Seminole council delays vote on Billie's removalCompiled from Times wires
© St. Petersburg Times
published March 18, 2003
The Seminole Tribal Council on Monday postponed a decision on whether to remove James E. Billie from his $312,000-a-year chairman's job.
A medical emergency involving a council member's relative caused the delay.
The council is scheduled to reconvene this morning at its Hollywood, Fla., headquarters to consider charges that Billie, tribal chairman since 1979, violated tribal law.
Billie is accused of misusing the Seminole investment account, forming offshore companies to set up a secret Internet gaming site, funneling tribal money into a Nicaraguan hotel venture and giving two associates $80,000 to wage a legal battle against the tribe for control of the hotel.
11 Miami police officers' conspiracy trial nears end
MIAMI -- Eleven Miami police officers schemed to plant guns on unarmed targets of police gunfire and lied under oath to protect each other, a prosecutor charged Monday in closing arguments of their federal conspiracy trial.
Allan Kaiser told jurors the officers had "a premeditated plan that in case of a bad shooting, we get a 'throw-down' " -- slang for a planted gun. ". . . That was the way of doing business in bad shootings."
Defense attorneys said prosecutors' case hinged on the testimony of two turncoat officers who made plea deals to protect their pensions and lighten prison time.
"The government can suggest to you things all day long, but there's no proof of them," said attorney Sam Rabin.
Closing arguments in the 10-week trial continue today. The officers face up to 10 years in prison and loss of their careers if convicted in the shootings that left three men dead and one wounded. The shootings occurred between 1995 and 1997.
The indictment covered the deaths of two robbers who jumped 20 feet off a highway overpass to get away from police; a 123-round volley that killed a 72-year-old drug suspect as his 14-year-old great-granddaughter crouched feet away; the wounding of a homeless man; and shots fired at a purse snatcher who escaped injury.
Prosecutors say all of the targets were unarmed.
'America's Most Wanted' subject caught in Florida
DAYTONA BEACH SHORES -- A man accused of fatally shooting his wife as she slept in their Tennessee home was captured after a tipster contacted America's Most Wanted.
FBI agents and police arrested Joseph Leroy Crouch Jr., 60, Sunday at a condominium in Daytona Beach Shores.
Crouch had been on the run since June 2001, when his wife, Betsy, was found slain in the couple's home in Memphis.
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