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The accountant who sees EU rules as a chance to transform his firm

first_img whatsapp Tags: NULL KCS-content Show Comments ▼ The accountant who sees EU rules as a chance to transform his firm center_img For a man less than three months away from retirement, BDO’s policy board chairman – in effect, the firm’s international chairman – can’t wait to get into the issues. And to be fair, there is much for Dermot Mathias, who joined the accountancy giant 37 years ago, to discuss. What excites him most is the possibility of a Brussels-inspired regulatory revolution. The European Union’s financial services commissioner Michel Barnier released a two-month consultation paper last week about the industry. As one would expect, it raised questions about audit quality in light of the financial crisis, where accountancy firms passed the accounts of banks like Northern Rock, Lehman Brothers and the Royal Bank of Scotland that then went bust or had to be rescued by government.The Big Four global accountancy firms – PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), Ernst & Young, Deloitte and KPMG – audit 70 per cent of Europe’s largest 350 firms. Barnier wonders whether they may have too cosy a relationship with their clients, at the expense of investors who may therefore be presented with financial statements that lack rigour or at least relevance. Barnier asks a number of questions, including whether auditors should remain with the same clients for decades, whether regulators should pick auditors for very big firms, whether internal control assessments ought to be added to financial statements, and whether smaller audit firms should face less onerous rules than their big rivals.But Barnier is clear things should change. He said: “The status quo is not going to be an option for the EU. We want to strengthen this profession and its credibility.” Mathias, 61, does not agree with everything Barnier proposes, but he obviously welcomes the general thrust of opening up the Big Four to competition, as his firm BDO along with rival Grant Thornton occupy the two spots just outside the elite quartet.“Having four big players is unhealthy,” says Mathias, taking off his jacket and hanging it on the back of a chair in a bright first-floor meeting room in BDO’s Baker Street headquarters. “In other areas of business, having four dominant companies is not too much of a problem. But in our industry, because of the conflicts of interest that often arise out of the range of work professional service firms perform, clients may only be faced with a choice of two or just one firm to choose from. Now, I would say this, because its in my interest, but there are others in the market who say this also.”Mathias last week handed over his UK senior partner role to audit partner Simon Bevan, and at the end of the year will hand over his international chairman’s role to BDO’s German head Holger Otte. BDO’s network of 95 firms employs 46,000 in 110 countries and last year posted sales 2.3 per cent down at $5bn (£3.1bn).Mathias agrees with Barnier that internal controls and corporate governance issues should be included in audit reports. The impetus for this comes from recent probes into bank failures where it emerged that senior staff were nominally in charge of more junior workers who constructed complex financial instruments that their line managers could not understand, and in some instances even destroyed the firm. The BDO boss also thinks that having regulators choose the auditor for key companies and having limits on the amount of audit work the Big Four can do among Europe’s biggest 350 firms are “ideas worth considering”.What Mathias is admitting to here is that despite efforts to grow the business in the six years he has been in charge, it still lags far behind the Big Four in scale as well as elite clients. In the last three years BDO has tripled its staff in China to 5,000 and has moved into number five positions in other fast growing markets like Russia and Brazil. Overall, since 2007 the group has boosted its staff from 31,500 to 46,000.By contrast PwC employs 161,700 staff and last year reported worldwide sales of $26.6bn. And despite the hundreds of clients BDO has, it does not audit any bank. Audit