SAN BERNARDINO SHOOTINGS: Feds want Marquez to stay locked up
Biggest news you missed this weekend.
It’s telling that the most-talked about moment during Saturday’s Democratic debate in New Hampshire was Hillary Clinton returning late to the podium after a commercial break.The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee on Saturday said U.S. officials ‘‘sloppily approved’’ the visa application of Tashfeen Malik, one of the shooters in the massacre in San Bernardino, California, that left 14 people dead. While investigators are still trying to piece together the details of the plot, husband and wife Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik appear to have dropped few clues to what they were planning. “They’re not even below the radar.
An issue that could have created some fireworks — the disclosure that Sanders’ campaign had improperly accessed Clinton campaign voter data — was defused when Sanders apologized, and Clinton accepted. Bob Goodlatte, R-Virginia, reviewed Malik’s visa application and said that immigration officials had not sufficiently vetted the information that Malik provided in her efforts to obtain a visa. They’re stealth,” said Patrick Skinner, a former CIA case officer who is now a security consultant. “Basically, you have a woman with zero friends, who had no contact with anyone, and a husband who was the same way. Goodlatte’s review found that Malik’s application contained two items to show that the couple had met before: a statement from Farook and copies of pages of each of their passports that showed visas to visit Saudi Arabia. Goodlatte said he reviewed the application and found there was insufficient evidence to prove Malik and U.S. citizen Syed Farook, had met in person — a requirement for a foreign national seeking a K-1 financée visa.
However, the passport stamps do not clearly demonstrate whether they were in Saudi Arabia at the same time, or whether they were together while in that country. A translator who attempted to decipher the partially illegible Arabic-language passport stamps was unable to determine what date Malik left the country, although her visa was valid for 60 days. Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the seventh movie in the popular sci-fi franchise, put a Sith chokehold on cinema screens this weekend and broke every major opening record.
The film, which introduced Daisy Ridley, John Boyega and Oscar Isaac as new heroes in a galaxy far, far away, tallied $238 million for the weekend, according to studio estimates. Davis has seen the same phenomenon in Boston’s underworld, where mobsters and bank robbery rings with deep personal or family ties adhere to a code of silence. For centuries, blood, marriage and romance have bound criminals, including Old West outlaws Jesse James and his brother Frank; the Depression-era bank robbers Bonnie and Clyde; and the Mafia.
Voting was underway Sunday it what was expected to be Spain’s most volatile election since its transition from a monarchy in the 1970s, as voters decide whether to reject the nation’s two leading political parties after years of economic turmoil and political corruption. Polling showed that nearly one out of three of the nation’s 36.5 million registered voters were still wrestling with their ballot choice at the last minute.
A Paris-bound Air France flight from the tiny East African nation of Mauritius made an emergency landing in Mombasa, Kenya, on Sunday because of a suspicious package that turned out to be a fake, authorities said. The Kenya Airports Authority said all 473 people aboard Flight 463 were screened at Mombasa’s Moi International Airport and taken to hotels, while Kenyan authorities combed the plane for clues and other devices, the authority said on Twitter. Later, Air France CEO Frederic Gagey said the package, found in a bathroom, was “an ensemble of cardboard, papers and something that resembled a kitchen timer.” U.S.
The findings could add fire to a simmering debate over whether the U.S. visa application process, and the immigration system in general, needs to be overhauled with an eye toward preventing terrorist attacks. Two Illinois cousins pleaded guilty this month to conspiring in a pair of plots that would have had one man storming the Joliet armory and the other jetting off to fight overseas with the Islamic State. Congratulations to Spain’s Mireia Lalaguna Royo, who was named the winner of the Miss World 2015 competition Saturday in China. “I think this is a good decision, because Miss World is not looking for our body, they are looking for a soul,” Lalaguna said. China refused a visa to Canada’s contestant, Chinese-born Anastasia Lin, who has been vocal about China’s political repression and poor human rights record.
Conductor Kurt Masur, who was credited with helping prevent violence after the collapse of communism in East Germany and later reinvigorated the New York Philharmonic during an 11-year stint as music director, died Saturday at 88. Goodlatte called immigration officials’ work on Malik’s application ‘‘unacceptable’’ and has previously said that his committee is preparing to introduce a bill that would revamp visa security. Farook did, in fact, reach outside his marriage for help in at least one instance: A friend and former next-door neighbor, Enrique Marquez Jr., supplied the assault rifles used in the rampage, and he and Farook plotted attacks in 2011 and 2012 that were never carried out, investigators said Thursday. But even there, there was a family connection: Marquez became related to Farook last year by entering into what prosecutors said was a sham marriage to help a Russian woman obtain U.S. residency.
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