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China sentences veteran rights activist to 13 years prison

China on Wednesday sentenced a veteran pro-democracy campaigner to 13 years in prison on vaguely defined subversion charges, one day after releasing the widow of a Nobel Peace Prize laureate after eight years of house arrest. Source link link: China sentences veteran rights activist to 13 years' prison.....»»

Category: newsSource: manilainformer manilainformerJul 12th, 2018

Google developing censor-friendly search engine for China – source

BEIJING, China – Google is crafting a search engine that would meet China's draconian censorship rules, a company employee told AFP on Thursday, August 2, in a move decried by human rights activists. Google withdrew its search engine from China 8 years ago due to censorship and hacking ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsAug 2nd, 2018

Solid as a Rock: Vitug explains the historic maritime ruling

ON JULY 12, 2016, a 479-page verdict stated that a tribunal of the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) ruled in favor of the Philippines in its maritime dispute with China over the West Philippine Sea. The PCA concluded that China’s claim of historic rights falling within its so-called nine-dash line had no legal basis. Two years after the victory, the Philippines has yet to completely assert its sovereignty over the territory......»»

Category: financeSource:  bworldonlineRelated NewsJul 31st, 2018

Carmelo moves closer to Rockets after reported three-team trade

By David Aldridge, TNT Analyst Half a Banana Boat Crew is better than nothing. Thursday’s (Friday, PHL time) reported trade of Carmelo Anthony from Oklahoma City to Atlanta as part of a three-team deal also involving Philadelphia -- and which will be followed by the Hawks waiving Anthony -- obviously clears the way for Anthony to join Chris Paul in Houston, as has been rumored for weeks once it became clear OKC had to get rid of Anthony to lower what would have been a lethal luxury tax bill next year. The deal sends guard Dennis Schroder from the Hawks, which drafted him 17th overall in 2013 and who has been Atlanta’s incumbent starter the last two seasons, to the Thunder for Anthony and a Lottery protected (1-14) 2022 first-round pick. In addition, forward Mike Muscala was re-routed from Atlanta to Philadelphia through Oklahoma City, which will receive former first-rounder Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot from Philly. The 76ers will send third-year wing Justin Anderson to Atlanta to complete the deal. Anthony has told people for more than a week that he expects to wind up with the Rockets, according to a league source. The Rockets have been in flux this offseason, losing defensive stalwart and team leader Trevor Ariza in free agency to Phoenix, along with Luc Mbah a Moute, who returned to the Clippers after one season in Houston. The Rockets helped stanch some of their defensive losses by signing 3 and D wing James Ennis (career 36 percent on three's) from Detroit last week. Anthony would not help the Rockets much at the defensive end. But the 34-year-old Anthony can still score, even though his average fell to 16.2 points last season as the Thunder’s third option behind Russell Westbrook and Paul George. Houston’s offense doesn’t need upgrading -- the Rockets were just behind top-ranked Golden State in Offensive Rating last season (112.2), and of course, obliterated the rest of the league in three-point attempts and makes. But after Paul missed the last two games of the Western Conference finals against the Warriors, Houston’s offense bogged down at the worst possible times -- most notably the second half of Game 7, when the Rockets missed a seemingly impossible 27 consecutive three-point attempts. Anthony isn’t a great three-point shooter by any means, but he’s still a load in the post and is still able to get to the foul line -- his last season in New York, when he was more of a primary option, he still averaged almost five free throws a game. The Thunder’s main motivation to trade Anthony rather than use its stretch provision to get his $27.8 million off its books for next season was not just economic, though that was a key factor. OKC will save less money by trading Anthony rather than stretching him, but in doing so the Thunder will also address a major need that was clear to any who’ve watched the team the last couple of years -- an offense that falls apart whenever Westbrook is on the bench. If OKC had just stretched Anthony, it would have had $9.6 million in dead money on its books that it couldn’t have done anything with this year. The Thunder chose instead to take on Schroder’s $15.5 million for next year. Acquiring Schroder, who was obsolete in Atlanta once the Hawks decided to acquire the rights to rookie point guard Trae Young on Draft night, gives OKC a young veteran who can create offense for himself and others when Westbrook needs a blow. Schroder averaged 19.4 points and 6.2 assists last season. But Schroder has to deal with pending legal action against him stemming from an incident last September in DeKalb County, Georgia, in which he and three other men were involved in a fight with another man, who reported suffered a torn ACL and meniscus. The charges against Schroder were recommended to be upgraded from misdemeanor to felony. Assuming the charges are resolved before the start of the season -- a good assumption, or the Thunder would have never signed off on the deal -- OKC will upgrade its roster with a player who will provide incredible versatility as either a top-notch reserve, a player who could start alongside Westbrook or, at the worst, could be moved down the road. Schroder has three years and $46.5 million left on his deal. Atlanta made its intentions for Schroder clear when it picked Young rather than Luka Doncic, whose rights the Hawks sent to Dallas in a Draft night deal, and traded for veteran point guard Jeremy Lin from Brooklyn earlier this month. The Hawks just wanted a first for Schroder, and got one from OKC, which wouldn’t have been able to move Anthony’s whole contract without it. Muscala’s $5 million had to be included to make the deal work financially. He became coveted by Philadelphia after free agent Nemanja Bjelica backed out of a verbal agreement with the 76ers this week. Philly needed a stretch four who could shoot, and Muscala is a career 38 percent three-point shooter. Anderson was a former first-rounder (21st overall in 2015) with the Mavericks whose athletic ability and work ethic have made him a team favorite both in Dallas and Philly. The rebuilding Hawks will give him a look on the wings along with Taurean Prince, DeAndre’ Bembry and first-round pick Kevin Huerter. The Hawks have been shopping veteran forward Kent Bazemore since before this year’s Draft. SiriusXM radio host and longtime NBA reporter Mitch Lawrence was first to report the potential deal between the Thunder and Hawks. Longtime NBA reporter, columnist and Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer David Aldridge is an analyst for TNT. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 20th, 2018

EU urges China to free activists on third anniversary of ‘709’ crackdown

The European Union urged China to free dozens of activists during a human rights meeting in Beijing this week, three years after a crackdown that jailed scores of lawyers and activists. EU urges China to free activists on third anniversary of ‘709’ crackdown BEIJING – The European Union urged China to free dozens of activists… link: EU urges China to free activists on third anniversary of ‘709’ crackdown.....»»

