- The Washington Times - Sunday, January 26, 2003

U.S. officials obtain records of Ritter's arrest

ALBANY, N.Y. Federal authorities have obtained sealed records in the purported Internet sex sting involving former U.N. Chief Weapons Inspector Scott Ritter to review them for possible federal charges.
State Supreme Court Justice Joseph Teresi signed an order Thursday requiring police and Albany County prosecutors to provide records and any evidence to the FBI and the U.S. Attorney's Office.
Federal authorities filed a motion earlier in the week to obtain the records to determine whether federal laws were violated, the Daily Gazette of Schenectady and the Times Union of Albany reported in yesterday's editions.
Assistant U.S. Attorney William Pericak refused to comment to the newspapers. A message to his office by the Associated Press was not immediately returned yesterday.
Mr. Ritter, 41, a critic of the Bush administration's push toward war with Iraq, acknowledged his June 2001 arrest this week in national television appearances.

Florida begins feeling a warming trend
MIAMI Bright sunshine across most of the state yesterday helped temperatures begin climbing back toward normal across Florida after two days of freezing weather that citrus growers feared would damage their $9-billion-a-year crop.
Growers said yesterday that they were largely spared significant crop damage.
"We actually dodged a major bullet," said Shawn Crocker, a spokesman for the Florida Strawberry Growers Association. "I don't think we're going to see any catastrophic damage."

Man sentenced in sexual-assault case
POMONA, Calif. A man who advertised on Spanish-language radio stations as "El Doctor Misterio" pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting women seeking treatment for headaches and other ailments.
On Friday Superior Court Judge Jack Hunt immediately sentenced Fernando Lozano, 32, to nine years and four months in prison.
Lozano will be deported to Mexico after he serves his sentence, said Jane Robison, a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County district attorney.
Prosecutors said Lozano pleaded guilty to practicing medicine without a license, sexual penetration by fraud, two counts of lewd acts on a child under 15 and three counts of sexual battery.

Klan leader charged in slaying
CLINTON, N.C. The grand dragon of a Ku Klux Klan group and the wife of a Klan leader serving time in federal prison were among four persons charged with murder in the killing of an unidentified man two years ago, authorities said yesterday.
The decomposed body was uncovered in a field earlier this month after a witness called authorities.
Sampson County Sheriff Jim Thornton said yesterday that the fatal shooting appeared to be tied to a plot to bomb government offices in Johnson County earlier this year, but he declined to elaborate.
Sharon Barefoot of Benson was arrested Friday; and Marvin Glen Gautier, 50, of Benson and Michael Anthony Brewer, 30, of Lumberton were arrested Wednesday, Sheriff Thornton said. A fourth person, who has not been identified, was also arrested Friday, Sheriff Thornton said.

Doctors are stopping high-risk procedures
ATLANTA Nearly one in five Georgia doctors is abandoning high-risk medical procedures, including delivering babies, and hundreds more are leaving the state or retiring because of high medical malpractice insurance rates, according to a study released yesterday.
"Medical liability insurance is a serious problem in Georgia," said Bruce Deighton, executive director of the Georgia Board for Physician Workforce, which released the study. "We're not saying we have an answer to correct that, but it does have an impact on the physician supply in Georgia, and it does reduce access to medical care in Georgia."
Doctors in several states have complained about rising malpractice insurance rates, driven at least in part by large jury awards.
The board, an advisory body to the legislature, surveyed 2,200 Georgia doctors for the study.

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