Man guilty of witness intimidation

first_imgNORWALK – Jurors convicted a 30-year-old accountant Monday of attempting to intimidate a witness at the order of gang members. Henry Beserra, who wears button-down shirts, is hardly the picture of a gang member, but the recording he made, witnesses in the trial concluded, was to be used to prove to incarcerated Mexican Mafia leaders that the witness had become a “rat” and should be killed. Jurors took just four hours to return a guilty verdict against Beserra, a former UCLA student referred to in court as a “ghost,” or an underground go-to guy for a prison gang. He was convicted of attempted witness intimidation with a gang enhancement. “Ghosts aren’t recognized as gang members. But they’re really into doing things that need to be done for the gang,” a witness and Mexican Mafia member testified last week. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE11 theater productions to see in Southern California this week, Dec. 27-Jan. 2Judge Philip Hickok ordered Beserra to return to Norwalk Court on June 15 for sentencing. Defense attorney Noland King said Beserra is innocent, and a victim of overly aggressive prosecutors. “All Mr. Beserra was doing was picking up his cell phone to make a call,” said King, arguing that he inadvertently made the four-minute recording by pressing the wrong button on his phone. On Sept. 2, Beserra sat in Whittier Court, watching a preliminary hearing in a case in which a Mexican Mafia gangster was the victim. The gangster, from Santa Fe Springs, testified that a rival gang member attempted to kill him because he told a local gang to pay taxes to the Mexican mafia on its drug sales. A supervising bailiff confiscated Beserra’s cell phone during the witness’ testimony when he saw him holding it in court. He noticed there was a recording on the phone, and gave it to detectives to investigate. Detectives testified that he was planning to use the recording, in which the witness can be heard saying and spelling his name, as proof that the witness was “ratting out” his gang. But King argued that Beserra is innocent and was in court to support a family member charged with trying to kill the witness. “Mr. Beserra is an accountant. His family is here in court supporting him. He was in court supporting his cousin \,” King said. During the trial last week, Beserra sat calmly watching the proceedings. He sat politely throughout the trial, his hands folded in front of him, wearing button-down shirts. He chatted with attorneys and court personnel during breaks. With no visible tattoos, a military-style haircut and a pleasant demeanor, he appeared out of place amid gang investigators and tattooed witnesses on the stand. But this is not Beserra’s first conviction. In 2002, he was convicted of assault with a deadly weapon and making criminal threats, according to court records. He was also held to answer on charges of rape, sodomy and false imprisonment among other crimes in 2002, according to court records. Monday’s conviction could be considered Beserra’s third strike, landing him in prison for a maximum of 25 years to life. Deputy District Attorney Mike Enomoto testified that his voice can be heard on Beserra’s recording, as he questioned the witness. Enomoto said this is the first time he’s learned of underground Mexican Mafia members called “ghosts.” “This is the first time I’ve dealt with a ghost in one of my cases,” he said. “They are, by nature, clandestine. You would not by looking at Beserra think he was gang related. If not for an alert bailiff, this recording would have gone undetected.” sandy.mazza@sgvn.com (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3026160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

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POPULAR PRIEST CENSURED BY CATHOLIC CHURCH

first_imgPOPULAR Passionist priest Father Brian D’Arcy has been censured by the Catholic Church for being too liberal.The high-profile cleric, based in Fermanagh, is a popular figure here in Co Donegal.He learned to speak Irish at Colaiste Mhuire in Loughanure. Hundreds of people from this county attended his annual Novena in Enniskillen last month.The action against the priest was taken by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) last year after an anonymous complaint.Fr D’Arcy has spoken out against mandatory celibacy for priests, church teaching on contraception and has been a vocal critic of the handling of clerical sexual abuse.The action came after Fr Ottaviano D’Egidio, the Passionist Superior General, was summoned by Cardinal William Levada, Prefect of the CDF, 14 months ago. “Some time ago the CDF was in touch with our General about some of Brian’s views and since then Brian has been co-operating to ensure that he can continue to make a contribution to the religious journalism that he is involved in,” Fr Pat Duffy, the Irish provincial of the Passionists told the Tablet.A popular broadcaster, Father D’Arcy’s Sunday World column is now submitted to the Vatican for approval before it is published. POPULAR PRIEST CENSURED BY CATHOLIC CHURCH was last modified: April 26th, 2012 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:father brian d’arcyPOPULAR PRIEST CENSURED BY CATHOLIC CHURCHlast_img read more

