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Adnan Syed hired by Georgetown’s prison reform initiative

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Adnan Syed, who was released from a Maryland prison this year after his case was the focus of the true-crime podcast “Serial,” has been hired by Georgetown University as a program associate for the university’s Prisons and Justice Initiative. The university says Syed started working this month for the initiative. In his new role, Syed will support Georgetown’s “Making an Exoneree” class. The university wrote in an online announcement that students in the class reinvestigate decades-old wrongful convictions, create short documentaries about the cases and work to help bring innocent people home from prison.

FIFA reviews chef’s ‘undue access’ to hold World Cup trophy

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ZURICH (AP) — FIFA says it’s taking “appropriate internal action” to address breaches of World Cup protocol by a celebrity chef who held the gold trophy on the field. The chef is known as Salt Bae and is regularly seen with FIFA president Gianni Infantino. He mingled with Argentina players and posed for photos after their victory over France on Sunday in Qatar. FIFA says that was “undue access to the pitch.” FIFA describes the trophy as “a priceless icon” which “can only be touched and held by a very select group of people.” That includes World Cup-winning players and heads of state.

Pope warns Vatican staff an ‘elegant demon’ lurks among them

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis has warned Vatican bureaucrats to beware the devil that lurks among them, saying it is an “elegant demon” that works in people who have a rigid, holier-than-thou way of living the Catholic faith. Once again, Francis used his annual Christmas greeting to the Roman Curia to put the cardinals, bishops and priests who work in the Holy See on notice that they are by no means beyond reproach and are in fact particularly vulnerable to evil. Francis said Thursday that Vatican bureaucrats are in fact “in greater danger than all others, because we are beset by the ‘elegant demon’ who does not make a loud entrance, but comes with flowers in his hand.”

California university apologizes for prisoner experiments

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A prominent California medical school has apologized for conducting dozens of unethical medical experiments on at least 2,600 incarcerated men in the 1960s and 1970s. A report conducted by the University of California, San Francisco, has found two university dermatologists conducted the experiments on men at a prison hospital until the practice was halted in 1977. The experiments included putting pesticides and herbicides on the men’s skin and injecting it into their veins. The report says the doctors engaged in questionable informed consent practices. One of the doctors is still associated with the university.

US probing automated driving system use in 2 Tesla crashes

The U.S. government’s highway safety agency says it’s sending teams to investigate November crashes in California and Ohio involving Teslas that may have been operating on automated driving systems. The probes bring to 35 the number of crashes investigated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration since 2016 in which either Tesla’s “Full Self-Driving” or “Autopilot” systems likely were in use. The California crash occurred on Thanksgiving Day involving eight vehicles on the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. The Ohio crash happened Nov. 18 near Toledo, when a Tesla Model 3 crashed into an Highway Patrol SUV. A message was left Thursday seeking comment from Tesla.

Former Broncos RB Ronnie Hillman dies at 31

DENVER (AP) — Running back Ronnie Hillman, who was part of the Denver Broncos team that won Super Bowl 50, has died. He was 31. Hillman’s family posted on his Instagram account Wednesday that he was diagnosed with a rare form of kidney cancer called renal medullary carcinoma and was under hospice care. The family later posted that he died surrounded by family and close friends. The Broncos have expressed their condolences on social media. Hillman was picked by the Broncos in the third round of the 2012 draft following a standout career at San Diego State.

NFL ‘Sunday Ticket’ headed to YouTube beginning next season

The NFL has announced a multiyear agreement with Google for “NFL Sunday Ticket.” The package of out-of-market Sunday afternoon games will be distributed on YouTube TV and YouTube Primetime Channels. The NFL was seeking $2.5 billion per season for the package, which has been on DirecTV since 1994. The satellite provider has paid $1.5 billion per year on an eight-year contract that expires at the end of this season. Besides Amazon, Apple and ESPN also expressed interest in “NFL Sunday Ticket.”

International migration drove US population growth in 2022

The U.S. population grew by 1.2 million people this year, with growth largely driven by international migration, and the nation now has 333.2 million residents. That’s according to estimates released Thursday by the U.S. Census Bureau. Net international migration — the number of people moving into the U.S. minus the number of people leaving — was 1 million residents from 2021 to 2022. That represented a growth rate of 168% over the previous year, according to the 2022 population estimates. Natural growth — the number of births minus the number of deaths — added another 245,080 people to the total.

2 suspects in murder for hire case charged with wire fraud

Two of the men charged in the murder for hire case that led to the 2018 killing of a Vermont man are now facing federal wire fraud charges. Serhat Gumrukcu and Berk Eratay are due in court next week to answer the charges contained in an updated indictment. The two men are also charged with arranging for the kidnapping and murder of Gregory Davis, who was killed in January 2018. Prosecutors have alleged that Davis was killed because he was ready to go to the FBI to complain that Gumrukcu was failing to live up to his obligations in an oil trading deal while Gumrukcu was working on a separate deal with a biotechnology company.

Jurors deciding whether Tory Lanez shot Megan Thee Stallion

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Jurors have began deliberating at the trial of rapper Tory Lanez, who is charged with shooting hip-hop star Megan Thee Stallion in the feet and leaving her wounded. The jury of seven women and five men received the case late Thursday morning after Lanez’s defense completed a closing argument from a day earlier and Los Angeles County prosecutors gave a brief rebuttal. The 30-year-old Canadian rapper has pleaded not guilty to three felony counts including assault with a semiautomatic firearm. He faces up to 22 years in prison and possible deportation. Lanez’s attorney argued he was not the shooter.

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