these cases and other accusations of abuses,” said the activist, who lamented the fact that fatal shootings by agents rarely result in prosecutions.

“We’re paying our taxes and - therefore - the salaries of the border agents, and so I feel that we have the right to know what is happening,” she emphasized.

Mike Wilson, a representative for the Border Action Network in Arizona, told Efe that there are no consequences for Border Patrol agents who take a person’s life.

“Nobody is held responsible for these deaths. No agency of the government of the United States,” said Wilson.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Exports of Spanish Arms and Defense Sector Drop 44 Percent in Spain

Exports of Spanish Arms and Defense Sector Drop 44 Percent in Spain

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Spain’s arms exports fell 43.7 percent in the first half of the year compared with the same period in 2011, the Industry Ministry said in a report released Wednesday.

The Iberian nation’s arms and defense sector had foreign sales of 619.4 billion euros ($818.87 billion) between Jan. 1 and June 30.

The total includes sales of police and security gear, of hunting and sporting guns and of “dual-use” items that have both civilian and military applications.

The largest single transaction was the sale to Venezuela of a patrol ship capable of navigation on the high seas and components for building a coastal patrol vessel.

That deal was valued at 162.1 billion euros.

Sales to other European Union member-states accounted for 41.9 percent of the total, driven mainly by transactions with Britain, Germany and Italy, Spain’s partners in joint projects such as the Eurofighter and the A-400M military transport plane.

Besides Venezuela, the Spanish defense sector’s non-European customers included Ghana, Mexico, Chile, Peru, Tunisia, Brazil, Turkey and South Africa.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Latin America News:  Bus Plunges into 820-Foot Ravine in Ecuador Leaves 10 Dead, 17 Injured

Latin America News:  Bus Plunges into 820-Foot Ravine in Ecuador Leaves 10 Dead, 17 Injured

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At least 10 people were killed and 17 others injured in a bus accident Wednesday in Tungurahua, a province in Ecuador’s Andean region, media reports said.

The bus went off the highway and plunged into a 250-meter (820-foot) ravine while traveling from Ambato to Pillaro, the Ecuavisa television network said.

About 40 people were aboard the bus at the time of the accident, the television network said.

The injured were taken to clinics in Ambato, Ecuavisa said.

No official reports have been released on the number of victims or the cause of the accident.

The bus “was full and the driver lost control on a curve,” survivor Angel Moya told the El Comercio newspaper.

“Afterwards, it was all confusion. Three people died next to me. I survived, but this is all traumatic,” Moya said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Guatemalan Attorney General: Cartels Have Infiltrated the Justice System

Guatemalan Attorney General: Cartels Have Infiltrated the Justice System

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Drug cartels and other criminal organizations have infiltrated the Guatemalan justice system, Attorney General Claudia Paz said in comments published Wednesday by capital daily Siglo 21.

Assistant prosecutors have been discovered colluding with Mexico’s brutal Los Zetas cartel and other drug outfits, she said.

Other judiciary employees were caught providing information to criminals, Guatemala’s top law enforcement official said.

“The organized-crime structures have the capacity to threaten or corrupt because they have a lot of money,” she said.

Her office has removed 40 people, including prosecutors, from their positions in the course of 2012 for “irregular acts,” Paz said.

Nearly 850 formal criminal complaints have been filed this year over alleged wrongdoing by judiciary employees, leading to the opening of 165 investigations, the attorney general said.

Some local and prosecutor’s offices were found to be falsifying data to overstate the number of prosecutions initiated, Paz told the newspaper.

More than 100 Zetas have been captured in Guatemala since 2008, when the cartel moved into the Central American country.

The Zetas, founded by deserters from a U.S.-trained Mexican special forces unit, are blamed for several mass killings in Guatemala.

Read more by HS News Staff →

“Tales of Masked Men” Shines a Light On Mexico’s Lucha Libre (VIDEOS)

“Tales of Masked Men” Shines a Light On Mexico’s Lucha Libre (VIDEOS)

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This graphics segment is featured in “Tales of Masked Men,” a new PBS documentary
about Lucha Libre. The film was directed and produced by Carlos Avila. This graphics segment
was made by Todd Brunelle and his company Corruptive Media. The film was Co-Produced
and Edited by Thom Calderón. The clip features the music of The Angel and it is narrated by
actor Miguel Sandoval.

“Tales of Masked Men” - Lucha Libre 101 - the very basics of the sport. from Carlos Avila on Vimeo.

