Tag Archives: hostages

Elite unit rescues U.S. hostage from pirates in daring night-time raid into Somalian base


| jlane@queenscourier.com

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U.S. special forces swooped into Somalia this morning to rescue an American woman and a Danish man after a shootout with pirates holding them hostage that left nine captors dead.  Jessica Buchanan, 32, and Poul Hagen Thisted, 60, were freed and are unharmed at a safe location following their kidnap from Galkayo in the Galmudug region of Somalia last October. Nine Somali pirates were killed and five captured during a brutal gun battle after the mission at 2am on Wednesday to save the two hostages, who had been working for the Danish De-mining Group. The sensational mission was carried out by SEAL Team Six, who were already famous for killing former Al Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden last May in Abbottabad, Pakistan, ten years after 9/11.

The two hostages had been working in northern Somalia for the DDG, whose experts have been clearing mines and unexploded ordnance in conflict zones in Africa and the Middle East.  Danish Foreign Minister Villy Sovndal said the poor health of one hostage had led the U.S. to take action and said the rescue operation did not necessarily pave the way for further copycat missions. People involved with the hostages said that Ms Buchanan had been suffering from a possible kidney infection. Both of them are now ‘on their way to be reunited with their families’

 

Read More of this Story at: Daily News

Suit over ‘cop-flub coverup’


| jlane@queenscourier.com

The Round Up

Suit over ‘cop-flub coverup’

A Queens man cleared in a gun-possession case is suing the city for $3 million, claiming prosecutors knew testimony from a key NYPD witness was flawed — and kept that fact secret from the defense. Deon Davis, 21, claims Queens District Attorney Richard Brown’s office has known for four years that Officer Ronald Martiny gave “mistaken” testimony in Davis’ 2007 firearms arrest. The Brooklyn federal court suit, filed this week, says that, after a 2008 visit to the crime scene, Martiny changed his original story about Davis having escaped through a fence. Read More: New York Post

 

Vallone’s trash talk

Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr. is telling illegal garbage dumpers where they can stick their trash. Vallone, who observed personal garbage in a public receptacle outside his office, is outraged that some citizens view the city as their private dumping ground. “I was walking into my office in the rain and I noticed one of the garbage cans outside was stuffed up with personal garbage. I passed it and got angry,” said Vallone. “This is something a lot of people are not aware of, but they see these overflowing garbage cans and a lot of times they assume it’s because they haven’t been emptied. But a lot of times it’s because pigs think they can dump their garbage in public property.” Read More: Queens Courier

 

Officials dispel rumors of crime spikes near Racino

While reported rumors surface about crime spikes near the Racino, officials hope to dispel the so-called fallacies. A recent New York Post article alleged petit larcenies and misdemeanor assaults have increased within the 106th Precinct — which covers the new Resorts World Casino — though they say it’s unclear whether the offenses can be tied to the South Ozone Park gambling operation. The published story started a flurry of worry, according to Captain Thomas Pascale, the 106th Precinct’s commanding officer. However, local officials said so far there’s no cause for concern. Read More: Queens Courier

 

Haggerty’s Queen. $idelight

At the same time he was on trial for stealing more than $1 million from Mayor Bloomberg, political consultant John Haggerty was also using the mayor’s money to settle old political scores in Queens, according to campaign records. Filings at the state Board of Elections show Haggerty’s 28th Assembly District Republican Committee shelled out $16,636 over the last six months to back candidates for party positions against archrival Phil Ragusa, the Queens Republican leader. The Mayor’s Office declined comment. Read More: New York Post

 

Dolan Slams New Birth Control Policy At Fordham Event

The speech on religion and law came at an appropriate time. Archbishop Timothy Dolan is railing at a new Obama administration policy on health care and contraceptives. “You bet we got a disagreement,” said Dolan. The policy requires most health insurance plans to cover free contraceptives for women. The White House turned down Catholics’ request for exemptions for insurance provided to employees of Catholic hospitals, colleges and charities. It has given them another year to comply. Churches themselves are exempt, but that’s not good enough according to Dolan, who added that his opposition has supporters of different faiths. Read More: NY1