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Fancy getting your pet neutered for free?

first_imgTo celebrate World Animal Week, Animals In Need Donegal are offering the chance to win free and discounted neutering vouchers for dogs and cats as part of their pet neutering drive.The Donegal based animal rescue has five free neutering vouchers for cats and three 50% discount vouchers for dogs up for grabs.For a chance to win the vouchers, go to Animals In Need Donegal’s Facebook page and comment cat or dog under the competition post. The winners will be chosen at random when the competition closes this Sunday 8th October.An AIN spokesperson said ‘Donegal has a huge number of unwanted animals needing to be rescued each year and the main reason is that people are still not neutering their pets and too many animals are being born with not enough homes to for them to go to.’So far this year the charity has rescued 337 dogs and pups (174 dogs from Letterkenny Pound and 163 dogs were surrendered by their owners), neutered 240 cats and has saved 190 cats and kittens since May.AIN continued ‘We are asking people once again to please neuter your pets. Every year we are left to deal with so many unwanted animals who are the result of uncontrolled breeding.’ Highlighting how easily animal numbers can get out of control she said ‘With cats able to have three litters of kittens a year, with an average 4-6 kittens at a time, who in turn can start breeding at 6 months old, then left to their own devices from that one cat you can have hundreds of cats in just a couple of years.’There are also a number of health benefits in neutering your pet.Spaying female cats helps to prevent uterine infections and mammary tumors, which are malignant or cancerous in about 90 percent of cats, while spaying female dogs also eliminates the risk of pyometra, which is a common, life-threatening infection of the uterus and greatly reduces the likelihood of mammary tumours which are malignant in around 50 percent of dogs.Neutering male cats and dogs prevents testicular cancer and many prostate problems along with reducing anti-social behaviour such as territory marking, roaming and aggression.The AIN spokesperson said ‘Neutering your pet is not only the right thing to do for the animal but is also cost effective. It’s a once-off trip to the vet and will avoid all the expenses incurred when babies come along or your pet develops medical problems associated with not having been neutered.’AIN reiterated ‘Please be a responsible owner and neuter your pet at 6 months old.’The prize vouchers are valid in the Republic of Ireland and valid for one month from the date of the draw.Check out their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AINDONEGAL/ to be in with a chance to win.Fancy getting your pet neutered for free? was last modified: October 5th, 2017 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:animals in needdonegalneuteredlast_img read more

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In Pictures: Donegal’s top Techno students triumph at national awards

first_imgBright Leaving Cert students from across Donegal were celebrated for their achievements at the Technoteachers Association annual awards on Saturday, March 10th. The National Student awards took place at the GMIT Galway Campus, where students were recognised for their results in subjects including Materials Technology Wood, Technical Graphics, Technology, Constructions Studies, Design & Communication Graphics and Graphics and Construction.The event acknowledges both the students and their teachers for outstanding achievements in last year State Examinations 2017. See the photos below for the Donegal winners:Damien Keys from Deele College Raphoe won first place in Leaving Cert Construction Studies, ordinary level.Jarlath Leonard from Colaiste Colmcille, Ballyshannon won second prize in Leaving Certificate Design and Communication Graphics, ordinary level.Dean Michael Coyle from Mulroy College Milford won third place in Leaving Cert Construction Studies, Ordinary Level.Cait Ni Mhordha from Colaiste Ailigh won first prize in Leaving Certificate Design and Communication Graphics, Higher Level. Her parents accepted the award on her behalf, where they were joined by tutor Seosamh Mac Ceallabhui.Pictured at the annual TechnoTeachers Awards in GMIT recently was Damien Keys from Deele College who won first place in Leaving Cert Construction Studies, ordinary level. Also pictured is tutor Andrew McFadden, TechnoTeacher Chairman Tony Harris and Dr Michael Hannon from GMIT. Photo: Reg GordonPictured at the annual TechnoTeachers Awards in GMIT recently wasJarlath Leonard from Colaiste Chiolmcille who won second prize in Leaving Certificate Design and Communication Graphics, ordinary level . Also pictured is tutor Hugh McGlynn, TechnoTeacher Chairman Tony Harris and Dr Michael Hannon from GMIT. Photo: Reg GordonPictured at the annual TechnoTeachers Awards in GMIT recently was Dean Michael Coyle from Mulroy College who won third place in Leaving Cert Construction Studies, ordinary level. Also pictured is TechnoTeacher Chairman Tony Harris and Dr Michael Hannon from GMIT. Photo: Reg GordonPictured at the annual TechnoTeachers Awards in GMIT recently Cait Ni Mhordha’s from Colaiste Ailigh’s parents accepting the award on her behalf. Cait won first prize in Leaving Certificate Design and Communication Graphics, higher level . Also pictured is tutor Seosamh Mac Ceallabhui, TechnoTeacher Chairman Tony Harris and Dr Michael Hannon from GMIT. Photo: Reg GordonIn Pictures: Donegal’s top Techno students triumph at national awards was last modified: March 12th, 2018 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:awardseducatonLeaving certtechnoteacherslast_img read more

