RSPO should suspend membership of groups undermining Guatemala’s anti-impunity commission (commentary)

first_imgArticle published by Mike Gaworecki agribusiness, Agriculture, Certification, Commentary, Corporate Social Responsibility, Corruption, Editorials, Environment, Human Rights, Indigenous Peoples, Indigenous Rights, Industrial Agriculture, Land Grabbing, Oil Palm, Palm Oil, Pollution, Researcher Perspective Series, Rspo, Sustainability, Water Pollution The journey toward sustainability must begin from a baseline of proven ethical intent — and a number of recent signs raise serious doubts about the ethical intent of a wide swath of industry players in Guatemala.Palm oil is the fastest growing agribusiness industry in Guatemala. Along with mining and hydroelectric projects, it is a major cause of land grabs that displace indigenous communities. Palm oil companies have been heavily involved in Guatemalan President Morales’ campaign to stop the U.N. Commission Against Impunity.In order to responsibly address the unfolding political crisis in Guatemala, the RSPO should postpone the certification processes of all Guatemalan palm companies until GREPALMA and its members end their campaign to sabotage the U.N. Commission Against Impunity and desist from undermining the rule of law in the country.This post is a commentary. The views expressed are those of the author, not necessarily Mongabay. In the coming weeks and months, a number of Guatemalan palm oil producers are expecting to receive memberships in the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) — a move that would secure them a certain green credibility and improve the reputation of Guatemalan palm oil production in the international market.Within the industry, it is generally understood that RSPO membership can serve as an “onramp” to what, in corporate social responsibility jargon, is known as the “journey toward sustainability.” But the journey toward sustainability must begin from a baseline of proven ethical intent — and a number of recent signs raise serious doubts about the ethical intent of a wide swath of industry players in Guatemala.Indeed, evidence has come to light that the Guatemalan palm oil industry writ large has been explicitly engaged in an effort to undermine democracy in the country — a fact that the RSPO cannot ignore.Guatemala is widely recognized as suffering from one of the highest rates of corruption and impunity in the world. It ranks 143rd out of 180 countries in Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index. In an effort to address the rampant criminality in the country, beginning in 2006, Guatemala’s Congress endorsed the presence of a U.N.-sponsored Commission Against Impunity, which worked with Guatemala’s attorney general to address political corruption and human rights violations against Guatemala’s majority indigenous peoples. But in late December 2018, Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales defied his country’s Constitutional Court and signed an order expelling the U.N. commission.Among the strongest voices in support of this move was the Association of Oil Palm Growers in Guatemala (GREPALMA), perhaps the most powerful industry association in the country. Shortly after President Morales ordered the expulsion of the U.N. commission — an action widely viewed as an unconstitutional power grab by President Morales that was roundly condemned by the United Nations secretary-general — the Association of Oil Palm Growers publicly announced its support for the commission’s expulsion.Oil palms surround the Guatemalan community of Sechaj, Raxruhá on three sides. Photo credit: Fabio Erdos/ActionAid.Since 2017, Morales has been engaged in a battle against the U.N. commission, which was investigating his alleged violations of campaign finance law as well allegations of corruption by many of his associates, including close family members. The commission has also helped the Guatemalan attorney general bring charges against Guatemalan military leaders for massacres of indigenous peoples, as well as for acts of corruption by Guatemala’s former president, Otto Perez Molina, and several business executives allied with Morales. All told, during its 11 years operating in Guatemala, the U.N. commission filed corruption cases that implicated more than 600 people, including prominent businesspeople and elected officials.In January 2018, the commission’s investigation led to the arrests of