Month: October 2019

Jenkins reveals Gadots look from Wonder Woman 1984

first_imgLos Angeles: Director Patty Jenkins recently unveiled the new look of actor Gal Gadot from her upcoming film Wonder Woman 1984. The film, a sequel to Jenkins’ 2017 blockbuster, will see Gadot’s Wonder Woman face off against Kristen Wiig’s Cheetah. Chris Pine is reprising his role of Steve Trevor. Jenkins tweeted a picture of a new costume for the DC superhero with the background featuring an array of colours which intersect to make a ‘W’ honouring Wonder Woman. Also Read – ‘Will be acting till I die’Gadot is donning the costume that is plated in a vibrant gold colour. Her arms are covered by sleeves which lead into her famed wrist bracelets. The new suit seems to be a homage to the character’s Gold Armour from the comic books, which means Wonder Woman could be taking flight in the new film. The film will also feature ‘Game of Thrones’ and ‘Narcos’ star Pedro Pascal in a pivotal role. It is set to release on June 5, 2020.last_img read more

Encephalitis deaths cross 100mark Nitish meets officials

first_imgNew Delhi: As the death toll due to Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) in Muzaffarpur district crossed the 100 mark on Monday, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has summoned the Bihar government and Union Health Ministry over the rising deaths and sought a detailed report in the matter.Meanwhile, Bihar Health Minister Mangal Pandey, who had once hit the headlines for appointing a dead doctor to head a district hospital in June last year, faced the fury of affected families over asking the cricket score during a crucial meeting on the outbreak of AES in the state in the presence of Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan in Muzaffarpur on Sunday. Also Read – IAF receives its first Rafale fighter jet from FranceIn the alleged video, Pandey is heard asking “how many wickets have fallen?” to which someone responds “4 wickets”. India was playing Pakistan in a World Cup tournament late Sunday evening. Coming to the NHRC notice, the panel has also sought a detailed report on the status of implementation of National Programme for Prevention and Control of Japanese Encephalitis Virus/Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (NPPCJA) and other steps taken to deal with the painful situation. The panel has given four-week time to submit the sought details. Also Read – Cosmology trio win Nobel Physics PrizeIn a related development, the Centre in response to an RTI reply has stated that the occurrence of Japanese Encephalitis (JE) was observed for the first time in 1955 at Vellore in Tamil Nadu and the government has spent several crores of rupees to contain the deadly disease, which has claimed the lives of over 7,500 children since 2009. As per the RTI, there were 779 deaths reported in 2009, while in 2010, 679 deaths were reported due to JE. Similarly, in 2011, 1,169 children died due to ‘brain fever’ followed by 1,256 deaths in 2012, then 1,273 deaths in 2013 and 1,711 deaths in 2014. Though there is no provision of providing compensation to the affected families from the Centre, the Bihar government has announced an ex-gratia of Rs 4 lakh for each of the children killed in the outbreak. Bihar CM Nitish Kumar has also directed officials of the Health Department, the district administration and doctors to take all possible measures to tackle the situation.last_img read more

Renault unveils Triber globally in India

first_imgNew Delhi: French auto major Renault Wednesday made its global unveil of its compact multi-purpose vehicle Triber here in India, where it aims to double total sales by 2022. Renault Triber is the outcome of a joint project between Renault teams in India and France and is the world’s first vehicle specifically designed for the Indian market, the company said. “India is a key market for Groupe Renault. We are still young to India, yet our ambitions are high in line with our ‘Drive the Future’ strategic plan: we aim at doubling our sales by 2022,” Groupe Renault Chief Executive Officer Thierry Bollor told reporters here. He further said, “For that reason, we are bringing Renault Triber, another breakthrough concept, targeted for India’s core market.” The compact multi-purpose vehicle (MPV) has been conceived, developed and produced in India, for Indian customers first, before it is taken to the world, Bollor said. “It is a real game-changer,” he said. Renault said it is aiming to double the sales volume to two lakh units annually over the next three years in India. Commenting on design innovation around Triber, Groupe Renault Executive Vice-President (Corporate Design) Laurens van den Acker said the goal was to design a car that would transform according to the many needs and the many lives of customers. “Whether they are parents, lovers, a friends’ group, a family pack, whatever their tribe, whatever their lifestyle, Renault Triber should adapt,” he said. The model offers an attractive, robust and compact design and is re-inventing space for all, he said. “We are proud of our latest breakthrough, which turned a length challenge into a miracle within 4 metres,” Acker added. The vehicle is powered by a 1-litre petrol engine. The Renault Triber will be manufactured at the Chennai plant and hit the Indian market in the second half of 2019.last_img read more

