Russian Billionaire Loses Lawsuit Against Nordic Banks

© Reuters.  Russian Billionaire Loses Lawsuit Against Nordic Banks © Reuters. Russian Billionaire Loses Lawsuit Against Nordic Banks

(Bloomberg) — A group of Nordic banks sued by a Russian oligarch aren’t required to accept his business, according to what may prove to be a landmark ruling by a court in Finland.

Russian billionaire Boris Rotenberg, an associate of President Vladimir Putin, lost his lawsuit against four Nordic banks and was ordered to pay more than 500,000 euros ($ 556,000) to cover their legal fees, the Helsinki District Court ruled on Monday.

The court said that forcing the banks to accept business from Rotenberg, who is on the U.S. sanctions list, would have subjected them to significant financial risk which they, by law, are prohibited from taking.

The lawsuit targeted Svenska Handelsbanken AB (ST:) for refusing to accept cross-border deposits from Rotenberg, and Nordea Bank Abp (SIX:), OP Group and Danske Bank A/S (CSE:) for not processing payments to vendors for basics including Rotenberg’s electricity bills.

Jakob Dedenroth Bernhoft, a Copenhagen-based lawyer who specializes in compliance and money laundering issues, said the decision would set an important precedent.

“All the other banks will look at this decision from the court for guidance on what to do in a similar situation,” Bernhoft said by phone before the verdict was delivered.

At stake was the banks’ access to the U.S. dollar market, which is crucial to their ability to operate.

The case comes against a backdrop of money-laundering scandals in the region, with regulators ratcheting up compliance requirements. Banks are also under increasing pressure to identify dodgy customers. According to documents provided to the court, Rotenberg has a current account at Handelsbanken, which the bank has supplied on the recommendation of the Finnish Financial Ombudsman Bureau.

Rotenberg had argued that his status as a dual citizen of both Russia and Finland meant that banks based in Europe must process his transactions. But the court said Rotenberg failed to prove he resides in a European Economic Area country, and thus has no such rights to basic banking services as mandated by law.

The court’s panel of judges ruled unanimously, but the verdict can be appealed. Rotenberg has seven days to express his dissatisfaction with the ruling, the court said.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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Stock Market News

Forex – Yen Loses Early Luster as Fears Ease

© Reuters.  © Reuters. – The Japanese yen was the early beneficiary of Iran’s decision to fire several missiles at military bases in Iraq which were hosting U.S. troops. Investors chose this currency as a safe haven in case this move represented a dramatic escalation of the recent tensions in the region.

The yen soared to a three month high against the U.S. dollar, with falling as low as Y107.64, before rebounding as investors breathed a sigh of relief that no further action followed.

Moves in the widely traded pair were more subdued, with the euro gaining against the dollar early. EUR/USD dropped as low as $ 1.1127, but has since rebounded.

Elsewhere, was trading basically flat, while was a touch lower.

Helping the move to the more relaxed tone were reports that there were no American casualties from the missile attacks as well as tweets from Iran’s foreign minister who indicated that his country did not seek an escalation of the conflict and U.S. President Donald Trump who stated that “all is well.”

This bout of military action was prompted by the killing of a key Iranian military adviser Qassem Soleimani by a U.S. airstrike last week, and investors will now wait for the promised press conference from President Trump to gauge whether he sees the need for a response to the Iranian missile attacks, or whether he seeks to deescalate the heightened tension.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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Forex News

Dollar loses steam versus yen as trade deal, Brexit hopes face reality check

By Tomo Uetake

SYDNEY (Reuters) – The dollar hovered below 2-1/2-month highs against the yen on Tuesday, failing to extend recent gains as optimism over trade negotiations between the world’s two largest economies and for an orderly British exit from the European Union started to fade.

In early Asian trade, the dollar was steady at 108.35 against the yen, still not far from its 2-1/2-month high of 108.63 yen marked on Friday.

The euro also stood flat at $ 1.1026 () versus the greenback, off Friday’s three-week high of $ 1.1062.

Although markets initially welcomed the “Phase 1” trade deal between the United States and China that President Donald Trump outlined last week, a lack of details kept many investors cautious.

