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TuesdayJanuary 29, 2013

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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Michael Bublé and Argentine Wife, Luisana Lopilato, Expecting Baby!

Michael Bublé and Argentine Wife, Luisana Lopilato, Expecting Baby!

Photo: Michael Bublé and Argentine Wife, Luisana Lopilato, Expecting Baby!

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Crooner Michael Bublé and his Argentinian wife, Luisana Lopilato, recently announced they are expected

On January 24, Lopilato, affectionately known as Lu, posted a video on her YouTube page announcing she and Bublé are expecting a “Mini Bublé”.

Born Luisana Loreley Lopilato de la Torre, Lu is an actress, model, and singer. She is a former member of the band Erreway.

Lopilato, 25, and Bublé, 37, met in November 2008 and he proposed in Argentina in November 2009. The beautiful couple were married in 2011 in Buenos Aires.

Fun fact: Lopilato is the beauty in Bublé‘s video for his hit song “Haven’t Met You Yet”.

Watch the couple’s below.

Read more by HS News Staff →

‘Sopranos’ Star Jamie-Lynn Sigler Announces Engagement to MLB’s Cutter Dykstra

‘Sopranos’ Star Jamie-Lynn Sigler Announces Engagement to MLB’s Cutter Dykstra

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Known mostly for her roles on HBO’s hit drama The Sopranos and Entourage , Jamie-Lynn Sigler has announced she is engaged.

Sigler posted a photo on Twitter of her and now fiancé, Cutter Dykstra, smiling as she showed of her engagement ring.

Dykstra is a league baseball player with the Washington Nationals and son of former MLB player Lenny Dykstra. Sigler and Dykstra met and began dating in 2012.

This will be Sigler’s second marriage, as she was married to former agent A.J. Discala in 2003. They filed for divorce in 2005. Since her marriage to Discala, Sigler has been linked to Entourage star Jerry Ferrara and footballer Mark Sanchez.

Sigler, 31, is currently starring on the NBC comedy Guys With Kids.

Appropriately, one of her most recent film’s was 2012’s “I Do”.

Sigler and Dykstra reportedly met through her friend and fellow half-Cuban actress, Joanna Garcia. Garcia is married to the Yankees’ Mark Swisher. In November, Garcia and Swisher announced they are expecting their first child, a baby girl.

Read more by HS News Staff →

PEW Report :A Nation of Immigrants A Portrait of the 40 Million, Including 11 Million Unauthorized

PEW Report  :A Nation of Immigrants  A Portrait of the 40 Million, Including 11 Million Unauthorized

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The nation’s immigrant population reached a record 40.4 million in 2011, including an estimated 11.1 million who are unauthorized, according to a new analysis of Census Bureau data by the Pew Hispanic Center, a project of the Pew Research Center.

The overall number of immigrants in the U.S. continues to grow steadily; it is up by more than 9 million since 2000. By contrast, the number of unauthorized immigrants living in the U.S. grew for decades before peaking at 12 million in 2007. It was 11.1 million as of 2011, the last year for which an estimate is available.


The 40.4 million total, which includes legal as well as unauthorized immigrants, made up 13% of the total U.S. population in 2011. While the 40.4 million is a record, immigrants’ share of the total population is below the U.S. peak of just under 15% during the period from 1890 to 1920 &#8212 a high-immigration era dominated by arrivals from Europe. The modern wave, which began with the passage of border-opening legislation in 1965, has been led by arrivals from Latin America (about 50%) and Asia (27%).


Besides this new analysis of the nation’s immigrant population, the Pew Hispanic Center also is publishing today a statistical portrait of the nation’s foreign-born population. It is based on the Census Bureau’s 2011 American Community Survey and features detailed characteristics of the U.S. foreign-born population at the national level, as well as state population totals. Topics covered include age, nativity, citizenship, origin, language proficiency, living arrangements, marital status, fertility, schooling, health insurance coverage, earnings, poverty and employment.


The Pew Research Center also has published a number of reports on the size and characteristics of the nation’s unauthorized immigrant population and on the public’s attitudes towards immigrants and immigration policy. The key findings are:

Unauthorized Immigrants

Trends in unauthorized immigration: The most recent Pew Hispanic Center estimate is that 11.1 million unauthorized immigrants lived in the U.S. in 2011. Unauthorized immigration peaked at 12.0 million in 2007, and fell since then mainly because of less immigration from Mexico, the largest source of U.S. immigration. In 2010, unauthorized immigrants from Mexico made up 58% of all unauthorized immigrants.

Unauthorized immigration and children: In 2010, there were 1 million unauthorized immigrants under age 18 in the U.S., as well as 4.5 million U.S.-born children whose parents were unauthorized. These details are included in a report based on 2010 data that also estimates births to unauthorized immigrants; region of origin for unauthorized immigrants; state populations of unauthorized immigrants and unauthorized workers; and overall labor force participation. 

Characteristics of unauthorized immigrants: In 2010, nearly two-thirds of unauthorized immigrants had lived in the U.S. for at least a decade and nearly half (46%) were parents of minor children. This Census Bureau data-based report also includes data comparing the length of U.S. residence for unauthorized immigrants in 2000, 2005 and 2010. It estimates that 9 million people lived in “mixed-status” families.

Migration from Mexico: Immigration from Mexico has declined since 2007, largely because of the first decrease in unauthorized immigration in at least two decades. This report includes Mexican data about the characteristics, experience and future intentions of Mexican migrants handed over to Mexican authorities by U.S. law enforcement agencies; and U.S. data on border enforcement as well as characteristics of Mexican-born immigrants in the U.S.