Communism leaching

first_imgCommunist Party members must use this “pivotal moment” in history to help bring about a “democratic and transformative upsurge” to radically shift politics and mass thinking in the United States, party chair John Bachtell told delegates gathered in Chicago for the organisation’s 31st National Convention, coinciding with the centenary celebrations. With a series of interconnecting crises facing the world — including the escalating war danger in the Middle East, the climate crisis, and rampant militarisation — many see the current moment as one of “despair, fear, and division,” but Bachtell says it is also a “turning point moment” and one of “growing unity.” Also Read – A special kind of bondBachtell, who has headed the century-old party for five years, told convention delegates on June 22 they must act in the face of massive resistance by corporate interests and the radical right, symbolised and led by President Donald Trump. But the right’s anti-worker, anti-woman, anti-LGBTQ, anti-immigrant, and anti-Muslim moves have energised thousands of people to turn to socialism and to question the entire capitalist system, Bachtell declared in his keynote address. And the CP must take advantage of that. “We are the champions of the working class. We are part of a global movement for solidarity, peace, and sustainability,” Bachtell added, to applause. Also Read – Insider threat managementThe US party, established September 1, 1919, stands on the shoulders of past leaders and workers, such as Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin, Ho Chi Minh, Nelson Mandela, Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, W.E.B. DuBois, and Angela Davis, Bachtell said. “The path to socialism we seek is non-violent, hopefully, one shaped by the battle at the ballot box. The working class, particularly people of colour, women, youth, and LGBTQ people are the core of the movement. It is a collaborative project shaped by the fight for the fullest democracy” possible and “the fullest flowering” of peoples, Bachtell said. Bachtell’s address, his last as party leader, laid out the capitalist threat to the globe, including militarism, xenophobia, racism, and denial of climate change. He also noted the fightback began literally the moment Trump was inaugurated, with the massive and historic women’s march — which included CP members — in 2017. And he warned the battle will take more than just mobilising for the 2020 elections. “Throughout our history, every time the working class wins, there’s been a reaction,” just as there is now. “Powerful capitalist and reactionary forces fear one thing above all else: The growing power of organised labour, people of colour, women, and the LGBTQ movement.” The fight against the capitalist class must be both on the streets, through organising, and also in the arena of ideas, Bachtell added. The second part is especially important since, as he pointed out, the working class and its allies are not yet settled as to who is the best person to beat Trump next year. Some 24 people seek the Democratic Party’s nomination, including Sen. Bernie Sanders, a democratic socialist, Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris, and former Vice President Joe Biden, among others. A counter-narrative is also needed, Bachtell noted, as Trump and the extreme right are attempting to sabotage the growing unity of progressives and the left “by spreading lies and disinformation in an attempt to hold power.” “Economic nationalism is aimed at exploiting” workers’ and peoples’ “fears and insecurities. Class supremacy, white supremacy, and male supremacy have been fused, and corruption and union-busting have been used” in a divide-and-conquer strategy, he explained. “Defeating the extreme right and the GOP is the most important thing we must do,” including ousting the “fossil fuel, military-industrial complex, and the industrial elite that constitutes its core.” It will take “maximum unity and alliance with other movements,” he said. “It will take the unity of the left and the center,” including even working with sometimes “unstable and unreliable” interests and “within and alongside the Democratic Party.” The Communist Party’s organising for 2020 will revolve around the major issues that are moving people into action and a positive vision of ideas, Bachtell explained. Those ideas range from strong labour law reform to combating global warming to legalising all immigrants, to opposing the Trump/GOP policies and attitudes that foster racism, xenophobia, white supremacy, male supremacy, and more. “And if Trump thinks he’s going to deport one million undocumented immigrants, he can go to hell!” Bachtell declared, to cheers. To engage in, influence, and lead the fight against the right, the party needs more people, especially young people, Bachtell said. The composition of the convention reflects that increase in youth participation and diversity, a report the day before showed. One-third of the 202 delegates were aged 44 or under. Some 10.3 per cent were African-American, another 10.3 per cent were Latinx, while 5 per cent were Afro-Caribbean, and 9.2 per cent were Jewish. But only 30 per cent were women — an imbalance the party pledged to work toward improving. Party membership has surged since Trump entered the Oval Office, and more of its local groups are joining with like-minded social movements to achieve their goals. There is a beacon of hope, Bachtell predicted, in that “many of the forces operating within the Democratic Party today” — along with CP members themselves—”will form the working-class party of tomorrow.” “Our ideas are now mainstream,” he added, noting that this isn’t the first time. The CP was the among the first advocates for enacting the minimum wage, Social Security, the National Labor Relations Act, Medicare, unemployment compensation, other progressive programmes, and to fight against the oppression of African-Americans and fight against fascism worldwide. “Ours is a vision where walls become bridges, weapons become plowshares, and capitalists go the way of kings and dinosaurs. This is our future if we rise to the challenge.” (Courtesy: People’s World The views expressed are strictly personal)last_img read more

DMK not to press noconfidence motion against Speaker

first_imgChennai: DMK President M.K.Stalin on Friday said his party will not press for a no-confidence motion against Speaker P. Dhanapal owing to the changed circumstances. Speaking to reporters here, Stalin said: “We will not insist on taking up the no-confidence motion. The situation has changed now. We have given a letter to the Speaker not insisting on the notice for the no-confidence motion.” The DMK chief had written to the Secretary of Tamil Nadu Assembly proposing a no-confidence motion against Dhanapal after the latter sent show-cause notices to three All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) MLAs — A. Prabhu (representing Kallakuruchi), Rathinasabapathy (Aranthangi) and V.T. Kalaiselvan (Virudhachalam) — in April seeking explanations for their anti-party activities. Also Read – Modi formed OBC commission which earlier govts didn’t do: Shah In the 234-member Tamil Nadu Assembly, the ruling AIADMK has 123 members (including the Speaker), DMK 100, Congress 7, Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) and Independent one each and two vacant seats. Meanwhile, the opening day of the Assembly session on Friday was adjourned after adopting obituary references for two lawmakers — R. Kanagaraj of AIADMK and K. Radhamani of DMK — who died recently. The House will meet on July 1 to take up the demands for grants for various departments.last_img read more