three executives of Guatemala’s largest palm oil company, the HAME/Olmeca group, and its subsidiary REPSA. REPSA had earlier received international condemnation for a spill of toxic palm oil effluent that polluted the water and food sources of dozens of indigenous communities. In September 2015, when riots erupted following a court ruling of “ecocide” that ordered REPSA to temporarily suspend operations, Q’eqchi’ Maya leader Rigoberto Lima Choc was shot and killed. An international campaign ensued, which resulted in Cargill and Wilmar International — among the world’s largest palm oil traders — cutting ties to REPSA. Other companies, notably Nestlé, refused to accede to campaign demands, but finally cut ties with REPSA when the corruption scandal broke.Egregious as the case of REPSA was, it is just one of countless cases of violence against land defenders in Guatemala. Last year, 26 human rights defenders were killed in Guatemala, including seven indigenous land rights defenders killed in the month following a speech in which President Morales attacked indigenous organizations.Palm oil is the fastest growing agribusiness industry in Guatemala. Along with mining and hydroelectric projects, it is a major cause of land grabs that displace indigenous communities. Palm oil companies have been heavily involved in Morales’ campaign to stop the U.N. Commission Against Impunity. In an indiscreet interview given by the Guatemalan businessman who lobbied the U.S. Congress against the U.N. commission, it was revealed that NaturAceites, a company that already benefits from RSPO certification, played a key role along with HAME/Olmeca in supporting the effort to oust the U.N. commission.The consideration by the RSPO of increasing its membership in Guatemala comes at a moment when the human rights crisis in the country is becoming increasingly visible internationally, as Guatemalan migrants show up in record numbers at the U.S. southern border — many of them forced out by the expanding palm oil industry. Among the indigenous Guatemalans intercepted at the U.S. border was 7-year-old Jakelin Caal, who died in U.S. Border Patrol custody last December. As a recent Reuters article explains, “Jakelin Caal, who died in U.S. custody after succumbing to a fever, left her village in the municipality of Raxruha with her father because he was struggling to earn enough to support his family as a corn farmer… While her father had not sold his land, others in the family have worked on palm plantations that surround their village.”With an unfolding constitutional crisis adding to Guatemala’s woes and clear indications that the country’s largest palm oil companies are playing a lead role in escalating that crisis, the RSPO has an obligation to send a clear signal showing which side of the crisis it falls on.Just a few months ago, the RSPO approved a revised set of principles for sustainable palm oil production that include the following:• Behave ethically and transparently. Drive ethical business behaviour, build trust and transparency with stakeholders to ensure strong and healthy relationships.• Operate legally and respect rights. Implement legal requirements as the basic principles of operation in any jurisdiction.• Respect community and human rights and deliver benefits. Respect community rights, provide equal opportunities, maximize benefits from engagement and ensure remediation where needed.In keeping with these principles, the board of directors and secretariat of the RSPO need to send a clear message to Guatemalan companies currently enjoying membership in the RSPO that they must comply with human rights norms, national laws and regulations, and international agreements. In order to responsibly address the unfolding political crisis in Guatemala, the RSPO should postpone the certification processes of all Guatemalan palm companies until GREPALMA and its members end their campaign to sabotage the U.N. Commission Against Impunity and desist from undermining the rule of law in the country.Angelina (right) and her daughter (left) live in Sechaj, Raxruhá, where water pollution by palm oil plantations is causing disease. Photo credit: Fabio Erdos/ActionAid.Doug Hertzler is a senior policy analyst on land rights issues at ActionAid USA.Jeff Conant directs the International Forests Program at Friends of the Earth U.S.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.center_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

