ROME (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Italian police said they have busted a crime ring exporting fake extra virgin olive oil to the United States, highlighting the mafia’s infiltration of Italy’s famed agriculture and food business.
Twelve people with links to the ‘Ndrangheta, the organized crime group based in the southern Calabria region, were arrested on Tuesday on a series of charges including mafia association and fraud, police said in a statement.
The gang shipped cheap olive pomace oil to the U.S. where it was re-labeled as the more expensive “extra virgin” variety, prized for its rich taste and health benefits, and distributed as such to retail stores in New Jersey, they said.
Italian crime syndicates earned an estimated 16 billion euros ($16.85 billion) in 2015 through illegal activities in the agriculture sector, up from 15 billions in 2014, according to Italy’s agricultural association, Coldiretti.
Besides counterfeiting products, gangs make money seizing control of farmland and firms, fixing prices, controlling distribution and through labor exploitation, studies say.
In 2015, crime groups forced more than 100,000 Italians and migrants to work long hours for little pay in fields across the country, according to a report by Italian General Confederation of Labor union (CGIL).
Read Full – http://www.reuters.com/article/us-italy-crime-food-idUSKBN1602BD
Today, the House Judiciary Committee heard and passed House Bill 1200 by a 9-3 vote. HB 1200 would severely limit your NRA’s ability to communicate with its membership in South Dakota. HB 1200 now heads to the House floor where it will await full consideration.
If enacted, HB 1200 would require the NRA to disclose a list of its members if certain contributions are made to a ballot question committee or used for an independent communication expenditure. These contributions are made so that NRA can inform its membership as well as Second Amendment supporters about legislation or other issues affecting their Second Amendment rights, and HB 1200 seeks to limit that ability.
It is critical that you contact your state Representative, and urge them to OPPOSE House Bill 1200.
HB 1200 is in conflict with the First Amendment. It seeks to limit the free speech of organizations like the NRA unless they first disclose their members’ private information in the process. Donors to organizations, regardless of their views on public policy matters, should be free to support causes they believe in without fear of retaliation, harassment, or intimidation by powerful government figures. Because free speech is the right of every American, this legislation must be defeated.
Again, please click the “Take Action” button above or call (605) 773-3821 to contact your Representative, and urge them to OPPOSE House Bill 1200.
Sourced From – https://www.nraila.org/articles/20170222/south-dakota-bill-attempting-to-silence-nra-passed-by-house-committee
BERLIN (Reuters) – The German Economics Ministry want to create a nationwide database aimed at making it easier to block companies found guilty of fraud and other violations from receiving federal, state and local government contracts.
A legislative draft viewed by Reuters calls for companies found guilty of major violations to be blocked from government contracts for five years, with less serious charges to result in a three-year ban.
“The goal of the legislation is to ensure that government contracts are only awarded to companies that have not incurred major legal violations and that have competed fairly,” according to the draft.
Read Full – https://townhall.com/news/politics-elections/2017/02/22/germany-working-on-nationwide-corruption-black-list-draft-law-n2289300
A U.S. District Court judge has ruled that the State of California can’t move forward in enforcing a law that makes it illegal for the entertainment news site IMDbPro to publish actors’ ages.
At the beginning of the year, IMDb filed a federal lawsuit against then-California Attorney General Kamala Harris seeking an injunction to stop enforcement of AB 1687, which went into effect January 1. Today, Judge Vince Chhabria found enough to grant the injunction, saying “it’s difficult to imagine how AB 1687 could not violate the First Amendment” and that the government has not shown how the bill is “necessary” in achieving the goal of preventing age discrimination in Hollywood.
“Accordingly, the government is enjoined from enforcing AB 1687 while this lawsuit is
pending,” he wrote (read the ruling here.)
SAG-AFTRA responded quickly to today’s ruling in the U.S. District Court for the North District of California. The guild had been a major proponent of the bill, which was signed into law in September.
“We are disappointed that the court has chosen to temporarily halt the State of California’s legal efforts to fully protect its citizens from employment discrimination,” said SAG-AFTRA COO and general counsel Duncan Crabtree-Ireland. “We look forward to the upcoming opportunity to present evidence to the Court of how this law will reduce or eliminate the age discrimination facilitated by IMDb.com.
“This is an early skirmish in what will be a long-term battle to ensure that entertainment industry workers are granted the same minimum employment protections as all other workers. SAG-AFTRA will continue to fight until we achieve for actors and other entertainment industry professionals, the same rights to freedom from age discrimination in hiring enjoyed by other workers in other industries.”
AB 1687 was narrowly crafted to apply only to “commercial online entertainment employment providers” that charge a “subscribers” fee, as does IMDbPro. Online publications such as Deadline Hollywood – which can be viewed for free – are not subject to the law.
SAG-AFTRA “Disappointed” In Court Pausing IMDb Age Law