Chennaiyin FC release Vanmalsawma Herd and Bernard

first_imgChennai: Chennaiyin FC on Friday confirmed the departure of midfielders Isaac Vanmalsawma and Chris Herd along with goalkeeper Nikhil Bernard from the club. While Isaac moves to Indian Super League side Jamshedpur FC on a permanent transfer, Chris and Nikhil leave CFC following the expiry of their respective contracts. Mizo midfielder Isaac completes a permanent transfer to Jamshedpur FC for an undisclosed fee, having joined Chennaiyin from FC Pune City before the 2018-19 campaign. Also Read – Dhoni, Paes spotted playing football together Isaac was a versatile influence on the Chennaiyin midfield, deployed by head coach John Gregory on the wings as well as in the middle. He made 20 appearances for the club across the ISL, Super Cup and AFC Cup; registering two goals and one assist in the process. Chris joined CFC midway through the 2018-19 campaign and made five appearances in the ISL. He then had three instrumental displays in CFC’s run to the Super Cup final, unfortunately missing out in the decider through suspension. The Australian defensive midfielder then played seven times in the AFC Cup, even finding the back of the net in the 2-0 home win over Nepal’s Manang Marshyangdi Club in the group stage. Nikhil joined the club after a stint at Gokulam Kerala FC, ahead of the just concluded season. He departs without making any senior team appearances.last_img read more

Circumplanetary Moonforming disk discovered around distant planet

first_imgWashington DC: Astronomers have made the first observations of a circumplanetary disk of gas and dust like the one that is believed to have birthed the moons of Jupiter, by using Earth’s most powerful array of radio telescopes. The finding, published in Astrophysical Journal Letters, adds to the intriguing story of planet PDS 70 c, a still-forming gas giant about 370 light years from Earth that was first revealed last month in visible light images. Also Read – Imran Khan arrives in China, to meet Prez Xi JinpingUsing the massive 66-antenna Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in Chile, astronomer Andrea Isella from Rice University in the US and colleagues collected millimeter wave radio signals that revealed the presence of dust grains throughout the star system where PDS 70 c and its sister planet, PDS 70 b, are still forming. “Planets form from disks of gas and dust around newly forming stars, and if a planet is large enough, it can form its own disk as it gathers material in its orbit around the star,” Isella said. Also Read – US blacklists 28 Chinese entities over abuses in Xinjiang”Jupiter and its moons are a little planetary system within our solar system, for example, and it’s believed Jupiter’s moons formed from a circumplanetary disk when Jupiter was very young,” he said. However, most models of planet formation show that circumplanetary disks disappear within about 10 million years, which means circumplanetary disks haven’t existed in our solar system for more than four billion years. In the new study, Isella and colleagues analysed observations made by ALMA in 2017. “There are a handful of candidate planets that have been detected in disks, but this is a very new field, and they are all still debated,” Isella said. “(PDS 70 b and PDS 70 c) are among the most robust because there have been independent observations with different instruments and techniques,” he said. PDS 70 is a dwarf star about three-quarters the mass of the sun. Both of its planets are 5-10 times larger than Jupiter, and the innermost, PDS 70 b, orbits about 1.8 billion miles from the star, roughly the distance from the sun to Uranus. PDS 70 c is a billion miles further out, in an orbit about the size of Neptune’s. PDS 70 b was first revealed in 2018 in infrared light images from a planet-hunting instrument called SPHERE at the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope (VLT). In June, astronomers used another VLT instrument called MUSE to observe a visible wavelength of light known as H-alpha, which is emitted when hydrogen falls onto a star or planet and becomes ionised.last_img read more

64th annual railways national awards function held

first_imgKolkata: The 64th Annual Railway National AwardsFunction-2019 was held at the Jamshedji Bhabha Theatre (NCPA), Mumbai on Tuesday. VK Yadav, Chairman, Railway Board was the chief guest. S N Agarwal, Member Staff, Rajesh Agarwal, Member Rolling Stock, VishweshChaube, Member Engineering, N. Kashinath, Member Signal & Telecom, V P Pathak, Member Materials Management, Rajesh Tiwari, Member Traction, P S Mishra, Member Traffic, Vijay Kumar, Finance Commissioner, S K Mishra, Secretary Railway Board, General Managers of all Zones and Production Units, other officials and employees of Indian Railways along with awardees and their families were also present at the event. Eastern railway bagged prestigious Safety Shield, Commercial Shield and Rolling Stock (Mechanical Engineering) Shield this year in 64th Annual Railway National Awards Function – 2019. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’P C Sharma, General Manager, Eastern Railway received those prestigious shields along with respective Principal Head of Departments on behalf of Eastern Railway from Vinod Kumar Yadav, Chairman, Railway Board in presence of Railway Board Members and other dignitaries. In addition, Ramesh Kumar, Dy. Chief Accounts Officer/G of ER Headquarters, Sheikh Safikul Alam, Traffic Gateman & Barun Chandra Barh, SSE/TRS of Howrah Division, VilasiMinz, Sub-Inspector & Ujjal Kumar Das, SSE/P. Way of Asansol Division, Bijan Kumar Biswas, SSE/C&W of Sealdah Division and Shri Surendra Kumar, CTI of Malda Division of Eastern Railway were honoured at the awards giving function for their meritorious contribution in their respective fields. VK Yadav, Chairman, Railway Board gave away medals, cheques.last_img read more

