Month: August 2020

Former Miami cop pleads guilty to smuggling guns into Dom Rep

first_imgA former Miami-Dade police officer who is accused of helping smuggle firearms to the Dominican Republic pleaded guilty Monday in federal court to unlawfully exporting firearms.According to a news release by the Department of Justice, by pleading guilty, Michael Freshko admits that he used his position as a police officer to transport firearms past the TSA screening area at Miami International Airport and would hand off the guns to a co-conspirator near the departure gates.Prosecutors said the co-conspirator would store the guns in carry-on baggage.The same co-conspirator would travel to the Dominican Republic aboard a commercial flight and deliver the guns to an associate, prosecutors said.Department of Justice officials said Freshko confessed to smuggling one or more guns on October. 5, 2012, and multiple guns on December. 7, 2012.Prosecutors said six guns were smuggled in all, including four Glock .9 mm pistols, one Sig Sauer .9 mm pistol and one Sig Sauer 5.56 rifle.Freshko faces a maximum sentence of five years in federal prison when he is sentenced.Freshko was hired by the Police Department in September 2004 and was most recently assigned to the Airport District.He was relieved of duty by the Miami-Dade Police Department on December. 7, 2015.last_img read more

Developing Jamaica’s creative industry is positive news

first_imgIt was very encouraging during the recently concluded Jamaica 55 Diaspora Conference to learn of the effort made by the Jamaican government to engage the Jamaican Diaspora in the nation’s development. Most of the outreach made for potential projects involving the Diaspora’s participant seemed well thought out and pragmatic. Moreover, various task forces have been established within the Diaspora. These task forces are working with relevant Jamaican entities to ensure these projects come to fruition.Among the many projects seeking the Diaspora’s participation, is the development of cultural and creative industries.Minister Grange initiativeShortly after her appointment as Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sports, Olivia “Babsy” Grange, placed emphasis on developing the nation’s cultural, entertainment, and sports resources into viable industries. Competent and creative management of these sectors of Jamaican life has the potential to earn the nation significant foreign exchange and boost national` employment. Proper planning could see the development of the nation’s creative industries giving several rural towns the missing economic thrust.It’s very heartening to see the government is developing solid plans to build on these industries. More importantly, it’s a positive sign that the government is reaching out to engage the Diaspora in this development.Cultural and Creative Industry CouncilIn her presentation Minister Grange informed that the Jamaican government will soon be announcing the creation of a Cultural and Creative Industry Council. It’s urged that if the government is serious about the Diaspora’s participation in building this industry, representative(s) from the diaspora is/are included on the council.It continues to surprise that more advantage is not taken by the Jamaican government of its Diaspora. Beside able to participate in areas of Jamaica’s development, the Diaspora offers Jamaica an extremely potent target market. This is a market of well over the size of Jamaica’s population. It’s a market that demands Jamaican products, creating viable potential for the Jamaican export sector.But the emphasis seems to be on the export of Jamaican produce and process foods and drinks. Even so, more can be done in this area, as some of processed foods exported from Jamaica are not really made in JamaicaThere’s still need for Jamaica to focus more on the development of its agro-processing industry, making use of local fruits and food to supply the Diaspora market.Jamaican craft for exportOne area that has strong potential, and within the creative industries, is the production of Jamaican craft for export.With her practical experience in Jamaica’s cultural development Minister Grange is cognizant of the potential of a Jamaican craft industry. Jamaica has some of the best informal and formal crafts producers in the world. However, without focused support from the Jamaican private and public sectors these creative people are struggling to make limited items found in the few craft shops and markets on the island.The Diaspora is a key market to export Jamaican straw, ceramic, pewter, wooden and other craft items. For example, Jamaican ceramic dolls, clay vases, pots, and tableware are showpiece items in homes in the Jamaican Diaspora, and homes of Americans and Canadians who visited Jamaica.Back in the 1980s the government concentrated on the development of the indigenous craft industry. At that time the products of craft producers, many from small rural villages, were purchased and resold nationally and internationally by Things Jamaica Ltd. It was a real disappointment that in the 1990s the then government discontinued operations of Things Jamaica Ltd.As the government turns it focus on the development of Jamaica’s creative industries, it’s also urged to draft a plan for the formal development of the craft industry. This is a plan to be shared with the Jamaican Diaspora to seek its financial, and general support.A vibrant craft industry is critical for engaging and providing jobs for residents of rural Jamaica, while boosting the national economy. There are several experts who have analyzed the potential of Jamaica’s craft who believes the nation’s craft products can effectively compete on the global market. The industry just needs organized support, and the Jamaican Diaspora can play a major role in this aspect.last_img