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Five keys for Raiders in Monday night opener against Broncos

first_imgOAKLAND — This was Derek Carr’s team from the start. Always was, even if recent events regarding a certain wide receiver have created an eclipse of sorts when it comes to the Raiders.Carr has never been more important than he will be Monday night (7:20 p.m.) when the Raiders host the Denver Broncos at the Coliseum.That’s why Carr tops the list of five keys to victory in Week 1:1. Derek is the first dominoQuarterback Derek Carr will be entrusted with running an efficient, mistake-free …last_img read more

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Letter: Barkley’s remarks on Warriors, Klay Thompson infuriating

first_imgComments to Warriors andKlay Thompson infuriatingRe: “Charles Barkley to Klay Thompson: Warriors ‘not going to make the playoffs’ ” (Eastbaytimes.com, Oct. 25):After reading this article, I was infuriated with Charles Barkley’s comments to Klay Thompson and the Warriors. I just don’t believe you can judge a team for an entire season after one game.The Warriors were aware that they needed to make changes for the upcoming season. They were able to acquire D’Angelo Russell, who has the ability …last_img read more

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2010 NCP Conference Exit Report

first_imgConference dates: 29- 30 July 2008Target audience: marketing and communications specialists from key sectors of our economy in the continent, including all government communicators.Profile of attendees: Report:The thing we have talked about least is, of course, football. That’s because we share the view that in the bigger picture this is not really about football. There are a few fanatics who thought is should have been about the beautiful game, but we know was really about communication. The main function of the 2010 event is to communicate to our people, to our continent and to the world a set of messages about ourselves, our past, our present and our future. What become clear in those two days is that the beautiful game of football is the platform, the catalyst, the excuse for us to get the attention of the whole world for a brief and invaluable moment. But what we hope to achieve from this event – changing the way we see ourselves and the way the world see us in Africa – will depend on how we communicate what happens on the football fields and around it, during, before and after the few hours when the layers actually kick a ball around.We all know this, but there was one lonely dissident those two days, Irvin Khoza, who insisted in saying at least something about the game. But even he had to concede that what happened on the field would mean very little unless we communicate effectively what we need to communicate to achieve our long-term goal, the real reason we campaigned so hard and so long for the privilege of playing host to this extraordinary event.It seems clear from what has been said that we – and the LOC in particular – are doing well on the first phase: meeting the 17 contractual obligations to FIFA, ensuring that stadiums and infrastructure will be ready. But this is just phase one, and it is in fact the easiest part. We have said loudly clearly that we are going to be ready – and we must continue to say it. We will have to. Questions will continue to be asked and we must patiently and consistently answer them, as was done by a number of our key speakers.But there is a much broader, long-term message to convey. It is not a defensive one, it is one that celebrates us, our people, our country, our achievements, our region, our continent, our past and our future. It is one that challenges the stereotypes people have of our people and our continent and taking the opportunity presented to us to force them to take a fresh look at us. As IMC (acting) and SA Tourism Chief Executive Moeketsi Mosola put it in his opening, scene-setting remarks, we need to create a “lasting impression” and we need to make full use of the communication opportunities this event presents to us.The message which has come clearly through these two days is that this is not something which can achieved by the LOC or government alone, but it is a national effort and that there needs to be a strategic plan to involve all South Africans and key institutions in achieving this. This phase 2 is complex, because we need to ensure the same level of preparedness in every South African institution and every individual, especially those involved in key areas such as the hospitality and security industries.The presentation from our German colleague was very clear and strong in driving home two central learning’s from their 2006 experience:That there is an enormous amount to be achieved, not just in ensuring the event runs smoothly and efficiently, but in mobilising South Africans to ensure that in every interaction with visitors and visiting media, we reinforce the central message about this country and this continent, and challenge the pre-conceptions we know many people will arrive her with.But also the presentation from the German experience made it clear that this does not come from goodwill alone, but from active organization, mobilization and communication. Germany’s crucial Friendship campaign was an extensive, coordinated, planned drive to ensure that all the key people reinforced the country’s friendly face.It was clear from our discussions that there is general recognition that we need now to enter this next phase and we need to do it actively and positively. What is less clear is how, where and who. If we are to believe our speaker, Germany was clear about what it had to challenge and how it had to do it – for example, in recognising that policemen and their attitudes were priorities, and in dealing with it effectively. It was not by chance that the World Cup was such a success in changing the way the world sees Germany – it was by dint of their hard work, their preparation, their organization and their focus.