“Media reports suggest China wants another high-level meeting later this month to finalize Friday’s agreement, suggesting that not all the details are nailed down,” said Alex Stanley, senior interest rate strategist at National Australia Bank.

“Market participants are conscious that previous U.S.-China ‘agreements’ have subsequently broken down amidst misunderstandings among the two sides.” 

A Bloomberg report on Monday, citing sources, said China wants more talks as soon as the end of October to hammer out the details of Trump’s phase 1 deal before Chinese President Xi Jinping agrees to sign it.

The negotiation between the UK and the European Union over Britain’s exit also looked equally fleeting.

Sterling slipped from a three-month high touched on Friday as last week’s euphoria gave way to doubts over whether a timely Brexit deal could be clinched. The pound was last quoted at $ 1.2604 versus the dollar, little changed on the day.

A deal to smooth Britain’s departure from the EU hung in the balance on Monday after diplomats indicated the bloc wanted more concessions from Prime Minister Boris Johnson and said a full agreement was unlikely this week.

Johnson says he wants to strike an exit deal at an EU summit on Thursday and Friday to allow an orderly departure on Oct. 31. If an agreement is not possible, he says he will lead the United Kingdom out of the club it joined in 1973 without a deal – even though parliament has passed a law saying he cannot do so.

The lira showed limited reaction after Trump imposed new sanctions on Turkey, but the currency stayed near seven-week lows against the dollar on concerns about a fallout from the country’s incursion in northern Syria.

In early Asia, the lira stood at 5.9239 per dollar , after having weakened some 0.8% on Monday.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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Food writer Jack Monroe ‘loses £5,000 in phone-number hijack’

Jack Monroe says she has lost about £5,000 after her phone number was hijacked and re-activated on another Sim card.

The criminals were then able to receive her two-factor authentication messages and access her bank and payment accounts.

The bestselling food writer tweeted she was “paranoid about security” and already had strong measures in place.

A privacy campaigner said the industry had failed to address “Simjacking”.

Ms Monroe tweeted she was “white-hot angry” and had been told although she should get her phone number back soon, the money “will take longer to recover”.

“The money stolen has run into thousands of pounds – I’m a self-employed freelancer and I have to absolutely hustle for every single pound I earn. And someone has just helped themselves to around five thousand of them,” she tweeted.

Ms Monroe is a best-known for her low-cost recipes and her support for anti-poverty campaigns.

In 2017, she successfully sued the right-wing commentator Katie Hopkins for libel.

Simjacking, also known as Simswapping, is when criminals port a phone number over to a new Sim card, which they can then use as if it was their own.

They do this by posing as a customer who wishes to move to a different mobile provider but keep their existing phone number.

While mobile phone operators often request personal information to complete the request, this can be data already in the public domain – Ms Monroe’s date of birth, for example, was on Wikipedia.

Sometimes individuals working for mobile operators or phone shops can be bribed into making the switch.

Often the first clue for the victim is when their own phone stops working.

Increasingly, banks and other services will use a text message to send a code as an extra layer of security to a registered phone number before allowing access to an account.

One critic of the industry’s response to the crime is a privacy campaigner who used to work for the GSMA, the trade body that represents mobile operators.

Pat Walshe, now managing director of Privacy Matters, told BBC News the scale of the problem in the UK was currently unknown but there were cases of Simjacking from around the world.

“The industry has failed to address this problem for a number of years,” he said.

“It’s not trivial [to carry out a Simjack attack] but someone could do it easily enough.”

Mr Walshe said victims should report the crime to their mobile provider, Action Fraud and the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).

“I think Jack Monroe’s case should now force the ICO to investigate whether mobile operators are meeting their obligations to safeguard services and data under telecom privacy rules, in addition to the [EU data protection law] GDPR,” he said.

The GSMA has championed an alternative mobile identity authenticator called Mobile Connect.

BBC News has contacted the ICO, which deals with data protection issues.

Jack Monroe has also been contacted.

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BBC News – Technology

Top 25 roundup: Florida loses Franks, rallies past Kentucky

No. 9 Florida, with backup quarterback Kyle Trask under center, scored three fourth-quarter touchdowns to rally for a 29-21 victory over Kentucky on Saturday night in their SEC matchup in Lexington, Ky.

