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Nunes sues Twitter, vows many more are coming; Beto confronted with third-trimester abortion question
NUNES SUES TWITTER, SAYS MORE LAWSUITS TO COME: Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., filed a lawsuit against Twitter and some of its users Monday seeking $250 million in compensatory damages and $350,000 in punitive damages, accusing the social media site of "shadow-banning conservatives" including himself, to influence the 2018 elections, systematically censoring opposing viewpoints and totally "ignoring" lawful complaints of repeated abusive behavior.
And the congressman told Fox News' Sean Hannity the lawsuit is "first of many" to come ... Click on the image above to see his full interview on "Hannity" from Monday night.
DID BETO ENDORSE THIRD-TRIMESTER ABORTIONS? - At a campaign event in Ohio on Monday, White House hopeful Beto O'Rourke appeared to punt on the question of third-trimester abortions but endorsed a woman's right to the controversial practice, less than a month after Senate Democrats blocked a bill that would have required doctors to provide medical care to newborns amid a swirling infanticide controversy in Virginia ... "Are you for third-trimester abortions?" an attendee of the campaign event in Cleveland asked O'Rourke, before describing the medical alternatives to such a procedure and disputing the medical necessity of late-term abortions. "Are you going to protect the lives of third-trimester babies?" O'Rourke responded: "The question is about abortion and reproductive rights. And, my answer to you is, that should be a decision the woman makes. I trust her."
REPORT: NATIONAL ENQUIRER PAID OFF BROTHER OF BEZOS' LOVER FOR TEXTS - The National Enquirer paid the brother of Jeff Bezos’ mistress $200,000 for the private text messages between the two lovers that were published in January, according to a Wall Street Journal report Monday night ... Michael Sanchez, the brother of Bezos’ girlfriend Lauren Sanchez, reportedly provided the intimate communications to American Media LLC, this after months of speculation as to how the tabloid obtained messages revealing lurid details about the Amazon CEO’s alleged love affair. The Journal's finding, attributed to people familiar with the matter, parallels the conclusion reached by private investigators working for Bezos as of early February.
WARREN INSISTS NATIVE AMERICAN HERITAGE CLAIM DIDN'T BOOST CAREER: 2020 presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren insisted Monday that her disputed claims of Native American heritage, for which she later apologized, had no role in the advancement of her career ... During a CNN town hall in Jackson, Miss., the Massachusetts Democrat was asked how she responded to critics who said her handling of questions about her heritage was “tone-deaf, offensive, and indicative of a lack of presidential tact.” “Well... you know... I grew up in Oklahoma. I learned about my family from my family. And based on that, that’s just kind of who I am and I do the best I can with it,” the senator responded. “You know, there was an investigation, nothing I ever did or my family played any role in any job I ever got.”
WHY BEN SASSE FLIPPED ON TRUMP'S BORDER EMERGENCY DECLARATION - "I think there are three different issues here. The first is, do we objectively have a crisis at the border? And, we do ... Second, does the president have the authority to declare a crisis in this kind of circumstance? ... I think the president does have that authority. That is a different question than whether or not that's a good law." – Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., on "Special Report," explaining why he voted against a resolution to stop President Trump's declaration of a national emergency at the U.S.-Mexico border. (Click the image above to watch the full video.)
Donna Brazile: Why I am excited to join Fox News and take part in a civil - and sensible - debate.
FOX NEWS EXCLUSIVE: Brazil’s 'Trump of the Tropics' talks controversial tweet, mysterious killing.
George Conway was turned down from job, jealous of wife, Trump campaign manager says.
11-year-old boy charged with murders of two adults at home.
MINDING YOUR BUSINESS
Report: Tesla asks workers to volunteer to help deliver 30,000 cars.
Marriott plans to open more than 1,700 hotels by 2021.
John Boehner flips on pot legalization: Fed laws 'way out of step.'
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The Big Story: The Shocking Story of Susan Smith, Part 2
“The Big Story” takes a closer look at some of the biggest headlines in American history. In this preview, a mother is charged with the murder of her two little boys, and now she must face not only the justice system, but also the court of public opinion. Watch a preview of the show now.