Windies denied whitewash against Zimbabwe

first_imgTeam Zimbabwe’s batsman Sikandar Raza matched a feat only Jacques Kallis has achieved as they batted out the final day to draw the second and final Test on Thursday.West Indies sealed its first Test series victory in three years but half-centuries from Zimbabwe’s Man of the Match Sikandar Raza, and also Regis Chakabva salvaged a draw for Zimbabwe at the Queens Sports Club.The Windies look destined for a 2-0 whitewash when Zimbabwe were reduced to 46-4 on day four – trailing by 76 – but all-rounder Raza (89) and Chakabva (71 not out) dug in to end the hosts’ 10-match Test losing streak in Bulawayo.Raza joined Jacques Kallis as just the second Zimbabwe player to score 80 or more in both innings and claim a five-wicket haul Raza frustrated the tourists with support from dogged wicketkeeper Chakabva as they batted out the final day to finish on 301-7.Graeme Cremer (28no) had a stroke of luck when he gloved Jason Holder behind first ball but was given not out with the Windies out of reviews, and the Zimbabwe skipper was twice fortunate not to go leg before as he saw out almost 50 overs in a defiant stand with Chakabva.West Indies captain Jason Holder was still able to celebrate his maiden Test series success as captain, The West Indies was winning a series for the first time since beating Bangladesh in 2014.for recent article on West Indies cricket against Zmbabwe, click the link: West Indies beat Zimbabwe in Test matchlast_img read more

T&T Central bank warns of further slide in foreign exchange reserves

first_imgThe foreign exchange reserves of Trinidad and Tobago continues to worsen as revenue decline from the energy sector. T&T foreign exchange reserves The Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago (CBTT) has warned of a “further slippage” of the foreign exchange situation in that country, noting the country will need to maintain its monetary policy dynamism to deal with the current as well as future domestic and external financial challenges.Calls to devalue dollarThere have been calls from the private sector, economists and financial experts for Trinidad and Tobago to devalue the local currency because of the tight foreign exchange situation, and the drastic decline in revenue from the energy sector. These factors has resulted in tight economic problems for the oil-rich twin island republic.But, CBTT Governor Dr. Alvin Hilaire told a news conference that the country had enough foreign exchange to cover at least nine months of imports.Hilaire said the financial institution is joining other central banks across the globe “in pursuing a monetary policy appropriate to country-specific circumstances, while advocating for closer coordination with other macroeconomic policies…and avoiding excessive money creation.”Shock therapy and gradualism He told reporters that determining the pace of adjustment to a large terms of trade shock as Trinidad and Tobago is facing “is not a simple choice between shock therapy and gradualism.Hilaire told reporters that monetary action in Trinidad and Tobago  had to respond to the economy’s energy-exporting nature and associated growth and inflation cycles.He said apart from direct local spending by energy companies, the main channel through which the energy sector affects the local economy is through government taxes.“This has interesting implications for monetary policy since even in the absence of an overall deficit, government spending in excess of what it receives from domestic taxes could add to inflationary pressures.Close attention to government spending“The Central Bank therefore has to pay close attention to the financial activities of the government to avoid the possibility of overheating the economy. This is further complicated by the fact that international energy prices are unpredictable, and the economy has been subject to the boom-bust cycles over the last half century associated with external price movements.”The Central Bank Governor said that for the most part, spikes in the energy prices from 1973 to 1982 and 1995 to 2013, “have been accompanied by episodes of relatively high growth in Trinidad and Tobago and moderate to high inflation.” The foreign exchange reserves of Trinidad and Tobago continues to worsen as revenue decline from the energy sector.last_img read more

