4 American Airlines flight attendants arrested at Miami airport on money laundering charges

Four American Airlines flight attendants face money laundering charges after at least three of them were allegedly caught by Customs smuggling more than $20,000 into the United States.

Maria Isabel Wilson-Ossandon, 48, Carlos Alberto Munoz-Moyano, 40, Miaria Delpilar Roman-Strick, 55, and Maria Beatriz Pasten-Cuzmar, 55, were arrested Tuesday in Miami and charged with money laundering and unauthorized transmitting of money, according to a criminal complaint.

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When Munoz-Moyano arrived at Miami International Airport from Chile, a Customs and Border Patrol agent conducted a routine check. When the agent asked Munoz-Moyano how much U.S. currency he had on him, the flight attendant first said $100, according to a police report. But then he changed his story and said he had $9,000 on him.

Clockwise from top left, Miaria Roman-Strick, Maria Wilson-Ossandon, Carlos Munoz-Moyano and Maria Pasten-Cuzmar. Miami-Dade Police

The wild discrepancy prompted agents to check other flight attendants, the report said. Roman-Strick was found to have $7,300 and Wilson-Ossandon was caught with $6,371. Maria Beatriz Pasten-Cuzmar was also searched, but the police report did not allege she had any cash on her.

In total, authorities seized $22,671 from the flight attendants. Wilson-Ossandon is listed as the main defendant in the criminal complaint, while her fellow flight attendants are listed as co-defendants.

The report said the four flight attendants admitted to something, but the details of their confessions are redacted. None of them had money transmitter licenses, the complaint said.

The four were booked in jail Tuesday, and had immigration holds, according to NBC Miami.

A statement from American Airlines said they are cooperating with law enforcement and “take this matter seriously.”

No. 2 GOP senator: Picture coming out of diplomats testimony not a good one | TheHill

Sen. John ThuneJohn Randolph ThuneHillicon Valley: Zuckerberg would support delaying Libra | More attorneys general join Facebook probe | Defense chief recuses from ‘war cloud’ contract | Senate GOP blocks two election security bills | FTC brings case against ‘stalking’ app developer The Memo: Trump ‘lynching’ firestorm is sign of things to come Senate Republicans block two election security bills MORE (R-S.D.) said on Wednesday that it was difficult to draw “hard, fast conclusions” from a top U.S. diplomat’s closed-door testimony but that the “picture” from initial reports was “not a good one.”

“The picture coming out of it based on the reporting that we’ve seen is, yeah, I would say not a good one,” Thune told reporters when a reporter characterized William Taylor’s testimony as “troubling.”

“But I would say also that, again, until we have a process that allows for everybody to see this in full transparency, it’s pretty hard to draw any hard, fast conclusions,” Thune added.

Thune noted at the time that he had not read Taylor’s testimony but had seen only initial reports.

Taylor, the top U.S. diplomat to Ukraine, said he believes the Trump administration withheld aid to Ukraine in an effort to get Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to launch politically motivated investigations, according to his opening statement and multiple sources familiar with his testimony

Thune, like most Republicans, also took issue with how House Democrats are running the impeachment inquiry, which has focused so far on closed-door depositions with current and former officials.

“I think whatever he said in private, it ought to be done in public, and I think the House Republicans are right to point out that this has been very much a sort of rigged process relative to previous impeachment exercises,” Thune said.

Thune, speaking to reporters later on Wednesday, was more circumspect about Taylor’s testimony, which he noted he had read since initially speaking to reporters earlier on Wednesday.

“Right now, it’s a one-sided story, and I think we’ve got to get the full picture, which we don’t have because it’s been a very rigged process,” Thune said after a closed-door GOP lunch.

He added in reference to Taylor’s testimony that “there’s an awful lot of second hand.”

Republicans have seized on the process as they’ve looked for a foothold in the political fight with Democrats over impeachment.

Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.) noted that he hadn’t read Taylor’s testimony but brushed off a question asking if it was a game-changing moment.

“Of course not. I mean, how could you do that when you haven’t heard anything from the other side? This is a one-side show trial. Don’t they do that in Russia?” he said.

Sen. Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyMulvaney faces uncertain future after public gaffes State cites 38 people for violations in Clinton email review Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle mourn Cummings MORE (R-Iowa) added that House Republicans were coming away with “an entirely different opinion.”

“It just brings very much to the surface that we ought to have more transparency. … The Democrats ought to get this stuff out in the open,” he said.

PG&E Imposes New Power Shutoffs In Parts Of Northern California To Avert Wildfires

Pacific Gas & Electric employees work in the PG&E Emergency Operations Center in San Francisco. Authorities say power outages have started again in parts of Northern California.

Jeff Chiu/AP


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Jeff Chiu/AP

Pacific Gas & Electric employees work in the PG&E Emergency Operations Center in San Francisco. Authorities say power outages have started again in parts of Northern California.

Jeff Chiu/AP

Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. has begun to cut power to about 179,000 customers in 17 counties in Northern California.

The utility announced what it calls “Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) events” Wednesday morning after warning customers earlier of the likelihood of its actions to reduce the potential for wildfires.

“Based on the latest weather readings, PG&E will be turning off power in portions of our service area as outlined below,” read the announcement.

The Wednesday afternoon blackouts involved parts of Alpine, Amado, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Sierra, Tehama, Yuba, Lake, Mendocino, Napa and Sonoma counties.

Portions of San Mateo county, just south of San Francisco, will have power outages early Thursday morning, as will Kern county in the Central Valley.

The power outages could last longer than 48 hours.

“Once the weather subsides and it is safe to do so, PG&E crews will begin patrolling power lines, repairing damaged equipment and restoring customers,” the utility’s announcement said.

Some customers will experience power outages even though their locality is not experiencing “critical fire weather,” in other words, high winds that can damage power lines.

“This is because the energy system relies on power lines working together to provide electricity across cities, counties and regions,” PG&E explained.

Judge directs State Department to hand over Ukraine documents to watchdog group

A federal judge has directed the State Department to begin delivering documents to a watchdog group that requested records related to the Trump administration’s interactions with the president’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, about Ukraine.

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“The documents and records are of critical importance,” U.S. District Judge Christopher Cooper said in a Washington, D.C., courthouse on Wednesday.

The documents were requested under the Freedom of Information Act by American Oversight, a watchdog organization founded by former Barack Obama administration officials.

Cooper directed the State Department to begin handing over the records within 30 days.

PHOTO: In this file photo taken on Nov. 22, 2016, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani arrives at Trump Tower on another day of meetings for President-elect Donald Trump in New York.Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images

In this file photo taken on Nov. 22, 2016, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani arrives at Trump Tower on another day of meetings for President-elect Donald Trump in New York.

Earlier this month, American Oversight filed a lawsuit seeking to compel the State Department to begin “processing and releasing senior officials’ correspondence with Giuliani and other communications about efforts to pressure the Ukrainian government to open a political investigation,” a press release from the group read.

“The lawsuit also sought the release of records related to the recall of U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch,” the group added.

The administration’s interactions with Giuliani and the Ukrainian government are now the focus of an impeachment inquiry on Capitol Hill. Democrats have accused the president of engaging Ukraine’s new leader, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, in a quid pro quo.

On Tuesday, the United States’ top diplomat in Ukraine, Ambassador Bill Taylor, told impeachment investigators that he believed actors inside and outside of the federal government had coordinated to withhold military aid to Ukraine until Zelenskiy expressed public support for investigations that may help President Trump politically.

The president fired back on Twitter on Wednesday, calling Taylor a “Never Trumper.”

Trump: ‘We’re building a wall in Colorado’

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Trump: ‘We’re building a wall in Colorado’

“We’re building a wall in Colorado. We’re building a beautiful wall. A big one that really works,” Trump said. Colorado doesn’t lie on the southern border.