Category: newsSource:  manilainformerRelated NewsJul 12th, 2018

Pakistani court sentences ex-PM Sharif to 10 years in prison

A Pakistani anti-graft tribunal on Friday announced a much-awaited ruling in a corruption case against former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, sentencing him to 10 years in prison over purchases of luxury apartments in London. Pakistani court sentences ex-PM Sharif to 10 years in prison A Pakistani anti-graft tribunal on Friday announced a much-awaited ruling in… link: Pakistani court sentences ex-PM Sharif to 10 years in prison.....»»

Category: newsSource:  manilainformerRelated NewsJul 6th, 2018

Gary Granada, top local and foreign poets featured in PEN’s ‘Free the Word!’ at CCP, July 4

The Philippine PEN (Poets & Playwrights, Essayists, Novelists) will hold "Free the Word!"---a forum plus poetry and performance event involving local and foreign writers---at Cultural Center of the Philippines' Main Gallery on July 4, 5-7 p.m. Founded in 1921 in London, PEN is the international federation of writers upholding freedom of expression with centers all over the world. PEN members through the years have included Nobel laureates Mario Vargas Llosa, Nadine Gordimer, Gunter Grass, Francois Mauriac and Liu Xiabao. Its main committees show PEN International's chief concerns: Writers in Prison, Writers for Peace, Women Writers and Translation and Linguistic Rights. ...Keep on reading: Gary Granada, top local and foreign poets featured in PEN’s ‘Free the Word!’ at CCP, July 4.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJul 1st, 2018

Nassar, trainer charged with sex assault; Karolyis cleared

By David Warren, Associated Press DALLAS (AP) — Texas prosecutors on Friday filed sexual assault charges against Larry Nassar and a trainer who worked at his side, expanding the worst abuse scandal in U.S. sports history beyond Michigan while also clearing world-renowned gymnastics coaches Bela and Martha Karolyi whose ranch served as a training site for Olympians. Nassar, a former sports doctor, was charged with sexually assaulting six minors in Walker County, home of the Karolyi ranch, about 70 miles (110 kilometers) north of Houston. A grand jury also indicted former sports medicine trainer Debra Van Horn on one count of second-degree sexual assault of a child, making her the first person other than Nassar to be charged in direct connection with the assaults. She had worked at Indianapolis-based USA Gymnastics for 30 years. Walker County District Attorney David Weeks said Van Horn was charged as "acting as a party" with Nassar. He didn't elaborate. Efforts to reach her for comment were unsuccessful, and the name of her lawyer wasn't immediately known. In Michigan, Nassar was sentenced earlier this year to decades in prison, after hundreds of women and girls accused him of molesting them with his hands under the guise of medical treatment. They said the abuse went as far back as the 1990s while he worked at Michigan State University and USA Gymnastics, which trains Olympians. A victim, Mattie Larson, told a judge in January that Van Horn "would be in the room many of the times Larry abused me. If a trainer, a professional trainer, doesn't say anything about it, I should trust her. At least that's what I thought." The Karolyis have denied wrongdoing . They couldn't be reached for comment Friday; a call to the number listed for Bela Karolyi wasn't answered. "The Karolyis were and remain fully cooperative with this investigation. There is no corroborated evidence of any criminal conduct" by the couple, said Stephanie Stroud, a Walker County prosecutor. Stroud said investigators tried to determine if anyone at the ranch knew about Nassar's conduct and didn't report it. But the two-year statute of limitations had already lapsed on any possible misdemeanor charges of failure to report. "That in no way means there was no wrongdoing at the ranch or within the ranks of USAG," Stroud said, referring to USA Gymnastics. "It is our belief that there was a total failure by USAG to protect the athletes that were part of their program and to take appropriate action once they were made aware of Dr. Nassar's actions." In a statement, USA Gymnastics said it is cooperating with Texas investigators and is committed "to doing everything possible to prevent this from happening again." Nassar, 54, probably won't be free again due to his long prison sentences for assault and child pornography crimes. But Weeks, the district attorney, said he still wants to bring him to Texas to face the charges. "There are a number of hoops we have to jump through to get him here," Weeks told reporters. The Karolyis are suing the U.S. Olympic Committee and USA Gymnastics, seeking more than $1 million for the canceled sale of their training center near Huntsville — a transaction that tanked in the wake of the Nassar scandal. Several former gymnasts have also filed lawsuits. One of them, Sabrina Vega, filed a lawsuit in May alleging USA Gymnastics, the U.S. Olympic Committee and the Karolyis failed to protect her and other athletes. Vega, who was on the team that won a gold medal at the 2011 World Championships, alleges the organizations and the Karolyis ignored signs about Nassar's behavior or should have known he posed a risk. She said Nassar molested her hundreds of times during medical treatments from 2008, when she was 12 years old, until 2012. Vega said the abuse occurred during competitions and at the Karolyi ranch. Congress passed a bill in January that makes members of amateur sports organizations, including those that run Olympic sports, mandatory reporters of sexual abuse. It also requires the organizations to implement standard protections for athletes. ___ Associated Press reporters Ed White and Corey Williams in Detroit, Terry Wallace in Dallas and researcher Monika Mathur in New York contributed to this report......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 30th, 2018