7000 quarters of illicit liquor seized

first_imgNEW DELHI: Delhi police has recovered 7,000 quarters of illicit liquor on the 2nd day of the drive against illicit liquor in addition to the recovery of more than 12500 quarters recovered on the previous day by Outer-North District. To curb the menace of illegal transportation or sale of illicit liquor, a special drive has been started and pickets were deployed at different static locations and patrolling teams were deployed to cover all arterial roads in all the police stations of Outer North District by Delhi police. The police officers checked the vehicles under Roko-Toko scheme of Delhi Police. On the 1st day of the drive, more than 12500 quarters of illicit liquor was recovered while 7000 quarters was recovery on the second day. From Bawana, Aniket, a resident of Sonipat (Haryana), 22 years was arrested, while he was carrying 20 cartons of illicit liquor in his Santro car.last_img read more

Videotape shows murder victim walking into medical students Halifax apartment

first_imgHALIFAX – A Halifax jury watched the last known sighting of a Dalhousie University student Thursday — Taylor Samson walked into his alleged killer’s apartment, but was never seen walking out.The surveillance tape was shown at the first-degree murder trial of medical student William Sandeson, who is accused of killing the 22-year-old during a drug deal.The video captures Samson following the accused into Sandeson’s apartment on Aug. 15, 2015, carrying a big black bag.Samson had brought 20 pounds of marijuana to sell to Sandeson.The 24-year-old told police Samson was shot in the back of the head by two men dressed in black who came into his apartment. Sandeson said he cleaned up after they left, and turned off his surveillance system at their request.The surveillance tape never shows Samson leaving the apartment, but Sandeson is seen carrying garbage bags and other items to his vehicle over the next few days.Detective Constable Roger Sayer, an investigator on the case, testified Thursday that Sandeson texted Samson, “I’m on my way down,” right when he is seen on video walking down a white hallway outside his apartment to go meet Samson.The jury later watched Sandeson walk out of his apartment several times, once completely shirtless, leaving an item on a shoe rack in the hallway.Surveillance footage captured Sandeson’s actions on subsequent days as well.On the morning of Aug. 16, the day after Samson went missing, surveillance footage shows Sandeson leaving his apartment early in the morning with his girlfriend. It also shows him putting items and bags into the back of his car.On Aug. 17, the footage shows Sandeson carrying more items out of his apartment, including a black Dalhousie backpack and a large white box.“These items were seized, and found to be containing what was 20 pounds of marijuana,” said Sayer about these items.On Aug. 18, he is seen carrying out full garbage bags with gloves on his hands and placing them in the back of his car.He was charged with murder the next day.Sayer told the court the investigation is still ongoing because Samson’s body has not been found.last_img read more

Some federal figures on marijuana pricing

first_imgOTTAWA – Public Safety Canada commissioned a study to help understand the cost of illegal cannabis. It found:— The price of illegal pot remained relatively stable between 2011 and 2015, dropping an average of one cent a month.— During these years the average price paid on the black market was $7.69 per gram for high-quality pot, $7.14 for medium-quality and $7.26 for low-quality.— On average medical cannabis cost nearly $2 per gram more than illicit pot.(Source: Public Safety Canada notes released through the Access to Information Act)last_img read more

