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Stanford given $25-million: For the fifth time in just over a year, a member of the Bass family of Fort Worth, Texas, has made a huge contribution from the family's oil fortune to an institution of higher education. But this time it was Stanford, not Yale, that received the gift. Robert M. Bass, a graduate of the Yale class of '71 and the Stanford Graduate School of Business, class of '74, announced Thursday that he and his wife, Anne, were giving $25-million to Stanford in recognition of the university's century of academic advances. The Bass family has given four separate $20-million gifts to Yale over the last year. A tentative witness: John F. Kennedy Jr., who took the bar exam three times before he passed, was tentative when asked on the witness stand about the famous Miranda vs. Arizona Supreme Court ruling that requires police to advise suspects of their rights. Kennedy, 30, an assistant district attorney in Manhattan, was testifying Wednesday against an immigration agent accused of illegal searches and seizures when the agent's attorney asked Kennedy if he knew what Miranda warnings were. "I know them as a card that we read defendants," said Kennedy, the son of the late president. The lawyer then asked: "Don't you know where or from whence the Miranda warnings emanated?" Kennedy said: "Yes, roughly. But whether from Miranda vs. Arizona, I wasn't sure what state it was." A legal expert said he was surprised a lawyer would seem unfamiliar with the Miranda case. "I think it would be fair to say that the (Miranda case) . . . is basic to any course in criminal procedure or constitutional law," said Columbia University law professor Richard Uviller.

Cash overload: Broadway producer David Merrick may not have known he was doing anything wrong when he understated the amount of money in his possession by $140,000 on an airport customs form, his lawyer said Thursday. Merrick, 78, and his girlfriend were stopped Wednesday at Kennedy Airport in New York as they were about to board a plane for London. The government said Merrick claimed $5,000, but the two actually had $146,600 _ $95,000 in cash in a handbag and $51,600 in cash and traveler's checks in Merrick's jacket. Americans may take as much money as they wish out of the country, but must declare amounts over $10,000. Customs agents filed a complaint against Merrick accusing him of violating currency laws. Merrick's many hit shows include Gypsy, 42nd Street, Hello Dolly and Oliver!.

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