Unauthorized immigrant worker characteristics: Unauthorized immigrants make up 25% of farm workers (not including temporary workers), according to 2008 data in a Pew Hispanic Center report that also includes estimates of unauthorized immigrant shares of other occupations and industries. This report includes details on school enrollment by unauthorized immigrant children and by U.S.-born children of unauthorized immigrants; and estimates of educational attainment, income, poverty rates and health insurance status of unauthorized immigrants.

Attitudes about Immigrants and Immigration Reform

Public attitudes about immigration: Immigration policy is not a top priority for the U.S. general public or for Hispanics. According to a recent survey of U.S. adults, 39% said that dealing with the issue of illegal immigration should be a top priority for the president and the Congress, placing 17th on a list of policy priorities. For Hispanics, one-third said the issue of immigration was extremely important to them personally, behind issues like the economy and jobs, education and health care.
Attitudes about immigration policy priorities: Among U.S. adults, 28% say the priority for dealing with illegal immigration should be given to tighter restrictions on illegal immigration while 27% say creating a path to citizenship should be the priority. A plurality (42%) says both tactics should be given equal priority. Latinos are more likely than the general public (42% versus 27%) to say the priority should be a path to citizenship for immigrants who are in the U.S. illegally. Just 10% of Latinos say priority should be given to better border security and enforcement. Latinos (46%) and the general public (42%) are about equally likely to say priority should be given to enforcement and legalization.

Hispanic Views of Obama’s Deportation Policy: In a 2011 survey of Hispanic adults, by a ratio of more than two-to-one (59% versus 27%), Latinos disapproved of the way the Obama administration was handling deportations of unauthorized immigrants. Nearly 400,000 unauthorized immigrants were deported annually since 2009.

Hispanics’ experiences with deportation: One-in-four (26%) Hispanic adults, and one third (32%) of Hispanic immigrant adults who are not a U.S. citizen or a legal resident, say they personally know someone who has been deported or detained by the federal government for immigration reasons in the past 12 months. Among Hispanic registered voters, 22% say the same.

Mexican public opinion: According to a 2012 survey of Mexican adults, more than half (53%) believed that Mexicans who move to the U.S. have a better life there. And among Mexican adults, 38% said they would move to the U.S. if they had the means or opportunity to do so &#8212 8% would come with authorization while 19% would come to the U.S. without authorization.

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Read more by HS News Staff →

Spanish Hotels See Great Opportunity in Latin America

Spanish Hotels See Great Opportunity in Latin America

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Spanish hoteliers, who have enjoyed a significant presence in Latin America for decades, see in Brazil, Chile and Colombia the best growth potential in a region that is already home to some 700 Spanish-owned hotels.

“Twenty-five years ago there were practically no Spanish hotels outside our borders. At this time, there are more than 1,500, above all in Spanish-America,” the president of the Spanish Hotel Confederation, Juan Molas, told Efe on Tuesday after participating in the 16th Ibero-American Conference of Tourism Ministers and Businessmen.

Besides Brazil, Chile and Colombia, other Latin American countries with excellent tourism potential include Uruguay and Peru, Molas said.

Tourism officials from the six Latin American countries who participated in the conference - Costa Rica, Cuba, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua - emphasized the benefits and guarantees their nations offer to Spanish investment.

Cuba’s deputy tourism minister, Xiomara Martinez, said that “the most important potential” of her country, where about a dozen Spanish hotel chains operate, is “the security, not only legal” and the fact that it is a “transparent (nation) for negotiations.”

Spain’s industry, energy and tourism minister, Jose Manuel Soria, who inaugurated the conference, emphasized the willingness of his government to build relations with Ibero-American countries “on the basis of the strengthening of the Spanish tourism sector inside and outside our borders.”

He also defended on Tuesday the cooperation between the public and private sectors as the key to propelling growth and creating jobs, both in Spain and throughout the Ibero-American community.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Dutch Queen Beatrix Stepping Down, Crown Prince Will Rule with Argentine Wife

Dutch Queen Beatrix Stepping Down, Crown Prince Will Rule with Argentine Wife

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Queen Beatrix announced Monday that she will step down in April after nearly 33 years on the Dutch throne, which means her son Willem-Alexander is set to become the country’s first king since the 19th century.

“Responsibility for our country must now lie in the hands of a new generation,” the monarch said in a brief televised address.

Beatrix recalled that she is about to turn 75 and said that this is “the moment to lay down my crown” in favor of Crown Prince Willem-Alexander, 45.

The queen’s first-born has been married since 2002 with Argentine investment banker Maxima Zorreguieta, with whom he has three young daughters.

The couple are the most popular figures in the Dutch royal family, above all thanks to Maxima’s spontaneous charm.

Beatrix was married in 1966 to the German Claus van Amsberg, who died in 2002. The second of their three sons, Prince Friso, has been in a coma since February 2012, when he was buried under an avalanche on a ski slope in Austria.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Blog del Narco: Police Chief and Wife Injured in Jalisco

Blog del Narco: Police Chief and Wife Injured in Jalisco

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The police chief of Hostotipaquillo was gunned down this morning along with his wife and one of his bodyguards, near the main square of the Municipality.

The police chief was identified as Lucio Rosales Astorga.

The attack occurred about 9:15 am at the head of the village, where they were scattered bushes of various calibers.

In the shootout, the gunmen escaped aboard a white Nissan pickup with several accomplices.

Astorga Rosales was driving in a patrol, accompanied by his wife and two bodyguards when they were stopped at the intersection of Ocampo and Javier Mina.

Hostotipaquillo is in the Valles region, northwest of Jalisco.

Read more in Spanish at Blog del Narco

Read more Narco News here at HS News

Read more by HS News Staff →

Man Who Killed General with Mexican Narco Ties Gets 50-Year Sentence

Man Who Killed General with Mexican Narco Ties Gets 50-Year Sentence

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A man has been sentenced by a Mexico City court to serve 50 years in prison for the April 20, 2012, murder of retired Gen. Mario Arturo Acosta Chaparro, judicial officials said.

