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Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman sentenced to life in US prison

Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman sentenced to life in US prison Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman was sentenced to life behind bars in a U.S. prison, a federal judge in Brooklyn decided Wednesday. Guzman, 62, was convicted in February of charges that mandate life in prison, proving he was "a ruthless and bloodthirsty leader of the Sinaloa Cartel," federal prosecutors in Brooklyn said in a court filing. "The horrific nature and circumstances of the defendant's offense, his history and characteristics and the fact that the defendant committed some of the most serious crimes under federal law make a life sentence warranted," prosecutors wrote.

Ocasio-Cortez on Trump's attack: 'There is no bottom to the barrel of vitriol'

Ocasio-Cortez on Trump's attack: 'There is no bottom to the barrel of vitriol' As the president continued his attack against four Democratic congresswomen of color, the self-proclaimed "squad" say that they will not be distracted by him.

Suit: Poor monitoring enabled Texas inmate to blind himself

Suit: Poor monitoring enabled Texas inmate to blind himself A Houston man alleges in a federal lawsuit that the state psychiatric prison where he was held was deliberately understaffed and that this prevented anyone from stopping him from using a plastic spoon to blind himself during a psychiatric episode. The Houston Chronicle reports that Miguel Carrera leveled the accusation in an amended complaint filed Monday. Carrera says he's had mental health problems for years and that while being held at an East Texas psychiatric prison in 2017 for an assault conviction, staff kept him undermedicated and didn't properly monitor him even though he had threatened to harm himself.

Reports: Plane had engine trouble before landing on beach

Reports: Plane had engine trouble before landing on beach Police in Maryland say the pilot of a small plane told them he was experiencing engine trouble before he made an emergency landing in the shallow ocean waters of a Maryland beach. News outlets quote Ocean City police as saying in a news release that 23-year-old Trevor H. Deihl took off in his Cessna plane from Reedville, Virginia, on Tuesday for a flight to the Ocean City Airport.

Eric Garner's mother speaks out on anniversary of his death

Eric Garner's mother speaks out on anniversary of his death Eric Garner's mother, speaking Wednesday on the five-year anniversary of his chokehold death, urged the New York City police commissioner to fire the officer involved. "We've been failed by every other source," Gwen Carr said on CBS. Speaking later in a radio interview, Mayor Bill de Blasio said, "Everyone gets due process.

UPDATE 1-Boris Johnson smashes record for most money raised by UK politician

UPDATE 1-Boris Johnson smashes record for most money raised by UK politician Boris Johnson has broken the record for the most money raised by a British politician in his bid to become prime minister, winning the backing of eurosceptic financiers after hardening his Brexit stance with a "do or die" pledge. This has helped Johnson surpass the previous fundraising record set by the former foreign minister David Miliband who raised 627,000 pounds for his bid to lead the Labour Party in 2010.

As housing market wavers, brokers strategize to get buyers

As housing market wavers, brokers strategize to get buyers The persistently slow housing market has Debra Goodwin creating cooking videos to try to sell a house. Glenn Phillips finds himself explaining to sellers the reasons why they might have to take a loss on their homes. Real estate agents have developed new strategies as they contend with a housing market that still hasn't fully recovered from the crash that began in 2006.

NC firm fires worker over invoice for 'poka honas'

NC firm fires worker over invoice for 'poka honas' A Valvoline Instant Oil Change center in North Carolina has fired a worker over an invoice that called a customer "poka honas," an apparent reference to Pocahontas. The Asheville Citizen Times reports the business's invoice shows the customer's address as Raccoon Trail, a street that doesn't exist in Asheville. A woman who says she's a friend of the customer posted the invoice on social media.

UPDATE 1-France seeks trade, climate or other top EU job - official

UPDATE 1-France seeks trade, climate or other top EU job - official France is eyeing a "strong economic portfolio" in the new European Commission such as trade or overseeing climate policy, a French official said on Wednesday. Following her confirmation by the European Parliament, European Commission president-elect Ursula von der Leyen will soon have to name a new college of commissioners, with each European country vying for influential jobs. Discussions on Commission appointments to be made by the new president will begin within days, said the French official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Chinese, Russian cyber watchdogs meet in Moscow

Chinese, Russian cyber watchdogs meet in Moscow A delegation from the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC), which oversees national cyber policy, met officials at Russia's state communications watchdog in Moscow on Wednesday, the Russian regulator said. Critics have accused Russia's authorities of trying to implement creeping China-style Internet curbs. The presence of the Chinese delegation in Moscow has not previously been reported.

Latest hot spell set to deepen drought pain in France

Latest hot spell set to deepen drought pain in France Hot weather in France next week is expected to prolong drought conditions that have impacted several sectors including nuclear power generation and farming, and led to restrictions on water use in 61 administrative regions. The hot weather and lack of rainfall throughout the year have led to very low levels of groundwater, which contributes to the volume and flow of rivers, said Violaine Bault, hydrologist at French Geological Survey BRGM. When groundwater decreases and there is no rainfall, rivers dry up.

