06-18-2018  12:34 pm      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

MRG Foundation Announces Spring 2018 Grantees

Recipients include Oregon DACA Coalition, Kúkátónón Children’s African Dance Troupe, Komemma Cultural Protection Association ...

CareOregon Awards $250,000 for Housing Projects

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The Honorable Willie L. Brown to Receive NAACP Spingarn Medal

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Some forest trails remain closed long after 2017 wildfire

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UW to pay 7K to settle Republicans' free-speech lawsuit

SEATTLE (AP) — The University of Washington will pay 7,000 to settle a lawsuit filed after the college billed a Republican club security fees for a rally.The UW College Republicans sued, saying the bill for ,000 to cover security costs for the campus event violated free-speech and...

Old farm warehouse may be saved as part of Hanford history

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OPINION

What Happened? Assessing the Singapore Summit

For all its weaknesses, we are better off having had the summit than not ...

Redlining Settlement Fails to Provide Strong Penalties

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5 Lessons on Peace I Learned from My Cat Soleil

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Research Suggests Suicides By Racial and Ethnic Minorities are Undercounted

Sociologist Dr. Kimya Dennis describes barriers to culturally-specific suicide research and treatment ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Greece: 2 face racism charges over beatings of immigrants

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greek police say they have arrested one suspected extreme nationalist and are seeking a second as suspects in a pair of attacks on immigrants in Athens.A police statement issued Monday said the suspects allegedly attacked two Pakistanis on Friday, stole a mobile phone...

Redistricting changes headed to the ballot in several states

A U.S. Supreme Court ruling Monday on redistricting lawsuits in Wisconsin and Maryland comes as several states already are considering changes to the criteria and processes that will be used to draw legislative districts after the 2020 Census.In most places, the state legislature and governor are...

States' redistricting plans facing challenges in court

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to block the use of legislative districts in Wisconsin and Maryland in separate cases that had alleged unconstitutional partisan gerrymandering. Instead, the high court allowed lower courts to continue considering the claims.The cases are among several that...

ENTERTAINMENT

Review: 'Jurassic World 2' leans on nostalgia, contrivances

Here's the good news: "Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom " is more fun than "Jurassic World." It's not exactly a high bar, but still a welcome surprise. In the hands of a new director, J.A. Bayona, with Chris Pratt's high-wattage charisma on full blast and a fair amount of self-aware humor intact,...

'Incredibles 2' crushes animation record with 0 million

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The combined powers of superheroes, the Pixar brand and a drought of family-friendly films helped "Incredibles 2" become the best animated opening of all time, the biggest PG-rated launch ever and the 8th highest film launch overall.Disney estimated Sunday that the film...

AFI highlights Clooney's life of acting, activism and pranks

LOS ANGELES (AP) — George Clooney's Hollywood career spans more than three decades, with memorable roles including fighting vampires, playing Batman and drifting through space in "Gravity." But Clooney's other accomplishments, including directing, screenwriting and activism, led to him...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Puerto Rico struggles with jump in asthma cases post-Maria

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Compulsive video-game playing could be mental health problem

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Israel PM, Jordan king meet after months of strained ties

AMMAN, Jordan (AP) — Jordan's King Abdullah II and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have met after...

Geraldine McCaughrean wins Carnegie children's book prize

LONDON (AP) — British writer Geraldine McCaughrean has won the prestigious Carnegie Medal for children's...

Greek far-right lawmaker arrested on treason-linked charges

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greek anti-terrorism police arrested an extreme far-right lawmaker on treason-linked...

Michael Martinez CNN

(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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