Trask, who entered the game after third-year starter Feleipe Franks dislocated his ankle and was carted off, completed 9 of 13 passes for 126 yards. He also rushed 4 yards for the go-ahead touchdown with 4:11 remaining.

Running back Lamical Perine cut Florida’s deficit to 21-16 with 12:41 remaining in the game when he scored on an 8-yard run, capping a six-play, 62-yard drive that required just 2:15. Trask put the Gators (3-0) up for good eight minutes later.

Kentucky (2-1), which dominated the first three quarters, had a chance to retake the lead late when the Wildcats marched 58 yards to set up a 35-yard field-goal attempt with 33 seconds remaining. But Chance Poore’s kick sailed wide right, and Josh Hammond put the game away with a 76-yard rushing touchdown.

No. 1 Clemson 41, Syracuse 6

Sophomore quarterback Trevor Lawrence passed for three touchdowns and ran for a fourth as the Tigers extended the nation’s longest active winning streak to 18 games with a victory over the Orange at the Carrier Dome.

Despite being intercepted twice, Lawrence completed 22 of 39 passes for a career-high 395 yards, hitting Amari Rodgers for touchdowns of 16 and 87 yards.

Clemson (3-0, 2-0 ACC) has not lost an ACC game since a 27-24 setback against Syracuse at the Carrier Dome on Oct. 13, 2017. The Tigers’ 18-game winning streak is the longest in school history and the second-longest by an ACC member.

No. 2 Alabama 47, South Carolina 23

Junior quarterback Tua Tagovailoa threw for five touchdowns as the Crimson Tide shook off the Gamecocks in the second half for in their Southeastern Conference opener in Columbia, S.C.

Playing in the fourth quarter for the first time this season, Tagovailoa completed 28 of 36 passes for 444 yards to help the Crimson Tide (3-0, 1-0 SEC) outscore the Gamecocks (1-2, 0-1) 23-13 in the second half. Tagovailoa registered his eighth career game with at least four touchdowns passes.

Receiver DeVonta Smith and running back Najee Harris had two touchdown receptions each while combining for 13 catches for 223 yards. Receiver Henry Ruggs III had six catches for 122 yards, including an 81-yard touchdown reception in the first quarter.

No. 3 Georgia 55, Arkansas State 0

Quarterback Jake Fromm completed 17 of 22 passes for 279 yards and three touchdowns in just over a half of work as the Bulldogs rolled over the Red Wolves in Athens, Ga.

Backup quarterback Stetson Bennett completed 9 of 10 passes for 109 yards for Georgia (3-0), which piled up 656 yards (388 passing, 268 rushing). Georgia led 34-0 at halftime, and Fromm’s day was finished after James Cook scored on a 37-yard run to cap the Bulldogs’ first possession of the third quarter.

Georgia running back D’Andre Swift had nine carries for 76 yards and had two receptions for 64 yards, including one catch that he took in for a 48-yard score.

No. 4 LSU 65, Northwestern State 14

Joe Burrow and the Tigers’ passing game continued rolling in a demolition of the visiting Demons from the FCS in Baton Rouge, La. It was the 800th victory in LSU history.

Burrow, who passed for the second-most yards in school history (471) in a 45-38 victory at then-No. 9 Texas a week earlier, was nearly flawless against the in-state rival Demons (0-3). He completed 21 of 24 for 373 yards and two touchdowns with one interception before leaving the game late in the third quarter.

Terrace Marshall Jr. caught both of Burrow’s touchdown passes as he had his second multi-touchdown game and increased his season touchdown-reception total to six as LSU improved to 3-0. Justin Jefferson added 124 receiving yards on five catches.

No. 5 Oklahoma 48, UCLA 14

Jalen Hurts passed for 289 yards, rushed for 150 more, and accounted for four touchdowns to lead the visiting Sooners over the Bruins at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif.

Hurts set the tone rushing for 99 yards on five carries on the opening possession. The Oklahoma drive officially went 89 yards, but a holding penalty provided the nation’s fifth-ranked player in total offense coming into Saturday with an opportunity to further pad his lofty stats.

With Hurts clicking, the Sooners (3-0) scored on every first-half possession en route to a 34-7 halftime advantage. Hurts found Charleston Rambo and CeeDee Lamb on scoring passes of 48 and 39 yards, respectively, and Lamb finished a short, 36-yard drive just before intermission with a 1-yard rush.