New heritage minute on boat people highlights countrys inclusivity

first_imgTORONTO – The makers of Canada’s latest Heritage Minute say featuring the country’s acceptance of Vietnamese “boat people” in the short film was the ideal way to keep current events in perspective and usher in a landmark national birthday.The short clip, now among others highlighting key moments in Canadian History, was released by Historica Canada on Tuesday and shines a light on Canada’s admission of more than 100,000 refugees fleeing war-torn Vietnam in the 1970s.Crafted with the aid of neuroscience research and cast with “boat people” or their descendants, the video tells the story of a family jumping off a sinking vessel and being warmly welcomed as they begin a new life in Montreal.Historica Canada President Anthony Wilson-Smith says the clip encapsulates a period and a project that helped shape Canada.He says the country is a more diverse place than it was when it celebrated its centenary in 1967, adding the Heritage Minute acknowledges that increased diversity in the leadup to celebrations of Canada’s 150th birthday.He says the video also serves as a reminder of the value of welcoming refugees at a time when those fleeing violence in Syria look to Canada for aid and support.The arrival of the Vietnamese “boat people” took place against a different cultural backdrop and exemplified Canada’s approach to welcoming newcomers, he said.“We were a different kind of country then. We were less diverse than we are now,” Wilson-Smith said in a telephone interview. “It was actually quite remarkable … given the context of the times, how welcoming people were, and what an advantage it’s turned out to be to have them all.”Canada’s history of welcoming immigrants spans most of its existence as a country, but its particular connection to refugees began nearly a decade after centennial celebrations came to a close.The federal government tabled a new Immigration Act in 1976 which, for the first time, recognized refugees as a special class of immigrants. It created a refugee determination system, provided for admission on humanitarian grounds of designated classes of people and enabled the private sponsorship of refugees.By mid-1979, the plight of Southeast Asian “boat people” fleeing Vietnam, which had fallen to communist control years before, had become a crisis driving hundreds of thousands of people from their homes. Many escaped in rickety fishing boats that became cesspools of illness and were easy prey for both pirates and the elements.That June, the Canadian government announced that 50,000 of those refugees would be resettled by the end of 1980. Historica said thousands more made it to Canada safely as a result of a successful private sponsorship effort dubbed Project Lifeline.The Heritage Minute tells the story of a typical family and depicts their terrified leap from a crowded, sinking boat into the ocean.It tracks their progress through a Malaysian refugee camp where the family shows anxiety as they’re interrogated by a visa officer. After considering their responses, the officer pauses before declaring “welcome to Canada” and clearing their way for arrival in Montreal, where scenes depict one of the newly arrived children being given a piece of Canadiana by one of her new peers.Wilson-Smith said Historica turned to science when crafting the latest Heritage Minute, which will be one of two exploring immigration themes in 2017.Brainsights, a company that analyses the way the brain responds to various forms of communication, screened two versions of the video to more than 600 people over several months.The company measured viewers’ brainwaves at two-millisecond intervals as they watched, and was able to develop quantitative measures of how effectively scenes were grabbing someone’s attention and forming an emotional connection.Brainsights Co-Founder Kevin Keane said current events drove his eagerness to partner with Historica and make sure the video’s message was communicated as effectively as possible.“The impetus to partner with them became stronger because we started seeing and worrying about broader macroeconomic developments — Brexit, the election of (U.S. President Donald) Trump,” he said. “We started asking ourselves, ‘if people had a greater understanding of history, would these things happen? How can we contribute in our limited way, in Canada, to improve that education and improve that shared understanding?”Keane said data from the viewings prompted Brainsights to recommend some tweaks to the finished clip, including adding a slight pause before the central “welcome to Canada” message for added impact.Wilson-Smith said Historica also tried to make the minute as authentic as possible by consulting people who worked as visa officers in refugee camps and casting only boat people or their children in the finished product.He said it was important to accurately document a moment that helped shift Canada in a more multicultural direction.“One of the great differences between Canada at 100 years in 1967 and Canada now is the diversity of the country,” he said. “(The Heritage Minute) is about people who came here who have made great contributions since, but it’s also about the welcoming attitude and atmosphere of the country.”____On the web:English – – read more

Judge praises sexassault victim sentences womans former supervisor

first_imgHALIFAX – He was her supervisor and sexually abused her for months — repeatedly groping her and making sexual comments, all under the guise of joking around.Now a 51-year-old Halifax man has been sentenced to eight months for sexual assault — and the judge is praising the courage of the young woman, who couldn’t get other managers to help her.“The victim, in spite of an unsupportive business environment in terms of her sexual abuse complaint, came forward with her complaint. This was courageous,” said Judge Marc Chisholm of Halifax provincial court.Chisholm handed down a sentence of eight months’ incarceration to be served conditionally. The judge said he would take submissions on those conditions but such a sentence often entails house arrest.The man pleaded guilty to two sex-assault charges, for incidents during the 2015 Christmas holidays.His name, and that of the victim, are protected under a publication ban. The firm’s name was redacted from the written ruling.The young woman, who is in her mid-20s, is still suffering from his abuse, the judge said.One of the incidents was caught on video — he was seen pulling her onto his lap, and putting his hand under her skirt. A few days later, he asked for a hug and fondled her breasts.The judge noted the man often remarked on her appearance, and told her he’d like to have sex with her. One time, he tickled her until she dropped to the ground.“On at least one occasion, he opened her blouse and looked down at her breasts,” said Chisholm. “On every occasion (she) told the accused no or stop.”The judge also heard from another young female employee who described being hoisted over the man’s shoulder, having to fight him off as he slid his hand up her skirt.In an effort to get him to stop, the women noted there were cameras recording the scene, but he told them he controlled the recordings, the judge said.Both women complained to a manager, the judge said, but “their complaints fell on deaf ears.”A written version of Chisholm’s sentence, handed down Sept. 15, was released on Friday.The judge said the victim in the sex-assault case has suffered psychologically. She felt alone and vulnerable, and told him she suffers from PTSD.“She stated that she was confused, in disbelief, fearful, uncertain what to do. The accused was a much older man, a supervisor at her workplace, who abused his position of authority,” Chisholm said.“She voiced her objection to the accused. She told the accused no, to stop. He repeatedly ignored her objections.”Chisholm noted the man was fired, but has since been hired elsewhere, and is even up for promotion. The defence presented 10 reference letters praising his work ethic and honesty.The man apologized, and said he never meant to hurt anyone.“The accused portrayed his conduct as joking around which, on occasions, went too far. He said he is not a bad person,” said the judge.“I do not accept that the accused was joking around and just went too far. His behaviour was a pattern of abuse which he knew she objected to and he continued unabated.”The accused — who has a common-law wife and four children — is a permanent resident of Canada, and faces possible deportation.The defence had sought a conditional discharge, but Chisholm said that wouldn’t properly denounce his behaviour.“Women’s sexual integrity must be respected. Sentences for persons who sexually assault a woman must reflect this,” he said.Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version wrongly said the sentence was to be served on weekends.last_img read more

