- - Tuesday, December 6, 2011


Attorney general says immigration law too harsh

MONTGOMERY — Alabama’s attorney general has become the highest-ranking Republican official to suggest throwing out parts of his state’s tough new immigration law, as he recommended that lawmakers repeal some portions of the statute that have been put on hold by federal courts and clarify some others.

In a letter to legislative leaders, Attorney General Luther Strange said the proposed changes would make the law “easier to defend in court” and “remove burdens on law-abiding citizens.”

The private letter, acquired by the Associated Press, represents the first time the attorney general has expressed concerns since he started defending the law against a federal court challenge filed by about 30 organizations and individuals. Both opponents and supporters consider the law to be the toughest in the U.S. against illegal immigrants.

Mr. Strange recommended repealing a section that makes it a crime for an illegal immigrant to fail to carry registration documents. A federal court has put that section on hold.

The attorney general also suggested repealing the requirement that public schools collect information on the immigration status of students. That section is also on hold.


Welfare repayments sought from couple in $1.2M home

SEATTLE — Prosecutors say a Seattle chiropractor and his wife drove a Jaguar and lived in a $1.2 million waterfront home while claiming welfare assistance.

The U.S. attorney’s office filed a civil lawsuit Friday accusing David Silverstein and Lyudmila Shimonova of filing false claims. Prosecutors are demanding that they pay back more than $135,000 in federal housing assistance since 2003 and are seeking tens of thousands of dollars in fines.

The government says that in gaining Section 8 housing assistance, Ms. Shimonova represented that she lived alone with her two children and that her household assets were less than $5,000. Mr. Silverstein received the monthly benefits of $1,272 as Ms. Shimonova’s purported landlord.


Mom denied food stamps shoots children, kills self

SAN ANTONIO — A Texas woman who for months was unable to qualify for food stamps pulled a gun in a state welfare office and staged a seven-hour standoff with police that ended with her shooting her two children before killing herself, officials said Tuesday.

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