Quake hits Chatsworth again

first_imgThough the shaker jarred buildings and interrupted conversations, Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Ron Myers said there were no reports of damage CHATSWORTH – A 3.5-magnitude earthquake hit the northwest San Fernando Valley today, the second quake to hit the area in a week. The temblor began shaking about 12:23 p.m. and was centered about four miles north of Chatsworth, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. On Thursday, a 4.5-magnitude quake struck near Chatsworth. “We have a lot of activity, around 30 a day in Southern California, but they’re usually too small to feel,” said Erik Pounders, a USGS geologist. “The last two have been the biggest we’ve had in awhile, but they’re nothing out of the ordinary.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Murder convictions upheld in man’s killing

first_imgA man and woman found guilty in the shooting death of a Hacienda Heights man, who was mistaken for a “snitch,” lost their bid to have their convictions reversed. A three-justice panel from the 2nd District Court of Appeal rejected Juan Tovar’s claim that a Pomona jury should not have heard secretly recorded statements he made in jail to a fellow gang member about his involvement in the shooting and the role of his co-defendant, Anne Marie Harrison. The appellate court panel, in a 17-page ruling released yesterday, wrote that Tovar “had no reasonable expectation of privacy in the jailhouse conversation.” The justices also rejected Harrison’s claims that the admission of Tovar’s jailhouse statements violated her constitutional rights and that there was insufficient evidence to support a gang enhancement. The second man in the car with Tovar and Harrison was not prosecuted and testified against both defendants. He told jurors that when Tovar asked Harrison if she should shoot Ramos, she replied, “Yeah.” Ramos — a 30-year employee of the Albertsons supermarket chain — and his family had not snitched on anyone. For more news and observations about crime in Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley, check out the Daily News’ crime blog by clicking here.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREStriving toward a more perfect me: Doug McIntyre Tovar was convicted of first-degree murder in the March 2, 2004, slaying of James Ramos, who was shot while trying to change the battery in his truck. Tovar was sentenced in February 2006 to 50 years to life in state prison. Harrison was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced in March 2006 to 40 years to life in prison. Harrison was driving, with Tovar and another man as passengers, when they came upon Ramos, whom Harrison mistakenly thought had snitched on a gang member she wanted to marry, according to the appellate panel’s ruling. Harrison turned the car around, pulled up next to Ramos and Tovar fired a single shot, fatally wounding Ramos in the chest, the panelists noted. last_img read more

Disease doesn’t get girl down

first_imgIn 2003 and 2004, she was named the California Goodwill Ambassador for the Muscular Dystrophy Association, and one of her drawings was selected for the association’s art collection. Saturday’s ball raised funds to help provide services for the more than 6,000 children and adults in Southern California diagnosed with neuromuscular diseases. The association provides clinic visits, support groups for patients and their families, recreational activities and a summer camp for children and young adults who live with neuromuscular disease. “I feel like if I talk on a stage, then more people will donate money to send me and others to summer camp and to possibly find a cure for this disease,” Alexis said. debbie.pfeiffer@sgvn.com (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3028160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREOregon Ducks football players get stuck on Disney ride during Rose Bowl event“I’m not courageous. I feel like my disease was a gift from God and a gift that I’m proud of,” she said. “If me being up here helps other kids like me, then I am very proud.” Her genetic disease affects the part of the nervous system that controls voluntary muscle movement. She was honored because, although she lives with the limitations of the disease every day, she still does much to educate the public about it, said Rose Maag, healthcare service coordinator for the association. “She is in a wheelchair now because she can’t walk, and as her disease progresses, she is needing more help in dealing with daily activities,” said Maag. “But she remains a bright and generous person who does special things for other people.” Over the years, Alexis, who lives with her mother and three siblings in Pico Rivera, has attended several association dinners, assisted firefighters in the Fill the Boot campaign, visited grocery stores to promote MDA programs and has appeared in promotional photo shoots for several of the fundraisers. PICO RIVERA – Alexis Marie Villa had no idea she was going to be recognized for her work for the Muscular Dystrophy Association until she arrived at a special ball held by the association this past weekend. When the Meller Elementary School student, who was diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy when she was 18 months old, found out she was the recipient of the 2006 Albertsons Courage Award on Saturday night, she was thrilled – and also a little nervous. “At first, I was amazed, and then I was scared about making a long speech,” she said. But Alexis, 10, lived up to the occasion, bringing the audience at the A Night Under the Stars Emerald Ball at the Beverly Hilton Hotel to tears when she told them she was like every other kid. last_img read more

Channel Island bald eagle, wild-hatched, takes flight

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE11 theater productions to see in Southern California this week, Dec. 27-Jan. 2 VENTURA – The first bald eagle known to have hatched naturally in the northern Channel Islands since the species was decimated a half-century ago by chemical contamination has taken its first flight, officials said. Though the flight was successful, the 3-month-old bird is staying close to its nest near its parents on Santa Cruz Island, Channel Islands National Park spokeswoman Yvonne Menard said. The eagle chick will continue to be fed for at least a few more weeks before it begins to hunt fish on its own. Once the eagle is grown, it will find its own territory on the island. Eagle fans have watched the chick grow via a Web camera trained on the nest. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Gossip: Spurs will sell Kane for €200million, Simeone would snub Chelsea offer