works accounts for 60 per cent of the group’s revenue. Mathias says: “It is clear that market forces have not been sufficient to fill the gap. We have grown, but I can’t say that we have rapidly closed the gap on the Big Four.”However, critics say that second tier firms like BDO and Grant Thornton are crying wolf – and that they are actually not prepared to take on the enormous amounts of high quality staff they would need to audit the world’s biggest companies. Instead, the critics argue, they are quite happy to earn a decent living from lucrative restructuring, tax and other advisory services, while not really trying that hard to grab the largest clients with subsidiaries all over the world.But Mathias rejects this. He says: “We have grown significantly over the last three years. And we are ready to take on the audits of more complex businesses.”Some radical critics of the accountancy profession say that one or more of the Big Four should be broken up to allow more competition. But Mathias does not agree. The move might lead to market instability, he says, cutting down the options of big firms. Going from a Big Four to a Big Three would simply mean less competition. And, Mathias adds, a break up would be simply be impractical. He explains: “It is very difficult to see how this could work. These units are separate legal entities in the countries they are incorporated in. If the EU were to break up a Big Four firm over here, they could still operate in the US and in fast growing economies in Asia.”Some observers say the accountancy profession has come up seriously short twice in the last ten years. First, in 2001 and 2002, through its role in the WorldCom and Enron accounting scandals. Indeed, the latter turned the Big Five into the Big Four when Arthur Andersen went under. And in 2007 and 2008 auditors passed the accounts of a string of banks that turned out to have been highly exposed to changes in market conditions, especially the money markets. Defenders of the profession argue that there are limits to what can ever be included in an audit statement – and that nobody could forsee how practices that were signed off by regulators, experts and everybody else suddenly turned out to have been so disastrously misguided. Others blame mark-to-market accounting rules.Aside from the EU’s paper, the UK’s Financial Reporting Council is also investigating Ernst & Young’s role in auditing Lehman Brothers, which failed in 2008. Mathias’ final worry is that audit statements, which are already overcomplicated, will become more so as a result of new regulation that is bound to come as a reaction to the financial crisis. He says: “Financial statements are governed by strict rules and have become increasingly complex. They have almost become opaque, and a barrier to communication with investors.”The BDO chief adds: “We need to converge international reporting standards, and then simplify them. There has been a lot of hard work done on this already since International Financial Reporting Standards were introduced some eight years ago. If the will is there, this could happen in two to three years. The issues are well understood. However, new regulations may make statements even more difficult to read.”For a man who is getting ready to pack up his tent, Mathias has a lot to say. He has moved his firm on greatly in the last few years, but there is still a lot for his successor to do. Yet just as a regulatory onslaught destroyed Arthur Andersen, a fresh revolution instigated this time by the EU authorities might give BDO the chance to grab the brass ring. And from his easy chair, no one will be cheering harder for his old firm than Mathias.CV | DERMOT MATHIASAge: 61Work: Mathias joined the firm in 1973 and qualified in 1976. He was made partner in 1980 and after a period in management consultancy, joined the corporate finance group, becoming head of corporate finance in 1990. He has been involved with the firm’s strategic development and management for the last fifteen years. Became senior partner in 2002Education: University of SurreyFamily: Married, two daughtersLives: Homes in Oxfordshire and Cornwall Hobbies: Walking in the countryside, skiing and national hunt racing whatsapp Share Monday 18 October 2010 7:33 pmlast_img read more