“This task is too grave,” Irvin Khoza said, “to leave to chance. It is not a foregone conclusion. The South African public will not just come. They have to be invited and kept interested. Our communication machinery cannot take South Africans for granted. Whereas it is important for the message to reach them, it is even more important to win them over with a message that permeates through the clutter of messages they are bombarded with.”It was not, I should add, by complaining about how the world sees them. It was not by saying that they were unfairly stereotyped. And I think this is an important message we have heard: we will not achieve much by complaining that the international media is unfair to us, questioning our readiness and continuing to purvey the notion that Africa.We will do it by being honest about our challenges. And in this I must thank the GCIS chief Themba Maseko who dealt with the issue of xenophobia honestly and clearly. We have to face up to this issue and defeat it, if we are to achieve what we have to achieve. We can’t explain it away, excuse it, or try and call it something else. We have to slay this dragon. There can be no question of that.We will do it by using every opportunity we have before, during and after the World Cup to challenge the stereotypes foisted upon us. That means every interaction, every image, every visit by a foreign correspondent needs to be used, not to purvey some fake, rosy picture of ourselves and our continent, but an honest and substantial one, which will challenge their preconceptions and help them learn more about us. This means mobilizing South African institutions and individuals to play their part.“We are all involved in the World Cup,” Essop Pahad said yesterday, “whether we are the taxi drivers who pick up tourists at the airports, workers in the service industry, people on the streets who are stopped and asked for information, or official translator trained in the many global languages … And we must engage in a mass campaign to make sure that the best of what we are as South Africans shines through.””Yesterday, on day one, we heard a good deal about how we can use mass media and new media, particularly innovative social networking campaigns, to achieve this. I must say that I felt that here we had genuine South African innovations, using global technology shaped to meet specific South Africa needs, in ways that were imaginative, interesting and engaging. I am thinking in particular of the Heartlines campaign, and the For Good programme, which are being important and valuable interactive networks for the country as a whole, but for partnerships like this in particular. I want to note that these campaigns do not do what they do by complaining about the media, but about, as Sophie Masipa put it, harnessing mass media for good.A key phrase Sophie used was “individual action for collective benefit” and the value and import of this phrase is probably the most important we need to embrace.Khaitu Mamela of City Press told us that he thought the media had to treat the middle ground between the extreme optimists and the ultra-pessimists He criticized our media for too easily conveying the skepticism of the European media and continuing to peddle the Option B story – that Fifa is working on a contingency plan for our failure. I hope he was not saying that our media should not be keeping us informed of what is being said in Europe; our media has to tell us when these things are being said about us; but he was, I think, urging us to use the skepticism we need to use whenever we want to practice the good journalism we was calling for.We thought Khaitu said something important when he said we must also not raise expectations beyond the realistic. 2010 is important, and there is a lot to be gained from it, but our issues and our challenges will not disappear as a result of it.We have heard a great deal about partnerships and collaboration, as clearly these goals can only be achieved by coordinating but not centralizing a range of initiatives in different sectors and having them work together and alongside each other. It was clear that everyone in the room sees the need to do these things, and the goodwill to get them done is there, and everywhere.We have identified a need to begin phase 2: a roll-out of the preparedness campaign to every South African institution and individual.The biggest achievement with the conference was agreeing to adopt a communication platform – communicator to communicator platform that we launched at the conference to use as a common platform for sharing and distributing content as well getting access to partner networks for distribution of good news.last_img read more

