LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A Dutch national who created and ran an elaborate online marketplace for the buying and selling of narcotics has pleaded guilty to U.S. drug trafficking and money laundering charges, prosecutors said on Wednesday.
Marc Willems, 45, of the Netherlands pleaded guilty on Tuesday to the two felony counts and admitted to launching “The Farmer’s Market,” which facilitated the sale of drugs like LSD, ecstasy and marijuana to users in the United States and dozens of other countries, the Los Angeles U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Two Northern California cities have made plans to rid themselves of armored vehicles built to withstand roadside bombs that their police got for free from the U.S. Defense Department, in a move that follows criticism of the police handling of protests in Missouri as too militarized.
Officials in San Jose and Davis took steps to jettison their so-called Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicles this week.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A solution to the longstanding mystery of why rocks move erratically across an isolated patch of California’s Death Valley finally emerged on Thursday, when researchers published a study showing the driving force was sheets of wind-driven ice.
Trails from the movement of the rocks, which show them changing direction suddenly in their movement across the so-called Racetrack Playa, have long befuddled scientists and the general public. People wondered: How were the rocks moved?
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – U.S. authorities have agreed to stop pressuring undocumented immigrants in Southern California to sign off on their own deportations under a legal settlement that may later allow some deportees to return from Mexico to seek U.S. legal residency, advocacy groups said on Wednesday.
The deal reached between the American Civil Liberties Union and federal officials stems from a lawsuit brought last year on behalf of other immigration rights groups and about 10 immigrants who accepted so-called “voluntary returns” to Mexico.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Waves up to about 20 feet (6 meters) high crashed along the Southern California coast on Wednesday, as heavy and potentially dangerous surf from a Pacific cyclone drew crowds of surfers and spectators to Los Angeles-area beaches, officials said.
Large swells generated by Hurricane Marie began hitting the Southern California shore on Tuesday, causing coastal flooding in the Orange County town of Seal Beach after dark that inundated garages of 30 coastal homes.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A drought has robbed the U.S. West of 63 trillion gallons (238 trillion liters) of water, and with all that weight off the land the ground in the region has risen by several millimeters, according to a study released on Thursday.
The findings by scientists at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego, were published in the online edition of the journal Science.
(Reuters) – Blood samples from a patient at a Northern California hospital, who is suspected of having been exposed to the deadly Ebola virus, will be tested by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, officials said.
There have been no confirmed cases of Ebola in the United States, though two American relief workers who contracted the disease in Liberia were flown back to America for treatment earlier this month.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Los Angeles city leaders are considering a lottery system to reward citizens for casting a ballot in local elections, in a measure to combat low voter turnout that officials and outside observers say could be a first for any U.S. municipality.
The Los Angeles Ethics Commission voted 3-0 on Thursday to recommend that members of the City Council move forward with the lottery idea, either by putting it before voters as a local initiative or by adopting it on their own, said commission president Nathan Hochman.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Former Manson Family member Bruce Davis, who was sentenced to life in prison for two 1969 murders but was granted parole this year, was ordered on Friday to remain behind bars by California Governor Jerry Brown who rejected the decision to free him.
When the 71-year-old Davis was granted parole by a state board in March, it was uncertain whether he would step out of prison on that vote of confidence in him by the panel, because Brown last year reversed a similar decision.
LOS ANGELES, Aug 6 (Reuters) – Former U.S. surgeon general
Jesse Steinfeld, who warned of the perils of second-hand smoke
and was famously not asked to return for the Nixon
administration’s second term after clashing with the tobacco
industry, has died at 87, his daughter said on Wednesday.
Steinfeld, a former official at the National Cancer
Institute who was named surgeon general in 1969, died on Tuesday
in California of complications from a stroke at an assisted
living center in Claremont, said his daughter Susan Steinfeld.