Turkey charges father of NBA’s Kanter as terror group member

ISTANBUL (AP) — A Turkish court has accepted an indictment charging the father of NBA player Enes Kanter with “membership in a terror group,” the country’s official news agency reported Monday (Tuesday, PHL time). The indictment followed an investigation of Mehmet Kanter, and prosecutors planned to seek his conviction and a prison term of five to 10 years at trial, Anadolu Agency said. It’s unclear when the trial in western Tekirdag province would begin. Enes Kanter, who plays for the New York Knicks, is a follower of a U.S.-based Turkish cleric who the government accuses of masterminding a failed military coup in 2016. Cleric Fethullah Gulen has denied the allegation, but tens of thousands of people suspected of ties to his network have been arrested or fired. The elder Kanter, a professor, was purged from public service after the coup attempt and detained for five days last summer. Anadolu said the indictment alleges he contacted some 120 suspects with alleged links to Gulen, including dozens who were said to have communicated through an encrypted messaging application. Enes Kanter, a former Oklahoma City Thunder center, has been a vocal critic of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. His Turkish passport was canceled last year. Prosecutors charged him in December with insulting the president in a series of tweets. They want to try him in absentia and have him sentenced to more than four years in prison, if he is convicted. I will continue to keep fighting for Human Rights and Freedom of Speech Justice and Democracy above all.I will stand for what I believe in.All I’m doing is trying to be voice of innocent people Keep my family,innocent people in your prayers 🙏#DictatorErdogan 🇹🇷@RT_Erdogan pic.twitter.com/i7kK3mwKND — Enes Kanter (@Enes_Kanter) June 18, 2018 “Keep my family, innocent people in your prayers,” the basketball player tweeted Monday (Tuesday, PHL time) with the hashtag “DictatorErdogan.” His Twitter account is withheld in Turkey. Under a state of emergency declared in the aftermath of the coup, Turkey has arrested more than 50,000 and sacked some 110,000 people alleged to have infiltrated state institutions for Gulen. The government said the crackdown was needed to fight alleged acts of terror......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 19th, 2018

Reports: Cristiano Ronaldo strikes deal on tax fraud case

    MADRID --- Spanish media reports that Portugal forward Cristiano Ronaldo has agreed to plead guilty to tax fraud and pay a fine of 18.8 million euros ($21.8 milllion) in exchange for a prison sentence that would most likely be suspended. Spanish newspaper El Mundo reported Friday that Ronaldo is ready to admit to four counts of tax fraud that would carry a prison sentence of two years. Prison sentences not over two years in Spain are often suspended for first-time offenders. The deal has yet to be ratified by Spain's Tax Office, according to different Spanish media including Europa Press news agency. Neither Spain's Tax Office, its Ministry of Justice nor p...Keep on reading: Reports: Cristiano Ronaldo strikes deal on tax fraud case.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJun 16th, 2018