No. 6 Ohio State 51, Indiana 10

Sophomore quarterback Justin Fields passed for 199 yards and three touchdowns as the Buckeyes dominated in all phases in a win over the Hoosiers in Bloomington, Ind.

Junior running back J.K. Dobbins added 193 yards rushing and a touchdown, and Master Teague had 106 rushing yards and a score.

On defense, Ohio State (3-0, 1-0 Big Ten) had five sacks and scored on a 96-yard interception return by cornerback Damon Arnette, the fifth-longest interception return for a TD in school history. On special teams, Ohio State blocked a punt out of the end zone for a safety, helping first-year coach Ryan Day pick up his second career Big Ten coaching win. Day led Ohio State to a win over Rutgers as interim coach last season.

No. 7 Notre Dame 66, New Mexico 14

Ian Book passed for 360 yards and five touchdowns, and the Irish crushed the Lobos in South Bend, Ind., in the first meeting between the programs.

Javon McKinley had two touchdown receptions for the Fighting Irish (2-0), who won their 12th consecutive game at home. Chase Claypool led all Notre Dame receivers with four catches for 96 yards and a touchdown. Notre Dame outgained New Mexico 591-363.

Lobos quarterback Tevaka Tuioti completed 6 of 13 passes for 132 yards after coming in to replace starter Sheriron Jones. New Mexico (1-1) played under Saga Tuitele, who coached in place of Bob Davie as he recovers from a health scare.

No. 8 Auburn 55, Kent State 16

A week after losing two of three fumbles, sophomore running back JaTarvious “Boobee” Whitlow led a trio of 100-yard rushers as the Tigers crushed the visiting Golden Flashes.

With its top deep threat, receiver Seth Williams (NYSE:), out injured, Auburn (3-0) emphasized its running game. Whitlow went over the 100-yard mark with an 11-yard run on his first carry of the second half.

Running back Shaun Shivers and backup quarterback Joey Gatewood each rushed for 102 yards on 12 runs, and running back Kam Martin rushed for 71 yards, with 35 coming on a first-quarter touchdown run. The Tigers ended up rushing for 467 yards of their 633 yards of total offense.

No. 11 Utah 31, Idaho State 0

The Utes started fast, built a big lead and never looked back in a rout of the FCS Bengals in Salt Lake City.

Utah quarterback Tyler Huntley completed 15 of 19 passes for 282 yards and three touchdowns, including two long TD passes in the first half. He played three quarters before exiting.

Sophomore Bryan Thompson’s only two catches of the afternoon were for touchdowns, one for 82 yards in the first quarter to give the Utes (3-0) a 17-0 lead, and the second midway through the third quarter for 23 yards and a 31-0 lead.

No. 12 Texas 48, Rice 13

Sam Ehlinger passed for 279 yards and three touchdowns — two to freshman Jake Smith — in less than three quarters of play as the Longhorns overwhelmed the winless Owls in Houston.

The Longhorns (2-1) bounced back in a big way after a seven-point loss at home to No. 4 LSU last week, making things look easy in taking a 31-0 lead by halftime and strolling to the finish against the Owls. Texas has now defeated Rice in 42 of 43 meetings since 1966.

Ehlinger connected on 23 of his 27 throws without an interception (he’s still without one for the season), and did not get sacked. Tom Stewart passed for 179 yards and two fourth-quarter touchdowns to lead Rice (0-3), but the Owls were never in the game.

No. 13 Penn State 17, Pitt 10

True freshman Devyn Ford and Noah Cain each rushed for one touchdown to lift the Nittany Lions over the Panthers in University Park in the 100th meeting between the programs.

Penn State quarterback Sean Clifford was 14 of 30 for 222 yards. The Nittany Lions (3-0) received the opening kickoff of the second half and proceeded on a 13-play, 88-yard drive that ended with Cain’s 13-yard run for a 17-10 lead.

Pittsburgh quarterback Kenny Pickett was 35 of 51 for 372 yards, but his last-play pass from the Penn State 26 was knocked down in the end zone.

