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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Richard D. Kinder and his wife Nancy

WASHINGTON (AP) — Nearly all of the contenders for president are encouraging their deep-pocketed donors to give not just to their campaigns, but to groups known as super PACs, as well.

Unlike campaigns, these outside groups aren't limited in how much money they can accept from individual donors. While they can't directly take orders from the candidates they're spending money to help elect, they still account for about $2 of every $3 raised so far in the 2016 race for president.

Many super PACs must file their first fundraising reports with federal regulators by midnight Friday. The super PAC filings will detail how money was raised and spent from January to the end of June and include the names of donors.

Two weeks ago, many of the candidates filed their first campaign fundraising reports. Together, the reports from the super PACs and the candidates will make for the first major look at who is paying for the campaign for president.

A guide to what's already known about the presidential super PACs, based on information provided by the groups ahead of the Friday filing deadline with the Federal Election Commission:

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JEB BUSH'S JUGGERNAUT

Right to Rise, a super PAC helping former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, is backed by a dozen or more donors who have given $1 million or more. Miguel "Mike" Fernandez, a Miami health care investor, gave the biggest contribution at $3 million.

Bush aggressively courted big donors in the six months before he announced his presidential campaign, when he faced no legal restrictions on his work with the super PAC. Now that he's a candidate, Right to Rise is in the hands of a longtime friend and strategist, Mike Murphy.

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RAND PAUL'S (PAY)PALS

PayPal board member and Silicon Valley investor Scott Banister gave $1.25 million to Concerned American Voters, one of three super PACs supporting Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul's presidential bid. All three filed their FEC reports earlier this week.

Two other donors gave big to pro-Paul entities. Jeff Yass, managing director of high-frequency trading firm Susquehanna International Group, split a $2 million contribution between Purple PAC and America's Liberty. George Macricostas, head of a data center company called RagingWire, gave more than $1 million to America's Liberty.

Thanks mostly to those three donors, the trio of pro-Paul super PACs raised about $6 million through the end of June.

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RICK PERRY'S TEXAS TWOSOME

Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry isn't performing well enough in national polls to guarantee he'll have a spot on the first GOP debate stage, and his campaign has so far only raised about $1 million. But thanks to two Texans, his presidential effort has the money to carry on.

Several super PACs working together as an operation called Opportunity and Freedom say they raised $16.8 million through June 30. About two-thirds came from Kelcy Warren and Darwin Deason.

Warren, a billionaire Dallas energy executive who gave $6 million, also serves as finance chairman of Perry's campaign. Because of that position, he's legally restricted in what he can tell the super PAC. Fellow Dallas businessman Deason gave $5 million. Deason made his fortune by selling Affiliated Computer Services, a data-processing company, to Xerox.

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DEMOCRATIC DOLDRUMS

There won't be much talk of Democrats in the presidential super PAC filings. That's because they account for less than 9 percent of the total super PAC haul so far, according to an Associated Press analysis that compared money raised by formal presidential campaigns with what the super PACs say they plan to report having raised on Friday.

Priorities USA Action, the main group helping Democratic front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton, will report having raised $15.6 million by June 30. Haim Saban, an entertainment executive, gave $2 million to Priorities, making him the top donor. Hedge fund billionaire George Soros, one of the biggest Democratic donors in earlier elections, gave $1 million.

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Follow Julie Bykowicz on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/bykowicz

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