Jonathan Javier Arechega Zarazua was given the long sentence by Federal District Criminal Court Judge Jacobo Cedeño.

The 22-year-old Arechega was identified by eyewitnesses as the man who fired three shots at the retired general.

Acosta was shot and killed at a garage in the western section of Mexico City.

In May 2010, the retired general survived a shooting during an attempted robbery.

Acosta Chaparro and the late Gen. Francisco Quiros Hermosillo were arrested in August 2000 on charges that they provided protection for the Juarez drug cartel for years.

The two officers were tried, convicted and stripped of their ranks by a military court in November 2002.

Acosta Chaparro and Quiros Hermosillo served their sentences at Mexico City’s Military Camp No. 1.

Acosta Chaparro, however, was released on June 29, 2007, after a federal court threw out his conviction, citing lack of evidence linking him to drug traffickers.

The ruling allowed him to regain his rank of general.

Acosta Chaparro was also tried in connection with the massacre of 22 peasants during Mexico’s “dirty war” in the 1970s, but he was acquitted in February 2006

Read more by HS News Staff →

President Obama:  “Now is the Time” for Immigration Reform

President Obama:  “Now is the Time” for Immigration Reform

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President Obama spoke, on the need for comprehensive immigration reform, to an overflowing audience at Del Sol High School in Las Vegas this afternoon.

The President was expected to endorse the bipartisan immigration reform proposal announced yesterday by Senate members and he did not disappoint.  He viewed the bipartisan effort as a sign that “differences were dwindling” on the contentious issue of immigration reform. 

Obama felt the time was now to act and move forward on a comprehensive plan that included taking the estimated 11 million undocumented out of the shadows and putting them on a path to citizenship that is fair to all.

In his speech he often cited the great contribution immigrants have made to the country and especially to the economy.  Obama noted that 1-in 4 new small business owners are immigrants and that 1-in-4 high-tech start ups are started by immigrants.

Obama promised to help move along the Senate bipartisan plan which he noted was “very much in line with my principals” and the immigration position he campaigned on.  He affirmed his commitment to border security citing his record number of deportations and illegal border crossings at a record low level since 2000.

Read more by HS News Staff →

New York Woman Missing in Turkey, Husband and Brother Fly Over for Search

New York Woman Missing in Turkey, Husband and Brother Fly Over for Search

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A New York woman has disappeared after flying to Turkey on vacation and her brother and husband are now flying oversea to be closer to the search.

On January 7, Sarai Sierra arrived in Istanbul. She was originally going to travel with a friend, but the friend was no longer able to go, so she was traveling alone. During most of her vacation, the 33-year-old stayed in contact with her family, so it came as a surprise when she was not on her return flight.

Sierra was scheduled to return to the U.S. on January 22, but when she failed to arrive at New Jersey’s Newark Liberty International Airport, her husband called the airline and discovered she had never boarded the plane home.

On Monday Sierra’s husband, Steven, and her brother, David Jimenez, flew to Istanbul to assist in the search for their loved one.

Before leaving for Turkey, Jimenez told the Associated Press, ‘I don’t want to come home without my sister.’

Sierra is the mother of two sons, ages 9 and 11.

During their search for the missing mother, investigators found her Sierra’s passport, clothes, phone chargers, and medical cards were left in her hostel room in Beyoglu.

Investigators say they are also searching hospitals and police stations just to be sure she hasn’t somehow been injured, misidentified, or arrested.

Read more by HS News Staff →

STUDY: Crime Cost Uruguay 3.1 Percent of GNP, At Least $1.2 Billion

STUDY: Crime Cost Uruguay 3.1 Percent of GNP, At Least $1.2 Billion

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The cost of crimes against property and people in Uruguay in 2010 totaled at least $1.2 billion, which was equivalent to 3.1 percent of the country’s gross national product.

This was the conclusion of a new study carried out at the country’s Economic Research Center by researchers Aboal Diego, Jorge Campanella, and Bibiana Lanzilotta, with the collaboration of Magdalena Dominguez and Maren Vairo.

The study is one of eight selected in a competition organized by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) to measure with appropriate methodologies and innovative the cost of crime and violence in Latin America and the Caribbean, which are being presented by the authors in a seminar held on January 24-25 at IDB headquarters.

Crime rates in Uruguay are generally lower than in other Latin American countries. However, the growth of certain crimes over the past 20 years has put the subject at the top of the public agenda, according to the study. It adds that cost calculations for crime can be a useful input for formulating public policy and public debate.

The research analyzes kinds of criminal activities as follows: property crimes (76 percent in 2010), personal injury crimes (14.4 percent), sexual crimes (0, 6 percent), smuggling (0.1 percent), and other offenses (8.8 percent).

The study’s calculations include the cost of security and crime prevention,the criminal justice system, incarceration and rehabilitation of criminals,stolen goods, health, loss of life, and loss of productive time of prison inmates.

Read more at Inter-Development Bank →

Hispanic National Bar Commends Bipartisan Proposal for Immigration Reform

Hispanic National Bar Commends Bipartisan Proposal for Immigration Reform

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The Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA) commends the announcement by the Senate group of eight proposing a bipartisan framework for immigration reform.  The proposal provides a pathway to citizenship for those here in the U.S., while also providing for stronger border enforcement efforts. In addition it addresses the status of undocumented children, as well as providing for a guest worker program and visas and green cards for skilled workers. 

The Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA) is an incorporated, not-for-profit, national membership organization that represents the interests of the more than 100,000 Hispanic attorneys, judges, law professors, legal assistants, and law students in the U.S.

