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July 05, 2003

Tanzania attempting to discourage skinning humans
BBC | Submitted by: Tim Howard
"Exhibits of skin are part of Tanzania's campaign to discourage the trade in human skin at an international business fair in the capital. Vistors to the the week-long fair in Dar es Salaam will see a rather gruesome exhibit of human body parts in an effort to raise awareness about the underground trade in human skin which has hit southern Tanzania over the past two years. According to police the skins are in huge demand outside Tanzania."

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Acidic foam overwhelms Brazilian town
CNN | Submitted by: optional
"A river polluted with waste from Brazil's biggest city of Sao Paulo covered the streets of a small colonial town with a thick layer of snow-like foam that emits harmful acidic gas on Friday. ... Globo Television showed footage of cars being unable to cross the bridges early in the morning, and a bus forcing its way through the white foam that practically covered its body."

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MIT launches distributed surveillance website
business.boston.com | Submitted by: kade
"Two researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are celebrating the Fourth of July with a new Internet service that will let citizens create dossiers on government officials. The system will start by offering standard background information on politicians, but then go one bold step further, by asking Internet users to submit their own intelligence reports on government officials -- reports that will be published with no effort to verify their accuracy."

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Man steals Susan Sarandon's jewelry, dies horribly
Sun | Submitted by: Tim Howard
"A man's mutilated body has been found surrounded by jewellery belonging to Oscar-winning actress Susan Sarandon. Victim Robert Greene, 38, had been tortured before having his head, limbs and private parts cut off in a hotel room in Canada. ... A man Greene met in a gay bar has been charged with his murder."

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Coca-Cola bottler sued for financing death squads
News Corporation | Submitted by: optional
"Coca-Cola's main Latin-American bottler, Panamco, is being sued by Columbian food and beverage union Sinaltrainal for financing right-wing paramilitaries alleged to have murdered and intimidated union leaders. ... Coca-Cola said its Columbian employees have been caught in the crossfire of a 40-year-old civil war. ... 'The Coca-Cola company and its Columbian bottlers vigorously condemn all forms of violence and the unwarranted use of force against workers in the workplace and elsewhere.'"

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UK unhappy about British citizens facing tribunals
BBC | Submitted by: Tim Howard
"There are at least 680 suspected al-Qaeda and Taleban members at the US naval base in Cuba. US President George W Bush decided on Thursday that six of them, including Britons Moazzam Begg and Feroz Abbasi and Australian David Hicks, should face trial in a military tribunal rather than in a regular court. ... The UK's Foreign Office Minister Baroness Symons said the government was concerned about the men's access to lawyers, the standards of evidence and their rights to appeal in the case of any guilty verdicts."

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'Betamax case' lawyer dead at 77
Sacramento Bee | Submitted by: Tim Howard
"Attorney Dean Dunlavey, who helped make it possible to allow consumers to videotape copyrighted movies for their own enjoyment, has died. He was 77. ... Dunlavey successfully argued the landmark video case before the U.S. Supreme Court in 1984. Sony Corp. of America vs. Universal City Studios Inc. was best known as the 'Betamax case.' ... Dunlavey urged the justices to reject the movie industry's stance and allow Americans to continue to have unrestricted use of the recorders. 'The studios have been paid once. There's no reason they should be paid twice.'"

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Woman kills husband for disparaging her tiny ass
New York Post | Submitted by: stripey
"A Brooklyn newlywed pleaded not guilty yesterday to fatally stabbing her hubby after he made a wisecrack about the size of her derriere. ... Authorities have said the newlyweds started arguing when Jason became enraged that his wife was instant-messaging someone in a chat room on the computer at their Cypress Hills home at around 1 a.m. During the heated exchange, Jason criticized the size of Judy's backside, saying it was too tiny, authorities said. ... The two eventually ended up in the kitchen, where petite Judy -- a size 4, by one estimate -- admits to police that she grabbed a knife, court documents show. 'I grab the knife, and Jason said, "Stab me, I don't care," and I stick him on his chest, not knowing that was hurting him,' Judy allegedly said in a handwritten one-page statement to cops."

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Mormon polygamists spotlighted in new book
AZ Central | Submitted by: Tim Howard
"Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith, in bookstores July 15, examines the dangers of religious extremism through those who claim to follow the original teachings of the Mormon Church. These 'fundamentalists' still practice polygamy, even though the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints officially abandoned the practice in 1890 and continues to distance itself from the subject. ... The book describes Joseph Smith and his revelation to practice polygamy and portrays Smith, who wrote the Book of Mormon, as a grifter and philanderer. Krakauer also explores the darker chapters of the faith's brief, sometimes violent, history, including the religion's role in the massacre of California-bound pioneers in 1857."

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Proposed WMD-seeking missiles
New Scientist | Submitted by: poorjon
"Forget Hans Blix, the UN and inspectors schooled in the art of uncovering biological, chemical and nuclear agents. There is a quicker way to prove the existence of weapons of mass destruction. Gather the latest intelligence, decide where the weapons are stashed, and fire a high-velocity projectile at the target. High-tech sensors packed into the projectile will then instantly beam back confirmation that the weapons are there. It is a high-risk concept that raises many questions, not least its technological feasibility and the political ructions that would follow if such a device were ever built or used. But the US military is taking the idea seriously."

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Garment workers given stimulants for 72-hour shifts
Philippine Daily Inquirer | Submitted by: Pinoyz
"Quitoriano had another trick up his sleeve: a box full of Duromine capsules. Again on orders from the owner, he would make the rounds of the annex, spot the most tired workers, and offer them the drug. Duromine, actually an appetite suppressant meant for obese people, has the interesting side effect, among others, of inducing insomnia. ... Anvil Ensembles has been giving workers the drug since 2001... 'You want to stay awake because they tell you that if you cannot finish your quota, you can walk out the door any time' and never come back, a female worker said."

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