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On Fox News:
Fox & Friends, 6 a.m. ET: Judge Andrew Napolitano, Fox News senior judicial analyst, on the 2020 Dems' push to expand the Supreme Court. Joel Osteen on the power of prayer following a tragedy like the New Zealand mosque attacks. Nifty Fifty's transforms Fox Square into a diner.
Special Report with Bret Baier, 6 p.m. ET: An interview with Kevin Hassett, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers.
On Fox Business:
Mornings with Maria, 6 a.m. ET: Special guests include: Susan DeVore, president and CEO of Premier; U.S. Rep. Warren Davidson, R-Ohio; Gen. Jack Keane; Tom Bevan, president and co-founder of RealClearPolitics.
Varney & Co., 9 a.m. ET: Special guests include: Sonny Perdue, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.
Lou Dobbs Tonight, 7 p.m. ET: Michael Pillsbury, senior fellow and director of the Center for Chinese Strategy at the Hudson Institute.
Kennedy, 9 p.m. ET: Buck Sexton, former intelligence officer with the CIA.
On Fox News Radio:
The Fox News Rundown podcast: "Former DNC Chair Joins Fox" - Donna Brazile, former chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, has joined the Fox News team, promising civility and an open ear to all debates. The longtime Democratic strategist explains why she made the “bold” decision to join the network. A new study found that taking a daily low-dose aspirin may not be the best way to maintain a strong heart. Fox News contributor Dr. Marc Siegel explains what this means and what we should be doing to stay healthy. Plus, commentary by psychotherapist, Dr. Robi Ludwig Psy.D.
The Brian Kilmeade Show, 9 a.m. ET: HUD Secretary Ben Carson on the opioid epidemic; former U.S. Rep. Allen West, R-Fla. on the state of President Trump's national emergency declaration, the 2020 presidential race, and the Mueller investigation; Matt Schlapp, chairman of the American Conservative Union, on Democrats' 2020 presidential candidates; former FBI Director Louis Freeh on the Mueller probe and counterfeit prescription drug investigations; Jack Mitchell on flooding in Nebraska
The Todd Starnes Show, Noon ET: Todd Starnes speaks with U.S. Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., about the latest developments in the Mueller investigation and analyses whether there is anti-Christian bias in Silicon Valley with Dr. Michael Brown.
2003: President George W. Bush orders the start of war against Iraq. (Because of the time difference, it was early March 20 in Iraq.)
1993: Supreme Court Justice Byron R. White announces plans to retire. (White's departure would pave the way for Ruth Bader Ginsburg to become the court's second female justice.)
1987: Televangelist Jim Bakker resigns as chairman of his PTL ministry organization amid a sex and money scandal involving Jessica Hahn, a former church secretary.
Fox News First is compiled by Fox News' Bryan Robinson. Thank you for joining us! Have a good day! We'll see you in your inbox first thing Wednesday morning.
Source: Fox News National
David Hookstead | Reporter
The Cleveland Browns got a massive bump in the latest Super Bowl odds.
Odell Beckham Jr. was shipped from the Giants to the Browns Tuesday night, and it had an immediate impact on the team’s Super Bowl odds. (RELATED: New York Giants Trade Odell Beckham Jr. To The Cleveland Browns)
According to Browns Wire, the odds went from 25–1 to 14–1 overnight at the Westgate for the Browns to win the Super Bowl in 2020.
That puts them at about the halfway mark of the league.
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) March 13, 2019
I would have told you that you were crazy if four months ago you told me Cleveland would have Super Bowl odds of 14/1. I never would have thought that was possible.
Fast forward to today, and the Browns offense is now loaded. They’ve got Baker Mayfield, Beckham, Jarvis Landry, Kareem Hunt and Nick Chubb on that side of the ball. (RELATED: Here Are The Best Twitter Reactions To Odell Beckham Jr. Getting Traded To The Browns)
That is loaded by every metric and measurement.
If you haven’t learned at this point to always expect the unexpected in the NFL, then you’re simply not paying attention.
The past 24 hours have been unreal, and I’m here for every second of it. I can’t wait to see what the Browns do with this revamped team. It’s going to be a lot of fun.
Source: The Daily Caller
Jeb Bush, former Governor of Florida, speaks during the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., May 1, 2017. REUTERS/Mike Blake
March 11, 2019
By Ginger Gibson
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The federal election oversight agency has levied a record fine against the Super PAC that backed former presidential hopeful Jeb Bush, who ran as a Republican in 2016, and a Chinese-owned corporation, according to a watchdog group that filed the initial complaint.
