Chef jailed for bullying
A pastry chef has been sentenced to two months in prison for systematically humiliating a young apprentice in incidents that were filmed and posted on social media. Two other apprentices were found guilty of going along with the 46-year-old chef’s persecution of the 17-year-old victim in a bakery in Narbonne. Over the course of several months, the teenager was regularly pelted with flour, food coloring and eggs for the amusement of his colleagues, and an incident in which he was dumped in a bin was posted online, prompting the victim to go to the police. The two apprentices who were convicted, a 20-year-old man and a 19-year-old woman, received a six-month suspended sentence and 150 hours of community service respectively. All three convicted were ordered to pay 1,500 euros (US$2,000) each in damages to their victim.
Child sex ring busted
Seven people, most from the US, have been arrested for alleged links to child prostitution in Puerto Vallarta, a popular tourist destination, a Jalisco State official said on Friday. The seven were arrested in separate raids since last week for alleged crimes including corruption of minors, Jalisco General Secretary Arturo Zamoro said. “Two of them are directly linked to international pedophile rings,” Zamoro said. He said the detainees are wanted in other countries and that most are Americans, without giving specifics or any other nationalities.
‘Cathedral’ carved for royals
An oak cradle designed to resemble a Gothic cathedral is headed from the country to London for the birth next month of the first child of Prince William and his wife, Kate. Dariusz Bergier, a carver and furniture maker in Tuszyn, hopes to send the cradle off to Britain on Wednesday. For the 2011 royal wedding, Bergier’s workshop was commissioned to make furniture for a hotel in Stafford where Kate Middleton’s family stayed. However, the cradle was intended as a gift, Bergier said. For the design, he drew his inspiration from 15th-century Gothic cathedrals. “A cradle for the heir to the British throne can’t be made in a common style,” he said.
Smugglers fined US$29.5m
A New York judge has ordered three men who pleaded guilty to smuggling South African rock lobsters to the country to pay the South African government nearly US$30 million in restitution. State Attorney Preet Bharara said on Friday the US$29.5 million is the largest sum ever ordered under the Lacey Act. That law makes it a crime to import illegally obtained fish, wildlife or plants. Defendants Arnold Bengis, David Bengis and Jeffrey Noll will get credit for US$7 million already paid in another case. The men were charged in 2003 with importing lobster harvested in violation of South African law and pleaded guilty the following year.
Hasan defense inadmissible
Army psychiatrist Major Nidal Hasan, 42, cannot argue at trial that he was defending the Afghan Taliban when he opened fire in a 2009 shooting rampage at Fort Hood, Texas, that killed 13 people, a military judge ruled on Friday. “There was no evidence that there was any immediate threat to others from your fellow soldiers,” Colonel Tara Osborn said, denying Hasan’s request to use the defense as he represents himself at his upcoming trial on 13 counts of first-degree murder.