No. 15 Oregon 35, Montana 3

Justin Herbert threw for 316 yards and five touchdowns, leading the Ducks over the Grizzlies in Eugene, Ore.

Herbert completed his first 10 passes of the game, finishing 30 of 42. He threw two touchdown passes each to tight end Jacob Breeland and wide receiver Johnny Johnson III, and had five touchdowns for the second straight game.

It’s the first time an Oregon quarterback has thrown five TD passes in back-to-back games. Herbert did so despite four receivers and a top tight end out with injury. The Ducks (2-1) extended their non-conference home win streak to 26 games, dating back to 2008.

No. 16 Texas A&M 62, Lamar 3

Isaiah Spiller rushed for 116 yards and two touchdowns, while Kellen Mond added 317 passing yards and another score through the air as the Aggies routed the FCS Cardinals in College Station, Texas.

Mond and Jacob Kibodi added rushing touchdowns for the Aggies (2-1), who outclassed the Cardinals (2-1) from the opening kickoff. Doing what a ranked team should do against a foe with 23 fewer scholarships, Texas A&M outgained Lamar 633-197 and picked up 35 first downs to the Cardinals’ nine.

The Aggies scored 13 points in the first quarter and led 27-0 at the break. They turned it into a laugher with three touchdowns in the final 7:39 of the third quarter.

No. 17 UCF 45, Stanford 27

Freshman quarterback Dillon Gabriel threw four touchdown passes, and the Knights scored on six of their first seven possessions while defeating the Cardinal in Orlando.

In just his second start, Gabriel completed 22 of 30 pass attempts for 347 yards. UCF amassed 413 yards in the first half and finished with 545 total yards on a humid day with game-time temperatures in the high 80s.

The Knights (3-0) have now outscored their three opponents 155-41 and have scored at least 30 points in 29 straight games, the longest streak in Football Bowl Subdivision since 1936.

Arizona State 10, No. 18 Michigan State 7

The Sun Devils marched 75 yards for the winning touchdown, a 1-yard run by Eno Benjamin, with 50 seconds to play to knock off the Spartans in East Lansing, Mich.

The drive was highlighted by Arizona State’s conversion on fourth-and-13, leading to the winning score. Freshman quarterback Jayden Daniels dropped back to pass but took off running with a wide-open field in front of him, picking up 15. Four plays later, the Sun Devils (3-0) were in the end zone.

Michigan State (2-1) appeared to tie the game in the final seconds on a 42-yard field goal from junior kicker Matt Coghlin, but the Spartans were flagged for too many men on the field. His 47-yarder as time expired went wide left. The loss kept Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio from becoming the winningest coach in program history.

No. 19 Iowa 18, Iowa State 17

Keith Duncan kicked four field goals, including the go-ahead boot inside the final five minutes, to lead the Hawkeyes past the host Cyclones in a game delayed twice by lightning in Ames, Iowa.

After Duncan’s 39-yard kick gave Iowa the lead at 4:51 — the third lead change of the fourth quarter — the Hawkeyes forced a turnover on downs and recovered a muffed punt at 1:29 to preserve the win.

Nate Stanley rushed for a score and passed for 201 yards for Iowa (3-0), which won for the fifth straight time and the sixth in seven games over Iowa State (1-1), improving to 45-22 in the series.

Temple 20, No. 21 Maryland 17

The Owls put the clamps on the Terrapins and their high-scoring offense in an upset in Philadelphia.

Maryland (2-1) entered the game averaging 71 points, and Temple (2-0) scored 56 in its win over Bucknell.

But Temple’s defense stole the show, holding Maryland without an offensive score in the first half, also recording four sacks and stopping the Terrapins twice in the final minutes on fourth-down attempts deep in Temple territory.

No. 22 Boise State 45, Portland State 10

John Hightower caught a touchdown pass and returned a kickoff for another score to help the host Broncos paste the FCS Vikings in a non-conference mismatch.

Curtis Weaver recorded four sacks for Boise State (3-0) to match the school’s single-game record. Chris Wing had four in 1996, also coming against Portland State (1-2).

True freshman quarterback Hank Bachmeier passed for 238 yards and two touchdowns in two-plus quarters for the Broncos. Junior receiver CT Thomas had two scoring receptions.

