- - Monday, March 21, 2011


Politicians apologize for handling of ‘44 rape

ABBEVILLE | The mayor of a southeast Alabama town and a state legislator have apologized to relatives of a black woman raped in 1944 by a gang of white men.

Abbeville Mayor Ryan Blalock expressed his sorrow to relatives of Recy Taylor during a news conference Monday. The woman’s brother and several other relatives attended.

Now 91, Mrs. Taylor was 24 and living in her native Henry County when she was gang-raped in Abbeville in 1944. She was walking home from church when she was abducted, assaulted and left on the side of the road in an isolated area.

Two all-white, all-male grand juries declined to bring charges. State Rep. Dexter Grimsley of Newville says police bungled the investigation and harassed Mrs. Taylor.


Former ICE lawyer sentenced for scam

LOS ANGELES | A former Immigration and Customs Enforcement lawyer was sentenced Monday to more than 17 years in prison for running a scam in which he and his wife created false documents allowing immigrants to live and work in the U.S.

Constantine Peter Kallas, a one-time assistant chief counsel for ICE, also was ordered by U.S. District Judge Terry J. Hatter Jr. to pay $296,000 in restitution after being convicted last year of 36 counts, including conspiracy, bribery and fraud.

“This case presents an epic display of a public official’s greed,” federal prosecutors wrote in a pre-sentencing memo to the judge.

Prosecutors said Kallas and his wife, Maria Kallas, carried out the elaborate scheme from 2003 to 2008 by setting up two companies to file false paperwork claiming the immigrants had job offers to work in this country.

Authorities say the Alta Loma couple banked at least $950,000 before their arrests in 2008.


Nuns sue archdiocese over retirement funds

BOSTON | The highest court in the state is being asked to settle an unusual dispute between an order of Roman Catholic nuns and Boston Cardinal Sean O’Malley, a trustee of a church-run pension fund.

The Daughters of St. Paul say they have tried for more than five years to withdraw from the Boston archdiocese pension fund so they could set up a separate, self-run pension plan for their U.S. lay employees.

In a lawsuit filed in December, the Daughters say the pension fund’s trustees, who include Cardinal O’Malley, have failed to give them a full accounting of their portion of the fund. They asked the Supreme Judicial Court to either order the trustees to give them those details or to rule that the nuns were never part of the plan and order the archdiocese to reimburse them for the contributions they made.

The Daughters of St. Paul is an international order with about 60 members in Boston and 75 more across the country. The group runs a publishing house called Pauline Books and Media, which publishes Catholic books, educational materials and music. The order has about 50 lay employees in the Boston area and 30 others in the U.S.


Sick Canadian boy treated in U.S.

ST. LOUIS | Doctors have given a terminally ill Canadian toddler a tracheotomy in hopes of extending the boy’s life by at least a few months, hospital officials say.

The 13-month-old’s parents brought him to Missouri last week after an Ontario court decided doctors could remove the child’s breathing tube.

Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center agreed to treat Joseph Maraachli after doctors in Ontario determined he was in a permanent vegetative state and deteriorating condition.

Cardinal Glennon said Monday that Joseph suffers from the progressive neurological disease Leigh syndrome. The Catholic hospital says Joseph is expected to remain in pediatric intensive care for seven to 10 days before getting treatment at a pediatric specialty hospital in St. Louis.

He then will return to his family’s home in Windsor, Ontario.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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