The Campaign Legal Center had asked the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to impose sanctions in 2016, after The Intercept reported that American Pacific International Capital, Inc (APIC) had made $1.3 million in contribution to the Right to Rise PAC.
APIC released a statement saying they are a U.S company and voluntarily agreed to the settlement with the FEC.
“The Commission expressly acknowledged that the company did not knowingly or willfully violate any U.S. campaign finance laws,” APIC said in a statement provided to Reuters. “American Pacific International Capital remains committed to compliance with all campaign finance laws and regulations.”
The Campaign Legal Center, however, called it a victory for transparency.
“Today’s action is a rare and remarkable step by the FEC, and a reminder that safeguarding our elections against foreign interference is in America’s vital national security interests,” said Campaign Legal Center President Trevor Potter.
The FEC alleges that two Chinese citizens, Gordon Tang and Huaidan Chen, who are prohibited from making campaign donations, funneled their contributions through APIC to avoid detection.
APIC was fined $550,000 for making the contributions and Right to Rise was fined $390,000 for soliciting a foreign national contribution.
Federal law prohibits foreign nationals or foreign companies from contributing to U.S. political campaigns or candidates.
The documents released by the Campaign Legal Center do not implicate Bush, who spent months before formally launching his campaign fundraising for the Right to Rise PAC.
Right to Rise spent millions trying to help elect Bush president. He ultimately lost the Republican nominating contest to Donald Trump.
The PAC was dissolved after Bush was defeated. A representative could not be contacted for comment.
(Reporting by Ginger Gibson; editing by Jonathan Oatis)
WASHINGTON – Top lawmakers on the Senate Finance Committee are requesting an unclassified briefing on a database kept by Customs and Border Protection that tracked journalists and others in a large migrant caravan last fall.
The committee's chairman, Republican Chuck Grassley of Iowa, and its ranking Democrat, Ron Wyden of Oregon, sent a letter Monday to the head of the agency asking to be briefed by Thursday.
Customs and Border Protection compiled data on dozens of people that included passport and social media photos. The database had information on journalists, organizers of the caravan "instigators" and activists.
Customs and Border Protection officials say the department's independent watchdog is looking into the database, and stress that journalists are not targeted based on their occupation or reporting.
Source: Fox News National
Members of the media reacted Friday to former Fox News editor Ken LaCorte’s op-ed criticizing a New Yorker report that claimed Fox News knowingly killed a story about Stormy Daniels and then-candidate Donald Trump prior to the 2016 presidential debate.
New Yorker reporter Jane Mayer alleged in her report this week that Fox opted not to publish the story in 2016 because higher-ups at Fox News were trying to protect then-presidential candidate Donald Trump from the scandal. She claimed that Diana Falzone, a FoxNews.com reporter, confirmed the affair occurred with Daniels’ manager and ex-husband.
However LaCorte’s op-ed, which appeared in Mediaite, points to a different reason the story was not published: a lack of corroborating evidence. (RELATED: CNN’s Stelter Says Dems Are ‘Dehumanized’ On Fox News After DNC Blacklists Network)
“It lacked: any mention of payments, a hush money contract or any corroborating evidence beyond the two secondhand accounts,” he wrote. “The story wasn’t close to being publishable, and my decision to hold it was a no-brainer. I didn’t do it to help Trump and never said nor implied otherwise.”
“I sent Mayer an email with some explanation and an offer to talk, and she responded: ‘sorry, but I didn’t know fact-checkers called, I was hoping to call you first. we just added this to the story today. I’ll call in a bit. up to my eyeballs right this moment.’ She never did,” LaCorte continued.
As he points out, “The Washington Post, Guardian, Newsweek, The Hill, Esquire, Vanity Fair, and at least 70 others,” pushed Mayer’s piece without reaching out to him.
LaCorte’s piece sent shock waves on social media with people pushing back on Mayer’s piece.
