Compliments of Mark Anderson of Andertoons
Online currency exchange, Liberty Reserve, is accused in laundering $6 billion. It is a central hub for criminals trafficking in everything from stolen identities to child pornography, federal prosecutors in New York said.
According to Preet Bharara, the United States attorney in Manhattan, and other law enforcement officials, it is the largest online money-laundering case in history. The cyber money-laundering scheme included 1 million users worldwide, with more than 200,000 users in the US. Over seven years, 55 million transactions were conducted through Liberty Reserve, the prosecutors said.
From 2006 to 2013, Liberty Reserve became one of the world’s most widely used digital currency services but it appeared to be a “financial hub of the cybercrime world”. The profits from criminal activities were processed anonymously and ranged from identity theft and credit card fraud to computer hacking, investment fraud, child pornography, and drug trafficking.
A recent ‘The New York Times’ article entitled “Wal-Mart Is Fined $82 Million Over Mishandling of Hazardous Wastes” reported that Wal-Mart Stores pleaded guilty Tuesday to improperly dumping hazardous waste in California and Missouri and agreed to pay almost $82 million.
The retailer was charged with six counts of violating the Clean Water Act in California and one count of violating a federal law related to pesticide disposal in Missouri.
Since 2003, Wal-Mart employees tossed products like bleach, fertilizer, hairspray, nail polish and deodorant into trash or the local sewer system.
The naturalization process confers U.S. citizenship upon foreign citizens or nationals who have fulfilled the requirements established by Congress in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). After naturalization, foreign-born citizens enjoy nearly all of the same benefits, rights, and responsibilities that the Constitution gives to native-born U.S. citizens, including the right to vote.
According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, 757 434 persons naturalized during 2012.
An applicant for naturalization must fulfill certain requirements set forth in the INA concerning age, lawful admission and residence in the United States. These general naturalization provisions specify that a foreign national must be at least 18 years of age; be a U.S. legal permanent resident (LPR); and have resided in the country continuously for at least five years. Additional requirements include the ability to speak, read, and write the English language; knowledge of the U.S. government and history; and good moral character.
In a recent Wall Street Journal article written by Jacob Gershman entitled: For Next Big Religion Case, High Court Goes to Greece, is reported that the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to rule on a case whether an upstate New York town violated the Constitution by opening its public meetings with a Christian prayer.
The case centers on the Town of Greece, near Rochester, which had routinely invited Christian clergy to deliver prayers, most of which contained references to “Jesus Christ,” “Jesus,” “Your Son,” or the “Holy Spirit.”
Town residents claim the practice violated the separation of church and state of the First Amendment.
Constitutional scholar Carl Tobias, of the University of Richmond School of Law, said “It’s a very delicate and difficult issue”.
The outcome could have wider implications beyond legislative invocations, Mr. Tobias said. It could have an impact on everything from school prayer to what may be recited at funerals for state troopers.
If you feel that personal income taxes in the United States are too high, you might be interested to learn that more than 8,000 French households had their 2012 tax bills top 100% of their income.
CNBC, in an article written by Holly Ellyatt entitled: Thousands of French Households Taxed 100%, it was reported that an additional 12,000 households paid taxes that were worth more than 75 percent of their 2011 income and that a further 9,910 households were taxed at more than 85 percent of their income.
The French business newspaper, Les Echos, reported that the excessively high taxes were the result of a “one-off levy” that was imposed on the 2011 incomes of French households with assets of more than 1.3 million euros (approximately $1.67 million). The surcharge was introduced by socialist President Francois Hollande in an attempt to offset the cost of a rebate scheme and taxation cap that had been introduced by former President Nikolas Sarkozy.
In response to the personal income tax changes, the French Constitutional Council said that: “such a high income rate was unfair and could be viewed as confiscatory”. The Council went one step further suggesting that the government should shift the burden to French companies thereby causing a major uproar throughout the French business community.