Palace: Phl not taking soft stance on China

The Palace denied it is going soft on China amid reports of a resumption of build-up over disputed portions of the South China Sea (SCS) that foreign ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) have criticized. Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said the Philippines shares Asean leaders’ concern regarding China’s aggressive actions on what is said to be the world’s busiest waterways.The recently concluded Asean foreign and defense ministers in Singapore issued a statement that did not name China but said that “land reclamations and activities in the area . . . have eroded trust and confidence, increased tensions and may undermine peace, security and stability in the region.” The Asean ministers resolved to expedite the code of conduct (CoC) on how to negotiate with China regarding overlapping maritime claims.“Asean’s concern on the Chinese build-up is right because Asean, as a regional bloc, wants to adhere to discussions pertaining to the code of conduct,” Roque said.“We cannot be not joining the call because the Philippines is one of those concerned in this campaign,” he added.Roque also disputed views that Manila is not among those insistent in pressing Beijing to speed up the CoC drafting. “We are not being too soft (on China) but we have an established policy on that. Number one, of course, is we are one with Asean in recognizing that this is a concern for all Asean countries. Particularly that of the freedom of navigation in the West Philippine Sea,” Roque said.“Our common concern is peace security and stability in one of the world’s busiest sea lanes,” he added.During Manila’s hosting of the Asean last year, President Duterte did not cite the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) ruling that nullified Beijing’s sweeping claim over nearly the entire South China Sea.It was the Philippine government that contested China’s nine-dash-line claim before the Hague court. China, however, refuses to recognize it.Apart from the Philippines, other Asean countries also have overlapping claims at the South China Sea including Vietnam, Malaysia and Brunei.Reclamation to continueChina in its known mouthpiece Global Times said Beijing is concentrating on civil and not military construction on islands in the South China Sea but insisted that the Chinese “will expand land reclamation.”“Most of the construction on islands in the South China Sea were completed in 2015 and the pace then slowed. Civilian facility construction is the major focus of the South China Sea islands building and the portion of defense deployment is relatively small,” Global Times quoted Chen Xiangmiao, a research fellow at the National Institute for the South China Sea.The size of some South China Sea islands will be further expanded in future through more dredging in the South China Sea region, Chen said.The relationship between China and other Southeast Asian countries, such as the Philippines, has becalmed in recent years, providing a golden opportunity for China to upgrade these areas, he said.China and the Philippines are enjoying good terms as President Rodrigo Duterte maintains a friendly policy toward China, Chen said. “But there is still some domestic pressure that urges Duterte to take a tough stance on China and the South China Sea issue,” Chen said.Foreign media like to hype China’s construction in the South China Sea as they try to make excuses to prevent China’s activities in this region, Zhuang Guotu, head of Xiamen University’s Southeast Asian Studies Center, told the Global Times.“China has the right to build whatever it needs within its territory,” Zhuang said.China’s military deployment in the South China Sea region was “not for military expansion,” but to defend its security and interests, he said.Zhuang and Chen warned the US is the biggest threat to stability in the South China Sea.“The US, Australia, Japan and other allies will constantly provoke China over this issue and that will incite other neighboring South China Sea countries to do the same,” Zhuang said.China’s construction projects in the region covered about 290,000 square meters in 2017, including new facilities for underground storage, administrative buildings and large radar, according to a report released in December on the nanhai.haiwainet.cn website run by the National Marine Data and Information Service and People’s Daily Overseas edition. No foreign vessels at BenhamThe Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has not monitored any foreign vessels at the Philippine Rise, formerly known as Benham Rise, during its latest patrol in the area. Lt. Col. Isagani Nato, AFP-Northern Luzon Command (Nolcom) spokesman, said that based on the latest patrol conducted by Nolcom troops, there was no presence of foreign ships at Philippine Rise.“As of now, we don’t have a report that there is presence (of foreign vessels) in Benham Rise,” said Nato.Earlier, Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol announced that President Duterte has banned foreign ships at the Philippine Rise and ordered the military to patrol the area.The announcement came following an uproar from government critics after the Duterte administration allowed the Chinese to conduct scientific research at the Philippine Rise.Nato, however, said that Nolcom is yet to receive official order regarding the matter.But Nato maintained that with or without the latest directive, Nolcom has regularly conducted air and maritime patrols along Philippine Rise.Apart from Nolcom, the Air Force and the Philippine Navy, Nato said that the Philippine Coast Guard, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) and the Philippine National Police-Maritime Group (PNP-MG) also conduct their own patrol in the area.He said the Nolcom uses air and naval assets of the Navy and the Air Force units under its jurisdiction.“We conduct our patrols regularly. It is a mandate of Nolcom forces so that is continuous with or without the directive from higher ups,” said Nato.According to Nato, Nolcom conducts three to four maritime and air patrol at Philippine Rise per month as part of the government efforts to secure the country’s maritime domain.ML ruling lauded, hitThe Supreme Court’s (SC) decision to uphold Mr. Duterte’s year-long martial law extension in Mindanao also drew mixed reactions.The High Court on Tuesday voted 10-5 junking militant groups’ petition and finding “sufficient factual basis” to extend martial law and suspend the privilege of wirt of habeas corpus in Mindanao until December 31, 2018.Roque welcomed the ruling saying that it affirms the need to continue protecting citizens from the threat of terrorist groups, primarily Islamic State (IS)-inspired fanatics.But for Left-leaning groups who petitioned the SC to lift martial law, the court decision opens up more crackdowns and human rights violations.The Palace official has insisted that human rights will be respected amid security operations.“The SC ruling underscores the unity of the whole government in its bid to defeat terrorism and prevent the spread in other parts of the country of DIWW and other like-minded local and foreign terrorist groups,” Roque said.“The majority of votes is a manifestation of confidence on law enforcement agencies that they shall, like they had been doing before, continue to protect our people, secure Mindanao, and pursue the bigger task of rehabilitation while upholding the rule of law, Human Rights, and International Humanitarian Law,” he added.Human rights watchdog Karapatan sees the contrary in the government’s motives, saying that the year-long military rule will boost attacks on the people.The continuous implementation of martial law in Mindanao will allow the unhampered massive rehabilitation in war-torn Marawi City and boost the security forces campaign to finish off the rebellion, the Department of National Defense (DND) said. In a statement, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said that the Supreme Court’s decision affirming the constitutionality of the one-year extension of martial law in Mindanao will definitely boost government efforts to rebuild Marawi City and address continuing rebellion.The defense chief welcomed the SC decision as a vote of confidence to the government security forces.“The DND – AFP is grateful for the trust and confidence of our public institutions and the support of the Filipino people,” said Lorenzana. Mario J. Mallari.....»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsJun 7th, 2018

$500M settlement in Nassar case won t be shared equally

By Ed White and David Eggert, Associated Press DETROIT (AP) — The $500 million settlement between Michigan State University and hundreds of Larry Nassar's victims will be divided up after weighing many factors, including the date and victim's age when the sexual assaults occurred and the impact it had on their lives, lawyers say. The school, where the sports doctor worked for nearly 20 years, announced Wednesday that it would set aside $425 million for 332 women and girls who say Nassar abused them and another $75 million to cover future claims. But it won't have a role in determining how much each victim will receive. That will likely fall to one or two former judges or experienced mediators who will be selected by lawyers to oversee the process, said John Manly, who represents roughly 200 victims in the worst sexual abuse case in sports history. "This can be wrapped up in four or five months," he predicted. Simple math says $425 million divided by 332 people would be $1.28 million each. But it's not "share and share alike," said attorney David Mittleman, whose Lansing-area firm represents 111 victims. Indeed, claims must be evaluated in many ways. Manly said some people could receive "substantially" more than $1.28 million while others get much less. Attorneys will also get a share of any award under agreements they have with clients. "The age of the abuse, the duration of the abuse," Manly said, listing the likely factors. "Treatment in the future and the past. Have you lost earnings? Are there things about a particular case that are aggravating or mitigating." Mittleman said the dates of the assaults will be important. Older abuse probably will be worth less because without the settlement, Michigan State could have been shielded by a statute of limitations. New York attorney Michael Barasch is not involved in the Nassar case but has represented hundreds of victims sexually abused by New York priests. He said a pool of money is "definitely the way to go." "You've got to have a sensible, systematic and transparent solution," Barasch said. "Who better than a fair mediator accepted by everybody? ... Some of these people are going to be disappointed — guaranteed. But I can tell you from my church abuse cases, the vast majority are so appreciative of having finality." Michigan State was accused of ignoring or dismissing complaints about Nassar, some as far back as the 1990s. The school had insisted that no one covered up assaults, although Nassar's boss was later charged with failing to properly supervise him and committing his own sexual misconduct. In a statement Thursday, his first since the settlement, Michigan State President John Engler apologized, calling Nassar an "evil doctor" whose assaults "shocked our campus and the nation." The former Michigan governor was hired as interim leader after Lou Anna Simon's sudden resignation in January. Michigan State hasn't disclosed how it will pay for the settlement besides leaning on insurance companies. Engler told reporters in Lansing on Thursday that he doesn't plan to ask state lawmakers for money. Dianne Byrum, a member of the school's governing board, said Michigan State likely would borrow money, tap savings, delay big projects and consider budget cuts. She said a tuition increase tied specifically to the Nassar case is unlikely. Nassar, 54, will be locked up for the rest of his life under three decades-long sentences for molesting athletes with his hands and possessing child pornography. He's at a federal prison in Arizona. In addition to working at Michigan State, Nassar worked with Indianapolis-based USA Gymnastics, which trains U.S. Olympians. His assaults were mostly committed in Michigan at his Lansing-area home, campus clinic and area gyms, but his accusers also said he molested them at a gymnastics-training ranch in Texas and at national and international competitions. The settlement applies only to Michigan State. Lawsuits are still pending against USA Gymnastics, the U.S. Olympic Committee and an elite gymnastics club in the Lansing-area. The deal surpasses the $100 million-plus paid by Penn State University to settle claims by at least 35 people who accused assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky of sexual abuse, though the Nassar agreement covers far more victims. ___ Eggert reported from Lansing......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 18th, 2018