The HNBA has long worked with bipartisan partnerships to pass comprehensive immigration reform legislation.  Just as in 2006 and 2007, when the HNBA established a task force of legal experts to review the numerous amendments and legal provisions of proposed initiatives, HNBA President Peter Reyes has established an HNBA Immigration Reform Task Force this year as well. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

What Was She Thinking?! Cuban Mother Has Screaming Child Tattooed (VIDEO)

What Was She Thinking?! Cuban Mother Has Screaming Child Tattooed (VIDEO)

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WARNING: The video below may be hard to watch as it contains child abuse.

Sometimes people make it very clear they should not have children in their care, and a recently discovered video is evidence of just that.

A video uploaded to YouTube shows a mother holding a child, approximately 3 years old, against her chest and holding his arm as a tattoo “artist” puts the needle to the child’s skin over and over again.

According to commenter victoriaadriana2010:

This happened in Havana, Cuba. It’s not clear what the tattoo’s of, but a website in the Dominican Republic claims it’s a “666” tattoo, and that his_ mom is a member of a cult called the Growing in Grace International Ministry. They’re based around a guy who claims he’s the second coming of Jesus and the Antichrist, but supposedly it’s not a Satanic thing.

All we can say is these are not the actions of mother or a true tattoo artist, these are the actions of child abusers.

Read more by HS News Staff →

High-Speed Rail Coming to Central Mexico

High-Speed Rail Coming to Central Mexico

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Mexico’s federal government and officials from the central state of Queretaro signed an agreement to build a high-speed rail system, Communications and Transportation Secretary Gerardo Ruiz Esparza said.

The train will be able to cover the approximately 200 kilometers (124 miles) from Mexico City to Queretaro city in less than two hours, Ruiz Esparza said.

The train will have state-of-the-art technology and operate at speeds of up to 180 kph (112 mph), the communications and transportation secretary said.

The project will cost between 25 billion and 32 billion pesos ($1.95 billion and $2.5 billion), with the federal and state governments funding the project, Ruiz Esparza said.

Engineeering studies are to be completed in late February or early March, with the train expected to start operating between 2015 and 2016.

Read more by HS News Staff →

‘Lucha Libre’ Wrestler RJ Brewer: Crusader Against Illegal Immigration (VIDEO)

‘Lucha Libre’ Wrestler RJ Brewer: Crusader Against Illegal Immigration (VIDEO)

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Professional wrestler “RJ Brewer” is El Mero Malo, the chief bad guy on “Lucha Libre USA,” a Mexican-themed wrestling tour.

Unmasked and unapologetic, RJ Brewer is an unlikely crusader against illegal immigration on the tour who has become a metaphorical punching bag for U.S. Latinos frustrated and outraged over immigration policy. Holding an Arizona flag over his head, Brewer’s job as the anti-immigrant character in the ring is to heckle the crowd. But for him, it’s not all an act.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Italian Striker Balotelli Leaving Manchester City for AC Milan

Italian Striker Balotelli Leaving Manchester City for AC Milan

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Manchester City and AC Milan reached an agreement that will send Italian international Mario Balotelli home to play for the Rossoneri, the acquiring club said Tuesday.

“Transfer agreement for Balotelli signed with Manchester City. Medicals tomorrow in Milan, then personal terms until 2017,” club director Umberto Gandini said on Twitter.

AC Milan will pay a transfer fee of 20 million euros ($26.92 million) to Man City, where the talented but volatile Balotelli was supposed to play through 2015, Italian media said.

The 22-year-old striker will reportedly receive a salary of 4 million a year in Milan.

Balotelli, who went to City in 2010 after a stint with Inter Milan, has scored only 20 goals with Manchester - which paid 22 million euros for the forward - and made the headlines in England more often for his odd behavior than for his performance on the pitch.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Mexican Authorities Detain Honduran Migrants Enroute to U.S.

Mexican Authorities Detain Honduran Migrants Enroute to U.S.

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Federal Police officers detained 15 Honduran migrants in Tamaulipas, a state in northeastern Mexico, who were planning to enter the United States, the Government Secretariat said.

The migrants were found at kilometer 287 of the Matamoros-Ciudad Victoria highway, the secretariat said.

Federal Police officers asked the driver of a bus to stop for an inspection, the secretariat said in a statement.

“During the inspection, the federal officers found said persons, who could not confirm their legal migratory status in the country,” the secretariat said.

The Hondurans were turned over to the National Migration Institute, or INM, office in Tamaulipas for processing, the secretariat said.

An estimated 300,000 Central Americans undertake the hazardous journey across Mexico each year on their way to the United States.

The trek is a dangerous one, with criminals and corrupt Mexican officials preying on the migrants.

Gangs kidnap, exploit and murder migrants, who are often targeted in extortion schemes, Mexican officials say.

Central American migrants follow a long route that first takes them into Chiapas state, which is on the border with Guatemala, walking part of the way or riding aboard freight trains, buses and cargo trucks.

The flow of migrants has increased markedly in the northern and northeastern parts of Mexico since U.S. officials increased security along the border in the northwestern part of the country.

Read more by HS News Staff →

REPORT:  Border Protection Agency Reveals Struggles with Corruption

REPORT:  Border Protection Agency Reveals Struggles with Corruption

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The Center for Investigative Reporting is reporting that since Oct. 1, 2004, 147 Customs and Border Protection officers and agents have been charged with or convicted of corruption-related offenses, ranging from taking bribes to stealing government money

According to an internal agency study reviewed by the Center for Investigative Reporting, “turf battles, internal dysfunction and other troubles have left U.S. Customs and Border Protection grasping to get a handle on corruption and other misconduct within its ranks.”  The internal study that has been kept secret for more than a year.