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Turning hostels into residential units

first_img13 May 2011A R40-million project in Limpopo province that is turning former hostels into low-cost residential units provides a framework for transforming the approximately 2 000 public hostels in South Africa, says Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale.The Seshego Community Residential Units project was “the first of its kind in this province”, Sexwale said at the official launch of the project at Seshego outside Polokwane on Wednesday.The project targets residents who earn a monthly income of up to R3 500, with rentals ranging from R400 for a one-bedroom unit to R800 for a two-bedroom unit.Half of the 189 Seshego units are already complete, with occupation due to start once all units are complete.Sexwale said the properties would be transferred to beneficiaries through two housing programmes, the Enhanced Extended Discount Benefit Scheme and the Registration and Endorsement Programme.“These low-cost housing properties are registered and endorsed to avoid sale or letting before expiry of a period of eight years from the date on which the property was acquired.”Sexwale said the government still needed to address approximately 2 000 public hostels in the country. “This programme therefore provides a coherent framework for dealing with the many different forms of existing public sector residential accommodation.”Sexwale said that the provincial local government and housing department would own the units, and would be responsible for ensuring that a proper property management and rent collection system was in place.“Property management may be outsourced to a private company,” he added.Provincial housing spokeswoman Dieketseng Diale said that most of the former Seshego hostel dwellers would benefit from the project. “The project has employed 245 locals, employing skilled and unskilled labourers comprising 59 women, 146 men and 40 youth.”Diale said the two-bedroom units could accommodate two individual tenants sharing, but could also accommodate an entire family. “Each design gets a garden for urban agriculture and recreation,” she said, adding: “When completed, the project will include a clinic and a recreation centre.”After the launch, Sexwale handed over 1 731 title deeds to beneficiaries of various RDP and low-cost houses from around the provinceSource: BuaNewslast_img read more

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YouPhonics Launches Music Collaboration Tool

first_imgTop Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting July 1 marks the soft launch of the music collaboration startup YouPhonics. The brainchild of Aidan Nulman, YouPhonics allows users to record, share, and compose tracks together via a web-based interface.A musician himself, Nulman created the project to help address some of the obstacles that musicians sometimes face when they want to collaborate: distance between musicians, a shared interface, knowing the right musicians and being able to access one another’s skills. “When I moved away from my band in 2006, everything fell apart,” says Nulman. “I haven’t really spoken with the guys since then, even though we practiced and performed together week-in, week-out for over two years.”Stems and SoundsYouPhonics allows you to record or upload tracks. These become “stems” that you can share, download, listen and edit. Stems – yours and others’ – can be mixed in order to create new tracks. No surprise for a collaborative site, the site places a lot of emphasis on the community aspect, with a social profile, comments and “like” features. And Nulman says YouPhones plans to add more social integration options soon. Tags:#start#startups A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Related Posts 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Personalized Beta Invitations and The Scalability of NiceYouPhonics is built with the help of Toronto-based Jet Cooper and BNOTIONS, but clearly the project rests on Nulman, who was once called the music industry’s Zuckerberg. As a solo entrepreneur, Nulman take a very personal and personalized approach to publicizing YouPhonics. (He wrote an apology to me last week, for example, when he didn’t have a press kit ready when I signed up for the beta.) Will being nice scale? Maybe not, but when I asked Nulman about all the personable and personalized emails and invitations, he said it makes for more “meaningful interactions.” Since meaningful interaction and collaboration are what YouPhonics hopes to foster musically as well, it seems like a good philosophy (and hey, good manners).YouPhonics’ competitors include other companies offering online music collaboration services, notably Indaba Music and Kompoz. YouPhonics has raised Friends and Family funding and is considering angel funding at this time. audrey watters Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…last_img read more

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