This Week in NBA History: Cavs blow it up at the 2008 deadline

Prior to the 2018 NBA trade deadline, the Cleveland Cavaliers decided they were in need of a big-time shakeup. We all know now what happened back on February 9 (PHL time). In three trades, GM Koby Altman sent out Isaiah Thomas, Channing Frye, Iman Shumpert, Jae Crowder, Derrick Rose, and Dwyane Wade, getting back in exchange Jordan Clarkson, Larry Nance Jr., Rodney Hood, and George Hill (they also sent out their 2018 first round pick, a 2020 second-round pick via Miami, cash, and the draft rights to Dimitrios Agravanis). Initial reactions have been positive. The Cavaliers definitely were not going back to the Finals with the roster they had coming into the season. They were too old, didn't have enough shooting, and had severe chemistry problems. Not only did The Land upgrade at several positions of need, they got younger, and they didn't have to shed their coveted 2018 unprotected Brooklyn Nets first rounder. Obviously, they'll need to work on their chemistry now, and when Kevin Love returns to the lineup, but you can't help but feel their chances of making it to four straight Finals increased as a result of all their wheeling and dealing. Ten years ago, the Cavaliers found themselves in a similar situation. On February 21, 2008 (back when the trade deadline came after All-Star Weekend), the Cavaliers, the Chicago Bulls, and the Seattle Supersonics, agreed to a three-team trade that shook up their squads. Cleveland sent out Donyell Marshall and Ira Newble to the Supersonics, and shipped Shannon Brown, Drew Gooden, Larry Hughes, and Cedric Simmons to the Bulls. In exchange, Team LBJ welcomed Joe Smith, Ben Wallace, Wally Szczerbiak, and Delonte West (plus a 2009 second-round pick that later turned out to be...Danny Green!). Cavaliers press release The day before that trade deadline, the Cavaliers were 30-24, in fifth place in the East, and a whopping 12 games behind the newly-formed Big Three of the Boston Celtics (though they did beat them that same month, 114-113 on Feb. 5). The season prior, LeBron James and company made it to the NBA Finals, only to get swept by the San Antonio Spurs. Now, with Boston dominating, team management obviously felt they needed a little extra push if they were to make it back. Prior to the trade, Cleveland was running out a first-five of James, Hughes, Newble, Gooden, and Zydrunas Ilgauskas. Boobie Gibson, Damon Jones, and Marshall provided shooting off the bench, while Dwayne Jones and Anderson Varejao were extra muscle. Post-trade, the hope was that Wallace and Smith would boost their interior defense, while sprinkling in some much-needed veteran know-how. Delonte West was seen as a more dynamic, versatile running-mate to James, and Szczerbiak could further bolster their long-range shooting. Cleveland won their first game with the new additions (they edged the Washington Wizards in the game they played before the new additions had finished their physicals), thumping the Memphis Grizzlies 109-89. They dropped their next two though, versus the Milwaukee Bucks, and those aforementioned Celtics, before winding up with a 45-37 record, good for #4 in the East (though they went just 14-13 in the aftermath of the trade). In the Playoffs, Cleveland needed six games to hurdle the Wizards in round one, before running smack into the team they made the moves to counter: the Celtics. The two squads went back-and-forth, each winning on their respective courts, but with Game 7 at the TD Garden, it was the Celtics who emerged triumphant, via a 97-92 result. And we know of course that Boston then went on to win the 2008 NBA Championship. But back to 2018. After a spirited pair of wins prior to All-Star Weekend, Cleveland has now gone 1-2 after the breaking, losing to the John Wall-less Wizards and the San Antonio Spurs. There's still 23 games left to play though, and a lot can still happen, including, as previously mentioned, working Kevin Love back in. Suffice to say, things are always interesting in in Cleveland when LeBron James is involved. With a special talent like he is, general managers really do have to ensure they're creating a roster that can put him in the best position to go deep into the postseason. That's what happened in 2008, and that's what happened again this year. Now the question is, how far will they go? The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or ABS-CBN Sports......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 26th, 2018

Russian hackers who stole 160 million credit card numbers sentenced

NEW YORK, USA – A US judge sentenced a pair of Russians who led a massive hacking and data breach scheme to lengthy criminal sentences, the US Department of Justice announced Thursday. Vladimir Drinkman, 37, was sentenced to 12 years in prison, while Dmitriy Smilianets, was sentenced to over four ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsFeb 16th, 2018

SABAH IS OURS! ‘Malaysia tightens grip on mineral-rich island of Sulu sultanate’

