Man gets 20 years in Haiti abuse case
NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) A Colorado man was sentenced to nearly 20 years in prison Tuesday for sexually abusing children at a school he founded in Haiti, including some who faced him inside the courtroom and testified that he threatened to expel them if they did not submit to his advances.
Judge Janet Bond Arterton called Douglas Perlitz a serial rapist and molester as she imposed the sentence in New Haven federal court.
Perlitz, 40 years old and now a resident of Eagle, apologized to his victims before the sentence was handed down. He said he knew his crimes were horrible but pleaded for leniency nevertheless, asking the judge to consider the good work he did in the impoverished Caribbean nation.
Food safety bill sent to president
WASHINGTON (AP) The House has passed a sweeping bill aimed at making food safer after recent outbreaks in peanuts, eggs and produce, sending it to President Barack Obama for his signature.
The legislation passed Tuesday would give the government broad new powers to inspect processing plants, order recalls and impose stricter standards for imported foods.
The food safety bill has faced several false starts since the House first passed it in July 2009. Most recently, the Senate passed the bill in November, including tax provisions that were supposed to originate in the House under the constitution, threatening completion of the bill.
Stopgap spending measure clears Senate
WASHINGTON (AP) The Senate passed a stopgap funding bill Tuesday to keep the government open into March, when Republicans will have greater power to cut federal spending.
The bill would freeze agency budgets at current levels. Thats still too high for Republicans set to take over the House, who vow to cut many programs to levels in place when President Barack Obama took office.
The measure is needed because the Democratic-controlled Congress in an unprecedented breakdown of the budget process has failed to pass a single one of the 12 annual spending bills that fund the day-to-day operations of every federal agency.
Judge revokes bail for Madoff secretary
NEW YORK (AP) Bernard Madoffs former secretary surrendered Tuesday in Florida after a judge revoked her $5 million bail, saying her access to large amounts of money created a very real potential she could flee.
U.S. District Judge Laura Taylor Swain rejected the arguments for 62-year-old Annette Bongiorno that her husband should be allowed to post money from his bank accounts to support a bail package. She surrendered to U.S. marshals in West Palm Beach, Fla., before the 3 p.m. deadline set by Swain, said Bongiornos lawyer, Maurice Sercarz.
Earlier in the day, the judge ordered her surrender, saying there was a serious risk the defendant will not appear in court to face charges of conspiracy, securities fraud and falsifying records. The judge cited what she called an abundance of very strong evidence that there were unrestrained assets that pose a very real potential for the facilitation of flight. Bongiornos next court date is scheduled for Jan. 14.