first_imgHere are the top stories in Saturday’s newspapers and online…Tottenham are willing to sell Harry Kane to Real Madrid for €200million (£176m). The England hitman is Real’s number one transfer target and Spurs chairman Daniel Levy is ready to do business with Florentino Perez. (Mundo Deportivo)Manchester United would be willing to sell David de Gea to Real Madrid but only if they get Gareth Bale in return. Real’s interest in De Gea is a popular line during summer transfer windows and the Old Trafford club fully expect Los Blancos to come knocking again at the end of the season. (Daily Mirror)Chelsea have suffered a blow in their search for a successor to Antonio Conte, with Diego Simeone making it known that he does not want to be considered for the head coach’s job at Stamford Bridge. (The Times)West Ham’s Javier Hernandez has admitted he asked for a January transfer but has vowed to give everything now he is staying at the club. (Daily Mirror)Sam Allardyce believes Davy Klaassen made a significant mistake putting money before football after rejecting a deadline day move to Napoli. (Daily Mail)Leicester City star Riyad Mahrez faces a fine of two weeks’ wages – about £200,000 – after going AWOL. Mahrez is said by a friend to be “depressed” after failing to secure his dream move to Manchester City on transfer deadline day. (Daily Mirror)And here’s the latest headlines on talkSPORT.com…Listen back to talkSPORT’s interview with Manchester City forward Raheem SterlingChelsea fans needs clarification on the future of manager Antonio Conte, Ally McCoist has told talkSPORTFormer Leicester City goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer believes the club are stuck in a ‘no-win situation’ after denying Riyad Mahrez a dream move to Manchester CitySean Dyche admits he is still coming to terms with questions about whether Burnley can catch Arsenal amid their best ever season in the Premier League Leicester City players are said to be angry with Riyad Mahrez for failing to report for training on Thursday after he was denied a dream move to Manchester CityArsenal are lining up a deal to sign Atletico Madrid goalkeeper Jan Oblak as a replacement for Petr Cech in the summer, according to reportsArsenal manager Arsene Wenger has ruled out a move to bring Alex Song back to the clubFormer Manchester City striker Edin Dzeko has opened up on his decision to snub a move to Chelsea last monthLiverpool could be set to battle Real Madrid for the signing of Roma star Alisson BeckerDavid Moyes admits he wanted to bring ‘one more player’ to West Ham United before the January transfer window slammed shut 1 Transfer rumours and paper review last_img read more

Liverpool vs Arsenal: Five classic encounters ahead of Anfield showdown

first_img getty Coutinho scored twice as Liverpool beat Arsenal 4-3 Football fans enjoyed a six-goal thriller at the Emirates 6 2.Arsenal 4-2 Liverpool – 2004Just days before, the prospect of a historic treble had been a reality. Walking out the Higbury tunnel that April afternoon, the match with Liverpool was now their most important of the season.Defeat in the semi-final of the FA Cup against Manchester United was followed by an extra-time loss in the Champions League to Chelsea. All that remained was the Premier League.An early goal from Sami Hyypia and a strike from Michael Owen just before the break looked as if it may add to the woe, but Thierry Henry had other ideas. A memorable hat-trick from the Frenchman, including a fantastic solo effort, lifted the pressure on Arsene Wenger as the Gunners ended the campaign on top and unbeaten. 4.Liverpool 5-1 Arsenal – 2014As a contest it was over in the opening 20 minutes. Under Brendan Rodgers that season, Liverpool had made a habit of starting well and overwhelming their opponents and Arsenal were the latest to suffer.Martin Skrtel scored twice in 10 minutes, followed by strikes from Raheem Sterling and Daniel Sturridge. It was 4-0 at half-time and Gunners fans feared the worst when Sterling netted his second and his side’s fifth. The match was long gone for Arsenal when Mikel Arteta converted a penalty. Green reveals how he confronted Sarri after Chelsea’s 6-0 defeat at Man City tense 6 Raheem Sterling scores his second against Arsenal 3.Arsenal 3-3 Liverpool – 2017It is indeed a cliche, but fans really were treated to an early Christmas gift in this festive clash.There were six different goal scorers that night, with both sides locked in a battle to cement a champions League place.Liverpool had led 2-0 through Philippe Coutinho and then Mohamed Salah, but two goals in three minutes drew the home side level, before Mesut Ozil gave them the lead for the first time in the match. Roberto Firmino fired in an equaliser in one of the games of the season. 6 Arshavin scored four times against Arsenal 6 1.Liverpool 4-4 Arsenal – 2009Andrey Arshavin had a mixed spell during his time at Arsenal. Talented but equally frustrating, the diminutive midfielder moved to north London after an impressive Euro 2008 with Russia. Long after his departure, he is still fondly remembered for the part he played in one of the greatest encounters in the competition’s history, in which he incredibly netted all four goals.He opened the scoring on 36 minutes, before Yossi Benayoun and Fernando Torres responded, but the Gunners and Arshavin added two more, only for Torres to net his second. The Gunners thought they had won it in stoppage time when Arshavin grabbed his fourth, but Benayoun salvaged a point. Which teams do the best on Boxing Day in the Premier League era? Man United transfer news live: Haaland ‘wants a change’, two players off in January Ahead of the game tonight, in which the league leaders welcome Arsenal to Anfield, talkSPORT.com has ranked five of their best matches.5. Arsenal 3-4 Liverpool – 2016Liverpool began the 2016/17 season in stunning fashion as they edged this seven-goal thriller at the Emirates.  Philippe Coutinho netted twice, including a trademark free-kick, to give Jurgen Klopp’s side all three points. It was the start of the German’s first full season in charge and he would have been impressed with the clinical nature in which Liverpool responded to falling behind to a Theo Walcott strike, but concerned by their defensive frailties that day, particularly from Alberto Moreno. getty no dice center_img 6 huge blow gameday cracker Liverpool vs Arsenal is a fixture that rarely disappoints and usually guarantees plenty of drama.Both always seem to encounter each other when there is plenty at stake, whether that be a Champions League spot or a chance at winning the title, this match is traditionally a significant one in the Premier League calendar. Where Ancelotti ranks with every Premier League boss for trophies won REVEALED Premier League Team of the Season so far, including Liverpool and Leicester stars The two sides drew 1-1 in November REVEALED shining Latest Premier League News Henry netted a hat-trick to rescue Arsenal 6 Boxing Day fixtures: All nine Premier League games live on talkSPORT Son ban confirmed as Tottenham fail with appeal to overturn red card deals Oxlade-Chamberlain suffers another setback as Klopp confirms serious injury You can listen to the latest clash between Liverpool and Arsenal on Saturday evening through our radio player below, through the talkSPORT App, on DAB digital radio or on 1089 or 1053 AM. Our coverage gets under way at 17:00.last_img read more