Learn Africa Plc ( HY2019 Interim Report

first_imgLearn Africa Plc ( listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange under the Printing & Publishing sector has released it’s 2019 interim results for the half year.For more information about Learn Africa Plc ( reports, abridged reports, interim earnings results and earnings presentations, visit the Learn Africa Plc ( company page on AfricanFinancials.Document: Learn Africa Plc (  2019 interim results for the half year.Company ProfileLearn Africa Plc publishes and distributes educational material for the pre-primary, primary, secondary and tertiary education sectors in Nigeria. The company markets reference material, professional material, and general reading material as well as provides teacher training, education development programmes, digital content and educational consultancy services. Established in 1961 and formerly known as Longman Nigeria, the company was wholly-owned by Longman Group UK Limited, now Pearson Education. Pearson and Longman Nigeria mutually agreed to become separate corporate entities in 2011. Learn Africa Plc is the largest educational publisher in Nigeria with the widest range of books and educational resources as well as an expansive distribution network. The company’s head office is in Lagos, Nigeria. Learn Africa Plc is listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchangelast_img read more

BT shares: should I buy for my 2021 portfolio?

first_img Image source: Getty Images BT shares: should I buy for my 2021 portfolio? I would like to receive emails from you about product information and offers from The Fool and its business partners. Each of these emails will provide a link to unsubscribe from future emails. More information about how The Fool collects, stores, and handles personal data is available in its Privacy Statement. Royston Roche | Friday, 5th February, 2021 | More on: BT-A “This Stock Could Be Like Buying Amazon in 1997” Renowned stock-picker Mark Rogers and his analyst team at The Motley Fool UK have named 6 shares that they believe UK investors should consider buying NOW.So if you’re looking for more stock ideas to try and best position your portfolio today, then it might be a good day for you. Because we’re offering a full 33% off your first year of membership to our flagship share-tipping service, backed by our ‘no quibbles’ 30-day subscription fee refund guarantee. BT (LSE: BT.A) shares rose 25% in the past three months. They also outperformed the FTSE 100 index, which rose 12% in the same period. BT shares’ recent trading updateBT released its third-quarter trading update on 4 February 2021. Revenue for the nine months ended 31 December 2020, fell 7% to £16.06bn. The drop in revenue was primarily due to the negative impact of Covid-19 on the company’s consumer and enterprise units, legacy product declines, and divestments of domestic businesses in Spain, Latin America, and France.5G is here – and shares of this ‘sleeping giant’ could be a great way for you to potentially profit!According to one leading industry firm, the 5G boom could create a global industry worth US$12.3 TRILLION out of thin air…And if you click here we’ll show you something that could be key to unlocking 5G’s full potential…Adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation) fell by 5% to £5.6bn. One of the reasons for the fall in EBITDA is the drop in revenue, which was partially offset by the first half sports rights rebates, savings from the company’s modernisation programme, and other cost initiatives.The company’s profit before tax fell by 17% to £1.6bn. Normalised free cash flow also fell by 17% to £830m. Capital expenditure increased by 5% to £3.03bn, primarily due to the increased fixed and mobile network investment. Management expects no material impact from Brexit and the year-to-date results are in line with the estimates. The lower end of normalised free cash flow for the full fiscal year 2021 has been raised to £1.3bn. The revised range is between £1.3bn to £1.5bn; the EBITDA outlook remains the same as the earlier estimates of £7.3bn to £7.5bn. Strategic developments The company has created a new digital technology unit. It will enable the company to accelerate the digital and business transformation programmes. Management believes that digital innovation will be at the core of BT Group’s future success.Another focus area for the company is 5G. It has 5G live in 125 towns and cities. The number of 5G-ready connections has reached 2.1 million, adding more than 900,000 in the third quarter. The company’s 4G network now covers more than 85% of the UK.Openreach’s FTTP network has now crossed 4.1m and the company is on track to reach its target of 4.5m by March 2021. BT has also launched Halo 3+, which combines the power of the full fibre and mobile networks in one hybrid router.BT had suspended its dividend in May 2020 in the light of the Covid-19 and to fund the five-year transformation and modernisation program. It plans to invest its annualised savings in full-fibre broadband and 5G in the UK. The company plans to restart dividends in the fiscal year 2022 at an annual rate of 7.7p per share.Risks to consider in BT sharesThe telecom industry is facing a lot of challenges due to the rapid technological changes. It also involves a lot of capital investments for building up new infrastructures. BT is also facing competition from new players who are giving better offers to grab market share.In spite of all the challenges, I would like to buy BT shares in the next few months, as the company is still a market leader in telecom in the UK and is one of the beneficiaries of the 5G services. It is a large-cap company and lastly, the shares are available at a price-to-earnings ratio of 8.25, which I consider is a value buy. Click here to claim your copy now — and we’ll tell you the name of this Top US Share… free of charge!center_img Simply click below to discover how you can take advantage of this. I’m sure you’ll agree that’s quite the statement from Motley Fool Co-Founder Tom Gardner.But since our US analyst team first recommended shares in this unique tech stock back in 2016, the value has soared.What’s more, we firmly believe there’s still plenty of upside in its future. In fact, even throughout the current coronavirus crisis, its performance has been beating Wall St expectations.And right now, we’re giving you a chance to discover exactly what has got our analysts all fired up about this niche industry phenomenon, in our FREE special report, A Top US Share From The Motley Fool. Royston Roche has no position in any of the shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Enter Your Email Address Our 6 ‘Best Buys Now’ Shares See all posts by Royston Rochelast_img read more

