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F-16 part may be defective

WASHINGTON _ The Defense Department is investigating allegations that a Connecticut company manufactured a defective engine part used on some F-16 aircraft, according to documents. The investigation centers around allegations that gearbox housing assemblies made by the Purdy Corp. of Manchester, Conn., are being made in such a way that they could vibrate loose when attached to another part. No problems have yet been reported, the Project on Government Procurement documents said. Purdy had no comment.Tests of anti-stroke

drug said promising

NEW YORK _ A clot-busting drug shows promise in stopping strokes early before permanent brain damage occurs, although it can cause severe bleeding in the brain, two pilot studies released Saturday said. Despite the drug's risks, researchers are sufficiently encouraged to continue testing it, said Dr. Michael Pessin of Tufts University, who led one of the studies. If studies to find the optimal dosage of the drug, tissue plasminogen activator, are successful, clinical trials with large groups of patients will be started to assess the drug's effectiveness. Researchers hope the drug can break up clots to the brain and prevent some brain cells from dying.

Panama documents

may be released

MIAMI _ About 80 documents seized during the U.S. invasion of Panama have been set aside for possible release to the public, the Miami Herald reported Saturday. The documents are part of 50 tons of seized paper work, computer tapes and floppy disks that contain information on Panama's relations with Cuba, Libya and guerrillas in Colombia. Federal law enforcement agents sent to Panama after the Dec. 20 invasion already have shipped some of the documents back to the U.S., and some are in the hands of Miami prosecutors handling a drug indictment against former Panamanian leader Manuel Noriega. Some of the seized material has been set aside for possible release by the State Department, a government source told the Herald.

INS reverses

deportation error

MIAMI _ Two Haitian women who were mistakenly deported too early have been tracked down and returned to the United States while their cases are under review. Huguette Liberus, 34, and Medila Meus, 25, had asked for political asylum but were sent back to their homeland by mistake last July during a transfer error. The women said they were placed on an Eastern Airlines flight, met by Haitian military men in Port-au-Prince and held for three days without food or water. But the Immigration and Naturalization Service asked the women to return to Florida. They are being held in a detention camp pending a decision on their cases.

Elsewhere . . .

WRIGHTWOOD, Calif. _ A 17-year-old girl who was caught in an avalanche in Los Angeles National Forest was found alive after being buried under 3 feet of snow for nearly two hours, authorities said.

EMHOUSE, Texas _ Twenty-four cars of a freight train carrying liquid propane and other hazardous materials derailed Saturday, sparking a huge fireball and forcing the evacuation of several families. No injuries were reported.

WASHINGTON _ A man protesting U.S. policies in Nicaragua was arrested Saturday for allegedly throwing a bloodlike liquid onto a White House gate, police said. Louis Debenedette, 46, was charged with vandalism, officials said.

NEW YORK _ A 32-year-old security guard was stabbed to death on a subway train after he refused to give up his leather coat, police said. Three teen-agers were arrested in connection with the slaying.

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