Across Florida

Published May 22, 2007

Felony charge against singer is reduced

BOCA RATON - Former Creed front man Scott Stapp had a felony charge reduced to a misdemeanor Monday, after an apparent confrontation with his wife. Stapp, 33, was initially charged with aggravated assault with intent to commit a felony. Judge Cory J. Ciklin reduced the charge "because the allegation is that Stapp threw a bottle of Orangina at his wife, at her head, and missed, and the bottle broke, " sheriff's spokesman Paul Miller said. No one was injured. Creed sold more than 25-million records in the United States. Stapp has since launched a solo singing career.


Doctor convicted in al-Qaida sting

NEW YORK - A Boca Raton doctor was convicted Monday of providing material support to terrorists by agreeing to treat injured al-Qaida fighters so they could return to Iraq to battle Americans. Dr. Rafiq Abdus Sabir, 52, was convicted in Manhattan federal court after a three-week trial that featured testimony by him and Ali Soufan, an FBI agent who posed as an al-Qaida recruiter in a sting operation that led to four arrests. The charges against Sabir carry a potential maximum sentence of 30 years in prison. Sabir testified at trial that Shah never told him he was talking with an al-Qaida recruiter. Prosecutors say Sabir had agreed to treat wounded al-Qaida members while he worked at a hospital in Saudi Arabia.


Bomb squad destroys old cache

TALLAHASSEE - Authorities destroyed a cache of dynamite that may have been in a remote area for more than two decades. The materials had been buried in a wooded area in northwest Tallahassee and were burned Sunday. Bomb squad robots retrieved more than 70 pounds of explosives uncovered Friday by workers. Although the manufacturer's name was found, authorities don't know who buried them.


Asbestos lawyer's plea is rejected

MIAMI - A once high-flying asbestos litigation attorney was ready Monday to plead guilty to fraud involving thousands of clients, but a federal judge rejected the deal. Louis S. Robles has been accused of defrauding nearly 4, 400 clients out of $13.5-million. He had reached an agreement with prosecutors to plead guilty to two of 41 mail fraud counts and would have served 10 years in prison. But U.S. District Judge Alan S. Gold said he was unhappy with the amount of time Robles would serve and the amount of money victims would receive. Prosecutors say he stole from his clients, often by claiming that their money had not been received or paying them far less than they were due.


Graffiti makes its prophecy untrue

NAPLES - The graffiti on the windows at Lely High School early Monday said, "Class of '07 - We Out." The Collier County Sheriff's Office response: not so fast. Deputies nabbed nine teens on a vandalism wave described by one of the students as "a graduation prank gone bad." School officials now are deciding if they can graduate as planned Friday.