Power-short Zimbabwe removes barriers to solar energy expansion

Power-short Zimbabwe removes barriers to solar energy expansion Power-short Zimbabwe has removed import duties on solar-energy-related products, from batteries to cables, and mandated that all new construction in the country include solar systems, government officials said. To deal with power shortages, in part as repeated droughts hits hydropower, the country will now "promote the importation (and) local production of solar equipment and the use of solar power as an alternative energy source," Monica Mutsvangwa, the country's information minister, said Tuesday. Zimbabwe's government increasingly has called for expansion of renewable energy to meet power shortages, but a lack of effective coordination in policies has stood in the way, energy experts said.

UPDATE 1-After two escapes, 'El Chapo' may go to Supermax prison to avoid a third

UPDATE 1-After two escapes, 'El Chapo' may go to Supermax prison to avoid a third Joaquin Guzman, the convicted Mexican drug lord known as El Chapo, has escaped twice from maximum-security prisons in Mexico, once by digging a mile-long tunnel from his cell. ADX Florence's current roster of about 376 inmates reads like a who's who of notorious criminals.

UPDATE 1-Millions stranded in India as early monsoon downpours bring flood havoc

UPDATE 1-Millions stranded in India as early monsoon downpours bring flood havoc Millions of people are stranded by flooding in northeast India with concern growing about food and water supplies, and officials said on Wednesday that water levels of a major river were rising even further. At least 5.8 million people have been displaced - a million more than on Monday - and some 30 have died in the past two weeks in the tea-growing state of Assam due to the monsoon rains, local government officials said. "The water level of the Brahmaputra and its tributaries have started showing a rising trend since midday and flowing above the danger mark in at least 10 places," an Assam Disaster Management Authority official said.

Cannonball highlights how close Napoleon came to victory at Waterloo

Cannonball highlights how close Napoleon came to victory at Waterloo A cannonball discovered this week by archaeologists provides a further indication of how close Napoleon Bonaparte came to winning the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. The 3 kilogram (6-pound), rusty cannonball was found on Monday near the site of a field hospital about 600 meters behind Anglo-Allied lines on the battlefield in Belgium. Tony Pollard, the head archaeologist at the site, told Reuters Television he believed it was fired by the French army, another sign of near Napoleon's troops came to victory in the battle described by the Duke of Wellington as a close-run thing.

Woodstock 50 festival unlikely as town denies appeal, organizers 'disappointed'

Woodstock 50 festival unlikely as town denies appeal, organizers 'disappointed' Woodstock 50 festival unlikely as town denies appeal, organizers 'disappointed' originally appeared on goodmorningamerica.comThe bad news just won't stop for Woodstock 50 organizers. They just lost their appeal to hold their planned event at Vernon Downs racetrack in Vernon, New York.Town officials initially denied the request last week but gave promoters five days to appeal that decision.However, Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente Jr. ...

UPDATE 1-South African corruption inquiry adjourns after Zuma's lawyers say questioning unfair

UPDATE 1-South African corruption inquiry adjourns after Zuma's lawyers say questioning unfair A South African judge adjourned until Friday morning a public inquiry into state corruption, after lawyers for former President Jacob Zuma said he was being questioned unfairly. The inquiry is looking into allegations that Zuma, ousted by the ruling African National Congress (ANC) party in February 2018, allowed cronies to plunder state resources and influence senior appointments during his nine years in power. Zuma's lawyers have argued that the inquiry's lawyers should not cross-examine the former president because they say evidence given by other witnesses does not directly implicate Zuma in corruption and fraud.

Boris Johnson smashes record for most money raised by UK politician

Boris Johnson smashes record for most money raised by UK politician Boris Johnson has broken the record for the most money raised by a British politician in his bid to become prime minister, winning the backing of eurosceptic financiers after hardening his Brexit stance with a "do or die" pledge. Financiers and businessmen who funded the campaign to leave the European Union are among the donors who have poured hundreds of thousands of pounds into Johnson's campaign.

Sanders to urge 2020 rivals to reject health insurance industry donations

Sanders to urge 2020 rivals to reject health insurance industry donations U.S. presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, pushing an ambitious "Medicare for All" health plan that has split Democratic White House contenders, will urge his rivals on Wednesday to reject campaign donations from the health insurance and pharmaceutical industries. Fundamental healthcare reforms will be impossible if politicians are indebted to the industry, according to an excerpt of a speech Sanders will deliver later on Wednesday. "If we are going to break the stranglehold of corporate interests over the healthcare needs of the American people, we have got to confront a Washington culture that has let this go on for far too long," Sanders will say.

House where Manson followers murdered 2 is on the market

House where Manson followers murdered 2 is on the market One of the Los Angeles houses where followers of Charles Manson committed notorious murders in 1969 is for sale. The home in the hilly Los Feliz district is where Leno and Rosemary LaBianca were slain the night after actress Sharon Tate and four others were murdered were murdered by Manson followers in Benedict Canyon. Redfin listing agent Robert Giambalvo tells the Los Angeles Times the two-bedroom home is priced at $1.98 million.