No. 23 Washington 52, Hawaii 20

Jacob Eason completed 18 of 25 passes for 262 yards and three touchdowns as the Huskies defeated the Rainbow Warriors.

Washington (2-1) scored touchdowns on five of its first six possessions and took a 38-7 halftime lead in rebounding from an upset loss at home last weekend to California in its Pac-12 opener. Salvon Ahmed rushed eight times for a game-high 83 yards for the Huskies.

Hawaii (2-1) failed to make it three wins in a row against Pac-12 competition after defeating Arizona and Oregon State at home in its first two games of the season.

BYU 30, No. 24 USC 27 (OT)

Zach Wilson threw for 280 yards and one touchdown and ran for another score to help the host Cougars (2-1) upset the Trojans (2-1) in overtime in Provo, Utah.

BYU’s Jake Oldroyd made a 43-yard field goal on the first possession of overtime, and safety Dayan Ghanwoloku intercepted a third-down pass from USC quarterback Kedon Slovis to clinch the victory, the Cougars’ second straight win in overtime.

Slovis, a true freshman, completed 24 of 34 passes for 281 yards and two touchdowns, both to wide receiver Michael Pittman. But he threw three interceptions, the first two of which led to 10 BYU points in the first half.

No. 25 Virginia 31, Florida State 24

Wayne Taulapapa rushed for two of his three touchdowns late in the fourth quarter to rally the Cavaliers to just their fourth win in 19 meetings with the Seminoles, as host Virginia improved to 3-0 for the first time since 2005.

James Blackman passed for 234 yards and three touchdowns and had Florida State (1-2, 0-1 ACC) in front 24-17 in the fourth quarter before another defensive collapse. The Seminoles were outscored 21-7 in the fourth quarter and have been outscored 75-31 in the second half and overtime this season.

Bryce Perkins completed 30 of 40 passes for 295 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions for Virginia (3-0, 2-0). The Seminoles had first-and-goal at the 4 with just a few seconds remaining but elected not to spike the ball to stop the clock, instead direct-snapping to running back Cam Akers, who was stopped short as time expired.

–Field Level Media

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Sports and General News

Cardinal George Pell loses appeal of sex abuse convictions

Melbourne — An Australian appeals court Wednesday upheld convictions against Cardinal George Pell, the most senior Catholic to be found guilty of sexually abusing children. The decision brought cheers from scores of abuse survivors and victims’ advocates demonstrating outside court.

The Victoria state Court of Appeal, in a 2-1 ruling, rejected Pell’s appeal of a unanimous jury verdict in December that Pope Francis’ former finance minister was guilty of molesting two 13-year-old choirboys in Melbourne’s St. Patrick’s Cathedral more than two decades ago.

George Pell arrives at the Supreme Court of Victoria in Melbourne
Cardinal George Pell arrives at Supreme Court of Victoria in Melbourne, Australia, on August 21, 2019 AAP Images / Erik Anderson / Reuters

Pell’s lawyers will examine the judgment and consider an appeal to the High Court, Australia’s final arbiter, his spokeswoman Katrina Lee said in a statement.

Trending News

“Cardinal Pell is obviously disappointed with the decision today,” the statement said, adding that he maintains his innocence.

But prominent victims advocate Chrissie Foster was quoted by the Reuters news service as telling reporters outside the court that, “We have today in our court, in Victoria, the Supreme Court, saying, ‘We believe the victim and we uphold the jury’s verdict.’ No one is above the law.”

The Vatican issued a statement saying it was “reiterating” its “respect for the Australian judicial system” and it “acknowledges the court’s decision to dismiss Cardinal Pell’s appeal.”

But “the Holy See recalls that the Cardinal has always maintained his innocence throughout the judicial process and that it is his right to appeal to the High Court” and “the Holy See confirms its closeness to the victims of sexual abuse and its commitment to pursue … those members of the clergy who commit such abuse.”

Pell was sentenced to six years in prison in March and is no longer a member of Francis’ Council of Cardinals or a Vatican official.

But Reuters points out that he is still a cardinal in the Catholic church and would still be a priest even if he were to resign as a cardinal. Reuters adds that Pell could be stripped of his priesthood if a special Vatican body looking into his case also finds him guilty.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said soon after the appeal was rejected that Pell would be stripped of his Order of Australia honor.