Race for Magners League play-off spots

first_img• Almost 700,000 fans through the gates in 16 rounds• a league record gate of 50,645 for the Leinster v Munster game• on target to top more than one million fans by the Grand Final on 28 MayBROADCAST• 120 out of 134 matches being show live.• matches shown on Terrestrial TV in Scotland, Ireland and Wales.• a 10% growth in viewing figures in Wales with weekly averages of 254,750INTERNET• on-line audiences of more than 900,000 unique users per month across the Magners League and club websites LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS ON FIELD• Leinster and Ulster reached the quarter-finals of the Heineken Cup and Munster the quarter-finals of the Amlin Challenge Cupcenter_img Leading the way: James Coughlan goes flying in Munster’s recent win over AironiTHE RACE to to make the Magners League play-off places is hotting up with just six rounds to go.Munster are leading the charge for a home draw in the play-offs, with a nine-point lead at the top of the table over defending champions the Ospreys – but there are only six points separating the next five teams in the battle for the next three places.There are two Heineken Cup quarter-finalists in the chasing pack – Leinster and Ulster – last season’s Amlin Challenge Cup winners Cardiff Blues and the Scarlets.So there is all to play for as the season reaches its climax and Ospreys skipper Alun Wyn Jones says his side are in no mood to give up their title.Aiming for the top: Ospreys captain Alun Wyn Jones“Right from the start of our season we declared we wanted to become the first team to win the Magners League title back-to-back and the bonus point win over Connacht last weekend really made a difference and moved us nicely into second place,” says Jones.“The Grand Final win over Leinster in Dublin last year defined our season and after our exit from the Heineken Cup all our efforts will be going into retaining the title in May. Our strength in depth was questioned last season, but the team has held up well during the RBS 6 Nations.“It would be great to have a home tie in the play-offs, but getting into the top four is the first priority and we believe we can go anywhere and win. The Grand Final concept certainly added to the appeal of the Magners League last season and everyone is now gearing up for a big push between now and 28 May.”Magners League chairman Andy Irvine has also been impressed by the growth of the tournament this season and says: “We know we have an excellent, expanding product and it is great to see more and more people engaging with it. Some of the world’s biggest names are playing in the Magners League and the level of competition on the pitch continues to rise.”The headline figures highlighted by Irvine included:GATES• despite the difficult economic climate, attendance figures have remained constant on a game for game basis and show a 30% increase with the addition of the two Italian teams.last_img read more

Orange County’s No Plastic Bags in the Cart Campaign Commences

first_img UF/IFAS in Apopka will temporarily house District staff; saves almost $400,000 Please enter your name here Florida gas prices jump 12 cents; most expensive since 2014 From the Orange County Utilities DepartmentIn January 2016, recycling efforts in Orange County made strides when a new collection system was rolled out to more than 200,000 curbside collection customers countywide. Included in this system was the weekly automated collection of a 95-gallon blue lid recycling cart.The recycling cart replaced the two 18-gallon bins that required recycling to be sorted into one bin for plastic, metal and glass containers and the other for paper and cardboard. The bins were collected manually and any wrong materials were obvious and could be left behind.Since its launch, Orange County has seen an increase in the volume of material collected, which is great news. However, because it is difficult for the driver to see what is inside the cart, the influx of non-recyclables has dramatically increased.Among the biggest issues the county is seeing stems from plastic bags. No plastic bags are allowed in the blue lid recycling cart.Plastic bags get easily tangled in the processing equipment and can shut down the recycling facility. Plastic bags seen in county recycling carts include:1)       Garbage bags – even if good recyclables are inside of the bags, there is no way to tell. Therefore, do not bag recyclables. Leave the items loose in the blue lid recycling cart.2)       Retail store bags – many retailers collect these for recycling, so they should be returned to the store. Or, if reused for garbage, these bags belong in the green lid garbage cart.3)       Other – including dry cleaning bags, food storage bags, newspaper delivery bags, etc. must go in the garbage cart.No plastic bags of any kind belong in the blue lid recycling cart.More outreach and education will be provided to residents to help keep bags out of the recycling cart. Please share this with your neighbors!Some customers may be “wish-cycling” or wishing plastic bags are recyclable because they have a logo on them, but they are not recyclable as part the program for unincorporated Orange County.Orange County promotes the “Think 5” program as a reminder of what can be recycled: Plastic (#1-#5), metal and glass containers and bottles as well as cardboard and paper are the ONLY five items accepted.For all other items, “When it doubt, throw it out” is the best way to remember to put those items in the green lid garbage cart. Visit Share on Facebook Tweet on Twitter Gov. DeSantis says new moment-of-silence law in public schools protects religious freedom LEAVE A REPLY Cancel reply Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. TAGSOrange County Utilities Department Previous articleRep. Demings announces grant opportunities and awardsNext articleNational Infant Immunization Week starts today Denise Connell RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR You have entered an incorrect email address! Please enter your email address here Please enter your comment!last_img read more