FOREX-Dollar holds steady, pound hits 27-month low

FOREX-Dollar holds steady, pound hits 27-month low The greenback has strengthened since late June in response to better-than-expected data on U.S. jobs, inflation and retail sales. Wednesday's data on euro zone consumer price inflation, which was revised up to 1.3% year-on-year in June, failed to boost the euro.

US STOCKS-Wall St flat as railroads slide after CSX signals trade impact

US STOCKS-Wall St flat as railroads slide after CSX signals trade impact U.S. stocks treaded water on Wednesday as trade-related weakness hurt CSX Corp's profit, leading to a decline in railroad stocks and offsetting gains in shares of Abbott and Qualcomm. Shares of CSX recorded the steepest fall on the benchmark index, sliding 8.3% after the company posted lower-than-expected quarterly profit and cut its full-year revenue forecast. Rivals Union Pacific Corp slipped 5.3% and Kansas City Southern fell 4%.

UK PM May says compromise deal remains best way to prevent Iran getting nuclear weapon

UK PM May says compromise deal remains best way to prevent Iran getting nuclear weapon A compromise deal remains the best way to prevent Iran acquiring a nuclear weapon, British Prime Minister Theresa May said on Wednesday. The U.N. nuclear watchdog has confirmed that Iran earlier this month violated the 2015 accord, and Iran's supreme leader on Tuesday said Tehran would keep removing restraints on its nuclear activity in the deal. In her last major speech before stepping down next week, May said the nuclear deal must be protected "whatever its challenges".

US and Italian police arrest 19 alleged mafiosi as organised crime clan tries to reclaim old turf in Sicily

US and Italian police arrest 19 alleged mafiosi as organised crime clan tries to reclaim old turf in Sicily New York's notorious Gambino family and alleged mafia dons in Sicily were targeted in a series of raids on Wednesday carried out by more than 200 officers from the FBI and the Italian police. The coordinated operation was an aggressive move against the crime families' hopes of re-establishing their presence on Sicily, from where they fled during a vicious war between rival clans in the 1980s. The war was waged by Salvatore "Toto" Riina, a murderous boss of bosses nicknamed The Beast for his brutality, who was arrested in 1993 and died behind bars in 2017. He had waged a vendetta against rivals in the Inzerillo family, forcing many of them into exile in the US. Since Riina's arrest and imprisonment, the Inzerillos had been trying to reclaim their old turf in and around Palermo, in league with the Gambino family of New York, police said. "The investigation has shown the strong bond established between Cosa Nostra (in) Palermo and US organised crime, with particular reference to the powerful Gambino crime family of New York," a police statement said. Nineteen people were arrested in the joint operation, codenamed "New Connection", which was conducted by Italian anti-mafia police and their counterparts from the FBI. Thomas Gambino, one of 19 people arrested in the operation, escorted by an FBI officer and an Italian detective Credit: AFP They included Francesco and Tommaso Inzerillo, respectively the brother and cousin of Totuccio Inzerillo, a mafia don who was gunned down with a Kalashnikov assault rifle on the orders of Toto Riina in the 1980s. Also arrested was Salvatore Gambino, not a member of the American Gambino clan but the mayor of the town of Torretta near Palermo. He is charged with mafia association. "Didn't we win the election for you?" he was asked by another one of the arrested men, Simone Zito, an Italian who was living in the US, according to a conversation wire-tapped by police. Addresses in New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia were raided by the FBI. Video surveillance released by the police showed Thomas Gambino, the son of alleged mobster Joseph Gambino, discussing the sale of a plot of land in the Dominican Republic. "The Gambino and Inzerillo families brought to their knees by the forces of law and order," Nicola Morra, the president of Italy's parliamentary anti-mafia commission, wrote on Twitter. "We can defeat the mafia." Those arrested will be charged with crimes ranging from mafia association to fraud and aggravated extortion. Police confiscated assets and businesses worth around €3 million. The alleged Mafiosi were involved in a wide range of illicit businesses, from online betting to whole food supplies, investigators said. The operation is a blow to attempts by the Inzerillo family, with the backing of the Gambinos, to re-establish themselves in Sicily after being chased out in the 1980s. "The Inzerillos were ethnically cleansed out of Palermo by Riina at that time. The ones who were not murdered were given literally minutes to get out," said John Dickie, professor of Italian studies at University College London and the author of Mafia Republic - Italy's Criminal Curse. Alleged links between Cosa Nostra and the Gambino family go back a long time. "These trans-Atlantic links have been going on for decades," said Prof Dickie. "The Gambinos and the Inzerettos come from adjacent territories in Sicily. They're inter-related. Mafiosi from one side of the Atlantic will cross to the other side if they are being pursued by the authorities or their enemies." The Gambinos are one of five Italian-American mafia clans based in New York. Salvatore 'Toto' Riina launched a vicious clan war in Sicily in the 1980s Credit: AP The head of the family, Francesco "Franky Boy" Cali, was gunned down in a drive-by shooting in front of his mansion in Staten Island in March. He was married to Rosaria Inzerillo, a relative of the Inzerillo clan in Sicily. In May it was alleged that the Gambino crime family sent an explosives expert to Sicily to help Cosa Nostra blow up Giovanni Falcone, a crusading anti-mafia investigator, in the 1990s. A mafia "pentito" or turncoat told Italian investigators that the Sicilian mafia received training with the bomb and its remote-controlled detonator from an American "man of honour" sent from New York by John Gotti, the then head of the Gambino family. Gotti died of natural causes in 2017 at the age of 77. Falcone was murdered because he had managed to put so many Mafiosi behind bars during a series of maxi-trials.