Jane Mayer has always struck me as a fairly sinister figure in the world of journalism: someone who employs the trappings of the form (“research,” “quotes” etc.) to abuse its norms for deeply partisan purposes. This confirms it to me. https://t.co/gGNF273dag
— Esoteric Jeff (@EsotericCD) March 8, 2019
— Stephen Miller (@redsteeze) March 8, 2019
— Caleb Hull (@CalebJHull) March 8, 2019
— Mollie (@MZHemingway) March 8, 2019
Source: The Daily Caller
Saagar Enjeti | White House Correspondent
President Donald Trump kicked off his second summit Wednesday evening local time with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Hanoi, Vietnam.
Trump kicked off the summit in similar fashion with a ceremonial handshake between the two leaders. Trump briefly took questions while shaking the North Korean leader’s hand, saying of the summit, “I think it’ll be very successful” and that the two leaders have “a great relationship.”
The president was asked whether he would officially declare an end to the Korean War to which he replied, “we’ll see” and reaffirmed his commitment to making the goal of the summit denuclearization on the Korean peninsula.
Shortly afterwards, the two leaders were seen by reporters again seated across from each other with respective translators, when Kim Jong Un spoke for the first time. The North Korean leader expressed optimism about the summit’s beginning and some regret for “misunderstandings” in the interim 251 days since they last met in Singapore. He added that “a lot of patience was needed.” (RELATED: Here’s What Trump, Kim Jong Un Agreed Upon At Summit)
The president then noted his hope that the second summit would be more successful than the first and emphasized a point that he will likely raise time and time again during the summit; that North Korea has “tremendous economic potential” if it agrees to denuclearize.
Trump and Kim Jong Un were scheduled only for a 20-minute initial 1-on-1 meeting. After they will be joining an expanded bi-lateral working dinner, which is scheduled to last 90 minutes. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters Monday that Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will accompany the president.
The summit between the two leaders will then continue Thursday, though the White House has not yet released any other details. Trump mentioned briefly at the end of his second session with Kim Jong Un that a news conference would take place at the end, just as he did in Singapore.
Trump will seek to build upon his June 2018 summit with the North Korean leader where the two countries signed a memorandum agreeing in principle to begin a denuclearization process. The previous summit’s main achievement was securing a cooling period in tensions between the U.S. and North Korea, which ratcheted up early in Trump’s presidential term.
White House officials say the president will now seek to secure some sort of concrete commitment from the North Korean government to begin a denuclearization process. Trump’s pitch to Kim Jong Un is that by agreeing to denuclearization the young leader can usher in a new extraordinary period of economic prosperity.
North Korea’s economy is currently hampered by some of the most strict international sanctions in the world, hindering its ability to trade in international markets and subjecting the country to an effective blockade from the community of nations.
Source: The Daily Caller
The International Space Station (ISS) crew members Aleksey Ovchinin of Russia, Nick Hague and Christina Koch of the U.S. walk shortly before leaving to board the spacecraft at the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan March 14, 2019. REUTERS/Shamil Zhumatov
March 14, 2019
MOSCOW (Reuters) – A Russian-made Soyuz rocket lifted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Thursday, carrying three astronauts into space, two of whom survived a mid-air rocket failure in October.
The Soyuz MS-12 took off at 1914 GMT, as planned, and is due to bring Russian cosmonaut Alexei Ovchinin and U.S. astronauts Nick Hague and Christina Koch to the International Space Station around eight hours later.
For Ovchinin and Hague, it is the first flight since an emergency landing two minutes after they blasted off on Oct. 11, 2018.
An investigation showed then that the abortive launch was caused by a sensor damaged during the rocket’s assembly at the cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.
This week, Ovchinin and Hague said they were confident this time about reaching the International Space Station, though they said a small fault had been discovered on their rocket during final checks.
(Reporting by Andrey Ostroukh; Writing by Tom Balmforth; Editing by Andrew Heavens)
NOW ON AIR
The torrent of water from heavy rainfall spawned by last week’s "bomb cyclone" and snowmelt has led to devastating flooding across several Midwestern states, including swamping a major Air Force base in Nebraska that’s key to the nation’s nuclear attack response.
About one-third of Offutt Air Force Base — including officers, hangars and nearly 3,000 feet of the base’s 11,700-foot runway — is underwater due to flooding from the Missouri River south of Omaha.
Spokeswoman Tech. Sgt. Rachelle Blake told the Omaha World-Herald that 60 buildings, mostly on the south end of the base, have been damaged, including about 30 that were completely inundated with as much as 8 feet of water.
