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Chinese billionaire convicted in UN bribery case

In this Oct. 26, 2015 photo, Chinese billionaire Ng Lap Seng waves to the media as he leaves federal court. AP NEW YORK — A Chinese billionaire who wanted to build a United Nations center in Macau and was accused of illegally paying hundreds of thousands of dollars to U.N. ambassadors to make it happen was convicted at his bribery trial on Thursday. The verdict was returned in Manhattan federal court against Ng Lap Seng, one of China’s richest men. Ng was convicted of bribery, conspiracy and money laundering charges. Acting…

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Meet Aminé, a Joyful Rapper With an Eye on Politics

From a distance, Aminé (born Adam Amine Daniel) exudes glee and mischief. On the back of his laptop is a Supreme sticker cut up and reshuffled to read “penis.” On the cover of his album, he is seated on a blue toilet, naked from the calves up. A few weeks ago, he was selected as part of XXL magazine’s annual Freshmen list; on the magazine’s cover, he wore a T-shirt with several mispronunciations of his name. He was determined to release his album during the summer — “When who I…

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New details on Trump Organization’s confidentiality agreement

WASHINGTON — Throughout his business career, Donald Trump placed a premium on fame. But President Trump’s business organization wants to stay on the down low. CBS News has obtained a new confidentiality agreement rolled out after the election. The Trump Organization is requiring employees at all levels to sign it, or else they will lose their jobs. Employees must agree to keep secret any information they learn about anyone in the “Trump family” and extended family, including their “present, former and future spouses, children, parents, in-laws.” “I have reviewed confidentiality…

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Austin mulls pulling Ford Explorer police cruisers off the road

The state capital of Texas is considering pulling its police department’s entire fleet of Ford Explorer SUVs off the road.  More than 120 are already out of service. Sgt. Zachary LaHood is one of 18 Austin police officers who have been treated for carbon monoxide exposure after driving the department’s Ford Explorers. “I don’t remember if we hit a curb or if my head just hit the window and it woke me up but I remember swerving to miss a head-on collision,” LaHood said. He is now suing Ford. Play…

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Clashes erupt at sacred site in Jerusalem

JERUSALEM — Violence returned Thursday to a sacred site in Jerusalem as Palestinians gathering for prayers at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound clashed with Israeli police nearly two weeks after a deadly attack there.  Earlier in the day, Palestinians had celebrated as Israel rolled back security measures and thousands of worshippers heeded a call by Muslim authorities to assemble for prayers at the mosque for the first time in 11 days. But as crowds pushed at one of the gates to the compound in the Old City, police fired tear gas and…

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An Ode to Shopping Malls

The French marble floors still gleamed under artificial light. It wasn’t quite a ruin, but it looked as if a viral outbreak had removed all life from the place. “They had loud pop music echoing through the mall, and I’m looking down this corridor, and there’s no people, no stores open,” Mr. Bell said. “It was really a sobering moment.” You can see his hushed reaction in the 10-minute video he filmed that day and posted to YouTube. Owings Mills turned out to be the pilot episode for what Mr….

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Asia and Australia Edition: U.S. Senate, Jerusalem, Jeff Bezos: Your Friday Briefing

The context, experts emphasized, was the American principle of civilian control over the military, but the effect was chilling, particularly at a time when North Korea’s nuclear threat is increasing and trust that mutually assured destruction would forestall any nuclear attack appears to be decreasing. Continue reading the main story _____ Photo Credit Kimimasa Mayama/European Pressphoto Agency • The Japanese Ministry of Defense delivers its conclusions today about whether Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government deliberately withheld information about the safety of Japanese troops at a U.N. compound in South Sudan….

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“Similar” deaths of couple’s babies in 2015, 2016 probed

Gage Roberts (left) in court  KBAK BAKERSFIELD, Calif. – Authorities are investigating whether the death of a couple’s baby in California is related to the death of their older child in Kansas in 2015. CBS affiliate KBAK reports that Gage and Debra Roberts were charged with second degree murder Tuesday in the death of their infant in Bakersfield in 2016. KBAK reports that according to court documents, the baby was found dead on a hotel room floor on April 24, 2016. When Bakersfield Police Department officers arrived on scene, the…

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Death toll in Venezuela unrest hits grisly milestone

CARACAS, Venezuela — Days before a polarizing vote to start rewriting its constitution, Venezuela is convulsing to a rhythm of daytime strikes and nocturnal clashes. The most recent violence drove the death toll from months of unrest to 100 on Thursday. Most of the dead in anti-government protests that began in April are young men killed by gunfire. The toll also includes looters; police allegedly attacked by protesters; and civilians killed in accidents related to roadblocks set up during demonstrations. The count has been highly politicized, with the opposition and…

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Here’s the No. 1 consumer complaint in America

Americans love their cars, but their cars — and the auto industry — doesn’t always love them back.  Auto-related problems are the most common complaints among consumers, who cited everything from misrepresentations in sales to leasing disputes, according to a new report from the Consumer Federation of America and the North American Consumer Protection Investigators. The report surveyed 39 state and local consumer protection agencies in 23 states about the most common complaints they received last year.  Leasing used cars is emerging as a sore spot for consumers, who may…

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