- The Washington Times - Sunday, February 3, 2002

Romania, Italy team up in bid to bust Mafia ring
BUCHAREST, Romania Italy and Romania have started a joint effort to stem the increasing activities of the Italian Mafia in the Eastern European country, Interpol said Thursday.
"We have proof that Cosa Nostra and others have conducted business in Romania," Paolo Sartori, Interpol's liaison officer in Romania, told Pro-TV, referring to the notorious Sicilian crime syndicate.
Romanian Police Chief Mihai Stoica said police had seized documents from several companies accused of having links to or belonging to the Sicilian Mafia.

Ukraine destroys 30,000 illegal CDs
KIEV Ukraine bulldozed some 30,000 pirated CDs on Friday in a move aimed at showing Washington it is serious about stamping out copyright violations on music productions and escaping trade sanctions imposed last week.
"The operation is intended to show that we are becoming a civilized society," the head of the Kiev tax administration, Mikola Gordienko, told Agence France-Presse.
The compact discs with a street value of more than $90,000, confiscated in police raids in the Kiev region early last year, were crushed by bulldozers at a clearing on the outskirts of the city.
U.S. officials regard Ukraine as the capital of music piracy in Europe, exporting as many as 40 million illegally produced CDs per year, although Kiev contests the figure.

Austria's finest busted for calendar strip
VIENNA, Austria A group of Austrian policemen who posed armed and naked for a calendar have been barred from the force's elite unit as punishment, a police spokesman said Thursday.
Some 350,000 of the calendars have been printed, showing Austria's long arm of the law in the raw, with guns, handcuffs or nightsticks, and superimposed over photos of scantily clad women.
The 10 officers were either members of, or looking to join, Cobra, an elite unit whose tasks include providing security for important persons visiting Austria.
"This would mean people like the pope," said Interior Ministry spokesman Major Rudold Gollia.

Hildegard Knef,German star, dies at 76
FRANKFURT, Germany Hildegard Knef, a smoky-voiced actress and singer who starred in Germany's first post-World War II movie and scandalized church officials with a nude scene in 1951, died Friday at a Berlin hospital. She was 76.
Officials at the Heckeshorn Lung Clinic said Miss Knef, who suffered from emphysema, died of a lung infection after being brought to the hospital on Thursday. Her health had declined after emergency lung surgery last year.
Miss Knef, who sometimes went by the name of Hildegrad Neff in the United States, appeared in more than 50 films, most of them made in Europe. She reportedly turned down a Hollywood studio contract after being told she would have to change her name and say she was Austrian, not German.
She scandalized Roman Catholic authorities with a brief nude scene in the 1951 German film "The Story Of A Sinner."
Her work in the United States included the role of Ninotchka in Cole Porter's Broadway musical "Silk Stockings" in the 1950s, and a supporting role in "The Snows of Kilimanjaro," an adaptation of the Ernest Hemingway story.


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