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3 accused of pimping teens in California trafficking ring

AP Photo/Michael Balsamo LOS ANGELES (AP) — Three people have been charged with pimping eight teens for commercial sex work in a ring that operated in California, Nevada and Texas, authorities said Thursday. The teens, between 15 and 17, were lured into the commercial sex operation that solicited customers through postings on the internet, Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell said. Quinton Brown, 30, Gerald Lavell Turner, 32, and Mia McNeil, 32, face a total of 54 charges that include sex trafficking, pimping and … Read the referenced story here: 3…

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California Officials to Announce Human Trafficking Arrests

California law enforcement officials say they’ve made arrests in what they believe to be one of the largest human trafficking cases in the western U.S. Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell and California Attorney General Xavier Becerra are expected to provide details of the probe at a news conference Thursday morning. Authorities did not provide detailed information about the case. But they say it involves sex, fraud and theft crimes that spanned across California, Nevada and Texas.  Investigators say the probe was launched in December 2016 after a missing person…

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After Drought, California Looks to Replenish Aquifers

At the Terranova Ranch near Fresno, California, general manager Don Cameron examines grapes in a vineyard that workers flooded last spring. Winter rains had ended a severe drought and he was engaged in “groundwater recharge,” returning unused water from the North Fork of the Kings River to an underground aquifer, the source of irrigation for this region. Some were skeptical because he was flooding a working vineyard and not a special basin designed for the purpose. “We’ve been through a five-year drought,” Cameron explained. “Our groundwater has been depleted during…

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California Again Rejects Request for Voter Information

California’s secretary of state says he won’t comply with a second request for voter data from President Donald Trump’s commission investigating alleged voter fraud. Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, the commission’s vice chairman, sent a letter to California Secretary of State Alex Padilla on Wednesday asking again for voters’ names, party affiliations, addresses and voting histories if state law allows that information to be public.   In June, the commission requested the data for voters in all 50 states. Padilla and officials in at least 16 other states have…

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Cellphone video shot by California inmates shows escape

SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — Video shot by three inmates with a smuggled cellphone shows their methodical escape through a vent at the maximum-security wing of a Southern California jail last year, along with scenes from their days on the run…. … Read the referenced story here: Cellphone video shot by California inmates shows escape

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California knocks Trump as it extends climate change effort

AP Photo/Eric Risberg SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Gov. Jerry Brown and his predecessor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, stood side by side Tuesday to cheer the extension of one of the most ambitious programs in the U.S. to reduce fossil fuel pollution, while condemning President Donald Trump’s failure to see climate change as a deadly threat. Schwarzenegger, a Republican, joined Brown, a Democrat, for a sunny outdoor ceremony overlooking San Francisco where the governor signed legislation to extend a program limiting emissions of climate-changing carbons that both … Read the referenced story here: California…

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California Governor to Extend Climate Change Bill 10 Years

Gov. Jerry Brown is set to sign legislation Tuesday keeping alive California’s signature initiative to fight global warming, which puts a cap and a price on climate-changing emissions. The Democratic governor will be joined by his celebrity predecessor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, who signed the 2006 bill that led to the creation of the nation’s only cap and trade system to reduce greenhouse gases. The program has become closely watched around the world, promoted by Schwarzenegger and Brown alike a successful way to reduce emissions that hasn’t taken the steam out of…

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Montana Blaze Rages as California Crews Gain Ground on Wildfire

The biggest U.S. wildfire torched buildings and parched grassland forcing evacuations in eastern Montana while California firefighters gained ground on a massive blaze near Yosemite National Park on Monday, authorities said. The two-blaze Lodgepole Complex in Montana, the biggest wildfire in the United States currently, was only 5 percent contained on Monday after racing through 226,000 acres (91,500 hectares) of timber, brush and range land near the Missouri River, according to the National Interagency Coordination Center. The 215 firefighters have had to rely on bulldozers and harrows to plow fire…

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