EU takes further step against Poland over judicial reforms

EU takes further step against Poland over judicial reforms The European Union has given Poland's government two months to reverse new disciplinary regulations the bloc says undermine the independence of the country's judges. Wednesday's notice from the European Commission, which is the EU's executive, is seen as a step toward sending the case to the European Court of Justice in what would be an aggravation of the dispute. In April, the commission requested explanations from Poland on the 2017 law that introduced disciplinary measures for judges.

Sanders to urge 2020 rivals to reject health insurance industry donations

Sanders to urge 2020 rivals to reject health insurance industry donations U.S. presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, pushing an ambitious "Medicare for All" health plan that has split Democratic White House contenders, will urge his rivals on Wednesday to reject campaign donations from the health insurance and pharmaceutical industries. Fundamental healthcare reforms will be impossible if politicians are indebted to the industry, according to an excerpt of a speech Sanders will deliver later on Wednesday. "If we are going to break the stranglehold of corporate interests over the healthcare needs of the American people, we have got to confront a Washington culture that has let this go on for far too long," Sanders will say.

Cannonball highlights how close Napoleon came to victory at Waterloo

Cannonball highlights how close Napoleon came to victory at Waterloo A cannonball discovered this week by archaeologists provides a further indication of how close Napoleon Bonaparte came to winning the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. The 3 kilogramme (6-pound), rusty cannonball was found on Monday near the site of a field hospital about 600 metres behind Anglo-Allied lines on the battlefield in Belgium. Tony Pollard, the head archaeologist at the site, told Reuters Television he believed it was fired by the French army, another sign of near Napoleon's troops came to victory in the battle described by the Duke of Wellington as a close-run thing.

The Latest: De Blasio says officer entitled to due process

The Latest: De Blasio says officer entitled to due process The Latest on the U.S. Justice Department's decision not to prosecute the officer involved in Eric Garner's death. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says the officer who placed a chokehold on Eric Garner exactly five years ago is entitled to due process under state law. De Blasio said Wednesday the decision whether to fire Officer Daniel Pantaleo (pan-tuh-LAY'-oh) is up to Police Commissioner James O'Neill.

Ukraine says driver of missile that shot down plane has been held for two years

Ukraine says driver of missile that shot down plane has been held for two years Ukraine said on Wednesday that it has been holding the driver of the trailer carrying the missile that shot down a Malaysian airliner in 2014, saying he had captured two years ago and was now serving a sentence in Ukraine. Malaysia Airlines Flight MH-17 from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur was shot out of the sky over eastern Ukraine during a rebellion by Russian-backed separatists, killing all 298 people on board. A Dutch-led team of investigators has blamed Russia for supplying the surface-to-air missile that shot it down.

Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman sentenced to life in prison

Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman sentenced to life in prison Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman has been sentenced to life in prison plus 30 years by a judge in New York. The 62-year-old was found guilty in February of drug trafficking, after an 11-week trial that gripped the US and Mexico. A stream of infamous traffickers, cartel hitmen and mistresses were brought before the jury to testify that Guzman was one of the most powerful drug kingpins the world has ever known. His defence team insisted that he had been framed, and the real cartel leader was his colleague Ismael Zambada Garcia, known as El Mayo. Guzman's lawyer, Jeffrey Lichtman, described Guzman as no more than "a scapegoat", and that El Mayo wielded the real power, repeatedly paying off a "completely corrupt" Mexican government, including top officials like former presidents Enrique Peña Nieto and Felipe Calderon. Emma Coronel, Guzman's wife, arriving at court during his trial Before he was sentenced, Guzman, complained about the conditions of his confinement and told the judge he was denied a fair trial. He said US District Judge Brian Cogan failed to thoroughly investigate claims of juror misconduct. "My case was stained and you denied me a fair trial when the whole world was watching," Guzman said in court through an interpreter. "When I was extradited to the United States, I expected to have a fair trial, but what happened was exactly the opposite." He is expected to now be moved from Manhattan to the Supermax prison in Colorado - a facility known as the toughest in the US. Guzman famously escaped from high-security Mexican prisons twice - once hiding in a laundry cart, and once digging a mile-long tunnel under his cell. Guzman has been largely cut off from the outside world since his extradition in 2017, on the last day of Barack Obama's presidency. Wary of his history of escaping from Mexican prisons, US authorities have kept him in solitary confinement at a Manhattan jail and under close guard at his appearances at the Brooklyn courthouse where his case unfolded. Prosecutors will now begin hunting for the $12.7 billion they have ordered Guzman to forfeit.

