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McDonald's caused obesity, lawsuit says

Lawyers have filed a class-action lawsuit against McDonald's on behalf of New York children who have suffered health problems, including diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity.

In federal court in Manhattan on Wednesday, a lawyer alleged that the fast-food chain has created a national epidemic of obese children. Samuel Hirsch argued that the high fat, sugar and cholesterol content of McDonald's food is "a very insipid, toxic kind of thing" when ingested regularly by young kids.

The plaintiffs include a Bronx teen who ate every meal at McDonald's for three years while living in a homeless shelter. Another is a 13-year-old boy from Staten Island who says he ate at McDonald's food three to four times a week and is now 5 feet 4 and 278 pounds.

McDonald's lawyer Brad Lerman insisted the lawsuit was a frivolous attempt to cash in on the Golden Arches, "the kind of lawsuit that shouldn't be in court."

Memo: Los Alamos lab

can't find property

SANTA FE, N.M. _ A newly disclosed memo from a Los Alamos National Laboratory supervisor said nearly $1.3-million worth of computers, phones and other property was unaccounted for over a yearlong period.

The memo, dated April 10, was released to the Associated Press on Wednesday by Washington's Project on Government Oversight, which said it received it anonymously.

Lab spokeswoman Linn Tytler did not respond to repeated requests for comment.

Recount is now automatic

in undecided House race

DENVER _ An automatic recount was triggered Thursday in the race for Colorado's new congressional seat after updated vote tallies showed Republican Bob Beauprez ahead of Democrat Mike Feeley by just 122 votes out of nearly 163,000 cast.

Beauprez had led by 386 votes, but three counties were ordered by a judge to count every qualified provisional ballot in the battle to represent the 7th District in suburban Denver.

When the returns came in, Beauprez had 81,530 votes and Feeley had 81,408. The margin is so small that a recount is automatic under state law.

Crash kills two sisters

on way to see each other

SIX MILE, Ala. _ Two sisters were killed when their vehicles collided head-on on a rural highway as they traveled to visit each other, authorities said.

Authorities said the women were driving Jeeps in opposite directions on Alabama 25 Sunday when one of the vehicles crossed the center line, colliding with the other.

Trooper Cpl. Stan Lemon said investigators were trying to determine which car was on the wrong side of the road and why.

Sheila Wentworth, 45, and her sister, Doris Jean Hall, 51, were killed, along with Hall's husband, Billy Joe Hall Jr., 45.

Impact, not fire, killed

Wellstone's pilots

ST. PAUL, Minn. _ The pilots of the flight carrying Sen. Paul Wellstone died from the impact of the plane crash, not the fire that followed, a medical examiner said.

St. Louis County medical examiner Thomas Uncini said fire has not been ruled out in the deaths of the passengers, who included Wellstone, his wife and daughter and three campaign workers.

Ex-Calif. priest arrested

in altar boy's molestation

CORTE MADERA, Calif. _ A former priest accused of molesting an altar boy in the late 1970s and early 1980s was in custody Thursday.

Jerome Leach, 52, was arrested Wednesday at his apartment in this community just north of San Francisco.

Investigators said Leach's accuser, now 35 years old, told the archdiocese and police that Leach molested him when he was an altar boy at St. Patrick's Church in Larkspur and a student at the adjacent parochial school.