The 80-page unclassified report highlights nagging problems including how the agency has struggled to streamline its own disciplinary system, to stamp out an internal “code of silence” that protects corrupt co-workers from exposure or even to fully understand how bad the corruption problem is, says the Center

Click here to read the Center for Investigative Reporting story. 

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Catholic Samba Group Turns Parade into Procession After Nightclub Fire

Catholic Samba Group Turns Parade into Procession After Nightclub Fire

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A Catholic samba group in Rio de Janeiro changed its parade plans after the nightclub fire that killed more than 230 people, most of them students from the local university in Santa Maria.

The Catholic samba block group known as Revelry for Christ was scheduled to parade through downtown Rio Jan. 27. Instead, the group turned its parade into a religious procession, with approximately 30,000 would-be party-goers singing Catholic hymns and making their way to Rio’s metropolitan cathedral, where Archbishop Orani Tempesta celebrated Mass.

“Many of you left your homes early this morning for this annual youth parade which is the Revelry for Christ,” said Archbishop Tempesta, “but the Lord reserved another moment for you to show the world that the youth of today can show solidarity.”

This year’s theme for the parade was World Youth Day, scheduled to be held in Rio de Janeiro July 23-28.

Sao Paulo Cardinal Odilio Pedro Scherer asked Catholics in his archdiocese to celebrate Mass for the victims of the fire.

“The sadness increases with the awareness that the tragedy was a consequence of a series of errors and omissions, certainly avoidable, if security norms had been observed,” said the archbishop.

Officials said several factors contributed to the tragedy, including only one exit door, no sprinklers and the fact that the lead singer of the band was allowed to fire a flare during his performance. The flare ignited the ceiling, and fire quickly spread. Most victims died of smoke inhalation, according to Brazilian officials.

Pope Benedict XVI sent a message to Santa Maria Archbishop Helio Rubert, asking him to express his condolences to the families of the victims.

Read more at U.S. Catholic →

Taco Bell Pulls Commericial After Some Complain it Mocks Veggies (VIDEO)

Taco Bell Pulls Commericial After Some Complain it Mocks Veggies (VIDEO)

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Taco Bell recently pulled an ad after some complained it mocked vegetables and the people who bring them to parties.

The ad was to promote the fast food restaurant’s 12-taco variety pack. In the ad, the voiceover says, “Veggies on game day is like punting on fourth and one - it’s a copout, and secretly, people kind of hate you for it.”

A Taco Bell spokesperson has since come out saying the ad has been pulled because they “didn’t want anyone to misinterpret the intent of the ad.”

In response, health advocates like those at the Center for Science in the Public Interest, has thanked Taco Bell for the removal of the ad.

So what do you think? Does the ad mock veggies or send an anti-veg message?

Read more by HS News Staff →

Santa Maria Brazil Struggles to Recover After Deadly Fire

Santa Maria Brazil Struggles to Recover After Deadly Fire

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This southern Brazilian city, where 231 people died last weekend in a discotheque fire, struggled to recover Tuesday despite having 118 injured in hospitals, 75 of them in critical condition.

The general feeling in Santa Maria was almost back to normal, except for black crepe still hanging from a few balconies, while stores were open again after many remained closed Monday in mourning for Brazil’s worst disaster in more than 50 years.

Gone from the empty cemeteries were the hundreds of cars parked at their gates Monday and the thousands of people who attended the burials of close to 100 victims.

The tragedy could only be felt fully at the doors of the Kiss discotheque, where dozens of curiosity-seekers gathered, many carrying flowers and photos in commemoration of the victims, who were mostly university students.

“All of the Brazil feels the sorrow here, the whole world feels it,” the Bolivian nurse Isabel Mejia, who has lived 32 years in Santa Maria, told Efe at the entrance to the discotheque.

Mejia said her son had wanted to go to the party but she didn’t let him, saying it would cost too much money as one excuse, and mentioning his back problems as another.

“Mothers have an instinct and I was right,” said Mejia, whose son thanked her deeply for having stopped him from going out that fateful night.

The gymnasium where the dead were taken, and where a vigil was held by most of the families, was practically empty on Tuesday.

Remaining as a sad reminder was an altar around a table with photos, letters, flowers and white balloons that were used Monday night in a demonstration of mourning that brought some 30,000 people together.

Hospitals on Tuesday were the gathering place for journalists who had traveled from around the world and for families of the injured.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Watch Live Stream of President Obama’s Speech on Immigration Reform

Watch Live Stream of President Obama’s Speech on Immigration Reform

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Later today, President Obama will speak on the need to fix the United States’ broken immigration system.

You can watch the President’s speech below. It is scheduled to go live at 2:55 ET.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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State-Supported Cervantes Institute Sees Belting Tightening in 2013

State-Supported Cervantes Institute Sees Belting Tightening in 2013

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The commemoration of the anniversary of the discoveries of the Pacific Ocean and Florida and the Year of Spain in Japan are some of the activities scheduled by the Cervantes Institute for 2013, a year that will be marked by austerity.

Cervantes Institute director Victor Garcia de la Concha discussed the year’s upcoming program during a presentation that featured musical performances by Rosa Torres-Pardo and Rocio Marquez.

“These are not easy years and we have to tighten our belts, but all the activities that have been created for this year feature excellence,” said De la Concha.

The state-supported Cervantes Institute has seen its budget cut by 14 percent as a result of Spain’s economic woes.

Montserrat Iglesias discussed the general outline of the programming that will be offered at the Institute’s more than 70 centers around the world as well as the activities in keeping with its task of promoting the Spanish language and culture.

The 500 years since the discovery of the Pacific Ocean by Vasco Nuñez de Balboa will be celebrated with conferences, meetings and musical activities in Madrid, Tokyo, Manila, Utrecht, Brussels, London and Dublin.