“Tales of Masked Men” is currently playing at various film festivals around the world. Watch another clip below.

 

“Tales of Masked Men” - Lucha Libre as Morality Play from Carlos Avila on Vimeo.


Learn more about “Tales of Masked Men” here.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Stevie Wonder, Gilberto Gil Perform for 400,000 in Brazil (VIDEO)

Stevie Wonder, Gilberto Gil Perform for 400,000 in Brazil (VIDEO)

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American pop star Stevie Wonder and Brazilian singer-songwriter Gilberto Gil filled Copacabana Beach with music during a seaside concert that attracted some 400,000 people, police said.

Christmas Eve on one of Rio de Janeiro’s most famous beaches rocked to the soul and pop rhythms of Stevie Wonder, who appeared with a band of 11 musicians and opened with “What a Wonderful World This Would Be”.

The charismatic musician spoke in Portuguese to an audience he won from the start, and which he fully entranced with a version of “Garota de Ipanema” (The Girl from Ipanema), the classic bossa nova number created by Vinicius de Moraes and Tom Jobim.

Wonder was preceded by Gilberto Gil, who gave a touch of reggae and Brazilian pop music to the night before Christmas, and who also paid special tribute to Claudionor Viana Teles Velloso, known as “Doña Cano” and the mother of Brazilian musicians Caetano Veloso and Maria Bethania, who died Tuesday at the age of 105.

“She lived a very long life and left us the most beautiful family,” Gil said of Doña Cano.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Hero Surfer Dies in Puerto Rico

Hero Surfer Dies in Puerto Rico

Photo: Dylan Smith (right), Pictured here with his brother saved lives during Sandy

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When Superstorm Sandy pummeled the east coast, people stood up and did what was necessary to save lives. People like 23-year-old surfer Dylan Smith of Belle Harbor, New York risked their lives to save others.

Sadly, on Sunday morning Smith’s body was found floating near his surf board in the waters of Maria’s Beach of the coast of Puerto Rico’s western community of Rincon. Though a local resident pulled Smith to shore, the doctor who tried to resuscitate him was unable to find any signs of life.

ImageFor his bravery during Sandy, Smith, who is also a lifeguard, was recently selected as one of “People Magazine’s Heroes of 2012.” During the storm, Smith and a man named Michael McDonnel, used Smith’s surf board and a rope to bring six people to safety after a fire broke out in Rockaways.

Though Puerto Rican police are still investigating, it appears Smith may have died doing what he loved on a vacation intended to help him “blow off some steam.”

After rescuing people during Sandy, many attempted to talk about his heroism, but the young surfer wanted little to do with the spotlight, telling them, “I don’t want to talk about me. I don’t think I’m a hero. Absolutely not. I just did what I was trained to. I’m a lifeguard. I surf. This is what I do.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

9 Gunned Down in Sinaloa on Christmas Eve

9 Gunned Down in Sinaloa on Christmas Eve

Photo: Scene of the accident

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At least nine people were killed by gunmen in El Platanar de los Ontiveros, a town in the northwestern Mexican state of Sinaloa, media reports said.

The town is located in a mountainous area outside the city of La Concordia, whose mayor, Eligio Medina, called on Sinaloa Gov. Mario Lopez Valdes to provide support to the families besieged by violence in the area.

Army troops and Sinaloa Attorney General’s Office personnel removed the victims’ bodies from the town, Medina said.

El Platanar de los Ontiveros is on the outskirts of the “Gold Triangle,” an area dominated by drug cartels operating in Sinaloa, Durango and Chihuahua states.

The gunmen arrived in the town and opened fire indiscriminately on residents on Christmas Eve, Medina said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Bullet Tax Proposal Resurfaces in Gun-Control Debate

Bullet Tax Proposal Resurfaces in Gun-Control Debate

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The Newtown, Connecticut school shooting has reactivated many familiar gun-control measures at both the state and federal level, from assault weapons bans to universal background checks for gun purchasers. But it’s also inspiring some new or mostly new ideas, including one in Connecticut: a hefty tax on bullets.

The Hartford Courant reported last week that two Democratic legislators were proposing a new 50 percent tax on bullets as part of a broader gun-control bill. The Connecticut legislation is one sign that the gun-control debate that the shootings will prompt next year in statehouses around the country could morph into an ammunition-control debate, too.