Airmen from the 55th Wing had been filling thousands of sandbags in a round-the-clock effort to fortify facilities but were forced to give up after filling 235,000 sandbags and preparing 460 flood barriers.
“It was a lost cause," Blake told the World-Herald. "We gave up."
Col. Michael Manion, commander of the 55th Wing, has been providing updates on the flooding on Facebook. As of Tuesday morning, he reported there has been "slow water regression" that’s allowed some high points that were underwater to be revealed. Disaster recovery crews are expected to arrive by the end of the week to begin work when floodwaters fully recede.
"The wheels are in motion but remember – it will likely take months and months and the SE side of the base will never look the same," he wrote.
Nine aircraft of the 33 reconnaissance jets based at the facility were able to be flown out before the runway was flooded, according to Manion.
One of the planes was a Boeing-made E4-B plane, which is meant to serve as an aerial command center in case of national emergency or destruction of ground bases in an event such as a nuclear attack, Reuters reported.
The base is also the location of the U.S. Strategic Command, which oversees the country’s nuclear arsenal. The Strategic Command headquarters is set on a hill and was not affected by the floods, and neither was its new $1.3 billion building.
Many of the senior leaders from STRATCOM are participating in a worldwide military exercise called Global Lightning, which began Wednesday, according to the World-Herald.
Satellite photos released on Monday by NASA show the extent of the flooding in Nebraska, particularly along the Platte, Missouri and Elkhorn Rivers.
The effect of the flooding can particularly be seen around Offutt Air Force base.
"Several communities west of Omaha (between the Elkhorn and Platte Rivers) either flooded or temporarily became islands as floodwaters encroached from both sides," NASA Earth posted to Facebook.
The agency said that a "rare confluence of circumstances" has contributed to the late-winter flood.
"Extreme cold earlier in the winter set the stage by preserving a significant amount of snow; it also created a thick layer of ice on waterways and made the ground less permeable than usual," NASA said. "When an intense storm brought downpours and unusually warm air to the region in March, it rapidly melted much of the snow and ice, producing enormous runoff in a short period."
At least 3 deaths were blamed on flooding, and two other men have been missing for days.
While river depths were starting to level off in parts of Nebraska on Sunday, the water is so high in many places that serious flooding is expected to remain for several days. And downstream communities in Kansas and Missouri were bracing for likely flooding.
The rising Mississippi River also was creating concern. The Mississippi was already at major flood level along the Iowa-Illinois border, closing roads and highways and swamping thousands of acres of farmland. Moderate Mississippi River flooding was expected at several Missouri cities, including St. Louis.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Source: Fox News National
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi explained to reporters Monday what kind steps she may consider to lower the federal voting age to 16 years old at a press conference in Ferguson, Missouri.
“We’re obviously collecting thoughts about it. Just because someone has a good idea — any of us — doesn’t mean it’s going to the Floor next,” Pelosi said. “It means you go through the process. You build consensus. You build a crescendo. That’s another club I’m starting: the crescendo club.”
She added, “You have an idea? Let’s see how many people you can convince. Let’s see what the other views are that we can enhance this.”
Pelosi, at her weekly presser last Thursday, told The Daily Caller she always supported lowering the voting age. The Democrat-proposed legislation, known as the “For The People Act” (H.R.1), included a debate over a failed amendment intended to lower the voting age to 16 years of age. The amendment was defeated 126-305, but H.R.1 passed. (RELATED: 125 Democrats And 1 Republican Vote To Lower Voting Age To 16)
“I myself, personally — I’m not speaking for my caucus. I myself have always been for lowering the voting age to 16,” Pelosi said last week. “I think it’s really important to capture kids when they’re in high school, when they’re interested in all of this, when they’re learning about government to be able to vote.” (RELATED: Pelosi Says She Personally Supports Lowering The Voting Age To 16)
The Speaker further elaborated on her thoughts concerning the issue Monday night when she joined Missouri Democratic Rep. Lacy Clay to talk about and take questions about H.R.1, as well as the Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2019 (H.R.4).
“ …. When kids are in high school is really a prime time for them to be aware of civics. Many years ago, when I was in school, civics was a requirement. Then — remember that? Well, you don’t remember that, but you read about it.”