British police say Manchester bomber's brother arrested in UK after extradition

British police say Manchester bomber's brother arrested in UK after extradition British police said they had arrested the brother of a suicide bomber following his extradition to London from Libya, on suspicion of helping him plan the deadly 2017 arena attack in the northern city of Manchester. Hashem Abedi, 22, was detained after he landed at a London airport on Wednesday and will appear at Westminster Magistrates Court, though police did not specify when. Salman Abedi blew himself up at the end of a show by U.S. singer Ariana Grande at the Manchester Arena, killing 22 people and injuring more than 500.

UPDATE 2-Boeing to spend $50 million to support 737 MAX crash victim families

UPDATE 2-Boeing to spend $50 million to support 737 MAX crash victim families Boeing Co said on Wednesday it will dedicate half of a $100 million fund it created to address two deadly crashes of its 737 MAX planes to financial relief for the families of those killed, with compensation expert Ken Feinberg hired by the world's largest plane maker to oversee the distribution. The announcement of Feinberg's hiring came minutes before the start of a U.S. House of Representatives hearing that featured dramatic testimony by Paul Njoroge, a father who lost three children, his wife and mother-in-law in a 737 MAX Ethiopian Air crash in March. Feinberg told Reuters his team will "start immediately drafting a claims protocol for those eligible," with the first meeting with Chicago-based Boeing later this week in Washington.

Scarlett Keeling: Man convicted of raping and killing UK teenager in Goa

Scarlett Keeling: Man convicted of raping and killing UK teenager in Goa An Indian court has convicted a beach shack worker for raping and murdering a British teenager from Devon in 2008 in Goa, a popular tourist destination on the country's south west coast. The Goa bench of the Bombay High court on Wednesday held Samson D'Souza, 36, guilty on all five counts of drugging, raping and murdering 15-year old Scarlett Keeling on north Goa's Anjuna beach, after she had attended a belated Valentine's Day party over 11 years ago. But a second man, Placido Carvalho, similarly accused of leaving Scarlett to die after drugging and sexually abusing her has been acquitted. Both men, who had worked at the Curlies' beach shack patronised by foreign tourists in Anjuna, were the last to be seen with Scarlett before she died. The High Court was hearing an appeal filed by India's Central Bureau of Investigation or CBI against the acquittal of the two men by a children's court in Goa in 2016. Scarlett's bruised and half-naked body was found on Anjuna beach and a post-mortem revealed a cocktail of drugs including ecstasy, cocaine and LSD in her system. Fiona Mackeown, Scarlett's mother, photographed next to her daughter's grave Credit: Roy Riley The Goa police initially sought to close the case as an accidental drowning of a 'druggie' tourist, but the fierce campaign by Scarlett's mother Fiona MacKeown and pressure from local and foreign media outlets led to the case being handed over to the federal CBI. A second post-mortem proved that the teenager had indeed been drugged and raped and further investigations led to D'Souza and Carvalho being arrested and charged with rape and culpable homicide. However, in 2016 a local court in Goa acquitted them both, following which the CBI went in appeal to the Bombay High Court around two years ago.     "It's been eight years of agony," Mrs Mackeown said after the acquittal verdict by the Goa court. "India's entire judicial system has let me down." Foreign tourists annually flock to Goa's beaches. In 2017, Danielle McLaughlin, a 27-year old Irish national was attacked and killed in Goa. Her alleged killer was arrested and charged soon after, his trial continues with little idea of when it is likely to conclude. "Families of several victims like Scarlett have been known to simply walk away exhausted by India's slow and inefficient judicial processes" said New Delhi criminal lawyer Malavika Rajkotia.  It's also hugely expensive for them to pursue the cases by travelling frequently to India from their countries, she added.   ENDS.

El Chapo: Who is the Mexican drug baron and Sinaloa cartel kingpin and how was he brought to justice?