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The Trump administration is planning to collect DNA samples from asylum-seekers detained by immigration officials and will add the information to an FBI database used by law enforcement hunting for criminals, a Justice Department official says. (Oct. 21)
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WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump said Wednesday that a wall is being built in Colorado.

“And we’re building a wall on the border of New Mexico. And we’re building a wall in Colorado. We’re building a beautiful wall. A big one that really works — that you can’t get over, you can’t get under,” Trump said during a speech at the Shale Insight Conference in Pittsburgh.

He continued, “And we’re building a wall in Texas. And we’re not building a wall in Kansas but they get the benefit of the walls that we just mentioned. And Louisiana’s incredible.”

Colorado is not positioned along the U.S.’s southern border, where Trump has focused his desire for a physical barrier, and there have been no reports of plans to construct a border wall in the state. A portion of the border wall is being built along the Colorado River in Arizona.

Trump presumably misspoke, as he had just been speaking about the border wall plans along the southern border between New Mexico and Mexico.

“You know why we’re going to win New Mexico? Because they want safety on their border. And they didn’t have it. And we’re building a wall on the border of New Mexico,” he declared before mentioning Colorado.

Nevertheless, Trump’s comments spread on Twitter.

Trump’s border wall promise was a main campaign slogan from 2016, and the President recently said his administration will redirect $3.6 billion in Pentagon money to step up construction on the barrier.

Read or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/10/23/trump-declares-were-building-wall-colorado/4077890002/

PG&E Imposes New Power Shutoffs In Parts Of Northern California To Avert Wildfires

Pacific Gas & Electric employees work in the PG&E Emergency Operations Center in San Francisco. Authorities say power outages have started again in parts of Northern California.

Jeff Chiu/AP


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Jeff Chiu/AP

Pacific Gas & Electric employees work in the PG&E Emergency Operations Center in San Francisco. Authorities say power outages have started again in parts of Northern California.

Jeff Chiu/AP

Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. has begun to cut power to about 179,000 customers in 17 counties in Northern California.

The utility announced what it calls “Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) events” Wednesday morning after warning customers earlier of the likelihood of its actions to reduce the potential for wildfires.

“Based on the latest weather readings, PG&E will be turning off power in portions of our service area as outlined below,” read the announcement.

The Wednesday afternoon blackouts involved parts of Alpine, Amado, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Sierra, Tehama, Yuba, Lake, Mendocino, Napa and Sonoma counties.

Portions of San Mateo county, just south of San Francisco, will have power outages early Thursday morning, as will Kern county in the Central Valley.

The power outages could last longer than 48 hours.

“Once the weather subsides and it is safe to do so, PG&E crews will begin patrolling power lines, repairing damaged equipment and restoring customers,” the utility’s announcement said.

Some customers will experience power outages even though their locality is not experiencing “critical fire weather,” in other words, high winds that can damage power lines.

“This is because the energy system relies on power lines working together to provide electricity across cities, counties and regions,” PG&E explained.

Fired NYPD officer in Eric Garners chokehold death, Daniel Pantaleo, sues to get job back

The former New York police officer who was fired in August for using a chokehold during Eric Garner’s deadly arrest five years ago is suing to be reinstated.

Daniel Pantaleo filed a lawsuit Wednesday against the NYPD alleging the decision to terminate him was “arbitrary and capricious,” Pantaleo’s attorney, Stuart London, confirmed to NBC News. NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill chose to fire Pantaleo at the recommendation of the NYPD’s Deputy Commissioner of Trials.

“It is clear that Daniel Pantaleo can no longer effectively serve as a New York City police officer,” O’Neill said at the time.

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O’Neill said that Pantaleo made a proper arrest up until the point that his grip became a chokehold, a move prohibited by the NYPD. The commissioner also placed blame on Garner himself for resisting arrest.