Victorian Supreme Court Dismisses Cardinal George Pell Child Sexual Abuse Appeal
Valda Hogan, an abuse victim, celebrates outside Supreme Court of Victoria along with other demonstrators on August 21, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia after Cardinal George Pell’s appeal of convictions on charges of sexually abusing two 13-year-old choirboys in late 1990s was rejected Robert Cianflone / Getty Images

Pell, 78, showed no emotion when Chief Justice Anne Ferguson read the verdict to a packed courtroom but bowed his head moments later. He wore a cleric’s collar but not his cardinal’s ring. Pell had arrived at the court in a prison van and was handcuffed as he was led away by a guard.

The Australian Catholic Bishops’ Conference, a body representing all the nation’s Catholic bishops, said all Australians must be equal under the law and they accept the court’s verdict.

“I respectfully receive the court’s decision and I encourage everyone to do the same,” Melbourne Archbishop Peter Comensoli said in a statement.

Clerical sexual abuse and the Catholic Church’s handling of such cases worldwide have thrown Francis’ papacy into turmoil.

In a little more than a year, the pope has acknowledged he made “grave errors” in Chile’s worst cover-up, Pell was convicted of abuse, a French cardinal was convicted of failing to report a pedophile, and a third cardinal, former U.S. church leader Theodore McCarrick, was defrocked after a Vatican investigation determined he molested children and adults.

Explaining the judges’ thinking

Ferguson said she and President of the Court of Appeal Chris Maxwell “decided that it was open to the jury to be satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that Cardinal Pell was guilty.”

The two judges “accepted the prosecution’s submission that the complainant was a very compelling witness, clearly not a liar, was not a fantasist and was a witness of truth,” Ferguson said.

The dissenting judge, Mark Weinberg, “could not exclude as a reasonable possibility that some of what the complainant said was concocted,” particularly in relation to the charge that Pell had squeezed the boy’s genitals and shoved him against a cathedral corridor wall as they passed in the midst of the choir moments after a Mass, she said.

“Justice Weinberg found that the complainant’s account of the second incident was entirely implausible and quite unconvincing,” Ferguson said.

One of the choirboys, identified by the sentencing judge as J.J., was the key prosecution witness. His friend, identified as M.R., died of a heroin overdose in 2014 at the age of 31 without ever complaining he had been abused. Neither victim can be named.

Victim reacts

J.J. said in a statement on Wednesday that he “felt a responsibility to come forward” after attending his friend’s funeral.

“The criminal process has been stressful. The journey has taken me to places that, in my darkest moments, I feared I could not return from,” he said in a statement released by his lawyer.

“I am grateful for a legal system that everyone can believe in, where everybody is equal before the law and no one is above the law,” he added.

The victim said he was relieved by the verdict and, “I just hope that it’s all over now.”

The father of the deceased victim shed tears of relief in the courtroom when Pell’s appeal was denied, his lawyer said.

Lawyer Lisa Flynn said the father had an “extremely tough wait” for the judgment against Pell and the court made the correct decision. “The disgraced cardinal is in the right place behind bars.”

An earlier trial had ended with a deadlocked jury, with at least two jurors holding out for conviction or acquittal. While Pell’s lawyers argued in the appeal that the jury must have had reasonable doubt, the prosecutors said contrasting evidence from more than 20 priests, choristers, altar servers and church officials still did not preclude guilty verdicts.

Detailing the abuse

The abuse occurred months after Pell became archbishop of Australia’s second-largest city and set in motion the world’s first compensation arrangement for victims of clergy sexual abuse.

The victim who testified said the incident in the corridor occurred in early 1997. The jury also concluded that Pell in late 1996 had orally raped the same choirboy and indecently dealt with the boy and his friend in a rear room of the cathedral after catching them swigging altar wine.

Pell did not testify at either of his trials. But both juries saw a video of a police interview of him in Rome in 2016 in which Pell rejected the allegations as “absolutely disgraceful rubbish” and a “deranged falsehood.”

Ferguson read a summary of the three judges’ findings. The 325-page ruling was published later Wednesday.

When sentencing Pell to six years in prison in March, the trial judge accused Pell of showing “staggering arrogance” in his crimes. He was ordered to serve a minimum of three years and eight months before he will be eligible for parole.

