Paul Manafort trial: Prosecution prepares to rest its case
Prosecutors are expected to rest their case against Paul Manafort, President Donald Trump’s former campaign manager, as soon as Friday. The trial has featured testimony about extravagant wardrobes, and alleged secret offshore and doctored bank accounts. Manafort’s business partner Rick Gates has detailed years of alleged lawbreaking at Manafort’s political firm and admitted to stealing money from secret overseas bank accounts. Manafort’s attorneys have challenged the government’s interpretation of the loan documents, in part suggesting that the income Manafort claimed was money that had been earned but not yet received. Manafort’s trial – for 18 criminal counts of tax evasion, bank fraud and conspiracy – is the first under special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election. Manafort has denied any wrongdoing.
Spike Lee’s ‘BlacKkKlansman’ released in theaters
Know this: “BlacKkKlansman” is not a period piece. The film, directed by Spike Lee, draws a solid line from the rebirth of the Ku Klux Klan in the 1920s to present day despite its plot set in the groovy 1970s. “BlacKkKlansman” chronicles the stranger-than-fiction tale of how Ron Stallworth, a young black cop portrayed by John David Washington, infiltrated the KKK in Colorado Springs, Colorado — and yes, it’s based on a true story. In theaters nationwide on Friday, ( ★★★½ out of four, rated R) “BlacKkKlansman” is timed to the one-year anniversary of the Charlottesville, Virginia, protests and the death of Heather Heyer.
Spike Lee’s latest movie “BlacKkKlansman” is based on a book by Ron Stallworth, an African-American detective who infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan. At the film’s New York premiere, stars John David Washington (who plays Stallworth) and Topher Grace (who takes on the role of former KKK leader David Duke) talked about channeling their real-life counterparts onscreen. (July 31)
California wildfires: Firefighters work to contain new threat
Even as a ferocious wildfire rips across valleys along the Riverside-Orange County line in Southern California, firefighters will be working around the clock Friday to contain the Holy Fire that has forced mandatory evacuations. They expect favorable weather conditions over the weekend to help them extinguish the blaze, which has grown to 10,236 acres. Meanwhile, the Mendocino Complex Fire – the largest in California history – turned a corner as firefighters achieved 51 percent containment. The fire destroyed more than 100 homes and has blackened an area about the size of the city of Los Angeles, according to The Associated Press.
PGA Championship: Tiger in striking distance after topsy-turvy round
Tiger Woods will hit the Bellerive Country Club on Friday looking to improve from his first round at the PGA Championship. Woods, who shot an even-par on Thursday, is six shots off Gary Woodland’s lead. Meanwhile, after paying tribute to the late Jarrod Lyle, Rickie Fowler — widely considered to currently hold the mantle of Best Player To Never Win a Major — has, through one round at least, put himself squarely in contention to finally break through after an opening-round 65. Friday’s Round 2 starts at 7:50 a.m. ET and TV coverage begins at 2 p.m. ET on TNT.
3D-printed guns: Will the court continue to ban the release of firearm blueprints?
A hearing in Seattle Friday will establish the next steps in the already-winding legal battle over whether blueprints of 3D-printed firearms should be made readily available to the public. Originally set to be released Aug. 1 by Cody Wilson, courts in New York, New Jersey and Washington State issued rulings barring Wilson and his company, Defense Distribution, from uploading instructions for making 3D-printable guns. Gun control advocates and some policymakers – including attorney generals from eight states and the District of Columbia who sued the government to block the blueprints – are concerned that the availability of 3D guns would give felons and others restricted by law from possessing weapons another route to illegally secure firearms.
A federal judge issued a temporary restraining order, stopping a Texas businessman from posting his blueprints for 3D printed guns online. Cody Wilson had just resumed posting his blueprints after a 5-year battle with the US government. (Aug. 2)
Contributing: Associated Press
Read or Share this story: https://usat.ly/2MA1Wwi