The 500th anniversary of the discovery of Florida will also be a central element in downtown Miami, where various events regarding Ponce de Leon will be held.

The Year of Spain in Japan is another of the important activities scheduled for 2013, and the Cervantes Institute will hold assorted events in Tokyo, including the 2nd Flamenco Summit and featuring the presence of dancer and choreographer of contemporary dance Cesc Gelabert.

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US Immigration Proposal Divides Reform Advocates- Undocumented are Over 60% Hispanic

US Immigration Proposal Divides Reform Advocates- Undocumented are Over 60% Hispanic

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A legislative proposal out of Washington may soon give hope to millions of illegal immigrants living in the United States, while at the same time sparking renewed fears of a system run amok and warnings that years of inaction have made the problem only more complex.

The plan, being floated by a group of Democratic and Republican senators, calls for a “tough but fair” path to citizenship that helps attract and retain high-skilled workers while ensuring immigrants who apply for jobs are in the country legally.

​​Groups like the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) are not impressed.

“To a certain extent this is déjà vu,” said Special Projects Coordinator Jack Martin. “It basically is a rehash of the push that was made in 2007 to come up with a comprehensive immigration reform that could pass. And it did not pass Congress.”

FAIR’s biggest objection is the plan’s path to citizenship for unauthorized immigrants, a provision it sees as nothing more than a general amnesty.

“The public basically opposes that because of the fact that they want people to come into our country legally, and they see the amnesty-type proposal as encouraging more illegal immigration,” Martin said.

Yet that “tough but fair path” to citizenship is exactly what many groups that work with undocumented workers have been clamoring for, and something they say has been sorely lacking from the country’s intense focus on immigration enforcement.

“It’s almost like the Wild West where workers are isolated and they have very little rights and protection,” said Ai-jen Poo, director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance and co-director of the Caring Across Generations Campaign.Image

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Mexico’s PEMEX Takes Delivery of Environmentally-Friendly Ships

Mexico’s PEMEX Takes Delivery of Environmentally-Friendly Ships

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Oil giant Petroleos Mexicanos, or Pemex, said it took delivery of two ships from South Korea’s SPP Shipbuilding Group.

The vessels are designed to meet the highest environmental and technology standards, allowing for an upgrade of the existing fleet, Pemex said.

Pemex CEO Emilio Lozoya Austin took delivery in Pusan of the ships, which are called the Centla and the Jaguaroundi, the state-owned energy company said.

Two more ships are scheduled to be delivered soon, Pemex said.

The Texistepec is set for delivery in February and the Raramuri a month later.

The ships are custom-designed to meet company needs and are environmentally friendly, Pemex said.

The ships were acquired as part of the overhaul of Pemex Refinacion’s fleet and were designed to help meet the environmental sustainability targets established in the business plan, the state-owned energy company said.

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SPAIN: Young Designers Making Porcelain the New Jewel in Fashion

SPAIN: Young Designers Making Porcelain the New Jewel in Fashion

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From figurines crowding grandma’s shelves to spectacular necklaces. Such is the evolution porcelain is undergoing thanks to the emergence of young designers who are turning it into jewelry.

The super-ceramic was invented in China 4,000 years ago, and historically has been considered a luxury that the best tables cannot possibly do without.

Porcelain is still a luxury product, but has taken another turn and is making its name in the world of jewelry because of its outstanding properties - it is strong, light, hard and translucent.

Properties that have allowed many figurines to survive through the years as if on an eventual mission to be transformed into stunning necklaces, cameos, earrings and bracelets.

“We’ve always collected pretty figurines, rare and curious, and that gave us the idea of breaking up the figurines and making compositions out of the pieces. It gave us the feeling that each figurine had a history and that by breaking it and combining it with others we wrote a new chapter in its story,” Andres Gallardo, founder of the eponymous firm, told Efe.

Jewels by Gallardo and Marina Casal have found their way beyond Spanish borders and now artists - songstress Lana del Rey for one - are wearing their designs.

Jewelry designer Maria de Frutos has also made porcelain one of her signature materials.

“My great-grandfather was the owner of a porcelain factory in Madrid that my grandmother continued until the (1936-1939 Spanish Civil) war destroyed everything, and then it was looted,” De Frutos recalled.

Her grandmother passed along to her some 150 porcelain cameos and, under her brand Oh La La Jewelry, has taken them and made them into items of finery that mix delicacy with history.

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Spanish Model River Viiperi Brings Girlfriend Paris Hilton to Barcelona

Spanish Model River Viiperi Brings Girlfriend Paris Hilton to Barcelona

Photo: Paris Hilton, River Viiperi in Barcelona

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Celebrity Paris Hilton is currently accompanying her boyfriend, Spanish model River Viiperi, as he takes to the runway to show off designer collections at 080 Barcelona Fashion.

The millionaire turned up as just one more fashionista at Barcelona’s new DHUB Design Center to preview the designers’ new looks “backstage.”

More discreet than usual, Paris Hilton went Monday night by surprise to the Mango runway show to see her 21-year-old boyfriend strut the new styles, without passing “photocall” where all the famous front-row guests had their pictures taken.

In fact, the rich American heiress ensured her anonymity by arriving when the lights were already turned down and the fashion show was about to start, and slipped into a row where the youngest guests were seated, taking a place beside Jonathan Andic, the son of the president of Mango.

Dressed in a red suit, she watched each time River Viiperi passed by, with whom she has been going out since September 2012, and who has worked with the likes of Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein and H&M, and has been photographed by Mario Testino for the most prestigious fashion magazines.

