NEW YORK

New York prosecutors have rested their case against the woman accused of passing herself off as a German heiress and swindling friends, banks and hotels.

Anna Sorokin told a judge Monday she will not testify in her grand larceny and theft of services trial in state court in Manhattan.

Her decision came after several weeks of testimony in a case that has drawn international attention.

Closing arguments are expected Tuesday, and jurors will begin deliberating the same day.

Prosecutors say Sorokin bilked people and businesses out of $275,000 while living a jet-setting lifestyle she couldn’t afford.

They say she also peddled bogus bank statements in a quest for a $22 million loan.

Sorokin’s lawyer says she never intended to commit a crime and planned to pay back the money.

Source: Fox News National

Authorities say a man is facing murder charges in connection with the death of a woman found nearly decapitated in a Brooklyn apartment.

The New York Police Department announced the arrest of Jerry Brown, 34, of Brooklyn, early Sunday.

He also faces an attempted murder charge in connection with another woman who was also at the apartment and was hospitalized in critical condition.

Emergency responders went to a Brooklyn building early Saturday after the surviving woman asked a passing driver to take her to the hospital and he instead called 911.

Police found the dead woman, identified as Savannah Rivera, 20, inside the apartment. A 4-year-old girl was in another room, but was unharmed.

Brown was at a hospital in police custody. There was no information on any attorney for him.

Source: Fox News National

A wealthy heiress has pleaded guilty to charges implicating her in a sex-trafficking conspiracy case against an upstate New York self-help group.

Clare Bronfman entered the plea on Friday in federal court in Brooklyn.

The plea means the 40-year-old Bronfman will avoid going to trial early next month with Keith Raniere. He’s known as the spiritual leader of the group called NXIVM (NEHK’-see-uhm).

Prosecutors say Bronfman was bankrolling Raniere’s group at a time when he had a secret harem of sex slaves who were branded with his initials.

Sentencing is set for July 25.

Bronfman is a daughter of the late billionaire philanthropist and former Seagram chairman Edgar Bronfman Sr.

Source: Fox News National

President Donald Trump and his team love to deride unfavorable stories as “fake news.” But it’s clear from Robert Mueller’s report that the special counsel isn’t buying that.

While there are exceptions, Mueller’s investigation repeatedly supports the news reporting that was done on the Russia probe over the last two years, and details several instances where the president and his team sought to mislead the public.

Whether that’s enough to sway Trump’s supporters remains unknown. They’re still basking in the report’s ultimate conclusion that the evidence doesn’t support that the president or his team worked with the Russians to influence the 2016 election.

Source: Fox News National

The Latest on a man with gas cans arrested at St. Patrick’s in New York City (all times local):

1 p.m.

Police say a man arrested after entering St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York with two cans of gasoline, lighter fluid and butane lighters had booked a flight to Italy and had also been arrested at a New Jersey cathedral a few days ago.

Deputy New York Police Commissioner John Miller says 37-year-old Marc Lamparello is facing charges including attempted arson and reckless endangerment for after his arrest Wednesday night at the New York City landmark. It happened just days after flames ravaged the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.

Lamparello remains in police custody.

Police say Lamparello, of Hasbrouck Heights, was confronted by a cathedral security officer when he entered the church and was told he couldn’t bring the items inside.

The security officer notified officers from the counterterrorism bureau who were standing outside.

It isn’t immediately clear whether Lamparello has an attorney who can comment on his behalf.

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8:10 a.m.

The New York Police Department says a New Jersey man is in custody after he entered St. Patrick’s Cathedral carrying two cans of gasoline, lighter fluid and butane lighters, just days after the Notre Dame cathedral fire in Paris.

Deputy Commissioner John Miller says cathedral security notified officers from the counter-terrorism bureau who were standing outside on Wednesday night.

The New Jersey man said his car ran out of gas and that he was trying to cut through the cathedral to get to Madison Avenue. Police determined the vehicle was not out of gas.

The man was being held at a police station on Thursday while prosecutors worked to determine the charges against him.

Source: Fox News National

A New Jersey man was arrested after entering St. Patrick’s Cathedral carrying two cans of gasoline, lighter fluid and butane lighters, the New York Police Department said, just days after flames ravaged the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris.

The unidentified 37-year-old man had pulled up Wednesday night in a minivan outside the landmark cathedral on Fifth Avenue in midtown Manhattan, walked around the area, then returned to his vehicle at 7:55 p.m. and retrieved the gasoline and lighter fluid, said NYPD Deputy Commissioner of Intelligence and Counterterrorism John Miller.

“As he enters the cathedral he’s confronted by a cathedral security officer who asks him where he’s going and informs him he can’t proceed into the cathedral carrying these things,” said Miller. “At that point some gasoline apparently spills out onto the floor as he’s turned around.”

Security then notified officers from the counter-terrorism bureau who were standing outside, Miller said. The officers caught up to the man and arrested him after he was questioned.

“His basic story was he was cutting through the cathedral to get to Madison Avenue. That his car had run out of gas,” Miller said. “We took a look at the vehicle. It was not out of gas and at that point he was taken into custody.”

