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American Scene: Court suspends license of attorney in scandal
Question of the Day
The Ohio Supreme Court on Wednesday suspended for one year the law license of an attorney whose emails to Jim Tressel triggered an ongoing scandal and NCAA investigation that cost the football coach his job at Ohio State University.
At issue was whether Columbus attorney Christopher Cicero violated professional rules of conduct that prohibit revealing information from meetings with a client or a prospective client.
The 5-2 court decision followed the recommendation of a disciplinary board that argued Mr. Cicero wrongly discussed interviews with tattoo parlor owner Edward Rife, a potential client. The court, however, overruled the board’s recommendation for a six-month suspension.
State seeks to seize polygamist sect’s ranch
AUSTIN — Texas wants ownership of Warren Jeffs’ massive ranch where prosecutors say the convicted polygamist sect leader and his followers sexually assaulted dozens of children, the state attorney general’s office said Wednesday.
A judge will determine whether to grant the state control of the nearly 1,700-acre property owned by the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. According to local tax records, the total value of the land is appraised at more than $33 million.
Seeking to bolster their case for seizures, prosecutors also allege that FLDS leaders financed the property through money laundering.
Starting with a raid on the secluded Schleicher County ranch in April 2008, the state spent more than $4.5 million racking up swift convictions against Jeffs and 10 of his followers.
First lawsuits filed in deadly veterans crash
LUBBOCK — Two Army veterans and their wives on Wednesday sued the railroad company whose train hit a truck carrying veterans and their spouses during a parade in Texas.
Four veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan were killed and 16 more people were injured in the Nov. 15 collision.
They had been riding on a flatbed truck in the parade organized to honor wounded veterans for their military service and were in the process of crossing the tracks when the crash happened. Officials have said the truck entered the crossing after the warning signals began sounding.
The lawsuit claims negligence and recklessness on the part of Union Pacific Railroad Inc. and Smith Industries Inc., the company that owned the truck, led to the collision.
The lawsuit claims the railroad was negligent in 28 ways, including failing to provide reasonable and timely audible and visual warning of the approaching train and failure to provide a safe railroad crossing. It also says the train did not brake or otherwise attempt to slow and the railroad hadn’t fixed what it claims are hazardous conditions posed by the road grade.
Bloomberg lights holiday tree that survived Sandy storm
NEW YORK — New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg on Wednesday helped light the Rockefeller Center tree, an 80-foot Norway spruce that made it through Superstorm Sandy.
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