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ABQ driver faces wrongful death suit

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. The Albuquerque man accused of running down and killing a person who he believed had taken his stereo is now named in a civil wrongful death lawsuit involving the same incident.

Christopher Pino, 51, was indicted Monday on charges including second-degree murder, leaving the scene of a crash and aggravated assault. Police say Pino saw two men carrying a stereo he thought was his and hit one of them with his Hummer near Solano and Silver. Daniel Arballo died later in a local hospital. Last week, an attorney acting as the personal representative of Arballo s estate filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Pino. The lawsuit seeks damages and other relief.

Christopher Pino should be punished for his disregard for the life and safety of people in New Mexico, the lawsuit filed in state District Court in Santa Fe argues. It is not clear who is representing him in the civil case. According to a criminal complaint, a witness described watching the Hummer hit one person, sending him flying before reversing and going after the second person. The driver, the witness told police, was shouting threats.

You re going to be killed, I m going to kill you, you stole from me, the witness, a security guard at a nearby business, said describing what he heard.


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Pino told police he only wanted to knock the men down so that he could detain them until police arrived.

He said he s been dealing with property crime, and wanted the men arrested to send a message to others to leave the property alone.


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Trial opens in Turkey for 221 suspected coup instigators

A trial opened on Monday in Turkey’s capital for 221 suspects, including 27 former generals, accused of being the instigators of last summer’s failed military coup. The main defendants are Gen. Akin Ozturk, a former air force commander, and other alleged members of the so-called Peace at Home Council a group on whose behalf a coup declaration was read on state television. Other defendants include the former military aide to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as well as the brother of a ruling party legislator.

The suspects face life prison terms if found guilty of charges that include attempting to destroy the government and the parliament, leading an armed terror group, attempting to assassinate the president and killing some 250 people, the state-run Anadolu Agency reported. U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, wanted by Turkey for allegedly orchestrating the coup, is also named among the defendants of the high-profile trial and will be tried in absentia along with eight other defendants who are on the run. Gulen has denied any involvement in the coup attempt. The trial is taking place in a courthouse and prison complex in the outskirts of Ankara that was built especially for this trial. Security was tight, with snipers standing guard on rooftops and a drone flying overhead.

The suspects were forced to walk along a lane toward the courthouse, held by military police officers on each arm and each protected by a commando officer. As they walked by, pro-government protesters called for the death penalty to be reinstated and for the defendants to be hanged even though the capital punishment is unlikely to be applied retroactively. Some held up banners that demanded “the death penalty on behalf of the martyrs of the July 15 coup” while others shouted “traitors!” A rope used for hanging was thrown at one of the defendants, Anadolu reported. In a related development, Amnesty International released a report on Monday criticizing Turkey’s government for dismissing tens of thousands of public sector employees following the coup, saying the massive crackdown had left teachers, academics, doctors, police officers and soldiers branded as “terrorists” and unable to make a living. It has called on Turkey to end the arbitrary dismissals, saying they have had devastating effects on the individuals and their families.

More than 100,000 public servants have been dismissed and banned from the civil service through decrees issued under the state of emergency for alleged connections to Gulen and other groups listed as terror organizations. More than 47,000 people have also been arrested for alleged links to the coup.

The government says the purge is necessary to weed out Gulen’s followers.

What’s next for Iran after President Hassan Rouhani’s win?

After Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s electoral victory Saturday, what’s next for the Islamic Republic? Here’s some things to watch for:


Those backing President Ebrahim Raisi will accept the results. However, hard-liners within Iran’s judiciary and security services will continue to pressure Rouhani in different ways. Even before the vote, hard-line elements routinely detained dual nationals, likely seeking concessions from the West. Artists, journalists, models and others have been targeted in crackdowns on expression. Hard-liners probably will challenge Rouhani in the country’s parliament, especially over social issues or any measure that appears to be accepting or promoting Western culture. The paramilitary Revolutionary Guard, which answers to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, will continue to launch ballistic missiles and have close encounters with U.S. Navy vessels in the Persian Gulf. THE ECONOMY

The nuclear deal with world powers allowed Iran to start selling its crude oil everywhere and the country quickly re-entered Europe and other key markets. However, their re-entry comes as global crude prices remain stuck around $50 a barrel, about half the price when major sanctions began to bite. Airbus and Boeing Co. have signed multi-billion-dollar deals with Iran since the accord as well. Iran was also reconnected to the international banking system. Even so, many other international firms remain hesitant to re-enter the Iranian market for fear of changing political winds that may usher in new sanctions, jeopardizing their profits and any nascent ventures.

RELATIONS WITH THE U.S. Donald Trump long threatened to renegotiate the nuclear deal while on the campaign trail. His administration said it put Iran “on notice” in February after issuing a series of sanctions following ballistic missile tests. But since then, Trump’s administration has taken a key step toward preserving the accord. Rouhani’s win may ease some of the tensions between the two nations, as a hard-line victory could have further imperiled the deal. It’s unlikely relations will ever be as warm as they were between former President Barack Obama and Rouhani, as the two even once shared a telephone call amid the nuclear negotiations, the highest-level direct communication since the 1979 U.S. Embassy hostage crisis in Tehran. RELATIONS WITH SAUDI ARABIA

Trump’s visit to Saudi Arabia on Saturday is not going unnoticed by Iran. The Sunni kingdom and Shiite power Iran haven’t had diplomatic relations since early 2016. That’s when Saudi Arabia executed a prominent Shiite cleric and protesters in Iran attacked two of the kingdom’s diplomatic posts. Saudi Arabia immediately cut diplomatic ties and other Sunni Arab countries in the Gulf have taken a harder line on Iran since. Many of those countries worry about Iran’s regional intentions. Iran backs Syrian President Bashar Assad, supports Shiite militias battling the Islamic State group in Iraq and has aided Shiite rebels, known as Houthis, holding Yemen’s capital. Iran and Saudi Arabia have held talks on allowing Iranians to attend the annual hajj pilgrimage in the Sunni kingdom, required of all able-bodied Muslims once in their lives. However, tensions remain.


Khamenei, 77, is only the second supreme leader in Iran’s history. There have been concerns about his health over the last few years. He underwent prostate surgery in 2014. Iran’s president is one of three members on a temporary council that takes over the supreme leader’s duties should his post become vacant until a successor is named by the panel known as the Assembly of Experts. Rouhani and Raisi both sit in that assembly.

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