“It’s hard to say exactly what his intentions were, but I think the totality of circumstances of an individual walking into an iconic location like St. Patrick’s Cathedral carrying over four gallons of gasoline, two bottles of lighter fluid and lighters is something that we would have great concern over,” Miller said. “His story is not consistent.”

Miller said the suspect is known to police, who are currently looking into his background.

St. Patrick’s Cathedral was built in 1878 and has installed a sprinkler-like system during recent renovations. Its wooden roof is also coated with fire retardant.

Source: Fox News National

Just days after flames ravaged the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris, a New Jersey man was arrested Wednesday night after entering St. Patrick’s Cathedral carrying two cans of gasoline, lighter fluid and butane lighters, according to the New York Police Department.

The unidentified 37-year-old man had pulled up in a minivan outside the landmark cathedral on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, walked around the area, then returned to his vehicle at 7:55 p.m. and retrieved the gasoline and lighter fluid, said NYPD Deputy Commissioner of Intelligence and Counterterrorism John Miller.

“As he enters the cathedral he’s confronted by a cathedral security officer who asks him where he’s going and informs him he can’t proceed into the cathedral carrying these things,” said Miller. “At that point some gasoline apparently spills out onto the floor as he’s turned around.”

Security then notified officers from the counter-terrorism bureau who were standing outside, Miller said. The officers caught up to the man and arrested him after he was questioned.

“His basic story was he was cutting through the cathedral to get to Madison Avenue. That his car had run out of gas,” Miller said. “We took a look at the vehicle. It was not out of gas and at that point he was taken into custody.”

“It’s hard to say what his intentions were, but I think the totality of circumstances of an individual walking into an iconic location like St. Patrick’s Cathedral carrying over four gallons of gasoline, two bottles of lighter fluid and lighters and lighters is something we would have great concern over,” Miller said.

Miller said the suspect is known to police, who are currently looking into his background.

St. Patrick’s Cathedral was built in 1878 and has installed a sprinkler-like system during recent renovations. Its wooden roof is also coated with fire retardant.

Source: Fox News National

A New Jersey man has been arrested outside St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City with two jugs of gasoline.

Police say church personnel stopped the 37-year-old man from entering the landmark cathedral in Manhattan at about 9 p.m. Wednesday. Authorities were investigating whether the unidentified man is emotionally disturbed.

There is currently a heavy police presence outside the cathedral on Fifth Avenue. The incident comes just days after flames ravaged the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris.

St. Patrick’s Cathedral, which was built in 1878, has installed a sprinkler-like system during recent renovations and its wooden roof is coated with fire retardant.

Source: Fox News National

Officials in a suburban New York county are announcing new measures to fight the spread of measles.

The new measles rules in Rockland County were announced Tuesday, the day after New York City closed a preschool over non-compliance with measles vaccine requirements.

Both New York City and Rockland are struggling to contain a measles outbreak centered in ultra-Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods while battling lawsuits over their efforts to require vaccinations.

Rockland County Executive Ed Day says the county will order anyone with measles to stay home, among other measures.

New York City’s Board of Health will vote Wednesday on whether to extend last week’s emergency declaration ordering mandatory vaccinations in four Brooklyn ZIP codes.

New York City has confirmed 329 cases of measles since October. Rockland County has confirmed 186 cases.

Source: Fox News National

A Florida man who pleaded guilty to sending pipe bombs to prominent critics of President Donald Trump will be sentenced in August rather than September, a judge said Monday.

U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff set the Aug. 5 date to determine the penalty for Cesar Sayoc after his lawyer, Sarah Jane Baumgartel, said Sayoc was anxious about the sentencing.

Sayoc, 57, could face life in prison for spreading terror in the days leading up to the midterm election last year. One charge carries a mandatory 10-year prison sentence.

His March guilty plea to explosives charges was a deal with prosecutors that eliminated a charge that would have carried a mandatory life prison sentence. Sentencing was originally set for Sept. 12.

He wrote letters to the judge after the plea insisting that he never meant to say he knew the 16 rudimentary pipe bombs could injure someone when he mailed them to addresses in New York, New Jersey, Delaware, California, Washington, D.C., and Atlanta, Georgia.

Cesar Sayoc, left, sits with his lawyers in Manhattan federal court Monday.

Cesar Sayoc, left, sits with his lawyers in Manhattan federal court Monday. ( JANE ROSENBERG)

“The intention was to only intimidate and scare,” he wrote in one letter, a sentiment he repeated Monday when questioned by Rakoff.

He also admitted that he knew the devices he described as “sparkler fireworks” could injure someone if they caught fire or detonated.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jason Richman said prosecutors would present the judge with an FBI report longer than 100 pages to show the devices could have exploded if they were properly assembled.

Baumgartel responded by saying the defense would show they were not properly constructed.

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Sayoc has been held without bail since his late-October arrest outside a South Florida auto parts store. He had been living in a van plastered with Trump stickers and images of Trump opponents with crosshairs over their faces.

Authorities say he targeted numerous Democrats, including former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, former President Barack Obama, former Vice President Joe Biden, several members of Congress and actor Robert De Niro. He also sent explosives to CNN.

None exploded.

Source: Fox News National


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