Viiperi, son of a Spanish father and a Finnish mother, has lived in Ibiza, where he was born, as well as in the Canary Islands, Finland and Madrid, and according to the authoritative Web site models.com, is one of the 50 best-paid models in the world.

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NALEO Applauds Bipartisan Push in Senate for Immigration Reform

NALEO Applauds Bipartisan Push in Senate for Immigration Reform

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Organization calls for legislation that will make the naturalization process more accessible to immigrants and fully integrate new Americans into the fabric of society

The National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) Educational Fund today issued the following statement on the release of principles for bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform legislation in the U.S. Senate:

“NALEO Educational Fund applauds the bipartisan efforts of U.S. Senators who today released their framework for moving comprehensive immigration reform forward.  The principles acknowledge that our nation is struggling as a result of our broken immigration system, and aims to address this issue in a fair and humane manner that brings the more than 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the country today out of the shadows.

“We call on U.S. Senators to introduce legislation that will make a pathway to citizenship a reality by ensuring that the legal process for entry into the country is efficient and timely and that the naturalization process remains accessible and affordable to eligible immigrants.  We also ask that new Americans are provided with the support needed to fully integrate into the civic fabric of our society.

“We look forward to working with the U.S. Senate on these measures and are hopeful that we can pass comprehensive immigration reform that fully recognizes the important role that immigrants and their families play in the future growth and success of the nation.”

To view the NALEO Educational Fund’s principles on comprehensive immigration reform, click here or visit our website at http://www.naleo.org/downloads/NALEO_PrinciplesImmReform.pdf.

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Women Advocacy Organizations Urge for Humane Immigration Reform

Women Advocacy Organizations Urge for Humane Immigration Reform

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Today, the National Coalition for Immigrant Women’s Rights(NCIWR) and organizations concerned with women’s rights across the country released Statement of Principles on Women and Immigration Reform.

“As Congress and the White House move to reform our immigration laws, it is imperative that policymakers recognize the contributions of immigrant women and address the needs of our communities,” notes Jessica González-Rojas, executive director of the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH). González-Rojas adds, “Women’s issues have been marginalized in previous debates and discussions around immigration reform. This Statement of Principles asserts a vision for immigration reform that is inclusive of, and responsive to, the unique needs of immigrant women and their families.”

The Statement of Principles, endorsed by more than 200 local, state and national organizations representing immigrant rights, reproductive health and justice, children’s health and rights, labor and workers’ rights, civil rights, faith, and LGBT rights, calls for the inclusion of women in all aspects of immigration reform.

The statement was made in reaction to yesterday, a bipartisan committee in the Senate, which includes Sens. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and John McCain (R-AZ) released its framework for immigration reform.

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Julio Iglesias, Jose Feliciano Amongst Those to be Inducted into Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame

Julio Iglesias, Jose Feliciano Amongst Those to be Inducted into Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame

Photo: Julio Iglesias, Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame

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Spaniards Julio Iglesias and Manuel Alejandro, Mexicans Jose Angel Espinoza “Ferrusquilla” and Armando Manzanero, Puerto Rican Jose Feliciano and Cuba’s Concha Valdez Miranda are the first artists to be inducted into the Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame.

The announcement was made by the directors of the Miami-based LSHOF, Desmond Child and Rudy Perez, both producers and composers.

In a gallery packed with journalists and people from the music industry, Perez noted the enormous effort that had been made over the years to win the support of the existing U.S. Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Child has composed songs for artists like Bon Jovi, Selena, Aerosmith, Ricky Martin and Cher, among many others, while Perez has created numbers for such singers as Marc Anthony, Jennifer Lopez, Jose Feliciano, Julio Iglesias, Cristian Castro, Christina Aguilera, Luis Fonsi and Luis Miguel.

The six artists incorporated into the LSHOF will be honored with the La Muse prize at the gala to be held April 23 at the New World Center de Miami Beach.

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Formely Imprisoned in Mexico, Cassez Thanks Former French Pres. Sakozy for Getting her Out

Formely Imprisoned in Mexico, Cassez Thanks Former French Pres. Sakozy for Getting her Out

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Frenchwoman Florence Cassez, who was ordered released from prison by the Mexican Supreme Court after serving seven years on a kidnapping conviction, met on Monday with former French President Nicolas Sarkozy and thanked him for his efforts on her behalf.

“It was a great moment” and “very pleasant,” Cassez told reporters after meeting with Sarkozy and his wife, Carla Bruni, at his Paris office.

The 38-year-old Cassez was arrested on Dec. 8, 2005, on the Mexico City-Cuernavaca highway along with her boyfriend, Israel Vallarta, the suspected leader of the Los Zodiaco kidnapping gang.

A day later, agents from the now-defunct AFI, Mexico’s equivalent of the FBI, staged a mock raid so TV cameras could film the arrest of the gang members in a wooded area near Mexico City.

On Jan. 23, the Mexican Supreme Court ordered the immediate release of Cassez, who was convicted of kidnapping and other crimes in Mexico and sentenced to serve 60 years in prison, citing the re-enactment of the raid and other due process violations in its ruling on the case.

Sarkozy pressured Mexico to transfer Cassez to a French prison to serve out her term, invoking the Strasbourg Convention on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons, which Mexico signed in 2007.

The administration of former Mexican President Felipe Calderon, however, insisted that the Frenchwoman - who received a 98-year prison sentence in 2008 that was subsequently reduced to 60 years - could not be repatriated due to the possibility that she might obtain a drastic reduction or suspension of her sentence in France.

Some of Sarkozy’s statements about the Cassez case caused diplomatic tensions with Mexico, especially his call in February 2011 to dedicate the “Year of Mexico,” a series of more than 350 art, cultural and business events scheduled to be held in France, to the jailed Frenchwoman.