“Every time I watch that video I say to myself … ‘to Mr. Garner, don’t do it. Comply. Officer Pantaleo, don’t do it,'” O’Neill said.

Pantaleo has the right to appeal his termination under Article 78, a New York civil code that sets a path for challenges to rulings by a government agency.

A Staten Island grand jury declined to indict Pantaleo and, this summer, the Justice Department said it would not bring federal civil rights or criminal charges against him.

Pantaleo was among two officers who were initially confronting Garner about his alleged sale of cigarettes in an incident captured on bystander Ramsey Orta’s cellphone.

As back-up arrived, Pantaleo jumped on Garner’s back, wrapped his left forearm around the suspect’s neck and rode him to the pavement.

Pantaleo pushed Garner, a 6-foot-2, roughly 400-pound man, into the sidewalk as four other officers approached to help. Garner could be heard in video of the incident pleading repeatedly: “I can’t breathe.”

Judge orders State Department to release documents on Trump dealings with Ukraine | TheHill

The State Department must begin turning over documents related to the Trump administration’s dealings with Ukraine within 30 days, a judge ruled Wednesday.

American Oversight, an ethics watchdog organization, filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the State Department in early October in an attempt to gain access to documents related to communications between President TrumpDonald John TrumpGraham to introduce resolution condemning House impeachment inquiry Support for impeachment inches up in poll Fox News’s Bret Baier calls Trump’s attacks on media ‘a problem’ MORE‘s personal attorney Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiOvernight Defense: Trump’s Syria envoy wasn’t consulted on withdrawal | McConnell offers resolution urging Trump to rethink Syria | Diplomat says Ukraine aid was tied to political investigations Democrats say they have game changer on impeachment READ: Diplomat describes pressure put on Ukraine to open ‘investigations’ MORE and top State Department officials regarding Ukraine.

The group also requested records related to the recall of Marie Yovanovitch, the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine.

U.S. District Judge Christopher Cooper ruled Wednesday that the records sought were of public importance and that the State Department needed to begin disclosing documents within 30 days, NBC New York reported. Cooper reportedly advised American Oversight to meet with the government to narrow the request. 

“Despite the ongoing obstruction of Congress, the Trump administration will now have to start releasing records concerning its dealings with Ukraine,” Austin Evers, executive director at American Oversight, said in a statement to The Hill.

“This is an important victory for the American people’s right to know the facts about Ukraine, and it is a major setback for the White House’s stonewalling. The court recognized the importance of these documents and the need for the State Department to rapidly release them, and American Oversight will continue fighting to make sure the truth comes out.”

The State Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill. 

Cooper’s ruling comes weeks into House Democrats’ formal impeachment inquiry, which is centered around a whistleblower complaint accusing Trump of pressuring Ukraine to investigate 2020 presidential candidate Joe BidenJoe BidenSupport for impeachment inches up in poll Overnight Defense: Trump’s Syria envoy wasn’t consulted on withdrawal | McConnell offers resolution urging Trump to rethink Syria | Diplomat says Ukraine aid was tied to political investigations Democrats say they have game changer on impeachment MORE and his son over unfounded allegations of corruption. 

A group of House committees has issued deposition and documents requests to numerous administration officials as part of the inquiry. The House Foreign Affairs Committee subpoenaed Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoTrump hotel cancels Christian aid group’s event to support the Kurds: report Pence on Syria: ‘Our troops are coming home’ House calls on Russia to release Paul Whelan or else provide evidence of wrongdoing MORE in late September for documents related to the administration’s dealings with Ukraine, though he has refused to comply with the demand. 

Democratic Reps. Adam Schiff (Calif.), Eliot Engel (N.Y.) and Carolyn Maloney (N.Y.), the chairs of the House Intelligence, Foreign Affairs and Oversight and Reform committees, respectively, sent a letter to the State Department on Wednesday renewing their demand for records.

