05 24 2016
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  • On Tuesday, a judge ordered the 78-year-old Cosby to stand trial on sexual assault charges 
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  • The judge concluded Officer Edward Nero played little role in the arrest and wasn't responsible for the failure by police to buckle Gray in  
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  • Bill Cosby faces a preliminary hearing Tuesday to determine if his criminal sex-assault case in suburban Philadelphia goes to trial.Prosecutors had declined to charge the comedian-actor over the 2005 complaint, but arrested him in December after his explosive deposition in the woman's lawsuit became public. In the testimony given in that deposition, Cosby is grilled about giving drugs and alcohol to women before sex; making secret payments to ex-lovers; and hosting Andrea Constand at his home. They knew each other through Temple University, where he was a trustee and she managed the women's basketball team. Bill Cosby's wife refused to answer dozens of questions during a combative deposition in a defamation lawsuit filed by seven women who say the comedian branded them liars after they accused him of sexually assaulting them, according to a transcript released Friday. Camille Cosby was subjected to intense questioning by the women's lawyer, who repeatedly pressed her to say whether she believes her husband "acted with a lack of integrity" during their 52-year marriage. The lawyer also asked if her husband used his position and power "to manipulate young women." Camille Cosby didn't answer those questions and many others after her lawyer cited marital privilege, the legal protection given to communications between spouses. She repeatedly said she had "no opinion" when pressed on whether she viewed her husband's behavior as dishonest and a violation of their marriage vows. About 50 women have publicly accused Bill Cosby of forcing unwanted sexual contact on them decades ago. Cosby has denied the allegations. He faces a criminal case in Pennsylvania, where prosecutors have charged him with sexually violating a former Temple University employee, Andrea Constand. He has pleaded not guilty. Camille Cosby answered questions in the deposition Feb. 22 and again April 19 after her lawyers argued unsuccessfully to stop it. A judge ruled she would have to give a deposition but said she could refuse to answer questions about private communications between her and her husband. Camille Cosby's lawyer, Monique Pressley, repeatedly cited that privilege and advised her not to answer many questions asked by the women's lawyer, Joseph Cammarata. The exchanges between Cammarata and Cosby became testy at times, and she admonished him: "Don't lecture me. Just keep going with the questions." Using a transcript of a deposition Bill Cosby gave in a civil lawsuit filed by Constand in 2005 and a transcript of an interview she gave to Oprah Winfrey in 2000, Cammarata asked Camille Cosby about extramarital affairs her husband had. "Were you aware of your husband setting up trusts for the benefit of women that he had a sexual relationship with?" Cammarata asked. She didn't answer after her lawyer cited marital privilege. Cammarata asked her about Shawn Thompson, a woman who said Bill Cosby fathered her daughter, Autumn Jackson, in the 1970s. Jackson was convicted in 1997 of attempting to extort money from Bill Cosby to prevent her from telling a tabloid she's his daughter. He acknowledged he had an affair with her mother and had given her money. "Was it a big deal when this came up in the 1970s that your husband had — big deal to you that your husband had an extramarital affair and potentially had a daughter from that extramarital affair?" Cammarata asked. "It was a big deal then, yes," Camille Cosby replied. She said she had "no opinion" on whether her husband's admission he obtained quaaludes to give to women with whom he wanted to have sex violated their marriage vows. Her lawyer objected and instructed her not to answer when Cammarata asked her if she ever suspected she had been given any type of drug to alter her state of consciousness when she had sex with her husband. A spokesman for the Cosbys declined to comment on her deposition. The Cosbys have a home in Shelburne Falls, an hour's drive from Springfield, where the lawsuit, seeking unspecified damages, was filed. An attorney handling a separate lawsuit against Bill Cosby revealed Friday that Playboy magazine founder Hugh Hefner provided sworn testimony Wednesday. In the sexual battery lawsuit filed in Los Angeles, Judy Huth says Cosby forced her to perform a sex act on him at the Playboy Mansion around 1974, when she was 15. Bill Cosby's former lawyers have accused Huth of attempting to extort him before filing the case and have tried unsuccessfully to have it dismissed. Huth's attorney, Gloria Allred, said Hefner's testimony will remain under seal for now. Hefner also was named as a defendant in a case filed Monday by former model Chloe Goins, who accuses Bill Cosby of drugging and sexually abusing her at the Playboy Mansion in 2008.   The Associated Press generally doesn't identify people who say they're victims of sexual abuse, but the women accusing Cosby have come forward to tell their stories.___AP Entertainment Writer Anthony McCartney contributed to this report from Los Angeles.
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(CNN) -- Former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin, who captured the drama of Hurricane Katrina in 2005 with an "SOS" call to the nation, was indicted Friday on 21 federal corruption charges, including bribery, money laundering, fraud and filing false tax returns.