Cassez asked the reporters waiting outside Sarkozy’s office to allow her to “return to (my) life.”

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Latin America News: Mexico’s Pres. Peña Nieto Makes Quick and Friendly Visit to Uruguay

Latin America News: Mexico’s Pres. Peña Nieto Makes Quick and Friendly Visit to Uruguay

Photo: Mexico-Uruguay Relations

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Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto made a quick visit to Uruguay following the CELAC-EU summit in Chile and called for the adoption of a program to provide computers to schoolchildren in Mexico modeled on the one launched in the South American country.

Peña Nieto traveled to Montevideo on Monday with Uruguayan President Jose Mujica and visited the Uruguayan Technology Laboratory, or LATU, which oversaw implementation of the Plan Ceibal, a program to provide 500,000 schoolchildren with computers connected to the Internet.

The Uruguayan program is a “world benchmark,” Peña Nieto said, adding that he was eager to roll out a similar program in Mexico.

Uruguay will provide “all the technical advice” Mexico requests to create a similar program tailored to the country’s needs, Mujica said.

The South American country, which has a population of about 3.3 million, has 500,000 elementary and high school students, while Mexico has a population of about 115 million, requiring the distribution of computers to millions of schoolchildren.

Uruguay and Mexico have a free trade agreement in place and bilateral trade stands at around $548 million.

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Soccer Star Cristiano Ronaldo to Design Underwear for JBS

Soccer Star Cristiano Ronaldo to Design Underwear for JBS

Photo: Cristiano Ronaldo and JBS underwear

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Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo will design a line of men’s underwear for the Danish firm JBS Textile Group, the company said Tuesday.

The line will consist of two collections, one styled more for young people and the other for men more interested in fashion who want to keep up with “the latest trends,” JBS Textile Group said in a statement.

The line will include underwear and socks, and each year Ronaldo will come up with new products.

“It’s important for JBS that the people we work with represent our company’s values. Who better to represent our unsurpassed quality than one of the best soccer players in the world?” company owner Claus Bjerg Sorensen said.

In the same statement the Portuguese soccer star praised the quality of JBS products and noted that the companies he collaborates with in the fashion world are ones capable of producing “unique” products for his fans.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s creations will be available in several international markets “in the near future,” according to the company.

JBS Textile Group has been associated for years with the world of sports and as an example features among its products a line designed by Danish tennis ace Caroline Wozniacki.

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Emilio Estefan to Produce 2013 People en Español Festival

Emilio Estefan to Produce 2013 People en Español Festival

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The 2013 Festival PEOPLE EN ESPANOL, an event celebrating Hispanic entertainment, culture and community, will be produced by the, Grammy award-winning, Cuban-American musician and producer, Emilio Estefan in San Antonio, Texas, August 31-September 1, it was announced today by People en Espanol publisher, Monique Manso. 

Estefan, who served on the advisory board for the 2012 Festival, has a new and expanded role as producer. The 19-time, Grammy award-winning producer can list music for the Super Bowl and the Olympic closing ceremonies under his production credits, as well as the opening of the Miami Marlins Stadium, The Miami Center for the Performing Arts and the American Airlines Arena.

He has also produced many events both at the White House and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, as well as the Latin Grammy’s, The Hispanic Heritage Awards and large-scale concert events for HBO and Showtime.

Festival PEOPLE EN ESPANOL is a multi-faceted program that celebrates the best in Hispanic entertainment and culture by providing consumers one-of-a kind access to the celebrities and culturally relevant content that inspires them. FESTIVAL began in 2007 (originally titled Fiesta!) as a concert and family event in New York City’s Central Park.

Last year, FESTIVAL featured some of the biggest names in Latino music, including five-time Grammy award winner Luis Miguel, hip-hop sensation Daddy Yankee, Prince Royce, Tito El Bambino and more.

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Spanish Center Marc Gasol Has Best Game in this Memphis Grizzlies Season

Spanish Center Marc Gasol Has Best Game in this Memphis Grizzlies Season

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Spanish center Marc Gasol had the hot hand in the Memphis Grizzlies 103-100 win over the Philadelphia 76ers, scoring 27 points.

Gasol played 43 minutes, logging the most minutes on the court at the Wells Fargo Center and putting up his highest point total of the season.

The center hit on 10 of 15 field goals, made the only three-point shot he attempted and was a perfect six of six on free throws.

Gasol also piled up seven rebounds, all on defense, had seven assists, had two steals and blocked two shots.

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Some of the Missing Kombo Kolombia Musicians Found Dead in Well

Some of the Missing Kombo Kolombia Musicians Found Dead in Well

Photo: MIna, Mexico Where Kombo Bodies Found

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Twelve bodies, including those of at least four members of the Kombo Kolombia band reported missing last week, were found in a well at a ranch in the northern Mexican state of Nuevo Leon, officials said.

The bodies of four of the musicians, including Colombian keyboardist Heimer Ivan Cuellar Perez, have been identified, state security spokesman Jorge Domene said.

Investigators also identified the bodies of a vocalist, a saxophone player and a member of the band’s road crew, all of them Mexican citizens, Domene said.

More bodies may be at the ranch in the city of Mina, Domene said.

The group, which plays Colombian music, performed at a private function Thursday night at the La Carreta bar in Hidalgo, a city next to Mina.

Relatives of the 16 musicians and four road crew members lost contact with the group early Friday and reported them missing.

The four bodies identified so far all had gunshot wounds, the state security spokesman said.

“We are dealing with a direct attack on the members of this group,” Domene said.

Kombo Kolombia is known across the region for its performances of Colombian music and has appeared at the popular Internacional, La Eternidad and El Sabino Gordo clubs, all of which have been attacked by drug cartels.

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TuesdayJanuary 29, 2013