Dr. Conrad Murray gets 4 years in jail for Michael Jackson death


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

Comedian Patrice O’Neal Dead at 41

Comedian Patrice O’Neal died Tuesday morning … as a result of a stroke he suffered back in October…This according to his friends at the “Opie and Anthony” radio show. O’Neal had been a staple in the comedy world for years — and performed at the “Comedy Central Roast of Charlie Sheen” back in September. O’Neal was a regular guest on the “Opie and Anthony” radio show – and appeared on several TV shows such as “Chappelle Show,” “The Office,” and “Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn.” Opie just tweeted, “Yes it’s true that our pal Patrice O’Neal has passed away. The funniest and best thinker I’ve ever known PERIOD.” Read More: TMZ

American Airlines Has Normal Flights After Parent Company Files For Bankruptcy

American Airlines says its normal flight schedule will go on after filing for bankruptcy protection. AMR, the struggling carrier’s parent company, filed for Chapter 11 protection today. It also replaced American Airlines CEO Gerard Arpey with the company’s president, Thomas Horton. The airline says the move will help cut debt caused by high-jet fuel prices and labor problems. Travelers should not be affected for now, but the reorganization could lead to a reduced flight schedule and job cuts. American is the the third largest airline in the country and is the first major airline to file for bankruptcy since Delta in 2005. Read More: NY1

City might close Cypress Hills Collegiate Prep

Less than six years after opening its doors, a small school opened by Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s administration might be on its way to closure. Cypress Hills Collegiate Prep (CHCP), which shares space in the Franklin K. Lane building with three other schools on Jamaica Avenue in Brooklyn, received some bad news along with a “D” on its annual progress report – the city might move to close the school after only two graduating classes. Read More: Queens Courier

Iranian protesters storm British embassy

Dozens of hardline student protesters stormed the British Embassy and another British compound in Tehran Tuesday, destroying papers, reportedly setting the Union Jack flag afire and even carrying off a portrait of the Queen while staff fled to safety. Read More: New York Post

Richmond Hill family convicted of defrauding innocent victims

Three members of a Richmond Hill family have been convicted of defrauding 19 individuals, mostly members of the borough’s West Indies community, out of more than $1.8 million over a nearly six-year period by promising to assist them in obtaining “federally seized” properties in Florida and Queens at cheap prices or to assist them in gaining legal status in this country. Read More: Queens Courier

Dr. Conrad Murray gets 4 years in jail for Michael Jackson death
The disgraced doctor whose “medicine madness” killed Michael Jackson was sentenced to the maximum term of four years behind bars and a tongue-lashing Tuesday. Dr. Conrad Murray, 58, was branded a callous, reckless liar who violated his Hippocratic oath and left the King of Pop to die alone in his own bed by the judge. Read More: Daily News

Queens home sales & property values keep sliding at faster rate than rest of city
Queens homeowners are feeling the pain of the housing slump. The volume of home sales in the borough fell by 9% in the third quarter, compared with the same period last year, according to a report from NYU’s Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy. The decline exceeded the drop in home sales citywide, which measured 4%. Queens also stood out when it came to declining property values. Prices in the borough have depreciated 30% from their peak levels, which were reached in the fourth quarter of 2006. Read More: Daily News

War of words between Flushing Councilman and Police Department

Antoinette Carona buried her only son on what would have been his 22nd birthday earlier this month. Carona has lived in a self-described “hell” as she waits for the killer of her son, Alex Botero, to be caught. Botero was shot execution style in an elevator of the James A. Bland Houses in Flushing on Halloween night. More than 40 residents of the Bland Houses and nearby Latimer Gardens attended a community meeting on Nov. 15 to express their concerns over safety in the area. But there was one very important element missing: The police. Not a single representative from the 109th Precinct attended, City Councilman Peter Koo said, sparking a war of words between the lawmaker and NYPD. Read More: Daily News

Civic group starts new push to get historic Forest Park Carousel landmark status 

Concerned about the fate of the Forest Park Carousel, which has been shuttered since 2008, civic leaders have launched a new effort to win the historic amusement landmark status. The city has been unable to find an operator for the hand-carved wooden carousel, crafted by Daniel Carl Muller more than 100 years ago. Read More: Daily News