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Ex-Polish intelligence chief charged with aiding CIA over secret prisons

WArsaw

Ex-official charged over Cia prisons

Former Polish intelligence chief Zbigniew Siemiatkowsk, has been charged with aiding the Central Intelligence Agency in setting up a secret prison to detain suspected members of al-Qaida, the leading daily newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza reported Tuesday. It is the first high-profile case in which a former senior official of any government has been prosecuted in connection with the agency's program.

The newspaper said it was told by Siemiatkowski that he faced charges of violating international law by "unlawfully depriving prisoners of their liberty," in connection with the secret CIA prison where al-Qaida suspects were subjected to brutal interrogation methods. Prosecutors refused to confirm the reports, which also cited an anonymous source in the prosecutor's office, and a CIA spokesman declined to comment.

SEOUL, South Korea

N. Korea sticks to plan for satellite launch

North Korea intends to press ahead with its plan to launch a satellite next month, according to a government statement issued Tuesday, rebuffing President Barack Obama and other world leaders who have told the country to cancel the launching or face the loss of food aid and additional sanctions. The North's announcement came shortly after Obama and other leaders at a nuclear security summit in Seoul condemned the planned launching as a provocation and violation of a U.N. Security Council resolution, as well as a waste of millions of dollars that could be used to buy food. On Tuesday, North Korea accused the United States of applying "double standards" on satellite capabilities.

OVERLAND PARK, Kan.

Abortion files found in recycling bin

Antiabortion lawmakers want the Kansas Legislature to investigate after a former abortion provider discarded hundreds of patients' medical records in a recycling bin outside a Kansas City-area elementary school. The general counsel for the state board that regulates doctors said Tuesday it will consider going to court for an outside custodian to oversee remaining records from the Kansas City, Kan., clinic formerly operated by Krishna Rajanna. The clinic closed in 2005, shortly after Rajanna lost his Kansas medical license. Rajanna told the Associated Press he still has documents stored in his home. The discovery of the discarded documents has sparked an investigation by local police, the Johnson County district attorney's office and the state regulatory board. Rajanna said he had expected the bin to be emptied quickly.

WASHINGTON

Court won't hear $28M Florida tobacco case

The Supreme Court on Monday refused to overturn a $28.3 million verdict against R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. in the first of about 8,000 lawsuits that have been filed against cigarette companies in Florida. The high court refused to hear appeals of a Pensacola jury's award to the family of Benny Martin, who died of lung cancer in 1995. R.J. Reynolds lawyers argued that the case should be overturned because Florida judges aren't making plaintiffs prove cigarette makers knowingly sold dangerous and defective products. People suing cigarette companies only have to prove addiction, and that their illnesses, or deaths of family members, were caused by cigarettes. The cigarette company had said that standard violates due process.

PHOENIX

Death penalty tossed for man who killed 3

The Arizona Supreme Court on Tuesday threw out the death sentence of a Tucson man who bludgeoned his girlfriend and her two children to death in 1984, ruling that the murders weren't especially heinous. The court on Tuesday vacated two death sentences for James Granvil Wallace and imposed two sentences of life in prison instead. The justices wrote that the murders of Susan Insalaco, her 12-year-old son and 16-year-old daughter on Feb. 1, 1984, were heinous in layman's terms but not according to the letter of the law. The justices said Wallace didn't knowingly inflict more wounds on the family than he thought were necessary to kill them.

Elsewhere

La Paz, Bolivia: Bolivian Interior Minister Carlos Romero said his government has seized three shotguns, a revolver and more than 2,300 rounds of ammunition from a vehicle owned by the U.S. Embassy. Romero said the weapons were being transported without authorization and posed a security threat. The U.S. Embassy said the weapons were being transferred under an agreement with Bolivia's police.

New Delhi: A roadside bomb killed 11 paramilitary officers and wounded 29 others Tuesday as they were traveling in a minibus in India's western state of Maharashtra. Although no group took immediate responsibility, authorities blamed insurgent Maoists.

Bamako, Mali: The Economic Community of West African States, the body representing nations in western Africa, on Tuesday suspended Mali and put a peacekeeping force on standby in a threat to the junta that seized control in a military coup last week. There were no immediate plans to deploy the peacekeepers.

Times wires

Ex-Polish intelligence chief charged with aiding CIA over secret prisons 03/27/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, March 28, 2012 12:05am]

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