The idea of a bullet tax isn’t totally original. In 1993, U.S. Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan of New York proposed a 10,000 percent tax on one especially lethal type of bullet. Still, when Cook County, Illinois was considering a five-cent-per-bullet tax this fall, the Wall Street Journal reported that no state or local government had adopted one. Facing political resistance, Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle ultimately dropped the bullet tax proposal and instead imposed a new tax on gun purchases.

The Connecticut bill isn’t the only proposal since the Newtown shooting to focus on bullets. Three Democratic legislators in Wisconsin have proposed banning hollow-point bullets, which cause more damage on impact than regular bullets. City officials in San Francisco have proposed banning them, too.

After the shooting, Marc Ambinder of The Week laid out the case for focusing on bullet control instead of gun control. “The 300 million guns that are in private hands aren’t going away,” Ambinder wrote. In contrast, he argued, ammunition is easier to restrict. “Guns are forever, but ammo degrades, even if stored in precisely proper conditions and humidors that criminals don’t often have.”

Read more at Josh Goodman for Pew States →

Shooter Responsible for Killing 2 Fireman in New York Planned More Attacks

Shooter Responsible for Killing 2 Fireman in New York Planned More Attacks

Photo: Scene of the accident (@FDNY Incidents)

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The New York man who killed two volunteer firefighters and wounded two others before taking his own life left behind a note suggesting he planned more deaths, police said Tuesday.

“I still have to get ready to see how much of the neighborhood I can burn down and do what I like doing best, killing people,” William Spengler, 62, said in the typewritten note.

The ex-convict set a house on fire early Monday in Webster, New York, a suburb of Rochester, and then lay in wait to ambush the firefighters who came to put out the blaze.

Webster police chief Gerald Pickering read excerpts from Spengler’s note at a press conference.

Human remains were found amid the charred remains of the house the perpetrator shared with his sister, 67-year-old Cheryl Spengler, the police chief said.

The shooter’s sibling is missing and authorities suspect the remains are hers, Pickering told reporters.

William Spengler, who served 17 years behind bars for the 1981 beating death of his 92-year-old grandmother, was armed with a revolver, a shotgun, a Bushmaster rifle - the same weapon used in the Newtown school massacre - and an “arsenal of ammunition,” the police chief said.

Spengler began shooting at the firefighters before they could even get out of the truck, Pickering said.

Reacting to the Dec. 14 bloodbath in Newtown, Connecticut, President Barack Obama has pledged to work for a ban on the sale of assault weapons and extra-large ammunition clips.

Read more by HS News Staff →

POLL:  With or Without ‘Fiscal Cliff’ Most Americans Expect Recession in 2013

POLL:  With or Without ‘Fiscal Cliff’ Most Americans Expect Recession in 2013

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Most voters nationwide expect a recession in 2013 regardless of whether a deal is reached to avoid the so-called “fiscal cliff.” If a deal is reached and the December 31 fiscal cliff of big tax hikes and automatic across-the-board spending cuts is avoided, 54% of voters believe a recession is likely next year.

If no deal is reached, a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 70% think a recession is likely.

These figures include 26% who believe a recession is Very Likely with a deal and 42% who believe it is Very Likely without one.

Read more at Rasmussen →

Brazilian Burger Chain Selling Edible Wrappers (VIDEO)

Brazilian Burger Chain Selling Edible Wrappers (VIDEO)

Photo: Brazilian Burger Chain Selling Edible Wrappers (VIDEO)

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It’s happened to most, you’re eating a burger and without noticing you bite/rip off a piece of the burger’s wrapper. Well it seems a Brazilian burger chain has a plan to have you worrying less about eating the paper.

Earlier this year, scientists at Harvard announced they had developed “novel edible forms” they called WikiCells to not only be safe to eat, but also take on the flavor of whatever they contained—or in the case, wrapped.

Putting that technology to work on a large scale, Brazilian burger chain Bob’s Burgers is now advertising their use of edible wrappers for those that just can’t wait to open their burgers.

These edible wrappers are more than a novelty, however. WikiCells wrappers would help lower the amount of waste. It is estimated that in 2010 alone, U.S. consumers threw away more than 75 million tons of packaging waste.

Check out the video below.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Mexico’s Atlas Soccer Team Announces Addition of Jose Luis Chavez

Mexico’s Atlas Soccer Team Announces Addition of Jose Luis Chavez

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Bolivian midfielder Jose Luis Chavez will play for Mexico’s Atlas soccer team starting with the Clausura 2013 tournament, the club said in a statement.