Pasadena Police Arrest Glendale Resident for Stabbing Incident

first_imglatest #1 Pasadena Police Arrest Glendale Resident for Stabbing Incident Published on Thursday, March 7, 2013 | 4:56 am More Cool Stuff Police have to figure out why a 31-year-old woman would catch a taxi to Central Park in Pasadena, stab a man and then tried to leave the scene in that same taxi.The stabbing victim, a 52-year-old Pasadena man, is expected to survive his injuries, the Pasadena Star-News reported.His alleged attacker, Glendale resident Christine Hunt, was being held in jail in lieu of $1 million bail, pending her initial day in court, the newspaper reported. Hunt was booked on suspicion of attempted murder.The police were notified of the attack in the 200 block of South Raymond Avenue about 7:35 p.m. Tuesday, the Star-News reported, where Hunt reportedly arrived the scene via taxi stabbed the 52-year-old man as he was sitting with some friends at a park table and tried to flee the scene in a taxi.Police arriving at the scene pulled over the taxi and arrested Hunt without incident, the newspaper reported.Pasadena police asked anyone with any information regarding the stabbing attack to call them at (626) 744-4501. First Heatwave Expected Next Week Name (required)  Mail (required) (not be published)  Website  0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Virtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimes Business News Community News Make a commentcenter_img Community News EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS Top of the News Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy Herbeauty6 Strong Female TV Characters Who Deserve To Have A SpinoffHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyHere Is What Scientists Say Will Happen When You Eat AvocadosHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty18 Ways To Get Rid Of HiccupsHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyA Mental Health Chatbot Which Helps People With DepressionHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyInstall These Measures To Keep Your Household Safe From Covid19HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyThese Are 15 Great Style Tips From Asian WomenHerbeautyHerbeauty Subscribe Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadenalast_img read more

Jacobs Receives Top Design Award for U.S. Army Facility

first_img 9 recommended0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it Business News Name (required)  Mail (required) (not be published)  Website  Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadena Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. Make a comment Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * More Cool Stuff EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS HerbeautyA Mental Health Chatbot Which Helps People With DepressionHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyWant To Seriously Cut On Sugar? You Need To Know A Few TricksHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty10 Most Influential Women In HistoryHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyInstall These Measures To Keep Your Household Safe From Covid19HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyBollywood Star Transformations: 10 Year ChallengeHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty9 Of The Best Metabolism-Boosting Foods For Weight LossHerbeautyHerbeauty faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Virtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimescenter_img Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. (JEC) announced today that it was honored by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers with its highest award – the 2014 Chief of Engineers Award of Excellence in Design – for the design of the Mission Training Complex at Fort Bragg located in North Carolina.Jacobs provided full-service architecture and engineering, including construction administration, for the new 137,000-square-foot Mission Training Complex.The $28 million facility also received a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Gold Certification for New Construction, the 2013 American Institute of Architects (AIA) Northern Virginia Chapter Award of Excellence for Institutional Architecture, and a 2013 AIA DC Chapter Award of Merit.This combat training complex is a highly functional facility that allows for flexibility and future expansion. It includes modernized classrooms, tactical operations center areas that simulate a combat environment, and work cells with clerestory windows to optimize natural lighting, reduce electricity use and allow natural light to circulate throughout the interior spaces.In making the announcement, Jacobs Group Vice President Tom McDuffie stated, “We are honored to be recognized by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for our work at Fort Bragg and pleased to have the opportunity to contribute to our client’s mission and goals by providing them this facility.”Jacobs is one of the world’s largest and most diverse providers of technical professional and construction services. Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy Community News First Heatwave Expected Next Week Business Districts News Jacobs Receives Top Design Award for U.S. Army Facility Recognized by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for Design Excellence From STAFF REPORTS Published on Tuesday, January 13, 2015 | 11:11 am Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday Top of the News Subscribe Community Newslast_img read more

