French prosecutors said on Monday that five teenagers are in police custody on suspicion of vandalizing hundreds of Jewish graves.
Over the weekend, nearly 300 tombs in the region of Sarre-Union in Alsace were defaced by the teens, who range in age from 15 to 17. The youngest suspected vandal came forward after seeing the public outcry and furor, authorities said.
"Apparently, he was very, very affected by the scale of the reaction to this affair, including the statements from the highest state authorities," prosecutor Philippe Vannier told reporters. "We don't know the motive of these adolescents who don't have past criminal records and we don't know of any ideological convictions that could explain their behavior. They are very, very shocked by the turn of events." more >>
As the second anniversary of the crime that rocked Oscar Pistorius' life and led to the death of model-girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp approaches, South Africa's National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) announced that it will review and appeal the court's "culpable homicide" or manslaughter conviction.
According to a report in the Cape Times, state prosecutors gave notice to the Pistorius defense team last week and to the High Court of Pretoria and the Supreme Court of Appeal Monday this week. According to NPA Spokesman Velekhaya Mgobhozi, the State is waiting for the full transcripts of the trial before filing their appeal. This announcement also comes months after the High Court, through Judge Thokozile Masipa, granted the State permission to appeal the conviction but not the five-year sentence.
In the Cape Times report, Prosecutor Gerrie Nel argued that the sentence was "shockingly inappropriate," echoing earlier arguments it made when they filed papers in November 2014 for a harsher conviction and sentence, on "whether the principles of dolus eventualis were correctly applied to the case." more >>
Amanda Knox, the 27-year-old American woman known for the widely publicized case involving the murder of British exchange student Meridith Kercher in 2007, is engaged to childhood friend and musician Colin Sutherland.
Knox's father told ABC News that the couple got engaged on Feb. 3.
Amanda Knox and Colin Sutherland are said to have known each other since her middle school days in Washington State. Sutherland, also 27, has a band based in New York City called The Johnny Pumps, which classifies its kind of music as a mix of rock, "impure metal, and it's cut with a punk edge that will make you want to dance." more >>
For most of her life, former stripper and prostitute Annie Lobert sought a man to swoop into her life and rescue her from the hardships of growing up in a broken home, just like in the fairy tales. Now the founder of Hookers for Jesus, a ministry for sex workers, Lobert says too many women are placing their hopes for love and security in the wrong place.
Jesus Christ, she said, is the ultimate knight in shining armor, able to rescue them from a life of sin and transforming lives and relationships.
"What us women need to understand [is] if a man can't do what you ideally think he should do, [it is because] God is the only one who can do that for you. Jesus Christ is the only one who can ultimately be your ultimate romantic interest and I'm not talking about sexually. I'm talking about that intimate love bond that we have that heals all wounds, that heals all insecurities, that heals all the things that we think our husbands should do and be," she told The Christian Post. more >>
Sudanese government forces systematically raped and beat at least 221 women and girls in a series of organized door-to-door attacks in Darfur last year, a leading human rights watchdog group announced on Wednesday.
In releasing a 48-page report, Human Rights Watch detailed how Sudanese army troops went from house to house in the North Darfur town of Tabit last October and raped over 221 civilian girls and women in just a 36-hour timespan.
"The deliberate attack on Tabit and the mass rape of the town's women and girls is a new low in the catalog of atrocities in Darfur," Human Rights Watch Africa Director Daniel Bekele told reporters. more >>
Craig Hicks, the atheist accused of killing three Muslim students in North Carolina on Tuesday, is said to be a devoted follower of prominent British atheist, Richard Dawkins. Although Hicks' wife insists that the brutal killings were not hate crimes, anti-religious sentiment on his Facebook page suggests otherwise.
The 46-year-old Chapel Hill resident was arrested Tuesday and charged with three counts of first-degree murder following the deaths of newlywed couple Deah Shaddy Barakat, 23, and Yusor Mohammad, 21, and her sister, Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha, 19. All three were shot in the head at a condominium complex near the University of North Carolina campus following a parking dispute.
As police continue to investigate the possibility of a hate crime, Hicks' atheist beliefs – as seen in various posts on his alleged Facebook page – have fueled concerns amongst the victims' loved ones that anti-religious views may have precipitated the shootings. more >>