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Here is the latest news from The Associated Press at 8:40 a.m. EDT

April 13, 2019

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s threat to release “illegal immigrants” into Democratic strongholds has his critics accusing him of turning migrants into pawns to go after his political opponents. Trump wants to punish congressional foes for inaction on the border. His comments came just hours after White House and Homeland Security officials insisted the idea had been rejected as fast as it had been proposed.

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — An early, ardent supporter of WikiLeaks says he is being unfairly targeted for his activism for digital privacy after his arrest in Ecuador. Swedish programmer Ola Bini was arrested in an alleged plot to blackmail the country’s president over his abandonment of Julian Assange. Friends say the 36-year-old encryption expert was detained in the capital of Quito, just hours after Assange was evicted from the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

LONDON (AP) — More than 70 British legislators are urging the government to make sure WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange faces Swedish justice if prosecutors there reopen a rape allegation against him. Sweden suspended its investigation of serious sexual misconduct two years ago because Assange was beyond their reach while taking refuge in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, but the case could be reopened.

UNDATED (AP) — Democratic presidential hopeful Cory Booker is looking to break out of the crowded field of Democratic presidential candidates. He will launch a national campaign tour Saturday with a major rally in Newark, the New Jersey city where he served as mayor. The senator from New Jersey has made visiting early voting states a priority during his 10 weeks in the presidential race, but so far he remains in the middle of the pack.

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexican authorities say that a group of about 350 migrants broke the locks on a border gate and forced their way into southern Mexico. The National Immigration Institute did not identify the nationalities of the migrants, but they are usually from Central America.