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Boeing loses first big 737 Max order to rival Airbus

  • Flyadeal’s decision to go with Airbus reverses an earlier plan to buy 50 Boeing 737 Max jets valued at $ 5.9 billion, based on list prices.
  • Some analysts predict this order lost to Europe’s Airbus won’t be the last such loss for Boeing.
  • Boeing continues to work on fixing software that likely led to two deadly crashes and the model’s grounding earlier this year.
  • Deliveries of 737 models including the Max dropped sharply in the second quarter, Boeing said Tuesday

Boeing officially lost its first order to European rival Airbus in the aftermath of two deadly 737 Max crashes and the subsequent grounding of the plane by global regulators. Some analysts think this cancellation won’t be the last.

Indeed, orders for all 737 models including the Max fell by more than half through June, figures released by Boeing on Tuesday show. The planemaker delivered 113 of the model plane through June compared to 269 of all 737s in the first half of 2018. Boeing doesn’t break out deliveries for the Max from other 737 aircraft.

In the quarter running April, May and June, combined deliveries of 737 models fell to just 24 from 137. The company reports second-quarter results July 24, when it typically provides an update on its order and delivery outlook.

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The first lost order for a 737 Max was from Flyadeal, the budget airline run by Saudi Arabian Airlines. It announced Sunday it will buy up to 50 Airbus A320neo planes, the competing narrowbody model to Boeing’s 737 Max, and operate an all-Airbus fleet. The move reverses a December plan to buy up to 50 737 Max planes valued at $ 5.9 billion, based on list prices.

While it’s the first official switch since the 737 Max was grounded, Indonesian carrier Garuda said earlier this year it was talking to Boeing about canceling its order after Boeing delivered just one of the 50 737 Max jets. Together, the two orders are valued at roughly $ 10 billion, at list prices, though carriers are often offered substantial discounts.

“I don’t think we’ve seen the ends of these announcements,” industry analyst Henry Harteveldt of Atmosphere Research Group told CBS News’ Kris Van Cleave. “The big issue is Airbus’ production capacity. Airbus needs to find ways to increase its production capacity for its A320 line of aircraft, which isn’t easy to do.”

FAA finds new potential risk in Boeing 737 Max planes

Other carriers also are weighing options. Oman Air said in June it would start talks with Airbus if Boeing didn’t provide “support and recovery” for the 737 Max. In April, flydubai said it may consider an Airbus order to replace its Max order.

Before the 737 Max crashes, the world’s two biggest plane makers were already dealing with huge backlogs and had been increasing production to meet rising global demand. The cancellation itself is a small dent in Boeing’s backlog for the bestselling 737, including the Max version. Boeing’s order backlog for the 737 model stands at 4,415, according to its website.

Saudi Arabian Airlines booked its Airbus order at the Paris Air Show last month as part of 100 planes it plans to buy from Airbus, according to Sunday’s statement from the carrier. In a statement today, Boeing said it’s “proud of its seven-decade long partnership with Saudi Arabia’s aviation industry and we wish the flyadeal team well as it builds out its operations. Our team continues to focus on safely returning the 737 Max to service and resuming deliveries of Max airplanes.”

Delayed return?

Saudi Arabia Airlines’ current fleet already include 52 narrowbody Airbus aircraft, according to its website. Its Boeing aircraft are all larger models, known as widebodies. Saudi Arabia is also a big military customer for Boeing.

Last month, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration discovered a new flaw in Boeing’s 737 Max that could further delay its return to the skies. Still, some airlines are ordering the 737 Max. Boeing in June announced a letter of intent from International Airlines Group, parent company of British Airways and other carriers, to buy 200 of the model.

Boeing last week said it would pay $ 100 million to the victims of the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines crashes.

CBS News’ Kris Van Cleave contributed to this story.

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World Chess Championship 2018: American loses to Magnus Carlsen

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America’s hopes for the first world champion of chess since the 1970s have been dashed. In London Wednesday night, Fabiano Caruana lost to the world’s No. 1 ranked player, Magnus Carlsen. The pair were tied after 12 tense matches so it went to sudden death. Mark Phillips reports.
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