Judge in Gerald Stanley murder trial addresses witness inconsistencies with jury

first_imgBATTLEFORD, Sask. – Saskatchewan’s chief justice addressed some inconsistencies Friday in the testimony from key Crown witnesses at the trial of a farmer accused of murdering an Indigenous man.Justice Martel Popescul’s mid-trial instructions to the jury came a day after some witnesses to the killing admitted on the stand that they made last-minute changes to their stories and lied to investigators.“Common sense tells you that if a witness says one thing in the witness box, but has said something quite different on an earlier occasion, this may reduce the value of his or her evidence,” Popescul told jurors Friday before the Crown rested its case.Gerald Stanley, 56, is accused of second-degree murder in the death of 22-year-old Colten Boushie near Biggar, Sask., on Aug. 9, 2016.Boushie was sitting in the driver’s seat of a grey Ford Escape SUV when he was shot to death on Stanley’s farm. Boushie’s friends have testified that they were looking for help with a flat tire when they went to the farm.Stanley’s son has testified that his father told him he was only trying to scare the young people away and the gun just went off.Popescul was addressing the testimony of Eric Meechance, Cassidy Cross and Belinda Jackson, who were in the SUV with Boushie.Cross admitted Thursday that he had lied to police in his initial statement about carrying a gun, how much alcohol he had consumed and about breaking into a truck on the day his friend was killed.Jackson initially told police she saw a woman shoot Boushie.“I wouldn’t say I lied to them. I didn’t tell them the whole truth,” Jackson said Thursday. “Everything started coming back to me later when I was on my own.”Popescul said jurors should consider any explanation the witnesses gave for the differences.“Consider whether the differences are significant,” he said. “You should also consider the fact, nature and extent of any differences when you decide whether to rely on their testimony.”An autopsy report filed as evidence said Boushie had a blood alcohol level more than three times the legal limit when he was fatally shot. Blood alcohol was listed between 263 and 266 milligrams. In Canada, legal intoxication is 80 milligrams.Forensic pathologist Dr. Shaun Ladham detailed in his report that Boushie was a reasonably healthy young man. He said there were no other significant signs of trauma other than a bullet wound that entered just below the left ear and exited through his right neck.Ladham noted the bullet had a downward trajectory.Stanley’s lawyer, Scott Spencer, told court he planned to present his opening arguments on Monday, but went ahead and called a gun and ammunition expert as the first witness for the defence.— Follow @BillGraveland on TwitterNote to readers: This is a corrected story. Previous version said Boushie was in passenger seat.last_img read more

Quebecs maple syrup producers losing ground as US imports rise report

first_imgMONTREAL – Quebec’s government-sanctioned maple syrup cartel is hurting the domestic industry with its strict quota system and price controls, says a report published Thursday.Competitors in the United States and elsewhere in Canada are free to produce as much as they want and they benefit from price stabilization due to Quebec’s influence on the market, says the document produced by the right-leaning Montreal Economic Institute.“Quebec still has a strong position but our competitors are getting closer and they are growing faster than we are,” Alexandre Moreau, author of the report, said in an interview.The report says the federation of maple syrup producers in Quebec sets bulk prices and has a monopoly on bulk sales of the product, or 85 per cent of the province’s annual yield.Producers have to go through the federation in order to sell syrup in a container larger than five litres.The cartel helps stabilize the price of maple syrup and ensures a stable revenue for the province’s producers.According to the federation’s latest numbers, Quebec’s 13,500 producers harvested about 148 million litres of maple syrup in 2016, worth roughly $436 million. The province produced about 72 per cent of world maple syrup production.Moreau says his study reveals Quebec’s global market share began falling in 2004 — the year the federation introduced a quota system — from a high of 82 per cent in 2003 to 72 per cent.Since 2004, the number of taps harvested in Quebec has increased by 17 per cent compared with almost a 90 per cent hike in the United States, he said.The report states Quebec imported $20 million worth of maple syrup in 2016, almost all from the United States.Simon Trepanier of the maple syrup federation said he’s not concerned by the growth south of the border.Markets in Europe and Asia are underserved and there is space, he said, for both the Quebec and American markets to grow.“We’re not competing for the same clients,” he said.Moreau says Quebec’s farmers should be free to produce and sell as much maple syrup as they want.“Otherwise, their share of the global market will likely continue to fall.”Nicole Varin, a third-generation maple syrup farmer in Oka, Que., agrees with Moreau and has found out in the past how dangerous it can be to act against the cartel.She and her husband ignored the quota system and now face fines up to $450,000.Varin appealed and her case is before the Quebec Superior Court.“We are penalized because we have been real entrepreneurs,” she said. “We built our own client list and we serve them directly. We don’t need the federation.”— With files from Julien Arsenaultlast_img read more