El Chapo: Who is the Mexican drug baron and Sinaloa cartel kingpin and how was he brought to justice? Joaquin Archivaldo Guzman Loera, better known as El Chapo ("Shorty"), has been sentenced to life plus 30 years in prison by a US federal judge. The Mexican drug baron founded the notorious Sinaloa cartel in 1989 and picked up where Colombia's Pablo Escobar left off in dominating international narcotics trafficking, building up a vast fortune and leaving behind a bloody trail of vanquished enemies on both sides of the law.He was arrested on 8 January 2016 - on the run following the second spectacular prison break of his career - and extradited to the US before he had a chance to make fools of the Mexican authorities for a third time."What Al Capone was to beer and whiskey during Prohibition, Guzman is to narcotics," said Art Bilek, executive vice president of the Chicago Crime Commission. "Of the two, Guzman is by far the greater threat... And he has more power and financial capability than Capone ever dreamed of."El Chapo was born in La Tuna near Badiraguato, Sinaloa, in 1957, the son of a peasant cattle rancher and minor drug dealer growing poppies for opium to be sold in Culiacan and Guamuchil.Routinely beaten by his father, a violent alcoholic, the young Joaquin played with homemade peso bills he had drawn himself and took to growing and selling marijuana to support the family.By his late teens, he was working for local kingpin Hector Luis Palma Salazar, playing a logistics role in streamlining the movement of cocaine from his western home state northwards up the Pacific coast to the US. Moving on to work for the feared Guadalajara cartel under Felix Gallardo in the early 1980s, El Chapo (the nickname a reference to his 5' 6'' stature) was fiercely ambitious about expanding the business into something much larger than merely serving as a middleman for the Colombians.When Gallardo ordered the torture and murder of Enrique "Kiki" Camarena Salazar - an undercover Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agent who had infiltrated the syndicate and leaked information - in February 1985, the authorities pursued the cartel aggressively, their operations enabling El Chapo to capitalise on the chaos.After Gallardo was arrested in 1989, the territories formerly dominated by Guadalajara were divided up among the remaining godfathers and the Tijuana, Juarez and Sinaloa cartels were formed, the latter under Guzman, Salazar and Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada Garcia, who would serve as El Chapo's most trusted lieutenant. As the net finally closed on Escobar, by now rich enough to be running his own rogue state within Colombia, the Mexican cartels gradually moved in to fill the void left by the latter's Medellin cartel and its Cali rival.El Chapo and his men assumed control of the South America-US cocaine trade, employing ruthless and feared gangs like Los Chachos, Los Texas, Los Lobos and Los Negros to enforce for them, carrying out acts of intimidation, bribery, torture or execution as a matter of course.The Sinaloa cartel met demand north of the Texas border by finding ever more innovative ways to move their product, from building air-conditioned tunnels burrowing under fences to concealing cocaine inside fire extinguishers or cans of "chili peppers" shipped overseas.Over time, the syndicate would grow ever more powerful, taking out rival gangs and law enforcement to spread their influence, eventually branching out over five continents and moving into heroin, marijuana and methamphetamines.Very little changed when El Chapo was arrested in Guatemala in 1993, extradited to Mexico and sentenced to 20 years in prison. He simply bribed his guards to ensure favourable conditions and was allowed to dispatch orders to his brother Arturo as usual.He even held lavish Christmas parties with his entire family in his cell and enjoyed conjugal visits with his mistress, Zulema Hernandez, a former cop serving time herself for armed robbery who would later be murdered by rival Los Zetas sicarios.On 19 January 2001, El Chapo escaped from the maximum-security Puente Grande prison in Jalisco. According to myth, he did so hidden in a laundry basket. The truth, as Anabel Hernandez tells it in her book Narcoland (2010), is that he did so in a police uniform, with a police escort, after guard Francisco Camberos Rivera opened the door for him.Seventy-eight members of prison staff, including governor Valentin Cardenas, were subsequently arrested for their part in the escape following an investigation. El Chapo evaded capture for 13 years despite a manhunt instigated by US and Mexican authorities bringing together the FBI, CIA, DEA and the Mexican army. Their failure to find him - even with a $5m reward offered for information leading to his capture - spoke volumes about the endemic corruption taken root as a result of Guzman and his pernicious influence.Meanwhile, the drug war intensified, making cities like Tijuana and Juarez among the most violent places on Earth, where scenes of men hanged from freeway overpasses and horror stories about dead gangsters being dismembered in the desert became entirely commonplace.El Chapo's family - including at least 13 children from three marriages - saw their American assets seized in 2012 but business again continued as usual and he even managed to cultivate a reputation in Sinaloa as a Robin Hood figure, paying for food and medical supplies for local people, who came to see him as a savour when the state was failing them.That same year, Forbes magazine valued his net worth at around $1bn.When he was finally arrested again, in the Pacific beach resort of Mazatlan in February 2014, President Enrique Pena Nieto refused to transfer him to US custody, saying: "It would be unforgivable for the government not to take the precautions to ensure that what happened last time would not be repeated."And yet that's exactly what happened.On 11 July 2015, El Chapo escaped again, this time through a tunnel running 30ft beneath the Toluca prison showers to a house under construction a mile away.In hiding again, it was at this juncture that one of the most surreal episodes in his story took place: an interview conducted in secret by Hollywood actor Sean Penn for Rolling Stone."El Chapo Speaks" was published on 10 January 2016 and sees Penn recount in detail his encounter with Guzman, organised on his behalf by Mexican TV actress Kate del Castillo, who had exchanged friendly letters with the master criminal after praising his peculiar brand of philanthropy on social media. While the interview was curtailed by a military raid on Guzman's jungle compound in which the latter suffered a leg injury, he did later send the actors a video message in which he answered their questions about his career."It's a reality that drugs destroy," he told Penn. "Unfortunately, as I said, where I grew up there was no other way and there still isn't a way to survive, no way to work in our economy to be able to make a living."The gangster reportedly hoped to turn the meeting into an opportunity to discuss a potential biopic recounting his exploits: while that never came to pass, he is now the subject of a major Netflix series.Finally re-arrested on 8 January 2016 after a shoot-out in the city of Los Mochis, President Pena Nieto proclaimed: "Mission Accomplished. We have him."After judge Vicente Antonio Bermudez Zacarias, set to preside over his case, was murdered while out jogging near his home on 17 October 2016, El Chapo was extradited to the US last January where he plead "not guilty" to a 17-count indictment.El Chapo's trial, guilty verdict and sentencing in New York this spring has made for a sensational event but, sadly, its outcome is unlikely to have much of an effect on the brutal drugs trade, even if it is disingenuously cheered as a step in the right direction by the Mexican government.In 2017, a year in which Guzman was for once safely behind bars, a record 29,168 murders took place, according to local estimates, the total surpassing the previous high of 27,213 in 2011.The brutal truth is that a successor will simply step in to take El Chapo's place at the head of the Sinaloa cartel and the killing will continue.

