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A Suicide Attempt, Then Cops Find a Captive Daughter

German 26-year-old, believed to be autistic, was likely held captive by mom 'for years'

(Newser) - A 54-year-old woman apparently despondent over being evicted may have tried to kill herself by throwing herself down a stairwell, reports NBC News . She survived, but German cops at the scene to enforce the eviction made a "shocking" discovery: a 26-year-old woman held in "inhumane conditions." "... More »

A New Explanation for Our Huge Prison Population

It's not just the war on drugs, says law professor John Pfaff

(Newser) - The US prison population hit a record 1.62 million in 2009, and there's a widely accepted explanation for that: the war on drugs. But law professor John Pfaff is proposing a very different explanation, and he explains it in an interview with Leon Neyfakh at Slate . Only 17%... More »

America's Prisoners Cost You $260 a Year

Mandatory minimums, repeat-offender laws spiking prison numbers: report

(Newser) - A new report from a branch of the Brookings Institution notes that the US spent $80 billion on incarceration in 2010, an expense that translates into each American paying $260 per year to house our criminals. That's up from $77 per US resident in 1980, reports CBS News . With... More »

World's Top Drug Kingpin in Underground Cell

US aiming to extradite Joaquin Guzman

(Newser) - Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, the head of the Sinaloa drug cartel, is being held in an underground cell near Mexico City following his arrest this weekend —and US federal prosecutors in New York want to extradite him. He's wanted in six districts in this country, NBC News... More »

Captive Tucson Girls 'Tortured With Music'

Cameras recorded sisters in house of horrors

(Newser) - Three sisters held captive by their parents in a Tucson home endured a hellish existence in dungeon-like conditions, investigators say. For up to two years, the girls—ages 12, 13, and 17, were imprisoned in locked bedrooms with elaborate alarm and video systems that let the girls' mother and stepfather... More »

Arizona Sisters: We Were Imprisoned for Years

Mother, stepfather arrested in Tucson case

(Newser) - A horrific case out of Tucson: Police were called to a house around 4am yesterday, where they ultimately found three young sisters, malnourished and dirty, who say they were imprisoned there for as long as two years, the Arizona Republic reports. The 12- and 13-year-old girls say they managed to... More »

Italian Spy Boss Gets 10 Years for Helping CIA

Niccolo Pollari sentenced over imam's 'extraordinary rendition'

(Newser) - Italy's former head of military intelligence has been sentenced to a decade in prison for helping the CIA kidnap a Muslim cleric in Milan, Reuters reports. Three Americans have also been convicted in absentia over the plot, though they're not likely to serve their sentences. Egyptian imam Abu... More »

Chinese Citizens: We Were Jailed in a Holiday Inn

Officials want to silence citizens who are looking to air complaints: activists

(Newser) - Last March, while China's legislature held its 10-day annual meeting in Beijing, five citizens say they were being held against their will in a Holiday Inn near Shanghai, reports CNN . They had come to China's capital as "petitioners" looking to file grievances that had fallen on deaf... More »

Woman Locked in Bathroom 10 Years by Dad

20-year-old says she survived by listening to radio

(Newser) - A 20-year-old Palestinian woman has been freed after spending 10 years locked in bathrooms and other small rooms by her father, reports AP . There, she was beaten, fed little, and let out only at night. Her father threatened to rape, impregnate, and kill her if she tried to escape. The... More »

Ex-Nazi, 90, Starts Life Sentence

Heinrich Boere killed 3 people as SS member in 1944

(Newser) - A 90-year-old former member of the Nazi SS is heading to prison for murder—67 years later. An ambulance picked up the wheelchair-bound Heinrich Boere at his nursing home in Germany and carried him to a prison hospital, the BBC reports. A medical expert ruled him fit to serve his... More »

I Was Imprisoned on Scientology Ship: Woman

Church denies charges, calls her 'apostate'

(Newser) - A woman says she was imprisoned on a Scientology cruise ship for 12 years, unable to leave without an escort for the first six, and often forced to work long hours in the hot, noisy engine room, reports Australia's ABC News . Born into a Scientology family, Valeska Paris says... More »

Jaycee: After Giving Birth, 'I Wasn't Alone'

Backyard birth was 'painful' but uplifting

(Newser) - Diane Sawyer has released the first installment of her emotional interview with Jaycee Dugard , in which the kidnap survivor discusses the birth of her first child in her backyard prison. It was “very painful,” Dugard says. “But then I saw her. She was beautiful. I felt like... More »

Why Is Manning Being Forced to Strip Each Night?

It all started with a 'sarcastic quip,' his lawyer writes

(Newser) - Bradley Manning has been forced to sleep naked for three consecutive nights, his lawyer wrote yesterday on his website , and the practice is expected to continue “indefinitely.” The official reason? Manning is on “prevention of injury” watch and must strip nightly for his own safety. The real... More »

Bradley Manning Stripped, Left Naked for 7 Hours

Taking of soldier's clothes on Wednesday 'not punitive': Marines

(Newser) - The jailed soldier accused of leaking secret documents to WikiLeaks was forced to strip and was held naked for seven hours on Wednesday, his lawyer said on his website. Bradley Manning got his clothes back yesterday morning, after he was made to stand outside his cell during an inspection, the... More »

Engineer Who Sold China US Secrets Gets 32 Years

Noshir Gowadia's family plans appeal

(Newser) - A US engineer has received a 32-year sentence for selling military secrets to China, the BBC reports. Noshir Gowadia, 66, who worked on the B-2 bomber’s propulsion system, was found guilty in August of giving China information that helped it build a stealth cruise missile. He was reportedly paid... More »

Ohio Man Gets Life in Triple Murder, Dismemberment

Matthew Hoffman pleads guilty to 10 counts including rape, kidnapping

(Newser) - Matthew Hoffman has received life without parole after pleading guilty in the murder and dismemberment of a woman, her son, and her friend, CNN reports. The Ohio man pleaded guilty to all 10 counts in the case, among them three counts of aggravated murder and the kidnapping and rape of... More »

Doggedly Playing Lawyer, Inmate Overturns Conviction

New Yorker imprisoned for murder spends 15 years fighting case

(Newser) - A New York man was jailed for a decade and a half for a murder he maintained he didn’t commit—and finally, after years of legal work behind bars, he was vindicated. The Wall Street Journal tells the story of a feat “so unbelievably hard…that it's almost... More »

13-Year-Old Killer Spared Life Sentence

Detroit boy to stay in juvenile detention until he turns 21

(Newser) - A Detroit boy who murdered a woman when he was 12 has been sent to juvenile prison until he is 21 years old. Authorities will then decide if Demarco Harris should be released or serve a life sentence. Harris, now 13, shot and killed 24-year-old Trisha Babcock in a botched... More »

American Accuses North Korea of Sexual Abuse

Park, released Feb. 6, in a mental hospital

(Newser) - The Korean-American missionary who was released Feb. 6 after six weeks’ imprisonment in North Korea has suffered a mental breakdown due sexual abuse while he was in custody. Robert Park, 28, has been in a California mental facility for more than two weeks, his pastor tells Chosun Ilbo , after he... More »

Cops Find More Bones at Garrido Home

Authorities not yet certain if remains are human or animal

(Newser) - More bones have been found on the property belonging to Phillip Garrido—the man charged with abducting and imprisoning Jaycee Dugard—and on the property next door, California authorities tell KCBS-AM. “We have located what appears to be bones on both properties. We can’t tell at this point... More »

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