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MondayAugust 4, 2014

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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300 Rabbis Urge President to Negotiate for the Release of Cuban Prisoner Alan Gross

Three-hundred rabbis from across the United States on Monday asked President Barack Obama to negotiate with Havana to secure the release of Alan Gross, a U.S. government subcontractor serving a 15-year sentence in Cuba on a conviction for subversion.

“Alan went to Cuba on behalf of our government. His immediate release from prison in Cuba and return to the U.S. must be a priority for our nation. Indeed, we believe this is a moral imperative,” the rabbis said in a letter to Obama.

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EXPERTS:  Cuba Need to Eliminate Dual-Currency System

Ending Cuba’s dual-currency system, one of the most complicated reforms proposed by the government of Raul Castro, should have been done long ago, according to an economist cited in Monday’s edition of Communist Party daily Granma.

Joaquin Infante Ugarte, an adviser to the president of the National Association of Cuban Economists and Accountants, called the elimination of the dual-currency regime an “overriding necessity.”

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White House Struggles to Get Funding to Handle Border Crisis

President Barack Obama notified Congress that he will transfer $405 million from various Department of Homeland Security programs to deal with immigration problems on the Mexican border, a senior administration official told Efe Monday.

The measure was adopted because Congress left for their August recess without agreeing on the provision of funds to cope with the massive arrivals of unaccompanied children from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

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Murder Rate in Honduras Drops in Early 2014

The number of homicides committed in Honduras during the first six months of this year - 2,893 - represents a drop of 600 from the same period in 2013, President Juan Orlando Hernandez said Monday.

“The trend is downward, it’s a complex situation, but we’re continuing to work hard because the obligation of this generation is to deliver to our children a peaceful Honduras,” Hernandez told reporters in this capital.

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Mexico City to Get First High-Speed Train in Latin America

The high-speed Mexico City-Queretaro train, which will cover the 210-kilometer (130-mile) route at a speed of 300 kph (186 mph), will be the first of its kind in Latin America, the Communications and Transportation Secretariat said.

The train will carry 23,000 passengers per day “safely, quickly, comfortably and in an environmentally friendly way,” the secretariat said in a statement.

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Strong Increase in Number of Foreign Tourists Visiting Mexico in 2014

Mexico welcomed 6.9 million foreign tourists by air in the first half of 2014, up 10.9 percent from the 6.2 million visitors who arrived by air during the same period last year, the Tourism Secretariat said.

The United States, with 3.9 million visitors arriving by air, continues to be the top source of tourists for Mexico, the secretariat said, citing Integrated Migration Operations System, or SIOM, figures.

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Colombian Rebel Group Charged with Poisoning Solder

The Colombian army charged the ELN guerrilla group with the death of a soldier who ate poisoned meat.

Six other members of the 5th Mobile Brigade had to be hospitalized as a result of the “despicable act” in the northeastern province of Arauca, the command of the Quiron Task Force said in a statement.

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Tropical Storm Bertha Hits Dominican Republic with Heavy Rains, Flooding

Tropical Storm Bertha on Sunday brought heavy rains to the Dominican Republic, flooding several towns in the eastern part of the country and downing trees in Santo Domingo, according to a preliminary assessment by emergency authorities.

The COE emergency operations center maintained a tropical storm advisory and various states of alert in 15 provinces.

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Blog del Narco: Students in Acapulco form Gang that Kidnaps, Ransoms and Kills

Blog del Narco: Students in Acapulco form Gang that Kidnaps, Ransoms and Kills

Photo: Students who Killed

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All of the young men were studying at the Institute of Technology of Acapulco and were all well regarded in their school and in their social circles. But they formed a band of kidnappers and murderers who showed extreme cruelty and an absolute lack of scruples. They kidnapped their college buddies and then charged ransom, they killed many so they could not identify them. They come from families of influence and the parents of victims fear that they may soon go free ... and seek vengeance.

On the night of January 4, 2013 the parents received a phone call from strangers who told him they had kidnapped their son Arturo Rios Ceballos, 18, ​​a student of engineering Acapulco Institute of Technology (ITA). They demanded a ransom of 800,000 pesos.

Doña Elisa could only muster 45 thousand peso and the kidnappers agreed to that amount. They told the father to get dressed in white and leave the money in a plastic bag on a lone street. The family did all that was instructed but their son was never returned.

Three days later, on January 7, the body of the dead boy was found. He was found hanging from a rope after being tortured.

Doña Elisa recalled the last phone conversation with his son, the same day of his kidnapping. His son had been invited join Cahori on an outing.

The police located and questioned Cahori and discovered in his cell phone videos of young people being subjected to torture. He confessed that he belonged to a band of students ITA dedicated to kidnapping and murdering their own fellow students. Among his victims was Arturo Rios.

Soon the nine members of the murderous band were captured. In their cell phones authorities discovered more videos of them torturing students that had been sent the families of the victims to intimidate; also they had record of calls asking where they were demanding ransoms.

All of the murderers were students ITA, had good grades, their behavior records were impeccable and by all appearances looked like “good guys.”

Between 2010 and January 2013 the “Gang of Cahori” as is known by authorities- kidnapped and murdered 39 young Acapulqueños, as estimated by relatives of the victims.

Their modus operandi was as follows: first chose some peers, asked out, take him to a safe house and there you kidnap them. After receiving the ransom, they would hang the victim with light cable and dismembered with an ax. Threw his remains randomly around the area. They even used to go to funerals of their victims to offer condolences to the families.

To read more, go to Blog del Narco

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House Fails to Address Problems While Stripping Deportation Relief for Immigrants

House Fails to Address Problems While Stripping Deportation Relief for Immigrants

Photo: News Flash

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The House of Representatives approved two bills Friday night, one that allocated only a fraction of the funds needed to address the humanitarian situation surrounding unaccompanied children and another that strips deportation relief for more than half a million young immigrants. Both passed on largely partisan lines. The funding bill only provides $694 million out of the $3.7 billion President Obama earlier requested, including $35 million in funding for states that send National Guard troops to the border on their own, and rolls back due process protections for unaccompanied children. The bill has little chance of passing the Senate, and President Obama said earlier on Friday he would veto if it came to his desk.

The second bill ends the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, through which 580,000 young immigrants had received temporary legal status, and makes the beneficiaries eligible for deportation. Rep. Raul Labrador (R-ID) said they should end programs that enourage children to cross the border illegally if they “truly care about these kids.” But Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) said on the House floor, “Only cowards scapegoat children and only those who are ashamed of themselves do it after hours on a Friday night.”

read more at Immigration Impact

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MondayAugust 4, 2014