UPDATE 5-U.S. judge blasts drug lord El Chapo's 'overwhelming evil,' imposes life sentence

UPDATE 5-U.S. judge blasts drug lord El Chapo's 'overwhelming evil,' imposes life sentence Guzman berated the U.S. justice system, and a former associate described how he had paid a gang $1 million to try to kill her before U.S. District Judge Brian Cogan imposed the mandatory sentence of life plus 30 years. Cogan also ordered Guzman to forfeit $12.6 billion in a hearing in federal court in Brooklyn. Guzman, 62, was found guilty by a jury in February of trafficking tons of cocaine, heroin and marijuana and engaging in multiple murder conspiracies as a top leader of the Sinaloa Cartel, long known as one of Mexico's largest and most violent drug trafficking organizations.

Huawei says Italy's new 5G powers discriminate against it

Huawei says Italy's new 5G powers discriminate against it Chinese telecoms equipment group Huawei Technologies criticised the Italian government's newly beefed-up powers to intervene in the development of fifth-generation (5G) telecom services, saying they discriminated against the company. Luigi De Vecchis, chairman of Huawei Italia, made the comment in a parliamentary hearing, after the government moved by urgent decree last week to strengthen its existing so-called "golden power" to intervene in the private sector. It did so due to concerns over the potential involvement of Huawei and fellow Chinese equipment maker ZTE Corp in the development of 5G networks, a government source has said.

US: Russia is refusing visas to teachers of diplomats' kids

US: Russia is refusing visas to teachers of diplomats' kids The U.S. and British embassies in Moscow said Wednesday that Russia has refused visas to teachers at a school that educates diplomats' children. Ambassador Jon Huntsman that Russia hasn't issued visas to 30 new teachers who are due to arrive next month and adds "children should not be used as pawns in diplomatic disputes." He added the school may "look at the possible disenrollment of some new and returning students" if it can't hire enough teachers. The Anglo-American School has around 1,100 children from over 60 countries, including some children of wealthy Russians.

Swiss agree to extradite Chinese scientist to U.S. on theft charges

Swiss agree to extradite Chinese scientist to U.S. on theft charges Switzerland has agreed to extradite a Chinese researcher to the United States where prosecutors have charged him with helping his scientist sister steal secrets allegedly worth $550 million from British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline. Gongda Xue, a 20-year Swiss resident, has been fighting extradition and was labelled a potential flight risk after he was detained by Swiss authorities earlier this year. The Swiss Federal Office of Justice confirmed on Wednesday that the U.S. request for his extradition was approved earlier this month, though Gongda Xue still has until mid-August to appeal to the Swiss Federal Criminal Court to block it.

Hot dog fans can relish a stay in the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile with Airbnb

Hot dog fans can relish a stay in the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile with Airbnb A hot dog may not be considered a sandwich, but now it can be a home. Oscar Mayer is opening the doors of its infamous Wienermobile for the first time ever to give hot dog lovers a chance to book an overnight stay in the 27-foot hot dog on wheels through Airbnb. According to the listing, which went live for bookings on National Hot Dog Day, the camper/RV has one bed, one bath and can sleep two guests.

Italy, FBI crack down on Mafia clan with Gambino ties

Italy, FBI crack down on Mafia clan with Gambino ties Italian police and FBI agents have cracked down on a Palermo-area Mafia clan with ties to the U.S.-based Gambino crime family. Police said that around 200 officers including FBI agents fanned out in Sicily and in the New York area Wednesday, arresting 18 suspects in Italy and one in the United States. Palermo Police Chief Renato Cortese told reporters that members of the Sicilian Passo di Rigano crime clan had settled in the U.S. in the 1980s after surviving a turf war with the Corleone crime clan, which emerged victorious over the Inzerillo crime family in the Palermo area.

Lebanese brave badly polluted water to swim at public beaches

Lebanese brave badly polluted water to swim at public beaches On a beach in northern Lebanon, men and women swim in the Mediterranean's warm blue waters close to a sewage outlet, while children play in sand that is strewn with litter. A sign warning against swimming because of pollution seems to have had little effect on this beach near the city of Tripoli, one of a declining number of public beaches in Lebanon. If his salary is $500 or $600 a month, where could he take them?" said 63-year-old Adnan Daouk at the only public beach in the capital Beirut.

