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FROM THE HOMEPAGE
What could happen now that prosecutors have tied Trump to a federal crime?
Prosecutors have tied Donald Trump to a federal crime for the first time, accusing him of directing ..
Prosecutors have tied Donald Trump to a federal crime for the first time, accusing him of directing illegal hush-money payments to women during his presidential campaign in 2016.
While the Justice Department stopped short of accusing the US President of directly committing a crime, it said in a court filing that he told his former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, to make the illegal payments to porn actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal, who both claimed to have had affairs with Mr Trump (which he has denied).
Although Mr Trump hasn't been charged with anything, the question of whether a president even can be prosecuted while in office is a matter of legal dispute.
Here's a look at that long-running legal ambiguity and a few of the main issues at play.
Firstly, did the President actually commit a crime?
That isn't clear, and it's important to note that federal prosecutors haven't accused Mr Trump of violating the law.
However, there was no ambiguity in the court documents that prosecutors believe Cohen's actions were criminal and that Mr Trump (referred to as "Individual-1" in the documents, but clearly identifiable as the US President) was directly involved.
Prosecutors charged that Cohen arranged the secret payments at the height of the 2016 campaign "in coordination with and at the direction of" Mr Trump.
They also alleged Cohen made the payment in order to fend off potential damage to Mr Trump's presidential bid.
Federal law requires that any payments that are made "for the purpose of influencing" an election must be reported in campaign finance disclosures. (more…)
Clean cut: Dutch hospitals ditch US body-part distributors over ethics, disease
Hospitals in the Netherlands are dropping US body-part distributors on ethical grounds after a decad..
Hospitals in the Netherlands are dropping US body-part distributors on ethical grounds after a decade of unregulated trade in dissected human limbs.
In the United States, everything has its price, and as the large scale dead-body market shows, this doesnt end after death. In a Reuters exclusive, two Dutch hospitals revealed that they would be cutting off their business ties to American companies that have been profiting off the sale of human body parts in light of disturbing revelations.
The scrutiny began after Oregon-based MedCure came under suspicion of selling diseased body parts to customers in America and abroad, drawing attention from the FBI. The company has sold tens of thousands of pounds of human parts all over Europe, including numerous severed heads that were purchased by Amsterdams Academic Medical Center (AMC) for training and research. No evidence of disease was discovered in these particular shipments, but AMC and another Dutch hospital said they would drop the suppliers over their questionable ethics.
The parts the companies sell are often acquired from macabre deals where families are offered discounts on incredibly expensive funeral arrangements (with an average price-tag of $7,000 to $10,000 dollars in the US) in exchange for allowing companies to dismember and sell pieces of their loved ones corpses… yet, most dont even realize that someone is making money from their 'donation'. According to another Reuters article from 2017, many funeral homes have struck mutually beneficial deals with body-parts distributors – tipping them off on potential donors in exchange for referral fees – to take advantage of a product that can easily be obtained for free.
Whereas Dutch law is fairly strict in regard to the transport, sale and use of human organs, the body-part market is essentially a free-for-all, with the health industry claiming that regulations are not needed as the hospitals themselves are trusted to take precautionary measures.
Freek Dikkers, a nose, ears and throat specialist at AMC whose department had purchased heads from MedCure, called the such morbid business strategies “unacceptable.” Reuters reports that the going rate of a human head on the US market is $500 dollars and an entire body can fetch as much as $10,000, although the hospitals themselves declined to comment on how much they had been paying.
MedCure say they are “an accredited and regulated institution and adhere to the best-in-class industry standards for safety ethics, and transparency,” who sells the parts in order to facilitate scientific and medical research.
MedCure is not the first global medical supply company to draw heavy scrutiny for exploiting an unregulated market. The International Consortium of Independent Journalists published a study just this year about American based Medtronic which made millions selling faulty biometric implants linked to thousands of deaths. (more…)
Man has hand BLOWN OFF in explosion as Yellow Vest rally descends into chaos (DISTURBING VIDEO)
Gruesome footage distributed by a pro-protest Facebook group appears to show a man cradling the mang..
Gruesome footage distributed by a pro-protest Facebook group appears to show a man cradling the mangled stump of his hand after an explosion at a Yellow Vest rally in Bordeaux. A total of 26 people were injured in the city.
As Yellow Vest protests swept through France on Saturday, some 4,500 people flooded the streets of Bordeaux. The tension began building up around 16:00 when some of the protesters started throwing rocks at police who responded by firing flash-balls.
As the situation gradually descended into chaos, a man was captured on video running towards a group of protesters holding his right hand after a particularly loud bang went off. As the man approaches, it appears that his hand is completely blown off, with only a bloody stump left. The footage was released by Facebook group France en colere (Angry France) that covered the latest mayhem. (WARNING: THE LINKED VIDEO IS EXTREMELY GRAPHIC)
In another video, he is shown being rolled into an ambulance on a stretcher.
The deputy public prosecutor in Bordeaux, Olivier Etienne, confirmed that one of the protesters had suffered a serious injury to his hand. His current condition is unknown.
The French Sud Ouest daily reported that the man allegedly tried to recover a crowd-control grenade to throw it back at police when it exploded.
During Saturday's tumult, protesters erected barricades, set them on fire and ransacked the offices of several banks, including Societe Generale and BNP, as well as an Apple Store. A post office has also reportedly been looted.
Overall, some 125,000 protesters took to the French streets on Saturday to voice outrage with President Emmanuel Macron's government, high taxes, low wages and general pro-business reforms. Despite some 89,000 police having been deployed to Paris to stave off the violence, 135 people were injured, including 17 police officers. Nearly 1,000 people were arrested in the French capital.
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