- - Wednesday, June 15, 2011

ARIZONA

Rep. Giffords released from Houston hospital

Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was released from a Houston hospital Wednesday, five months after being shot in the head during a Tucson political event.

Mrs. Giffords will move to League City, a town 26 miles south of Houston, to a home owned by her husband, astronaut Mark Kelly. She will continue outpatient therapy at a facility that is part of the TIRR Memorial Hermann system, the hospital where she has been undergoing intensive rehabilitation since late January.

Mrs. Giffords, who was shot in the left side of her head and has been struggling to relearn how to speak and walk, will be assisted by a 24-hour home health provider, according to a statement from the hospital.

“Anyone who knows Gabby knows that she loves being outside,” Mr. Kelly was quoted as saying. “Living and working in a rehab facility for five months straight has been especially challenging for her. She will still go to TIRR each day but from now on, when she finishes rehab, she will be with her family.”

CONNECTICUT

Kissinger donates his papers to Yale

NEW HAVEN — Former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, who helped steer Vietnam War policy, will donate his collection of some 1 million documents and objects covering his life as a diplomat, teacher and private citizen to Yale University.

Yale President Richard Levin said Wednesday that the collection will enhance Yale’s archives of 20th century American leaders. Yale holds the papers of renowned former diplomats and alumni Henry Stimson, Dean Acheson and Cyrus Vance, as well as those of President Woodrow Wilson’s most influential adviser, Edward House.

Some materials could be available soon, but other parts of the collection could take some time to make available to the public, Yale history professor John Gaddis said, noting there was an ongoing effort to get documents from the 1970s declassified.

Yale says Mr. Kissinger made a financial contribution to the digitization of his government papers held at the Library of Congress, so those papers will be available at Yale.

Mr. Kissinger was national security adviser and secretary of state under President Richard M. Nixon and continued as chief diplomat during the administration of President Gerald R. Ford. He received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1973 for his role in negotiations with his North Vietnamese adversary that led to a peace accord.

HAWAII

Farm boss pleads guilty in human trafficking case

HONOLULU — A Hawaii farm supervisor pleaded guilty to confiscating passports from Thai laborers to prevent them from fleeing in one of the nation’s largest human trafficking cases.

Sam Wongsesanit, 40, entered his plea to a conspiracy charge in U.S. District Court on Tuesday as part of a deal with prosecutors to dismiss other charges against him.

Wongsesanit is the third defendant in a federal human trafficking case involving Los Angeles-based labor recruiting company Global Horizons to plead guilty in U.S. courts. The company recruited Thai laborers to work on farms in Hawaii and Washington state.

Eight defendants were indicted in January on charges of luring about 600 Thai nationals to the U.S., putting them into debt, confiscating their passports and threatening to deport them, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Wongsesanit faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison, a $250,000 fine and restitution to the victims.

IOWA

Breaches don’t change river flood outlook

HAMBURG — Construction crews on Wednesday put the final touches on a makeshift levee standing between a small Iowa town and the creeping advance of Missouri River floodwater, as communities downstream took advantage of a temporary dip in water levels to bolster their own strained defenses.

Water that breached the primary river levee just south of the Missouri-Iowa border Monday had advanced to within 500 yards of the temporary floodwall guarding Hamburg, 5 miles to the northeast, and was expected to reach the structure by Thursday, said Robert Michaels, the Army Corps of Engineers official who has overseen construction of the new levee.

Any hopes, however slight, that the breaches might alleviate the long-term flooding threat for communities downstream were short-lived, as river levels that dipped slightly from the release of pressure began their reascent Wednesday.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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