MALAYSIA HAS tightened its grip on Sabah which is being claimed by the Sultanate of Sulu following a proposal – by a member of the Philippines’ 25-man consultative committee tasked with reviewing and proposing amendments to the Constitution – to include the mineral-rich island as the country’s 13th federal state. Former senator Aquilino Pimentel Jr made the proposal while Filipino lawmakers are preparing to amend the 1987 Constitution and shift from presidential to federal form of government. He said the Duterte administration should continue to push for the country’s claim to Sabah in a way acceptable to international laws. “There should be a way that is acceptable under international laws to assert our claim to Sabah. I think we can defer it a little bit more, but to say that we stop doing it is not in the context of my proposal,” he told ABS-CBN Television recently. He also wanted Scarborough and Spratlys – which is being claimed by China and other ASEAN countries as theirs – to be part of the federated states of the Philippines.  Pimentel has also proposed the following to form part of the federal states Northern Luzon, Central Luzon, Southern Luzon, Bicol, Eastern Visayas, Central Visayas, Western Visayas, Minparom, Northern Mindanao, Southern Mindanao, Bangsamoro and Metro Manila as its capital. “Eventually once we have asserted our sovereignty and rights over Sabah, we should include Sabah. Not only Sabah, but also Scarborough, Benham Rise, and Spratlys,” Pimentel said. According to a report by Channel News Asia, Kuala Lumpur has strongly rejected Pimentel’s proposal to include Sabah as a federal state of the Philippines. “Malaysia is aware of remarks made by Mr Aquilino Pimentel Jr, a member of the Philippines’ Consultative Committee, which appeared in the media on the claim on Sabah recently,” it said, citing Malaysian Foreign Minister Anifah Aman as saying in a press statement. “The Government of Malaysia reiterates its position that Malaysia does not recognise and will not entertain any claims by any party on Sabah. Sabah is recognised by the United Nations and the international community as part of Malaysia since the formation of the Federation on 16 September 1963,” Anifah said. “Therefore, statements such as these will only expose the ignorance of history and international law of those who make them, as well as potentially harming the excellent bilateral relations which Malaysia and the Philippines currently enjoy.” Death Sentence Just last month, Malaysia’s Supreme Court upheld the death sentence for 9 Filipinos who were charged with waging war against the Malaysian King during the 2013 assault on Lahad Datu in Sabah. The Filipinos have been identified as Julham Rashid, 70; Virgilio Nemar Patulada, 53; Salib Akhmad Emali, 65; Tani Lahad Dahi, 64; Basad Manuel, 42; Datu Amirbahar Hushin Kiram, 54; Atik Hussin Abu Bakar, 46; Al Wazir Osman, 62; and Ismail Yasin, 77. Chief Justice Md Raus Sharif said the January 15 decision of the five-man panel of the Federal Court was unanimous, according to reports by The Star and Asia News Network, adding, the panel agreed with the Court of Appeal that the death sentence was the most appropriate based on the findings of the facts of the case. The other judges were Chief Judge of Malaya Ahmad Maarop, Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak Richard Malanjun, and Justices Ramly Ali and Azahar Mohamed. Basad Manuel is the son of the Jamalul Kiram III, the self-proclaimed Sultan of Sulu, who died from multiple organ failure in Manila in 2013. The bloody incursion by some 200 followers of Kiram from the southern Philippines in February 2013 was inspired by the supposed sultan’s claims of historical dominion over Sabah. The two-month siege was the most serious security crisis faced by Malaysia in years, involving armed conflict between the Sultan’s loyal followers and the Malaysian armed forces sent to root them out. The panel also dismissed the prosecution’s appeal against the acquittal of 14 men on the charge of waging war against the King and terrorist-related offences linked to the intrusion from Feb 12 to April 10, 2013, the reports further said. Chief Justice Md Raus said the panel has no reason to decide otherwise and affirmed the decision by the Court of Appeal delivered last June. At the height of fighting between Kiram’s followers and security forces, Malaysia deployed armoured vehicles and combat helicopters, including naval boats in an effort to flush out the Filipinos on the oil-rich island being claimed by both sides. About a dozen armoured personnel vehicles arrived in the town of Lahad Datu to support ground troops hunting down at least 50 members of the Sultanate of Sulu headed by Raja Muda Agbimuddin, the sultan’s younger brother. The group intruded Sabah in February 2013 to exert claim over Sabah, citing historical and legal claims, but Malaysia rejected this and launched a massive assault on about 200 of the sultan’s men following a deadline for them to surrender peacefully. The assault by Malaysian jets and ground artilleries left at least 62 intruders dead, but the fighting between the two groups also killed and wounded 18 Malaysian policemen and soldiers. Malaysia arrested more than 300 Filipinos who are suspected of supporting or aiding Raja Muda Agbimuddin’s group under a strict anti-terrorism law. More than 2,000 Filipino Muslims have returned to Sulu and Tawi-Tawi provinces after fleeing Sabah in 2013 for fear they would be arrested in a massive crackdown launched by Malaysian on illegal immigrants and […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  mindanaoexaminerRelated NewsFeb 3rd, 2018