Kristin Johnston died within five minutes medical examiner tells Butcher trial

first_imgHALIFAX – A Montreal-born yoga instructor who was found dead in her Halifax home had “defensive injuries” on her hands and fingers, a medical examiner testified Tuesday at Nicholas Butcher’s second-degree murder trial.“It looked as though an altercation or struggle had occurred at the scene,” Dr. Marnie Wood told the 14-member Nova Scotia Supreme Court jury.Wood said she went to Kristin Johnston’s home on Halifax’s outskirts on March 26, 2016, hours after the 32-year-old woman was found dead on a blood-soaked bed in the master bedroom.She performed an autopsy on Johnston’s body the next day.Wood said Johnston’s death was caused by sharp force injuries to her neck that led to a fatal amount of bleeding, and that the injuries were consistent with being caused by a single-edge blade.The trial has heard that a steak knife was found on the bed next to Johnston’s lifeless body.Wood, who was qualified to give opinion evidence at the trial, said there were injuries to Johnston’s right and left jugular veins. She estimated that with those injuries, Johnston would have died within “five minutes or less.”Wood also described injuries on her fingers and the palms of her hands as “defensive.”She agreed with defence lawyer Peter Planetta that there’s no way to determine the type of knife used to cause the injuries.“Exactly which single-edged blade and the exact size of that blade is impossible to determine with certainty,” she said.The jury has heard that officers were called to the scene in Purcells Cove after Butcher called 911 and told the dispatcher he had killed his girlfriend and tried to kill himself. He also told the dispatcher he had cut off his hand.Police have testified that a mitre saw was found in the bedroom next to an amputated hand.RCMP Sgt. Adrian Butler, a blood stain pattern analyst, testified Tuesday about the gruesome scene inside Johnston’s home.Butler said a large saturation stain found on the bed was consistent with Johnston receiving injuries to her neck and bleeding in the spot in which she was found — lying on her back.“Saturation stains and hand transfer stains were located on the bottom half of the pillow,” said Butler, as the jury flipped through a book of crime scene photos.“A minimum of two hand transfer stains were located on the pillow. A large, concentrated saturation stain — 60 centimetres by 121 centimetres in size — was located on the north side of the bed.”Butler, an expert witness, said there were also hundreds of blood spatter stains on a pillow, comforter and the floor.He said there were pools of blood on the bedroom floor near the mitre saw, along with hundreds of “cast off” spatter stains on the wall near the saw as well as stains on the saw’s handle.It appears Butcher’s hand has been reattached, as it is occasionally visible in the courtroom as he sits at his lawyer’s bench during the proceedings.The jury has heard that the businesswoman had just shut down her yoga studio and spoke to friends about ending her relationship with Butcher.The 36-year-old man, a graduate of Dalhousie University law school who worked with Young Drivers before his arrest, has pleaded not guilty.Earlier Tuesday, RCMP Cpl. Christian Hochhold testified that he analyzed a cellphone that belonged to Johnston.Hochhold, an expert in the forensic analysis of computers and other electronic devices, said he extracted a “plethora” of data, including emails, text messages, photos and Facebook messages.Those messages included exchanges Johnston had with friends in the weeks, days and hours before her death.Hochhold told the jury it would take “an extreme amount of dedication” to alter the text messages sent and received on the phone.Follow (at)AlyThomson on Twitter.last_img read more

Ottawa to test for risks of virus transfer from farmed to wild

first_imgOTTAWA – A science review to assess the risks associated with the transfer of a virus from farmed Atlantic salmon to wild salmon has been launched by the federal government.Fisheries Minister Jonathan Wilkinson says the results of the assessment of the piscine reovirus will guide decisions on aquaculture in Canada, including in the area of the Discovery Islands and Broughton Archipelago off B.C.’s coast.The government says in a news release the review will include domestic and international scientific experts, with a final report made available by early next year.Wilkinson says the government is committed to using the best available science to protect wild Pacific salmon, including Fraser River sockeye.Ecojustice sued the fisheries minister in Federal Court earlier this month, alleging the government fails to test farmed salmon for the virus before it allows companies to transfer the fish to open-net pens along salmon migration routes.The ministry says the study is one of 10 risk assessments that the department is conducting to understand the potential of pathogen transfers associated with aquaculture activities.last_img read more