Update – Security alert ends on Derry’s Buncrana Road

first_img Twitter Google+ Man arrested on suspicion of drugs and criminal property offences in Derry 365 additional cases of Covid-19 in Republic Previous articleFour arrested in Derry as part of letter bomb investigationNext articleAnother title for McKillop admin Update – Security alert ends on Derry’s Buncrana Road RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Homepage BannerNews Pinterest Facebook Main Evening News, Sport and Obituaries Tuesday May 25th By admin – August 20, 2014 center_img Google+ Twitter A security alert near the Derry/Donegal border has ended.Yesterday, police sealed off an area of the road near the Branch roundabout on the Buncrana Road.The PSNI say that at around 1230pm they received a report that a lorry had been hijacked in the Galliagh area.Two masked men approached the driver as he was making a delivery at Ederowen Park, and they loaded an object onto the back of the lorry, and ordered the driver to take the vehicle to Strand Road Police Station.But the lorry driver abandoned the vehicle on the Buncrana Road.Staff were evacuated from St Columb’s College and people were also been moved from business units in the Springtown Industrial Estate.The alert ended at around 6.30 last night when the alert was declared a hoax. WhatsApp WhatsApp Gardai continue to investigate Kilmacrennan fire Pinterest Further drop in people receiving PUP in Donegal 75 positive cases of Covid confirmed in North Facebooklast_img read more

ICE agents break window to arrest man with children in car, video shows

first_imgCheyenne Hoyt(KANSAS CITY, Mo.) — U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents in Kansas City, Missouri smashed a car window to arrest a man with his children in the backseat, video streamed live on Facebook by his partner shows. Cheyenne Hoyt and her boyfriend, 32-year-old Florencio Millan-Vazquez, were taking their 7-month-old daughter to the doctor Monday morning when a jeep pulled in front of them “as soon” as they got in the car, Hoyt told reporters at a press conference. The couple’s 11-year-old son was also in the car, ABC Kansas City affiliate KMBC-TV reported. A man then exited the jeep and ordered Millan-Vazquez to get out of the car, Hoyt said, adding that the man identified himself as an ICE agent and stated he had a warrant for Millan-Vazquez’s arrest.The agents did not show the family a warrant, Hoyt said. Local ICE officials said they didn’t have to, and noted the man had entered the U.S. illegally twice, which is a felony.Hoyt posted a 32-minute video to Facebook Live documenting the incident, which had been viewed more than 56,000 times by Tuesday afternoon.For more than 20 minutes after the video began, Millan-Vazquez refused to comply with the officers’ orders to open the door.At one point, Millan-Vazquez told the officers that they “just can’t” break his window, and one officer responded by instructing him and the passengers to cover their face and eyes.“We’re going to do it the hard way, or the easy way,” a man in a pink shirt told Millan-Vazquez. “It’s up to you.”The man then smashed the window and unlocked the door before Millan-Vazquez was pulled out by another officer.Hoyt said she told Millan-Vazquez “not to resist because I didn’t want them to shoot him in front of my kids.”“I didn’t know how far they were willing to escalate this — how far they were willing to show that they didn’t care that the kids were in there,” Hoyt told reporters.A child inside the car could be heard in the video whimpering in the back seat.“I’m scared,” the boy says.An agent later approached and asked the boy if he was hurt in the incident, and he replies, “The glass hit me, but I didn’t get cut.”ICE officers were “left with no other choice” than to physically remove Millan-Vazquez from the car after “attempting to negotiate” with him for about 25 minutes, ICE spokesman Shawn Neudauer said in a statement to ABC News, describing Millan-Vazquez as “uncooperative.”Millan-Vazquez, who is from Mexico, has a prior criminal history that includes misdemeanor offenses, Neudauer said.A federal immigration judge granted Millan-Vazquez voluntary departure in 2011, and he complied by returning to Mexico, Neudauer said. Five days later, he was “encountered by immigration officials after he illegally re-entered the United States under an assumed name,” and an expedited removal ordered was then issued.An alien who re-enters the U.S. after having been previously deported commits a felony, which is punishable by up to 20 years in federal prison, according to ICE.Millan-Vazquez will remain in ICE custody until he is deported to Mexico, Neudauer said. Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Faust: Let’s break down boundaries