‘Freedom and Crime’ by Jun Ledesma

Letters From Davao:  AM NOT SURPRISED when some quarters are exploiting to the hilt the order of the Securities and Exchange Commission to shut down the operations of Rappler.The bannered story warns of the muzzling of the press. Rappler itself, quoting Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque, wrote that if Duterte wants to close the media establishment they could have just sent the military. Of course it is the usual Rappler’s furtive way of saying it which is very characteristic of this media outfit.  But this is not about press freedom. It is about media ownership which, under Philippine laws, should be 100% owned by Filipinos. For years since the inception of Rappler, the impression was that it is fully owned by Pinoys. There are Filipinos  with extra money to spare who invested money in Rappler in the hope that they can support an independent media outfit. As every body knew, the big media establishments are tools used by the wealthy and famous to protect their interest from political predators but they end up using the muscle of the press to either promote or destroy politicians and their adversaries.  Not until SEC ordered the closure of Rappler that it came out in the open that  the notorious ON OMIDYAR had wormed its way in and into the heart and brain of Rappler. The characters behind these outfits are shrewd but not wise enough their own disclosures in their PDRs gave them away. The Philippine Deposit Receipts which Rappler through its holding company issued explicitly granted ON OMIDYAR to have a say in the operations and business of Rappler.  Ma. Ressa’s attention was called by SEC on this critical item but it appears that she was not paying attention or might have thought she can deal with the problem anyway.  Looks like she sat on the problem that even the  members of the 5-man Commission who, except for one,  are all appointees of ex-Pres. Noynoy Aquino have reach a point of decision.  As the story unravels, again it showed that there was an attempt to correct the provisions in the PDRs by submitting ON OMIDYAR’s waiver on its right to intrude into the conduct of business of Rappler. Again Rappler showed its cavalier attitude, it submitted the waiver document which was not even notarized.  Obviously even the Aquino-controlled SEC cannot take the lackadaisical attention of Ma. Ressa. It revoked the SEC registration of Rappler.  Even as it had been axed, Ressa and Pia Ranada fought back, the later calling Pres. Rodrigo Duterte names as if they reign supreme and they alone know what freedom of the press means. To add to her dramatics Pia intoned  that she is prepared to go to prison for exercising her rights of free expression. She forgot that It was Duterte who, early in his presidency signed an EO on Freedom of Information.  Ressa and Ranada wailed their press freedom had been curtailed. But such is not the case. Every word that they say saw print and broadcasted in nearly 2,000 media outlets in the Philippines and not counting the social media. The revocation of Rappler’s permit is not about freedom of the press but its violation of the constitution which succinctly underlines that media establishment must be 100% Filipino owned.   In hindsight the Duterte government was even too kind to Rappler even as it was the leading media organization that demonize Duterte in every turn. I had seriously doubted its overtures that brag it stands for truth and fairness. During the senate hearing on extra-judicial killing allegedly carried out by the Davao Death Squad which Sen. Leila De Lima and Sen. Antonio Trillanes claimed was organized by Duterte, Rappler simply swallowed what witnesses Matobato and Lascanas said.  In 2009 when as CHR Chair De Lima conducted a probe on EJK the number of victims she alleged then was less than 300. The probe lasted for months with nary a piece of evidence was found to indict Mayor Duterte. She pursued her quest to pin Digong when she became Justice Secretary but again she failed. When she became senator she became even more aggressive she placed a bungling Matobato in the witness stand. But Matobato was flawless in his delivery when he was interviewed by Time Magazine. It was unmistakable he was reading from an idiot’s card. He proudly state that as member of DDS he killed and buried more than 200 persons in an abandoned quarry. Yet he cannot find the grave of his victims.     When it was the turn of Lascanas to testify in the senate inquiry, he casually said that they buried more than 2,000 EJK victims in the same quarry.  Between the two perjured witness they  confessed to the  killing of over 2,200 victims of EJK which they buried, they said, in the abandoned quarry. It is simply a classic fantasy. A manslaughter of such magnitude cannot escape notice especially when that narrow piece of land is just about four kilometers from city hall and so adjacent to a number of housing subdivisions. Nevertheless, if they were so sure then why cannot they find a single piece of viable evidence.   In all these occasions Rappler gave the hearings liberal space and took the testimonies of the witnesses as the biblical truths. Both Rappler and Time Magazine adopted exactly the same flawed statistics which in their recent count had reached 13,000 EJK victims. I am based in Davao and frankly I am amazed […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  mindanaoexaminerRelated NewsJan 27th, 2018

Vietnam rejects anti-China activist appeal

HANOI, Vietnam – A Vietnamese court on Friday, December 22, rejected the appeal of a dissident sentenced to 9 years for anti-state propaganda, capping a grim year for activists in the one-party state. Vietnam's communist government has been accused of intensifying a crackdown on its critics in 2017, jailing at ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsDec 22nd, 2017

China jails 13 Taiwanese for telecoms fraud

A court in Beijing on Thursday handed down sentences of up to 15 years in jail to 33 people for telecoms fraud, including 13 from Taiwan who had been deported from Kenya, a case that infuriated Taiwan......»»