Entertainment Roundup: Conan Visits Haiti, Bob Marley, Spice, Soca Monarch

first_img1.5 Star Akil2.Aaron Duncan3.Ambi4.Asten Isaac, Rikki Jai, Yankey Boy5.Blaxx6.Cassi7.Chingee8.Dawg -E- Slaughter9.Dev10.Eddie Charles11.Farmer Nappy12.Feluke13.Hollywood Hp14.Jadel15.Kerlz16.Kris Kennedy17.Lfs Music18.M119.Banjella20.Marlon Asher21.Marvay22.Marzville23.Mighty & Subance24.Motto25.Omardarth Maharaj26.Orlando Octave27.Quin-C28.Rome29.S.O. King30.Shradah McIntyre31.Singer Boy Sergio32.Slammer Cutter Conan O’Brien takes his show to Haiti Late night host, Conan O’Brien, is giving Haitians in Haiti a chance to slam back at Donald Trump.  O’Brien too his show to Haiti last week for his latest international segment. In a preview clip released Monday night, the late-night host wanders the streets of the Caribbean country and gives Haitians a chance to respond to Trump’s crude remarks about allowing immigrants from “shithole countries” into the U.S.Only fair“President Trump insulted Haiti, so I thought it was only fair to give Haitians a chance to return the favor,” O’Brien says in a voiceover before allowing the people of Haiti to deliver punchlines at the president’s expense. Trump urged to visit Haiti“Mr. Trump, please come visit Haiti. Because every time you leave your country, you make America great again,” says one passerby. Another one comments: “For years we had heartless dictators, and finally we turned to democracy. But you guys did the opposite. “The #ConanHaiti special premieres Sat. Jan. 27th on TBS.  Bob Marley makes the Billboard Reggae Album chart again Reggae legend, Bob Marley, may be dead for over 36 years but he has made his 59th entrance on the Billboard Reggae Album Chart. Marley’s ‘Kingston Sessions: Vintage Years,’ a 10-track compilation from the singer, was released on January 12th on JA Records and has made it to five on the latest chart. The album includes songs Marley first cut during the 1960s, such As ‘Mellow Mood,’ ‘Mr. Chatterbox,’ ‘Soul Almighty,’ ‘Nice Time,’ ‘Hypocrites’ and ‘Thank You Lord.’Trinidad & Tobago gets ready for Soca Monarch SemisWho will be this year’s Trinidad & Tobago soca monarch? The answer is at least two competitions away and fans will have to see who moves on to the finals after the January 25th semis at Queen’s Park Savannah.Thirty plus artistes are vying for a chance to move on to the finals. Reigning Soca Monarch, Aaron “Voice” St. Louis, is defending his crown and says he is aiming for a hat trick at this year’s competition. The following is the list of the 2018 semifinalists in alphabetical order: Dancehall Spice Releases New Single Jamaican dancehall star, Spice, has dropped her first video and single of the year. ‘Duffle Bag’ was released on Friday, Jan. 19th. “I am trying to fuse dancehall with trap and hip-hop,” the singer told the STAR. “The artistes overseas use our dancehall style all the time and capitalize on it, so I don’t see anything wrong with me using theirs.” Spice is calling the fusion ‘dancehop’  and says she hopes to use it as a strategy to break and push dancehall more on to  the international scene.last_img read more

Amnesty International to unveil mural in Jamaica

first_imgThe international human rights group, Amnesty International, says it will unveil a mural of Jamaican women fighting for justice for family members allegedly killed by police in the capital on FridayIt said that the mural forms part of its “Brave Walls” campaign, a collaboration with the global street art community to help raise awareness of the vital work of human rights defenders.In a statement, Amnesty International, said the mural, which was done by the street artist Matthew McCarthy, had the support of local non-governmental organization (NGO) Jamaicans For Justice (JFJ) and a family support group composed of women who lost relatives at the hands of the police.Work on the mural started this week and it will be completed with the help of local young people during a “back to school” community event to empower youth to pursue education and inspire them to become the next generation of human rights defenders, the human rights group said.The statement said that the unveiling will feature guest speakers, legal aid workshops, entertainment, stalls with information from Amnesty International and other NGOs, and school supply giveaways.“Women in Jamaica, especially poor women, do not get justice when their children are killed by the police. There are hundreds of parents going through the same thing but there is still no help, there is still no justice. There is not a day that we don’t miss the ones we’ve lost,” said Claudette Johnson, a member of the family support group.Amnesty International said in 2017, Jamaican law enforcement officers killed 168 people, an average of three people a week in a nation of 2.8 million. Over the past decade only a handful of police have been convicted for such killings.last_img read more

Jamaica’s Reggae Girlz defeat Panama to advance to FIFA World Cup

first_imgJamaica defeated Panama on penalty kicks in a very exciting third-place CONCACAF game this evening in Frisco, Texas and now advances to FIFA’s Women World Cup next year in France.Both teams were competing for a World Cup placement from CONCACAF and ended the 90 minutes regulation period tied 1-1. After the required overtime period each team scored to be still tied 2-2, advancing to the dreaded penalty kicks. Jamaica won 4-2 on penalties. The Reggae Girlz, ranked No 64 in the world, are the first Caribbean team to earn a spot in the World Cup. Panama still has a chance to qualify in a two-legged playoff with Argentina, and make it to the World Cup in the footsteps of the men’s team which made it to last summer’s World Cup in Russia. Both the United States and Canada already secured spots in the World Cup with wins in the CONCACAF semifinals.  ..last_img read more

Former Super Eagles Coach Joins NPFL champions On Short-term Deal

first_imgRelated Sylvanus Okpala, a former assistant coach of the Super Eagles, has been appointed as the head coach of Nigerian Professional Football League (NPFL) champions Enugu Rangers.This was confirmed by the club’s general manager, Christian Chukwu, who revealed that the 55-year old has been given a short-term deal until the end of the season. He also disclosed that Okpala has not been handed any specific target.Okpala has been a wonderful servant to the Super Eagles after winning the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) both as a player and coach.He was part of the squad that won the country’s first ever AFCON title in 1980. Slyvanus Okpala also played a big role during the 2013 triumph as an assistant coach to the late Stephen Keshi.last_img read more