first_imgHarvard President Drew Faust says she would like to build as her legacy a more accessible and welcoming Harvard, with fewer boundaries — internal or external — that block the full development of an individual’s talent.“I would like people to feel like Harvard was open to them, that the boundaries that might separate them from what Harvard has to offer were significantly broken down during my presidency,” Faust told an audience at Sanders Theatre on Tuesday (Sept 21).In the session, Faust, who joked that she might outlast the tenure of President Charles William Eliot, who served for four decades, responded to questions posed by former ABC News anchor Charlie Gibson, a fellow this fall at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center for the Press, Politics and Public Policy. Gibson also asked questions from the audience.Faust, who generally has sent the Harvard community welcoming email messages and last year delivered a speech to begin the school year, this time participated in a question-and-answer session to address the Harvard community.Though Faust touted Harvard’s growing interdisciplinary strengths, Gibson responded that he sees Harvard as a “Balkanized” institution and that faculty members “chuckle” when asked about reducing barriers among Harvard’s famously decentralized Schools. Faust stuck to her guns, however, saying that the world’s problems increasingly demand interdisciplinary solutions and that students want their education to equip them to address those problems, regardless of institutional boundaries.Responding to Gibson’s questions, Faust addressed a wide range of issues facing the University in the 2010-11 school year. Gibson pressed Faust on several topics, including University finances (they’re improving); on Allston (it’s key to the future, and planning is ongoing); and on the alleged scientific misconduct of psychology professor Marc Hauser.Faust acknowledged the seriousness of the findings against Hauser, saying that “integrity is absolutely fundamental to what we do.” She noted that Harvard officials had taken firm steps to correct the scientific record and that they had sent a letter to members of the faculty outlining the findings even though such information customarily remains confidential. “In this instance, we’ve said more than we ever have,” she said.Gibson also asked about the reaction to disparaging comments about Islam made by former faculty member Marty Peretz. Gibson questioned why the University was still inclined to accept a gift in Peretz’s name.  The president agreed that the comments had been “very hurtful to many in our community” and that they were “at odds with the kind of fundamental values that we wish to embrace.” But she noted that the gift was from a group of alumni who wanted to recognize the contribution that Peretz made to their education and careers. In addition, she said, the gift was also an affirmation of the importance of involving undergraduates in research.Discussing University finances, Gibson expressed surprise at the level of financial aid, which goes to 60 percent of the undergraduate freshman class, with an average grant of $40,000. He called that aid “staggering” and questioned whether it was sustainable. Faust indicated the financial aid commitment is unwavering because it is a key part of Harvard’s mission to educate talented individuals, regardless of their ability to pay.Faust indicated that the University’s financial picture is improving — endowment investment returns were up 11 percent in the past fiscal year — even though the endowment remains below its high of just two years ago. She said fiscally prudent steps taken recently were not just done to save money, but as part of a reassessment of how the University operates. Reflecting on the fiscal challenge that she was handed almost as soon as she took office, Faust said it’s all just part of the job.“I’ve been around universities long enough, all my adult life, to know that universities are always filled with surprises, and that’s one of the wonderful things about them,” Faust said. “When I took this job, it was a little like getting married. You do it for better or worse, for richer or poorer, so I’ve always [asked]: What are the opportunities inherent in where I find myself? What is the hand I’ve been dealt? How do you make the most of that?”Gibson also asked whether too many students are making career choices upon graduation based on practicality rather than on living their dreams. Faust recalled being asked by a student why so many young graduates choose careers on Wall Street. She said in reply that she urges students to follow their passions, since, even if they don’t pan out, a practical job awaits. Faust advised students in the audience to focus on what they’re doing now, and not to be distracted by what they perceive their next step in life or their career should be.“My advice is to be fully where you are. Don’t constantly be thinking about wanting to be in the next place,” Faust said.last_img read more