Kids exposed to pot through secondhand smoke or edibles at risk for

first_imgTORONTO – As Canada gears up for the legalization of recreational pot on Wednesday, health providers are warning parents and other adults about the potential dangers to children of exposure through second-hand smoke or the ingestion of cannabis-laced edibles.Even the tail end of a joint can pose a risk if a curious child were to eat it, said Dr. Margaret Thompson, medical director of the Ontario, Manitoba and Nunavut Poison Centres.“Kids get into everything,” she said, noting that with the approach of legalization, poison control centres across the country have already been seeing a big uptick in calls about children who have inadvertently ingested marijuana-infused foods like cookies, brownies and gummy bears.A study by the Ontario, Manitoba and Nunavut poison centres shows that from 2013 to 2017, annual calls concerning cannabis exposure to children under age 18 rose by 50 per cent, to 234 from 116.“For the most part, it’s edibles we’re getting increasing calls about,” said Thompson, an emergency medicine specialist and toxicologist in Toronto. “And my biggest concern is that in Canada these are not yet legalized and so there is nothing that makes these products uniform.”Commercially produced cannabis edibles won’t be legal in Canada until late 2019, but they are readily available for purchase on the internet and in some illegally operating pot shops. As of Wednesday, Canadians also will be able to produce home-made edibles, as long as organic solvents aren’t used in their preparation.“And we won’t have any idea how much cannabinoid or cannabis is in any particular bite or whole brownie or full brownie pan,” Thompson said, calling children “completely naive to these products” and at risk for a more intense reaction to the psychoactive component of marijuana compared to adults.As yet, there is no legislation in Canada requiring edibles to be in child-resistant containers or to carry warning labels, she added.“So you might have 100 gummy bears that have some quantity of marijuana, oil or extract in them — and is that eight mg of cannabis or is it 25 mg in each gummy, because often they’re not labelled as to how much is actually in them.“It’s meant that you take one, but what child wouldn’t eat a whole package of gummy bears?”Kids who have inadvertently ingested cannabis can experience a number of adverse effects, including being disoriented, agitated and off-balance.“So they may be falling about the house, they may seem to regress in terms of their (developmental) milestones,” she said. “If they were originally walking around, now they’re crawling because they can’t stand straight.”Seizures and coma have been known to occur in kids who have taken in high concentrations of cannabis, and in rare circumstances children have experienced strokes or heart attacks.“I think our biggest message is be aware, be careful,” said Thompson. “Place your products in a locked box after you’ve used and out of sight from children.”But edibles don’t pose the only potential pot-related risk to children.Second-hand smoke or vapour from puffing on a joint or bong can also expose kids to the mind-altering component of weed, known as THC or tetrahydrocannabinol, one of more than 100 active ingredients in the budding plant.“What we know about cannabis smoke is that it is not unlike tobacco smoke, to the extent that if a person is exposed to it they do ingest some of the cannabis constituents,” said Dr. James MacKillop, co-director of McMaster University’s Centre for Medicinal Cannabis Research.“So if a child is around parents or other adults who are smoking cannabis heavily, that exposure alone could lead to a meaningful level of cannabis ingestion and in turn psychoactive effects.“This is particularly problematical in situations where there is low ventilation,” such as in an enclosed room in a home, he said from Hamilton.While getting lungfuls of second-hand pot smoke or vapour wouldn’t necessarily make a child feel “high,” it could make them feel dizzy and sick, said MacKillop, adding that the adverse effects would depend on how much they breathed in. Those effects could last for a few hours.“I would absolutely recommend that parents avoid exposing their children to cannabis second-hand smoke of any kind, and that also goes for cannabis vapour. Fundamentally, if it’s in the air and there’s fairly regular exposure to it, they’re likely to ingest it.”MacKillop also endorses Health Canada’s admonition that pregnant and nursing women avoid using marijuana, since THC — which is stored in fat tissue and over time leeches into the bloodstream — can cross the placenta into the fetus and also make its way into breast milk.The Canadian Paediatric Society is so concerned about the potential fallout from recreational cannabis legalization on children and youth that its surveillance program plans to track how many young people end up seeking medical attention for serious or life-threatening events related to the use of pot.The two-year study will run until October 2020 and will include cases from the beginning of September 2018.— Follow @SherylUbelacker on Twitter.last_img read more

Legal cannabis for sale in Calgary

first_imgCALGARY (660 NEWS) – There will be two cannabis stores opening in Calgary, on the first day of legalization.At 10 a.m., 420 Premium Market and Nova Cannabis at Willow Park, both along Macleod Trail, will welcome in the city’s first legal cannabis customers.Shelley Girard is with Alcanna, the company that owns Nova Cannabis and says staff expect lots of people on the historic day.“We are expecting some excitement–some energy–some buzz, so to speak–with customers and consumers and we’re ready. We’re ready for there to be some crowds and some lineups,” Girard said. Girard added, owners believe they have enough product to meet the demand, including dried cannabis, oils, capsules and paraphernalia.last_img read more

Calgarians asked for 2026 yea or nay in Winter Games plebiscite

first_imgCALGARY – Calgarians head to the polls to declare whether they want the city to host a second Winter Games.The question “are you for or are you against hosting the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games?” was to be posed to them Tuesday in a plebiscite to help determine whether the city should move ahead with a bid.Polls close at 10 p.m. ESTCalgary was the host city of the 1988 Winter Olympics.The legacy venues from those games form the foundation of a potential second bid, which would now include the Paralympic Games.While the result of the vote is non-binding on a city council that has the final say, the vote will influence council’s decision.The plebiscite was a condition of the Alberta government providing money for a bid. The provincial government is paying for the $2-million cost of the plebiscite.In an estimated $5.1-billion total price tag to host the games, the public investment asked of three orders of government is $2.875 billion.What a cost-sharing agreement between the federal, provincial and municipal governments would look like wasn’t clear to the public until Oct. 31, which was less than two weeks before the vote.The city has been asked to contribute $390 million, while the province has committed $700 million and the Canadian government $1.45 billion.The bid corporation Calgary 2026 says games revenues will cover the remaining cost.No order of government is providing guarantees against cost overruns, but Calgary 2026 has built $1.1 billion in contingency funds into its draft hosting plan.Calgary 2026’s plans includes $502 million to upgrade legacy venues from the ’88 Games to get them Olympic-read again.The two new sport venues proposed are an indoor fieldhouse and a 5,000-seat ice arena.No new stadium or NHL-sized arena is in the draft host plan, although there have been overtures between the city and the Calgary Flames to re-start talks on a new arena.Calgary mayor Naheed Nenshi feels the current proposed plan and financial agreement is good for the city and thus supports a bid.“I really want people to make their decision based on what’s before us because we know that’s solid and that’s certain and even that, I think leads to lots of benefits for Calgary,” the mayor said.The International Olympic Committee will accept bids from 2026 candidate cities in January. The election of the host city is in June.last_img read more