Danish court orders car dealer to compensate Chinese artist Ai Weiwei

Danish court orders car dealer to compensate Chinese artist Ai Weiwei Chinese artist Ai Weiwei was awarded 1.75 million Danish crowns ($262,952) compensation by a Danish court on Wednesday after a Danish car dealer used one of his works commemorating thousands of refugees as a backdrop for a commercial. Car dealer Skandinavisk Motor Co., an importer of Volkswagen cars in Denmark, used Ai's art work in a magazine commercial published more than 200,000 times, the district court said. The work called "Soleil Levant", which translates to "Rising Sun", displayed more than 3,500 life jackets collected from refugees and migrants who landed on the Greek island of Lesbos.

U.S. complains after Russia denies visas to embassy school teachers

U.S. complains after Russia denies visas to embassy school teachers The United States accused Russia on Wednesday of using children as pawns, after Moscow rejected visas for dozens of new teachers at an English-language school set up by the U.S., British and Canadian embassies in Moscow for the children of diplomats. U.S. ambassador Jon Huntsman said 30 teachers who had been due to arrive in Moscow next month had been denied visas, a move he said could force Moscow's Anglo American School to cut the number of children attending.

Teen says she was 'so scared' when shark bit her on the foot

Teen says she was 'so scared' when shark bit her on the foot A 16-year-old who was bitten by a shark while boogie boarding on Florida's Atlantic Coast says she was "so scared" but tried to stay calm. Jackie Jozaitis tells the Herald-Tribune she and her friend got up early on Friday to ride the waves on Amelia Island.

UPDATE 1-Eni officials tried to tamper with witness in Nigeria case - prosecutor

UPDATE 1-Eni officials tried to tamper with witness in Nigeria case - prosecutor Officials from Eni sought to convince a witness, a former Eni manager, to withdraw some statements he made during investigations into a Nigerian corruption case involving the Italian oil group, a court heard on Wednesday. Prosecutor Fabio De Pasquale made the comment in a trial hearing into the case, during a legal debate over a request by Eni lawyers to adjourn proceedings to give more time to consider evidence in a related obstruction-of-justice investigation. "We have become aware that Eni, through its managers, would have tried to influence and would have approached the defendant (Vincenzo) Armanna to convince him to withdraw some of his statements," De Pasquale told the court without elaborating.

RPT-Garuda scraps inflight photo ban amid online uproar

RPT-Garuda scraps inflight photo ban amid online uproar Indonesian flag carrier Garuda withdrew a proposal to stop passengers taking photos in cabins on Wednesday after being mocked over a plan that was introduced after a travel blogger posted unflattering photos on a flight. Rius Vernandes, who has more than 100,000 followers on Instagram, on Saturday posted photos and videos showing him holding a handwritten menu on note paper that he described as the business class menu on his Garuda flight from Sydney. Garuda said on Twitter the menu was not for passengers but had been meant as a notice for flight attendants.

UPDATE 1-World court orders review of Pakistan death sentence for Indian convicted of spying

UPDATE 1-World court orders review of Pakistan death sentence for Indian convicted of spying The World Court on Wednesday ordered Pakistan to review the death penalty given in 2017 to former Indian navy commander Kulbhushan Sudhir Jadhav who was convicted of being a spy, a document published on the court's website showed. The document, which appeared on the court's website before the judges started reading out a summary of the judgment, stated that Pakistan has to provide an "effective review" of the case and added that a "continued stay of execution" of Jadhav was needed for that to happen. India had asked the U.N. court, formally known as the International Court of Justice (ICJ), to intervene in the case, as it said Jadhav had been given an unfair trial and had been denied diplomatic assistance by Pakistan.

Spotify launches new Disney music hub: Listen here

Spotify launches new Disney music hub: Listen here Spotify launches new Disney music hub: Listen here originally appeared on goodmorningamerica.comDisney fans, rejoice!LISTEN: The Motion Picture soundtrack to 'The Lion King'Introducing #SpotifyxDisney: A first-of-its-kind music hub filled with just about every song, lyric and tune from across the entire Disney library, from Star Wars to Frozen. ...

FACTBOX-Legal cases sparked by Nigerian oilfield licence award

FACTBOX-Legal cases sparked by Nigerian oilfield licence award One of the oil industry's biggest corruption trials revolves around a Nigerian offshore licence known as OPL 245, which Royal Dutch Shell and Italy's Eni bought in 2011. Italian prosecutors accuse former and current executives of the two energy giants of paying bribes to secure the licence. Shell and Eni, and their executives, have denied the accusations and any wrongdoing.

UPDATE 1-U.S. to seek execution for Illinois man in gruesome slaying of Chinese student

UPDATE 1-U.S. to seek execution for Illinois man in gruesome slaying of Chinese student Federal prosecutors on Wednesday will begin arguing that an Illinois man should be executed for the gruesome murder of a Chinese graduate student in 2017. A federal jury in Peoria, Illinois, found Brendt Christensen, 29, guilty last month of the abduction and murder of Yingying Zhang, a 26-year-old student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. While the state of Illinois has outlawed capital punishment, it is an option in federal cases that prosecutors are seeking under U.S. kidnapping laws.

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