Bookmaker’s favour Macron as French ‘Run-Off’ favourite

first_img Bookies Corner: Trump Presidency sinks as US 2020 enters its 100 day countdown July 29, 2020 StumbleUpon Submit Related Articles Following this Sunday’s first round ballot, the 2017 French General Election will be decided by two outsiders as centrist Emmanuel Macron and far-right populist Marie Le Pen battle in the deciding 2nd round of voting on 7 May.Updating markets, the majority of bookmakers’ have priced Macron as firm 1/8 favourite (implied 90% chance of winning). Pollsters and commentators believe that Macron will now carry favour with the electorate, as French political parties push for the candidate to win round 2.Immediately following the announcements of the two Presidential finalists Francois Fillon leader of the Les Republicans and Les Socialist’s Benoit Hamon urged their party members to vote for Macron in order to ‘stop a far-right extremist’.As expected Marie Le Pen’s odds have drifted to 5/6-1 to win France 2017. However, a number of bookmakers have detailed that Le Pen dominates market wagers as political punters look for their Brexit and Trump moment in 2017.Speaking to SBC, Smarkets spokesman Pascal Lemesre commented on France 2017 “The implied probability of a Le Pen victory according to our market (12%) is quite similar to those that Leave and Trump had in the two big political betting shocks last year, but there is a big difference in the polls.While the Brexit vote and Presidential election were neck-and-neck in the polls in the lead-up to the vote, polls in France – which called the first round very well – have Macron way ahead for the second round and it really does look like his race to lose.So, while the betting markets are quite similar, polling isn’t and it would probably be a bigger shock than Brexit and Trump were Le Pen to triumph.” Share Bakhshi and Shaddick launch ‘Art of the Possible’ podcast tracking US 2020 developments August 10, 2020 Smarkets gains green light to enter Swedish market July 28, 2020 Sharelast_img read more

Worldpay CEO brought in to replace Corcoran at Paddy Power Betfair

first_img Share FSB selects Glenn Elliott as new COO August 12, 2020 BGC: Charities win big as bookies take beating in Britannia Stakes June 19, 2020 Submit StumbleUpon Alex Gersh returns to betting as Sportradar CFO   July 13, 2020 Share Related Articles Breon Corcoran is stepping down as CEO of Paddy Power Betfair to be replaced by Worldpay CEO Peter Jackson.The operator informed the stock market this morning that Corcoran is leaving after 16 years with the Paddy Power Group and having overseen the successful merger with the Betfair betting exchange in February 2016.The news saw the share price drop 5%.Chairman of Paddy Power Betfair Gary McGann commented: “Breon has been talking with me and the Board about his long-term plans and accordingly, some months ago, we intensified our focus on executive succession planning to ensure an orderly transition.“While we will be sorry to see Breon leave, we are delighted to have appointed a candidate of Peter’s calibre to succeed him. The Board’s unanimous selection of Peter follows a thorough global search for an individual with the skills and expertise to match the ambition of the Group. The combination of his executive expertise together with his understanding of the Paddy Power Betfair business as a non-executive Director uniquely positions Peter to assume the role of CEO and lead the Group in its next stage of development.“On behalf of the Board and management team, we would like to record our sincere appreciation to Breon, who leaves Paddy Power Betfair with the Board’s best wishes, having achieved great success over the past 16 years. Breon leaves behind a business that continues to perform strongly, and that has the scale, technology platform, combination of brands and exceptional people to outperform its competitors. We wish him every success in his future ventures.”Corcoran added: “I have been privileged to work with many exceptional people over the last 16 years and the business has a talented, stable and motivated management team. We have built a business that is a structural winner and has a very bright future.“This was a very difficult decision to make, and there is never a good time to leave, but this is the right decision for me and my family, and following the successful completion of the merger integration it is an opportune time for the business too. I look forward to watching the continued success of Paddy Power Betfair as a shareholder.”Jackson was unanimously appointed by the independent members of the Board following a succession process led by the Chairman and the Nomination Committee, together with Spencer Stuart, an international executive search firm. The succession process was international in scope with an objective to identify a world-class candidate with the necessary blend of skills and expertise to succeed Corcoran, who will oversee the company until Jackson is able to join.Jackson, now Paddy Power Betfair CEO Designate, commented: “I am excited about the prospect of joining the Paddy Power Betfair executive team. Paddy Power Betfair has some of the leading brands in the global gaming industry and the business has great prospects. I look forward to leading the team, and continuing to serve our global customer base.”last_img read more