Category: newsSource:  interaksyonRelated NewsDec 21st, 2017

Al Jazeera’s Mahmoud Hussein detained for one year – Al Jazeera

When his daughter Hagar graduated from high school, Mahmoud Hussein clipped articles from newspapers about universities from the confines of his prison cell. He wanted to be there for Hagar as she was about to embark on a new journey – higher education, and inform her of the best choices. “When I visited, I found that he’d made a list of universities that are suitable for her,” says Zahra Hussein, Hagar’s sister. At 23 years old, Zahra is the second oldest of Hussein’s nine children. Wednesday marks one year since Egypt arrested the Al Jazeera journalist, who is now 51 years old having celebrated a recent birthday at Cairo’s Tora prison. To date, Hussein has not been formally charged. “We’re all unable to adjust,” says Zahra. “The house is dead. Dad is under arrest, so there is no happiness coming in.”  An Egyptian national who was based in Qatar, Hussein was stopped and questioned for 15 hours by authorities, after travelling to Cairo on holiday last December 20.  He was accused of “incitement against state institutions and broadcasting false news with the aim of spreading chaos”, allegations he, his lawyers and Al Jazeera strongly deny. He is in poor physical and mental condition and is being denied adequate medical treatment. After he fractured his arm last summer, officials refused to let Hussein undergo surgery or have his cast changed. Human rights groups say there are currently around 60,000 political prisoners in Egypt, many of whom have disappeared. There are at least 20 journalists currently languishing in Egyptian prisons, according to a new report from the Committee to Protect Journalists. “I go through many phases of depression, and then I feel that I can’t continue,” says Zahra, who has adopted the role of family caretaker since her father’s arrest. As Hussein was being branded a “terrorist who works for Al Jazeera” by Egypt’s media, her bosses sacked her, saying they could not risk keeping her employed. She now works from home as a freelance translator. “I never wanted to be placed in this terrifying situation. I’ve always had this comforting idea that dad’s here. If any problem arises, dad will solve it.”  As part of his imprisonment, Hussein spent around three months in solitary confinement before being moved to a cell with other prisoners.   At the time of his arrest, Sherif Mansour of CPJ said: “Egyptian authorities are waging a systematic campaign against Al Jazeera, consisting of arbitrary arrest, censorship, and systematic harassment.” Al Jazeera Media Network has said it “rejects all the baseless allegations against Hussein, and condemns the unfair detention, in addition to obtaining false confessions by force. Furthermore, the network holds the Egyptian authorities responsible for Hussein’s safety and well-being”. Hussein is the oldest of nine siblings and hails from a village within the Giza governorate. The first member of his family to attend school, he has two degrees from Cairo University – one in political science, and another in law. “I loved school very much,” he told Al Jazeera in a March 2016 interview for an internal staff magazine. “I used to be top of my class through high school.” In 1988, Hussein started his journalism career as politics editor with the Cairo-based Sawt al-Arab Radio (Voice of Arabs Radio). He later became a broadcaster at the station.   During his years in radio, he also worked for several research centres in Egypt. He joined the state-run Nile TV in 1997 as a political affairs correspondent, before later being promoted as the channel’s head of correspondents.   During his years in radio, he also worked for several research centres in Egypt. He joined the state-run Nile TV in 1997 as a political affairs correspondent, before later being promoted as the channel’s head of correspondents. He spent years in Palestine where he interviewed Yasser Arafat, former chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), and covered major events such as Israel’s withdrawal from the Gaza Strip in 2006.  He then worked with several Arabic news channels, eventually becoming Sudan TV’s Cairo bureau chief. During those years, Hussein also taught at the Radio and Television Institute in Cairo, giving courses on news production and editing.  In 2010, Hussein joined Al Jazeera’s Cairo bureau as a correspondent, after freelancing for the network. He covered Egypt’s 2011 revolution which toppled former President Hosni Mubarak and the events that followed, up until the closing of Al Jazeera’s Cairo bureau in 2013. He then moved to Al Jazeera’s headquarters in Doha, where he worked as a news producer. Hussein is someone “who knows how news is made”, says Majed Khedr, his manager in Doha. Sitting in Al Jazeera Arabic’s bustling newsroom, Khedr remembers Hussein’s ability to lighten the mood in a stressful work environment. “What is unique about Mahmoud is his fun spirit. He has a good sense of humour,” Khedr says. “He always brought food, and it was usually Egyptian food …This was Mahmoud’s spirit, God bless him.  “His name is still in our daily work schedule because we are still convinced he is with us.” Anas Zaki, a news editor at Al Jazeera Arabic, described Hussein as someone who “was always there for his friends”. The pair studied at university together and have been friends for more than 30 years. If someone called Hussein in distress late at night, he would rush to their house and “never make him feel like he sacrificed his sleep or comfort”, Zaki says. […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  mindanaoexaminerRelated NewsDec 20th, 2017

MVP name drops Ravena brothers, Ricci, and Pogoy for 2023 Gilas team

With the Philippines being the main host of the 2023 FIBA World Cup, the search is on for the next wave of Gilas Pilipinas stars. Because let's face it, the current core of the team might be too old to play six years from now and their last stand, realistically, is going to be the 2019 FIBA World Cup and/or the 2020 Olympics. That's why the national team is fighting hard to make the 2019 tournament in China. But still, it's never too early to plan for the future and Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas President Manny V. Pangilinan, in his speech Thursday celebrating the country's win to take the hosting rights of the 2023 World Cup, name-dropped a handful of players that might make up the core of Gilas during that time. MVP mentions Kiefer, Thirdy, Ricci, and RR Pogoy as possible Gilas Pilipinas players for 2023. Then again, he also said that he's no coach #PlayLouderIn2023 | @abscbnsports — Paul Kennedy Lintag (@paullintag8) December 14, 2017 All players mentioned will be in that 26-32 year-old range or basically the peak years of a young basketball player. National team head coach Chot Reyes, adding to the statements of his boss, says that that's the most logical way to go about the 2023 lineup. However, he's not taking out players who are younger still. "As we develop the players, we develop as well the conditions to make the team at its strongest in 2023. Who they are, we still have to sit down -- coach Jong is there and the rest of the national team coaches -- and identify players," Reyes said. "Pero like MVP said, its most likely players who are between 26 and 32 years old in 2023. We're not discounting an exception of 22-, 23-year-olds, of course, pero most probably its within that [range]," he added. More importantly though, Reyes mentioned the need for the national team to make the program as early as now. Continuity and unity is key he says. "It's going to be a difficult task but we have to seek the assistance of all the stakeholders in basketball," he said. "Not only the PBA, but the commercial leagues -- even the UAAP and the college leagues. We will need to plan a calendar now pa lang and not wait until 2021 or 2022 to put that calendar together. Dapat ngayon pa lang may plano na tayo," Reyes added.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 14th, 2017

Jordan Clarkson celebrates Philippines World Cup hosting

Play Louder in 2023 is a success. On Saturday, FIBA awarded the Philippines the hosting rights for the 2023 World Cup. The country will host together with Japan and Indonesia. Before and after the announcement, overwhelming support poured on social media for the Philippines, and a certain someone didn't forget to give a meaningful shoutout on Facebook. Los Angeles Lakers combo guard Jordan Clarkson, a guy many want to see play for Gilas Pilipinas, made sure to congratulate his home country for the victory. Clarkson will be a grizzled veteran by the time the 2023 World Cup rolls around. Maybe by then, he actually leads Gilas Pilipinas to battle. We'll see in six years.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 10th, 2017