Nagin allegedly defrauded the city through "a bribery and kickback scheme" in which he received checks, cash, wire transfers, personal services and free travel from businessmen seeking contracts and favorable treatment from the city, the 25-page federal indictment says.

As part of the alleged bribes, Nagin's family members received a vacation in Hawaii; first-class airfare to Jamaica; private jet travel and a limousine for New York City totaling $23,500; and cellular phone service, the indictment said.

Nagin's family-owned granite-business Stone Age LLC allegedly benefited in the corruption, too, the indictment said.

Nagin could not immediately be reached for comment.

According to the indictment, the bribing businessmen allegedly received city contracts of $1 million for consulting, more than $3 million to build a project at Louis Armstrong International Airport, and $1 million for another airport project, the indictment said. Other contracts were for sidewalk repairs in the French Quarter and professional services, authorities allege.

Among the conspiracy charges is an accusation that Nagin awarded "no bid" work to a city contractor who provided "concealed and direct campaign monies" to Nagin, the indictment says.

Nagin allegedly received bribes from city contractors in the amounts of $60,000, $2,250, $50,000 and $10,000, the indictment says.

He also is accused of receiving a bribe in the form of granite inventory from a city construction contractor.

Nagin faces nine counts of honest services wire fraud, alleging he received nine wire transfers amounting to $12,500 each that were bribes or kickback payoffs from the same city construction contractor in 2010 and 2011, the indictment says. Those bribed totaled $112,500.

In his 2005 tax return -- the same year that Katrina hit the Gulf Coast -- Nagin allegedly filed a false tax return claiming his income was $156,278, the indictment says.

He is also accused of filing false returns for 2006 listing his income at $170,364, for 2007 with an income of $31,163, and for 2008 with a $143,852 income, the indictment said.

The indictment does not detail what the government claims the returns should state.

In 2005, as Katrina became the single most catastrophic natural disaster in U.S. history, Nagin took center stage on behalf of victims when he excoriated the slow pace of federal and state relief efforts, even using profanities.

Nagin, who is black, urged the reconstruction of a "chocolate New Orleans," adding, "You can't have New Orleans no other way." He later apologized, saying everyone is welcome to the city.

In issuing a national "SOS" during Katrina, Nagin expressed the desperation of a battered Gulf Coast:

"I need reinforcements, I need troops, man. I need 500 buses, man. We ain't talking about -- you know, one of the briefings we had, they were talking about getting public school bus drivers to come down here and bus people out here," he told radio station WWL-AM.

"I'm like, 'You got to be kidding me. This is a national disaster. Get every doggone Greyhound bus line in the country and get their asses moving to New Orleans.'

"That's -- they're thinking small, man. And this is a major, major, major deal. And I can't emphasize it enough, man. This is crazy," Nagin said then.

The hurricane slammed the Gulf Coast in 2005 and killed 1,833 people, directly or indirectly, in five states. Damages totaled $108 billion, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Current New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, who won election in 2010 when term limits kept Nagin out of the race, said the charges mark "a sad day for the city of New Orleans."

In the 2006 mayoral race, Nagin beat then Lt. Gov. Landrieu, scion of a prominent Louisiana political family.

"Today's indictment of former Mayor Ray Nagin alleges serious violations of the public's trust," Landrieu said in a prepared statement. "Public corruption cannot and will not be tolerated."

CNN's Zach Cumer and Joe Sutton contributed to this report.

™ & © 2013 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.

 

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