Chavez, who played for Bolivia’s Blooming from 2004-2006 and 2009-2012, has been selected for the national team eight times.

The 26-year-old midfielder also played for Bolivia’s Destroyers in 2007 and for Universitario de Sucre in 2008.

Chavez will join Atlas in the next few days and will be on loan to the team for a year.

He and Chilean Rodrigo Millar are being added as reinforcements for Atlas, which is coached by Mexican Tomas Boy.

Atlas and Queretaro are the leading candidates for relegation in the spring after taking last place in the past five championships.

Atlas was whipped by Morelia 4-0 on Sunday and coaches gave the players the day off on Christmas, with practice scheduled to resume on Wednesday.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Extreme Traffikcing:  Spanish Authorities Seize over 11 Tons of Hashish

Extreme Traffikcing:  Spanish Authorities Seize over 11 Tons of Hashish

Photo: Hashish ring busted in Spain

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Spanish police arrested 35 people and seized more than 11 tons of hashish, marking one of the biggest blows to traffickers of this drug in the Iberian Peninsula, officials said Wednesday.

The trafficking network operated out of central Spain, smuggling hashish from Morocco into the country and distributing it across Europe, the National Police said.

The suspects - 31 Moroccans, three Spaniards and a Belgian - smuggled the hashish into Spain in fuel trucks, unloading the narcotics at two warehouses in the central province of Toledo.

The trucks were unloaded at the warehouses and then sent back to the North African country to bring back more hashish.

The drugs were cut, hidden in legitimate merchandise and smuggled to different cities in Spain, as well as into the Netherlands, France, Belgium and Britain.

One truck was carrying 1,700 kilos of hashish and 65 kilos of marijuana hidden in a shipment of carrots bound for France and the Netherlands, the National Police said.

The other truck, which was being driven by the Belgian suspect, was hauling 8,500 kilos of drugs stashed in a shipment of luxury clothing bound for Britain.

The anti-drug operation started in March, with different members of the ring arrested and drugs seized during the various phases of the investigation, officials said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Authorities Lift Alert on Copahue Volcano on Chile-Argentina Border

Authorities Lift Alert on Copahue Volcano on Chile-Argentina Border

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Activity at the Copahue volcano, which began erupting over the weekend on the Chile-Argentina border, diminished markedly and the red alert issued for the area was lifted, emergency management officials said.

The National Geophysics and Mining Service ordered the alert level lowered on Christmas Eve.

Residents, however, should be on alert within a five-kilometer (3.1-mile) radius around the crater and on the banks of the rivers that flow out of the volcano, the emergency management office said.

The national emergency management office issued a red alert on Sunday for Alto Biobio, the city closest to the volcano and some 570 kilometers (350 miles) south-southeast of Santiago.

Officials prepared a plan to evacuate 1,797 people in four communities if eruptions increased at Copahue, a volcano 2,997 meters (9,826 feet) high.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Puerto Ricans Celebrate Christmas with Traditional Three Kings

Puerto Ricans Celebrate Christmas with Traditional Three Kings

Photo: Three Kings celebration in Puerto Rico

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The Three Kings group from the Puerto Rican town of Juana Diaz appeared on Christmas Eve at the cathedral in Havana, where they were welcomed by dozens of children and took part in a celebration of the Feast of the Epiphany.

The Three Kings, who are making their second visit to the island since 2000, traveled to Cuba from Ponce, Puerto Rico, with a crew of 33 people, trip coordinator deacon William Santiago told Efe.

“We have a special message of peace and brotherhood for the Cuban people from our church and the Diocese of Ponce. Thank you for welcoming the Three Kings to celebrate the birth of Jesus,” Santiago said during the event.

The excited children and their families took part in the celebration with the religious delegation from Puerto Rico and later posed for photos with Caspar, Melchior and Balthazar.

The group arrived in the Cuban capital last Friday and has visited the Church of Our Lady of Charity, as well as the churches of Regla and Jesus de Miramar.

The group will celebrate its 129th Epiphany of the Lord on Jan. 6, continuing a tradition that started in 1884, Santiago, who manages the Three Kings Museum in Juana Diaz, said.

The Three Kings group, considered the only one of its kind in the world, has visited Venezuela, Mexico, Spain, Italy, the United States, the Virgin Islands and the Dominican Republic, among other countries, as well as every town in Puerto Rico, Santiago said.

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WednesdayDecember 26, 2012