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Bluefin-21 sub searches anew for missing Malaysian jet

Sub searches again for missing jet

A robotic submarine headed back down into the depths of the Indian Ocean off Australia's west coast today to search the seafloor for any trace of the missing Malaysian jet. Data from the sub's previous missions turned up no evidence of the plane. It was the fifth attempt by the Bluefin-21 unmanned sub to find wreckage or the black boxes from Flight 370. The sub, which can create sonar maps of the ocean bottom, has now covered 42 square miles of the silt-covered seabed, the search coordination center said. Officials are desperate to find some physical evidence that they are searching in the right spot for the Boeing 777, which vanished March 8 with 239 on board. A weeks-long search of the ocean surface hasn't turned up a single piece of debris, and officials determined Thursday that an oil slick found in the search zone did not come from the plane.

Guantanamo 9/11 case veers off track again

The judge in the Sept. 11 conspiracy case at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, confirmed Thursday that the FBI is investigating apparent wrongdoing by the defense team for suspected mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, a complication that has further delayed the complex, slow-moving case, McClatchy Tribune reported. The turn of events has frustrated prosecutors and angered relatives of the victims, some of them coming away from this week's hearings believing the pretrial process has been "sabotaged." After nearly two years and 10 pretrial sessions, a trial date remains elusive and could be years away.

Nigeria: Abducted girls' fate unknown

The fate of 115 female students abducted by Islamic extremists was thrown into uncertainty Thursday when their school principal denied the Nigerian military's report that almost all the pupils had been freed.

Measure to ditch N.H. death penalty fails

In a tie vote, the New Hampshire Senate deadlocked Thursday on whether to repeal the death penalty, leaving the current law intact and New Hampshire as the lone state in New England that allows the execution of anyone convicted of a capital crime. Only one person in the state is on death row; Michael Addison, convicted in 2008 in the shooting death of a Manchester police officer.

Several feared missing in Everest avalanche

Officials say four or five climbers were feared missing after an avalanche swept the slopes of Mount Everest early today and hit a route used to ascend the world's highest peak. A Nepal Tourism Ministry official says the avalanche hit the area just below Camp 2. Rescuers and fellow climbers at the base camp were heading to the area to help. A helicopter was on the way from Katmandu.

Times wires

Bluefin-21 sub searches anew for missing Malaysian jet 04/17/14 [Last modified: Thursday, April 17, 2014 11:55pm]
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  1. Trigaux: For Class of 2016, college debt loads favor Florida graduates

    Banking

    Florida college graduates saddled with student debt: Take heart. The average debt Class of 2016 Florida grads must bear is less than students in most states.

    University of South Florida undergraduates gather at the USF Sun Dome in Tampa for last fall's commencement ceremony. A new survey finds their average student debt upon graduating was $22,276. Statewide, 2016 Florida grads ranked a relatively unencumbered 45th among states, averaging $24,461 in student debt. [Photo Luis Santana | Times]
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    Politics

    Imagine this:

    Your mail-in ballot for the St. Petersburg mayoral election has just arrived. According to the fine print, if you live on the west side of the city, your ballot will count as one vote. Meanwhile, a ballot in St. Pete's northeast section counts for three votes.

    Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections worker Andrea West adds mail ballots to an inserter Sept. 22 at the Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections Service Center in Largo. (SCOTT KEELER   |   Times)
  3. St. Petersburg will hold first budget hearing tonight

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — The Sunshine City's new property tax rate looks exactly like its current rate. For the second year in a row, Mayor Rick Kriseman does not plan to ask City Council for a tax hike or a tax cut.

    Mayor Rick Kriseman talks about the state of the city on Tuesday, two days after Hiurricane Irma passed through the state. [EVE EDELHEIT   |   Times]
  4. 'We were lucky': Zephyrhills, Dade City get back to normal after Irma

    Hurricanes

    Two weeks after Hurricane Irma struck Florida, residents and city officials in eastern Pasco — hit harder than other areas of the county — are moving forward to regain normalcy.

    Edward F. Wood, 70, tugs at a branch to unload a pile of debris he and his wife picked up in their neighborhood, Lakeview in the Hills in Dade City.
  5. After Hurricane Irma, many ask: How safe are shelters?

    News

    NAPLES — Residents of the Naples Estates mobile home park beamed and cheered when President Donald Trump and Gov. Rick Scott strolled amid piles of shredded aluminum three days after Hurricane Irma to buck up residents and hail the work of emergency responders. But almost nobody had anything good to say about …

    The Islamic Society of Tampa Bay Area opened its doors to anyone seeking temporary shelter during Hurricane Irma. Evacuees were housed in the Istaba multipurpose building and was quickly at capacity housing over 500 people. [Saturday, September 9, 2017] [Photo Luis Santana | Times]