Former Chelsea manager Antonio Conte appointed Inter boss

first_imgFormer Chelsea manager Antonio Conte is the new head coach at Inter.The Serie A club confirmed the 49-year-old’s return to management on Friday morning with a video posted on the club’s social media channels, which features a very serious looking Conte and club president Steven Zhang. no dice LATEST FOOTBALL NEWS deals Where Ancelotti ranks with every Premier League boss for trophies won huge blow Premier League Team of the Season so far, including Liverpool and Leicester stars Berahino hits back at b******t Johnson criticism – ‘I was in a dark place at Stoke’ Man United transfer news live: Haaland ‘wants a change’, two players off in January Real Madrid ‘offer’ Isco to Chelsea in bid to ‘make room’ for Tottenham star Beginning at Arezzo, Conte has also coached, Atalanta, Siena and the Italy national team REVEALED Oxlade-Chamberlain suffers another setback as Klopp confirms serious injury Conte will be charged with closing the gap on his former side, which he led to three league titles in three seasons as manager between 2011 and 2014.“I’m sure that Antonio Conte is one of the best coaches out there,” Zhang said.“I’m certain that he’ll help us achieve our objective and fulfil our mission, one which has always remained the same: to make this club one of the best in the world again.” Conte Honours gameday cracker REVEALED: How Inter could look under Conte with Lukaku and Moses I’m here, Inter. ⚫🔵#WelcomeAntonio #ForzaInter #FCIM #NotForEveryone pic.twitter.com/aIprrGciUD— Inter (@Inter_en) May 31, 2019“A new chapter in my life is beginning, I’m really excited,” Conte told Inter’s official website.“Through my work, I’ll try to repay all of the trust that the president and directors have placed in me.“I have chosen Inter because of the club it is, because of the project’s sound basis and how ambitious it is. Because of Inter’s history.“I was struck by the club’s transparency and the desire to bring Inter back to where it belongs.” tense Son ban confirmed as Tottenham fail with appeal to overturn red card Boxing Day fixtures: All nine Premier League games live on talkSPORT Conte spent two years at Stamford Bridge, winning the Premier League in his first season and the FA Cup in his final match in charge in May 2018.The Blues were forced to pay the manager £9m in compensation after the Italian won a legal battle and now he replaces the sacked Luciano Spalletti at the San Siro after the Nerazzurri finished fourth in Serie A this season, 21 points behind champions Juventus. REPLY Green reveals how he confronted Sarri after Chelsea’s 6-0 defeat at Man City Bari: Serie B (2009/09)Juventus: Serie A (2012, 2013, 2014)Chelsea: Premier League (2017), FA Cup (2018) shining LATEST REAL DEAL Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ last_img read more

