Caribbean News Round-up

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Brazil opposition demands sacking of Congress speaker

Eduardo Cunha has been under investigation for allegedly accepting bribes generated by a kickback scheme at the state oil company, Petrobras
Eduardo Cunha has been under investigation for allegedly accepting bribes generated by a kickback scheme at the state oil company, Petrobras

[BBC] – Brazil’s main opposition parties have made public a demand for the speaker of the lower house of Congress, Eduardo Cunha, to resign.

He is being investigated for alleged corruption in a kick-back scheme at the state run oil company, Petrobras.

A request for his resignation had already come from government supporters in Congress.

Mr Cunha holds the power to allow impeachment proceedings against the Brazilian President, Dilma Rousseff.

One of the most powerful members of the PMDB (the Party for the Democratic Movement of Brazil), part of the government coalition and hostile to Dilma Rousseff, Mr Cunha has been under investigation for months for allegedly having benefitted from the Petrobras corruption scheme.

Prosecutors say firms bribed Petrobras executives to secure contracts and that some of this money was passed on to politicians in various parties.

In July Mr Cunha left the government coalition after allegations by a jailed former consultant to Petrobras, Julio Camargo, that he had demanded a $5m (£3.2m) bribe to push through contracts for equipment.

Mr Cunha has denied any involvement.

As speaker of the lower house of the Brazilian congress, Eduardo Cunha has the power to reject or push forward the numerous requests by opposition parties to open a judicial process against President Rousseff.

Earlier this week, a Brazilian audit court ruled that the president broke the law in managing last year’s budget.

The opposition says the ruling by the Federal Accounts Court – which reports to Congress – paves the way for impeachment proceedings against Ms Rousseff.

Jaguar ‘too fat to mate’, says India zoo

Salman
Salman

(AFP) – A 12-year-old jaguar brought to New Delhi zoo on a “breeding loan” is being sent back after he was found too fat to mate, officials said Saturday.

The big cat, nicknamed Salman, was borrowed from a zoo in southern Kerala state last October but has since shown little interest in cosying up to his partner, Delhi zoo curator Riaz Khan told AFP.

“The female jaguar has been trying to entice him but he is simply lazy and does not respond to her overtures,” Khan said.

“The fact is he is too fat to breed and we have decided to send him back to Kerala,” he said, adding the jaguar polishes off some six kilos (13 pounds) of buffalo meat daily.

Jaguars look like the leopard, the only difference being they have spots inside their rosettes. The jaguar is also a much stockier animal than its cousin, with shorter legs and tail.

Jaguars have no defined breeding season and will mate any time of the year.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) lists the species as near threatened with hunting prohibited in India as well as various other countries.

The International Species Information Service says there are only 292 jaguars worldwide.

Delhi zoo officials have not weighed the big cat as yet, although they say he is “much heavier” than the normal 100 kilos (220 pounds).

The Indian Express daily said frustrated caretakers had given up hope of seeing Salman start a family.

“He has a bigger appetite than the tigers,” the English language newspaper quoted a caretaker as saying.

“He is lazy, a glutton, just loves to eat and relax.”

3,000 lbs of ganja seized offshore Ja, 4 Costa Ricans arrested

ganja[Jamaica Observer] – A vessel with four Costa Ricans was on Friday intercepted approximately 30 nautical miles off the south-western coast of Jamaica by a Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) Coast Guard vessel, during a counter narcotics operation involving MOCA and the Jamaica Constabulary Force Narcotics Division.

The vessel, which reportedly developed engine problems and was taking in water, was allegedly found to be loaded with multiple bales of ganja.

The Costa Ricans were subsequently taken into custody and the vessel taken in tow, but it continued to take on water and eventually sank.

Drugs amounting to approximately 3,000 pounds were reportedly recovered by the JDF Coast Guard.

Investigators from MOCA and the Narcotics Division continue their probe into the matter.

 

Man chops cow out of frustration

Cows[Jamaica Observer] – A farmer was thrown before the court for chopping two cows which he allegedly saw eating his bananas on his farm.

Trevor Easton, 54, of Temple Hall in St Andrew, chopped the two cows in their back after he saw them on his property in Temple Hall on September 12.

On Thursday when he appeared in court, Easton pleaded guilty to killing or injuring an animal.

When asked by Magistrate Simone Wolf-Reece why he had injured the cow, Easton said: “Frustration.”

He then explained to the court that the cows went on his property and destroyed his pineapples and other produce that he had planted.

Easton in his court document reported that he had left for England in 2002 and left his farm in the care of the complainant but that the complainant allowed his cows to damage the farm.

However, Easton said that on his return to Jamaica he met with the complainant and advised him that he should keep his cows off the property and had even reported the matter to the police.

On the day in question, Easton said he was going on his property when he saw the cows eating his banana and he got upset and chopped them and then went to report the matter.

The complainant, for his part, told the court that he had 14 cows and that a police sergeant had spoken to him about the cows going on Easton’s property and had threatened to take them to the pound.

The complainant said he tied up the cows on his farm but one of the animals that went on to Easton’s farm was a little calf who could not yet be tied as it would used the rope to hang itself.

He said that the calf got a chop on its shoulder.

As for the other injured cow, the complainant said that the animal had been tied on a peg but that the cow pulled out the peg from in the ground and went onto Easton’s farm.

“When I look at the bull, fi him spine chop right into two,” he said.

RM Wolf Reece then asked the complainant: “Do you accept that your cows damaged his thing?”

The complainant in reply said he had not seen the damage.

The magistrate, however, came to the conclusion that both men had issues that needed to be resolved and ordered them to meet with the probation officer to discuss their issues and to return to court on November 6.

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