But then, it became an elective, and I don’t know. There were other things kids took instead. So, the point is that when they are in high school, we see such a heightened interest in history and civics and climate and gun safety and you name it. And that would be a time for them to be registered to vote. Now, we want to start something that might say ‘register to register.’ But you’ve got to get them on there because once they leave high school, not all kids go to college. And even if they do, they might not be in that same sense of community that they as high school students can make a big difference. More and more, more and more.
Pelosi previously supported a local effort two years ago in San Francisco known as Proposition F, which would have lowered the voting age for municipal elections, but the measure was defeated.
Kerry Picket is a host on SiriusXM Patriot 125
Source: The Daily Caller
Lauryn Overhultz | Columnist
Julia Roberts took a firm stance against the actions of those involved in the college admissions scandal.
The “Pretty Woman” actress weighed in on the scandal while promoting her new drama “Ben Is Back” in the U.K.
Roberts and her husband have three kids together, 14-year old twins and an 11-year old son. They try to keep the experience relatively normal for their kids, Roberts said.
“My husband and I are very aligned on that front, I think that we live a very normal experience with our children. Obviously we have advantages that we didn’t have as children,” Roberts told ITV. “But I think that’s the unique part of it, coming from the childhood I have. You do need to know how to make your bed and do your laundry and make one meal. These are important life skills.”
“They have to run their own race,” she continued. “They have to have their own experience.” (RELATED: Lori Loughlin’s Daughter Loses Sephora Collaboration Amid College Admissions Scandal)
Actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin were both charged in the massive admissions scandal for allegedly paying for their children to gain admission to certain colleges. Loughlin allegedly paid $500,000 in bribes so her daughters could secure admissions to the University of Southern California. Huffman reportedly paid $15,000 to have someone take the SAT test for her daughter.
Source: The Daily Caller
FILE PHOTO: The Supreme Court is seen in Washington, U.S., May 14, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
March 19, 2019
By Lawrence Hurley
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Supreme Court on Tuesday endorsed U.S. government authority to detain immigrants awaiting deportation anytime – potentially even years – after they have completed prison terms for criminal convictions, handing President Donald Trump a victory as he pursues hardline immigration policies.
The court ruled 5-4, with its conservative justices in the majority and its liberal justices dissenting, that federal authorities could pick up such immigrants and place them into indefinite detention at any time, not just immediately after they finish their prison sentences.
The ruling, authored by conservative Justice Samuel Alito, leaves open the possibility of individual immigrants challenging the federal law involved in the case on constitutional grounds if they are detained long after they have completed their sentences.
In dissent, liberal Justice Stephen Breyer questioned whether the U.S. Congress when it wrote the law “meant to allow the government to apprehend persons years after their release from prison and hold them indefinitely without a bail hearing.”
The Trump administration had appealed a lower court ruling in the case that favored immigrants, a decision it said would undermine the government’s ability to deport immigrants who have committed crimes. Trump has backed limits on legal and illegal immigrants since taking office in January 2017.
The plaintiffs included two legal U.S. residents involved in separate lawsuits filed in 2013, a Cambodian immigrant named Mony Preap convicted of marijuana possession and a Palestinian immigrant named Bassam Yusuf Khoury convicted of attempting to manufacture a controlled substance.
Under federal immigration law, immigrants convicted of certain offenses are subject to mandatory detention during their deportation process. They can be held indefinitely without a bond hearing after completing their sentences.
(Reporting by Lawrence Hurley; Editing by Will Dunham)
Oyub Titiev, the head of human rights group Memorial in Chechnya, attends his verdict hearing at a court in the town of Shali, in Chechnya, Russia, March 18, 2019. REUTERS/Said Tsarnayev
March 19, 2019
LONDON (Reuters) – British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt condemned the sentence handed out to a prominent human rights activist by a court in Chechnya, calling it “an awful example of Russia suppressing vital work of human rights defenders”.
Oyub Titiev, who runs the office of the Memorial Human Rights Center in the southern Russian region, was sentenced to four years in a penal settlement on Monday after he was found guilty of possessing illegal drugs. His supporters say he was framed, with the drugs planted in his car.
Hunt wrote on Twitter on Tuesday: “Fabricated charges & absurd sentence imposed on Oyub Titiev are intended to silence his work in holding Russian govt to account for human rights abuses in Chechnya – they must #FreeTitiev.”
(Reporting by Michael Holden; editing by Stephen Addison)