Cross Across the County this Friday

first_imgIf you are interested in carrying the cross, please contact Darwin Gilliatt at 883-2088. The Fourth Annual Cross Across the County will begin at 5:30a this Friday at the Canton Christian Church and travel across the county to the Good Friday Services at the Livonia Baptist Church at noon. Patrick Henry Hughes and his father will join the walk near Livonia. Patrick will speak at the Good Friday Service. last_img

Man jailed after stealing €102,000 from The Cope

first_imgA man who stole €102,000 from the company he worked for to give to men he met in online chat rooms has been jailed for one year.Billy Mooney took sums ranging from €2,000 to €19,800 over a two year period from The Cope stores in Co Donegal between dates on 2014 and 2016. The 52-year-old had pleaded guilty to 18 charges of fraud and one of false accounting at Letterkenny Circuit Court.Mooney stole the cash in a complex fraud at the company’s Annagry outlet in West Donegal.But amazingly Gardai told the court that they did not believe the accused man spent a cent of the money on himself.Instead he wired the money by Western Union Transfer to men he met online who claimed they had lost their jobs and whose families had become ill.However, management at the company, known officially as the Templecrone Cooperative Agricultural Society Ltd (The Cope), were alerted to the fraud when Mooney sent texts to another employee.Mooney, of St Peter’s Terrace, Dungloe told the other employee that he was in trouble having become caught up in a scam and was in debt to the tune of up to €80,000 and was having to bother the money to cover himself.Detective Garda John Gallagher, from Milford Garda Station, investigated the fraud at the store which has around 110 employees.He said CEO of the company, Mark Sharkey, had contacted Gardai believing there had been a major fraud at the outlet.Garda Gallagher explained how Mooney took the money which was due to be deposited into an ATM machine at the Annagry branch of The Cope where he was located.However, through a series of cover-ups, Mooney was able to extract various sums of money but made it appear as if they were still on the company books.The court heard how Mooney stole various lump sums of money on separate occasions between July 1st, 2014 and January 1st, 2016 of between €2,000 and €19,800.In a victim impact statement, company boss Mark Sharkey said the theft had put the company under severe pressure and how they had struggled to survive.He said a number of key employees had left the company because of the stress and the shock of the ongoing situation at the company and that they also had to spend €16,000 to have a forensic accountant examine their accounts.He said that during and since the theft, Mooney had never apologised to the company or his fellow workers and that he was out sick for a number of months after the theft came to light.Barrister for the accused, Mr John McLaughlin said that he got involved in these chatrooms with other men and that in his mind he was in a romantic relationship.“He was so caught up in this scam that it overrode everything else in his mind.“When interviewed he used phrases like he was ‘borrowing money’. Not to excuse what he did but it was his twisted belief he was borrowing and not stealing.“There are no suggestions that he retained these monies himself,” he said.Detective Garda John Gallagher replied, “I don’t believe that he has gained financially.”However, the court was told that none of the missing money has since been paid back to the company.Passing sentence Judge John Aylmer said the fraud had come while the company was experiencing difficult trading circumstances and that it went on for a long time.He said Mooney had worked at The Cope for almost 20 years and had been a trusted employee and there had been a serious breach of that trust.However, he added that Detective Gallagher gave evidence that Mooney did not benefit financially from the scam.He added that he accep[ted that Mooney was remorseful and ashamed of his actions and that he came to court with no previous convictions.“He was a vulnerable person and a soft target for these scams,” said Judge Aylmer.He placed the charges in the mid-range of such offences and said each charge merited a sentence of four years.However, because of his early plea and his previous good record, he would reduce that sentence to three years in prison.Because Mooney was a first time offender, Judge Aylmer had to consider if he could suspend the entire sentence.However, he said he took these offenses were of such seriousness that he had to impose some custodial senetnce and he suspended the final two years of the three year sentence meaning Mooney will serve one year in jail.Man jailed after stealing €102,000 from The Cope was last modified: December 14th, 2018 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Billy MooneycourtdonegalSentenceTHE COPElast_img read more