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Update on the latest news, sports, business and entertainment at 4:20 p.m. EDT

July 24, 2018


The Latest: GOP senators voice doubts on farm tariff relief

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressional Republicans are expressing deep skepticism of Trump administration’s plan to bail out farms hit by tariffs, saying farmers want free trade, not handouts.

Agricultural Committee Chairman Pat Roberts, R-Kan., said “they would much prefer trade, rather than aid.”

GOP Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska said Trump’s trade war “is cutting the legs out from under farmers and White House’s ‘plan’ is to spend $12 billion on gold crutches.”

Senators said the aid package could help short-term, but they’re worried about losing long-term access to export markets. “When the tariff war is over... how do we get those markets back?” asked Sen. Jerry Moran, R-Kan.

Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., said “instead of offering welfare to farmers” to solve a problem the administration created, it “should reverse course and end this incoherent policy.”



The Latest: Death toll rises from Greek fires; more feared

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Wildfires raging through seaside resorts near the Greek capital have torched homes, cars and forests, killing at least 74 people.

Authorities say 26 of the dead were found huddled together in a compound. Other bodies were recovered from the sea, where victims had fled to escape the flames and smoke.

The fires that broke out Monday were the deadliest to hit the country in decades. Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has declared three days of national mourning. Officials fear the death toll could rise further.


Ivanka Trump confirms she is shutting down her clothing company

UNDATED (AP) — Ivanka Trump confirms that she is shutting down her clothing company and laying off 18 employees after some stores dropped her line and she decided ethics restrictions were holding back its ability to grow.

The president’s daughter said in statement she made the decision to focus more on work as a White House adviser.

She says she doesn’t know when or if she will return to the business, but that her focus “for the foreseeable future” will be her work in Washington.

Ivanka Trump has recently been encouraging U.S. companies to pledge to hire American workers. Her company has been criticized for using Chinese workers abroad to make its products.


Toronto police delving into life of gunman in mass shooting

TORONTO (AP) — Investigators are digging into the life of a 29-year-old man trying to explain what prompted him to fire a handgun into restaurants and cafes in a lively Toronto neighborhood, killing a 10-year-old girl and an 18-year-old woman and wounding 13 others.

The family of Faisal Hussain, who died during an exchange of gunfire with police, said Monday that he had long suffered from psychosis and depression but they never imagined this would be his fate. It was not immediately clear whether he took his own life or was killed by police during the rampage Sunday night.

A statement from Hussain’s relatives said he had lifelong “severe mental health challenges.”

Police Chief Mark Saunders said he would not speculate on a motive but did not rule out terrorism.


The Latest: Man faces murder charge after LA standoff

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Prosecutors say a gunman who took hostages inside a Los Angeles supermarket has been charged with murder, attempted murder and dozens of other charges.

The Los Angeles County district attorney’s office says Gene Evin Atkins is scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday on 31 charges.

Police say Atkins shot his grandmother seven times, kidnapped his 17-year-old girlfriend and shot at officers as they chased his car and then as he ran into the Trader Joe’s in the city’s congested Silver Lake section on Saturday afternoon.

Police Chief Michel Moore said a store worker, Melyda Corado, was killed by a police officer’s bullet as Atkins exchanged gunfire with officers while he ran into the store.

Prosecutors say Atkins is being charged with murder under a legal rule that his actions set into motion a series of events leading to Corado being killed.


The Latest: Official: IS seized body of downed Syrian pilot

BEIRUT (AP) — An official based in Syria and allied with government forces says Islamic State militants have seized the body of a Syrian pilot whose fighter jet was shot down by Israel.

The official told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the fate of the second Syrian pilot remains unknown. He did not elaborate.

The official is with the so-called “Axis of Resistance,” which is led by Iran and which includes Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and other groups fighting alongside President Bashar Assad’s forces. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to reporters.

Israel said it shot down the jet after it flew into Israeli territory. The incident comes as Syrian government forces retaking territory from rebels reached the Golan Heights frontier for the first time in seven years.

A sliver of land along the frontier, on the Syrian side, is still in the hands of IS.

—Bassem Mroue in Beirut;


The Latest: Lawyer says heiress ‘did nothing wrong’

NEW YORK (AP) — A lawyer for an heiress to the Seagram’s liquor fortune says her client, arrested in a federal investigation, “did nothing wrong.”

Susan Necheles (NEHK’-eh’-lehs) issued a statement Tuesday on behalf of Clare Bronfman.

Bronfman’s among supporters of a group called NXIVM (NEHK’-see-uhm) charged with racketeering conspiracy.

The upstate New York organization is accused of branding women and forcing them into unwanted sex.

Necheles says the group has helped thousands of people and is not “a criminal enterprise.”

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


An heiress to the Seagram’s liquor fortune has been arrested in connection with her work with a self-help group in upstate New York that is accused of branding women and forcing them into unwanted sex.

Federal prosecutors in Brooklyn announced Tuesday that Clare Bronfman and three other people associated with the NXIVM organization had been charged with racketeering conspiracy.

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

For many years she has been involved in financing NXIVM and supporting its co-founder, Keith Raniere.

Raniere was charged earlier this year along with a NXIVM adherent, the actress Allison Mack, with coercing followers into becoming “slaves” to senior members of the group.

They have denied the allegations. Bronfman has said she had no knowledge of wrongdoing.


The Latest: Pence rallies Georgia Republican voters for Kemp

ATLANTA (AP) — Vice President Mike Pence is rallying Georgia Republicans to vote for Secretary of State Brian Kemp in the gubernatorial primary runoff.

Pence tweeted Tuesday morning that he and President Donald Trump are “all in for you and hope all GA Republicans get out to vote in today’s runoff. You’ve run a great campaign!”

Trump endorsed Kemp last week and tweeted his support once again Tuesday.

Kemp faces Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle in what has been a bruising Republican primary. Pence visited the state over the weekend to stump for Kemp.

Tuesday’s winner faces Democrat Stacey Abrams in the fall.



The Latest: Bill Cosby to fight violent predator designation

NORRISTOWN, Pa. (AP) — Bill Cosby’s representative says the 81-year-old plans to fight the recommendation from a Pennsylvania board that he be classified as a sexually violent predator.

Andrew Wyatt said Tuesday that Cosby would see the prosecutor’s office in court. A judge will make the final determination if Cosby will receive the designation.

Cosby was convicted of assault in April and is already required to register as a sex offender.

The designation is defined in state law as a person who has “a mental abnormality or personality disorder that makes the person likely to engage in predatory sexually violent offenses.” It would require Cosby to receive counseling for the rest of his life from an approved treatment provider.

Cosby is due to be sentenced Sept. 24. He faces up to 10 years in prison.


Charges of rigging, intimidation mar Pakistan campaign

ISLAMABAD (AP) — As Pakistan prepares to make history Wednesday by electing a third straight civilian government, rights activists, analysts and candidates say the campaign has been among its dirtiest ever, imperiling the country’s wobbly transition to democratic rule.

Pakistan’s Independent Human Rights Commission says the campaign has been characterized by “blatant, aggressive and unabashed attempts to manipulate” the outcome, with media being silenced and the intimidation of candidates, according to.

At the center of most allegations is the powerful military establishment, along with its intelligence agency, known by the acronym ISI.

The manipulation is seen as seeking to prevent the Pakistan Muslim League, the party of disgraced Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, from returning to power, while giving a shot at running the country to former cricket star Imran Khan and his party.

Update hourly