Dennis Hastert was indicted on Thursday on federal charges including making false statements to the FBI, the U.S. Attorney's Office in Chicago said. The Illinois Republican, who left office in 2007, was charged with structuring the withdrawal of $952,000 in cash in order to evade the requirement that banks report cash transactions over $10,000, and lying to the FBI about his withdrawals, the U.S. Attorney's Office said in a statement.
U.S. President Barack Obama met on Thursday with the family of American journalist Steven Sotloff, who was beheaded last year by Islamic State militants. The White House said Obama met with Sotloff's parents Art and Shirley and his sister, Lauren, while he was in Florida for fundraising and a briefing on the upcoming hurricane season. "The president expressed his and the first lady’s condolences for Steven’s death," White House spokeswoman Bernadette Meehan said.
The FBI said on Thursday it had begun looking into the illegal access of the tax-return information of about 100,000 people disclosed by the Internal Revenue Service earlier this week. "The FBI has opened an investigation into the recently reported incident at the Internal Revenue Service and is working with our interagency partners to determine the nature and scope of this matter," a spokesman said. IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said Tuesday cyber criminals had sought to gain access to personal tax information 200,000 times from February to May, and were successful in about half of those attempts.
Nestled away in a northern Chicago suburb, among tree-lined streets, white picket fences and perfectly manicured lawns, is a 31-acre complex known as Misericordia. Misericordia, whose name means “heart of mercy” in Latin , is home to more than 600 children and adults with a wide range of physical and mental disabilities.
Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev late next month will confront people who lost limbs and loved ones in the deadly 2013 attack when he is scheduled to be formally sentenced to death for his crimes, a judge said on Thursday. The same federal jury that found Tsarnaev, 21, guilty of killing three people and injuring 264 in one of the highest-profile attacks on U.S. soil since Sept. 11, 2001, last month voted to sentence him to death. Tsarnaev's trial evoked memories of the darkest days in recent memory in Boston as victims testified of being hurled through the air by the twin pressure-cooker bombs, struggling to save the lives of those who had lost limbs amid screams of pain and fears that additional explosions would follow.
(Reuters) - Defense attorneys for six police officers facing criminal charges in the Freddie Gray case are seeking to have the trial moved from Baltimore, saying their clients cannot get a fair trial there, the Baltimore Sun reported on Thursday. The lawyers filed an 85-page document on Wednesday in Baltimore Circuit Court asking for a change of venue, arguing that a "presumption of prejudice" exists in the city, the newspaper said. Gray, a 25-year-old black man, was arrested April 12 and suffered a spinal injury in police custody.
By Jon Herskovitz AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - The National Weather Service issued a new flash flood watch on Thursday for large parts of Texas, where severe weather this week has left at least 16 people dead, damaged thousands of structures and flooded cities such as Houston and Austin. The warning stretches from south of San Antonio to Dallas, through Oklahoma, where severe weather this week killed an additional six people, and into Kansas. In Texas, the latest victim of the deadly storms that brought flooding on Monday was a boy whose body was recovered near the central city of San Marcos, Hays County officials said.
By Jon Herskovitz AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - Hundreds of people were ordered to evacuate flood-threatened areas of Texas on Wednesday as torrential rains battered the state, where at least 15 people have been killed in weather-related incidents this week, including six in Houston. People were told to stay away from more than 200 homes in Parker County where the Brazos River was poised to overflow its banks about 30 miles (50 km) west of Fort Worth on Wednesday night, county officials said. "The river is coming up fast and flowing at dangerous volumes," Parker County Judge Mark Riley told a news conference, adding shelters were available.