Wed, Jan 04, 2006 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take


■ United States

Jesus thieves nabbed

Four New Jersey teenagers were arrested on Monday and charged with stealing around 25 baby Jesus figurines, which they planned to burn in a bonfire, the police said. The police in Sayreville arrested Michael Payne, 19, and Christopher Olson, 18, Nicholas Hess, 18, and a 15-year-old boy whose identity was not disclosed because of his age. The investigation began when vandals destroyed a cross and a large statue of Jesus at St. Stanislaus Kostka Church, police said. The boys were charged with theft, conspiracy, criminal mischief and desecration of a place of burial.

■ Colombia

FARC attack oil wells

Rebels dynamited eight oil wells and an electricity tower near the Ecuadorean border, police said on Monday, the latest attack in a series that killed 37 soldiers and police last month. The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, destroyed the wells on Sunday, said regional police commander Humberto Guatibonza. The guerrillas also destroyed an electricity tower in Putumayo, leaving 300,000 people without power. The 17,000-strong FARC has been fighting for socialist revolution for 41 years.

■ United states

Muddy man to be charged

A man who had a rendezvous with a prostitute is facing charges after he got stuck in waist-deep mud and required a helicopter to pull him out. Thomas Bruno, 49, will be charged with trespassing, criminal solicitation and patronizing a prostitute, the Wilmington News Journal reported. Corporal Jeff Oldham, said that Bruno met a male prostitute in a bar and agreed to pay for sex with him. But the two got into an argument, and Bruno got lost while trying to leave the area. About 4am, Bruno called emergency officials, but could not provide a description of his whereabouts. Troopers using night-vision goggles found Bruno's vehicle, then followed his footprints about 3km and found him stuck in the mud.

■ Sweden

UN oil bribes to be probed

An investigation into alleged bribery in the Iraq oil-for-food program under former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein will be carried out after a UN report found several firms were involved, the prosecutor's office said on Monday. A UN panel last year reported that around 2,200 companies, including Volvo, had paid US$1.8 billion to the former Iraqi regime. "In the [UN] report a number of firms were named and we have decided to initiate a probe after reading the report," said Karin Rosander, spokeswoman for the prosecutors' office. Truck maker Volvo has said many firms paid to do work in Iraq and that it was accepted practice, although it did not allow bribes. The prosecutors' office said the investigation was likely to take several months but gave no details.

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