The committee chairs said in the letter that they had identified specific documents in the control of the State Department that are “directly and highly relevant to the [impeachment] inquiry.” 

“The Committees consider the refusal to comply with a duly authorized congressional subpoena as obstruction of the lawful functions of Congress and of the impeachment inquiry,” the lawmakers wrote. 

Despite the White House’s efforts to prevent cooperation with the impeachment inquiry, several former and current administration officials have privately testified before Congress. On Tuesday, William Taylor, a top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine, testified that he was told nearly $400 million in Ukrainian military aid was conditioned on the nation publicly declaring investigations into the Bidens and the 2016 election. 

Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, told Taylor that Trump wanted Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky ” ‘in a public box’ by making a public statement about ordering such investigations,” Taylor said in his opening statement.

Trump has repeatedly denied allegations of a quid pro quo. 

PG&E Imposes New Power Shutoffs In Parts Of Northern California To Avert Wildfires

Pacific Gas & Electric employees work in the PG&E Emergency Operations Center in San Francisco. Authorities say power outages have started again in parts of Northern California.

Jeff Chiu/AP


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toggle caption

Jeff Chiu/AP

Pacific Gas & Electric employees work in the PG&E Emergency Operations Center in San Francisco. Authorities say power outages have started again in parts of Northern California.

Jeff Chiu/AP

Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. has begun to cut power to about 179,000 customers in 17 counties in Northern California.

The utility announced what it calls “Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) events” Wednesday morning after warning customers earlier of the likelihood of its actions to reduce the potential for wildfires.

“Based on the latest weather readings, PG&E will be turning off power in portions of our service area as outlined below,” read the announcement.

The Wednesday afternoon blackouts involved parts of Alpine, Amado, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Sierra, Tehama, Yuba, Lake, Mendocino, Napa and Sonoma counties.

Portions of San Mateo county, just south of San Francisco, will have power outages early Thursday morning, as will Kern county in the Central Valley.

The power outages could last longer than 48 hours.

“Once the weather subsides and it is safe to do so, PG&E crews will begin patrolling power lines, repairing damaged equipment and restoring customers,” the utility’s announcement said.

Some customers will experience power outages even though their locality is not experiencing “critical fire weather,” in other words, high winds that can damage power lines.

“This is because the energy system relies on power lines working together to provide electricity across cities, counties and regions,” PG&E explained.

PG&E Imposes New Power Shutoffs In Parts Of Northern California To Avert Wildfires

Pacific Gas & Electric employees work in the PG&E Emergency Operations Center in San Francisco. Authorities say power outages have started again in parts of Northern California.

Jeff Chiu/AP


hide caption

toggle caption

Jeff Chiu/AP

Pacific Gas & Electric employees work in the PG&E Emergency Operations Center in San Francisco. Authorities say power outages have started again in parts of Northern California.

Jeff Chiu/AP

Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. has begun to cut power to about 179,000 customers in 17 counties in Northern California.

The utility announced what it calls “Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) events” Wednesday morning after warning customers earlier of the likelihood of its actions to reduce the potential for wildfires.

“Based on the latest weather readings, PG&E will be turning off power in portions of our service area as outlined below,” read the announcement.

The Wednesday afternoon blackouts involved parts of Alpine, Amado, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Sierra, Tehama, Yuba, Lake, Mendocino, Napa and Sonoma counties.

Portions of San Mateo county, just south of San Francisco, will have power outages early Thursday morning, as will Kern county in the Central Valley.

The power outages could last longer than 48 hours.

“Once the weather subsides and it is safe to do so, PG&E crews will begin patrolling power lines, repairing damaged equipment and restoring customers,” the utility’s announcement said.

Some customers will experience power outages even though their locality is not experiencing “critical fire weather,” in other words, high winds that can damage power lines.

“This is because the energy system relies on power lines working together to provide electricity across cities, counties and regions,” PG&E explained.