Tuesday, May 22, 2018
News Roundup

Egypt's Hosni Mubarak speaks for first time since detention

CAIRO — In his first comments to the media since he was detained more than two years ago, Egypt's former President Hosni Mubarak said he is dismayed at the country's state of affairs and particularly the plight of the poor.

The 85-year-old Mubarak spoke to Al-Watan newspaper after a session of his retrial for his role in the killing of hundreds of protesters during the popular uprising that forced him to step down in 2011. His comments were published Sunday, a day after he appeared in the dock on a hospital gurney, alongside his two sons. The trial was adjourned for June 8.

Mubarak told the newspaper reporter he was "very, very sad" for impoverished Egyptians. He said he was also dismayed by the state of the economy, the industrial cities built during his nearly 30 years in office, and the country's lack of security.

Mubarak also said that it was too early to judge his elected successor, the Islamist Mohammed Morsi, saying that he has a heavy burden to deal with.

The comments were Mubarak's first to a reporter since he was ousted, and his first public statements since his captivity.

Mubarak was detained two years ago and put on trial for complicity in the killing of nearly 900 protesters in the first days of the revolt against him. He has since been hospitalized, sentenced to life in prison and then granted a retrial. He is also accused in a number of corruption cases, where prosecutors are investigating his family wealth amid claims he amassed a formidable fortune while in power. His two sons are also on trial on corruption charges.

In his comments, Mubarak also said he feared for the country's future and its poor should tough economic measures be imposed in order to acquire a $4.8 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund. Egypt's economy took a hard hit over the last two years as foreign reserves dwindled, foreign investment sharply declined and tourists largely stayed away amid political turmoil.

Morsi's government would have to impose likely unpopular austerity measures as part of an economic reform program it is negotiating with the IMF. But talks have dragged on, while politics remain deeply polarized and consensus on managing the country's affairs is elusive.

Mubarak also said he is certain future generations will view his legacy fairly and that history will "exonerate" him. The former strongman stepped down on Feb. 11, 2011, after an 18-day popular uprising that demanded he resign. Protesters accused him of corruption and fostering a culture where power was centralized and police acted with impunity. Protesters feared Mubarak was preparing his son to succeed him.

Comments
Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Rays loss to Red Sox

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Rays loss to Red Sox

Marc Topkin's takeaways from Rays 4-2 loss to Red Sox on Tuesday:* The Rays record against a Red Sox team they consider a measuring stick doesn't look very good at 3-8. But, as manager Kevin Cash and several players pointed out, there is some consola...
Updated: 12 minutes ago
Forecast: Caribbean storm could grow into tropical system

Forecast: Caribbean storm could grow into tropical system

A storm system in the Caribbean Sea could grow into a tropical cyclone within five days, according to the National Hurricane Center.Forecasters give the system a 50 percent chance to develop.The storm’s low-pressure center on Tuesday was nestled betw...
Updated: 17 minutes ago
Academy at the Lakes wins first state softball title

Academy at the Lakes wins first state softball title

VERO BEACH —Academy at the Lakes waited two weeks to play in the Class 2A state softball tournament in hopes of winning what has been an elusive title.The Wildcats completed the first task Monday, cruising to a mercy-rule win over Fort Pierce John Ca...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Lightning-Capitals: Tampa Bay’s Game 7 to-do list

Lightning-Capitals: Tampa Bay’s Game 7 to-do list

TAMPA — By now there are no more secrets. After six games over 11 days, the Lightning knows all the Capitals' habits , and the Caps know all the Lightning's.To Lightning coach Jon Cooper the outcome of tonight's Game 7 of the Eastern Conference...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Couple whose dream boat sank finally set sail on ‘new adventure’

Couple whose dream boat sank finally set sail on ‘new adventure’

The young couple whose story traveled around the world after their dream voyage ended early at the bottom of John’s Pass is ready to try again.Three months after the Lagniappe sank, Nikki Walsh, 24, and Tanner Broadwell, 26, said they set sail Tuesda...
Updated: 3 hours ago
USPS to release scratch-and-sniff stamps; Leaks? White House has sinkhole; 2 Oregon teens take down homophobic school officials; more in U.S. news

USPS to release scratch-and-sniff stamps; Leaks? White House has sinkhole; 2 Oregon teens take down homophobic school officials; more in U.S. news

Updated: 3 hours ago
Sheriff: Weeki Wachee High student posted fake school shooting threat

Sheriff: Weeki Wachee High student posted fake school shooting threat

WEEKI WACHEE — A 16-year-old was arrested Tuesday on allegations that she created a fake social media post threatening to shoot students at Weeki Wachee High School, according to the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office.Deputies said the 16-year-old told...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Driver gets 28 years in prison for fleeing fatal Howard Frankland crash

Driver gets 28 years in prison for fleeing fatal Howard Frankland crash

TAMPA — After Allison Huffman slammed her car into a tow truck driver who had stopped to help a pair of stranded motorists on the Howard Frankland Bridge, she drove to a hotel and got out to look at the damage.She saw shattered glass, a bare tire rim...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Police: St. Pete man who pried a safe out of the wall in custody

Police: St. Pete man who pried a safe out of the wall in custody

ST. PETERSBURG — It took more than an hour for a 25-year-old man to break into a restaurant, pry a safe out of the wall, drag it through the back and then wrestle it into his car, according to police.That was last week. Michael Murphy was arrested Tu...
Updated: 4 hours ago
FSU starter Josh Ball faces Title IX suspension over dating violence accusation

FSU starter Josh Ball faces Title IX suspension over dating violence accusation

Florida State starting offensive tackle Josh Ball faces a university suspension after a Title IX investigation found him responsible for dating violence.The suspension came to light in a Facebook post Monday afternoon by Sandra Sellers, an FSU studen...
Updated: 4 hours ago