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  • Ng Lap Seng leaves federal court in Manhattan, Thursday, July 27, 2017. Hg, a Chinese billionaire who wanted to build a United Nations center in Macau was convicted Thursday of paying over $1.5 million in bribes to U.N. ambassadors to get it done.  (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

    The Latest: UN looking at next steps after bribery verdict

    NEW YORK (AP) — The Latest on the bribery conviction of a Chinese billionaire in a United Nations scandal (all times local):

    8:35 p.m.

    The United Nations says it’s considering what do following the New York bribery conviction of a Chinese billionaire who wanted to build a U.N. center in Macau.

    Prosecutors say Ng Lap Seng (ihng lap sihng) bribed U.N. ambassadors. The verdict against him came Thursday.

    The U.N. says it’s “considering next steps as a victim of these crimes.”

    U.N. deputy spokesman Farhan Haq says the U.N. “cooperated extensively to facilitate the proper administration of justice in this case, by disclosing thousands of documents and waiving the immunity of officials to allow them to testify at trial.” Prosecutors presented evidence that Ng from 2010 to 2015 bribed two U.N. ambassadors with hundreds of thousands […]
  • FILE- In this June 11, 2015, file photo, from left, an iPod, iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle are displayed at an Apple store in New York. The company discontinued sales of the iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle on Thursday, July 27, 2017, in a move reflecting the waning popularity of the devices in an era when most people store or stream their tunes on smartphones. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

    Apple kills iPod Nano, iPod Shuffle as music moves to phones

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle have played their final notes for Apple.

    The company discontinued sales of the two music players Thursday in a move reflecting the waning popularity of the devices in an era when most people store or stream their tunes on smartphones.

    The iPod product line still remains alive, though. Apple plans to continue selling its internet-connected iPod Touch.

    In a show of its commitment to the iPod Touch, Apple doubled the storage capacity of its top-of-line model to 128 gigabytes. That version costs $300. An iPod Touch with 32 gigabytes of storage sells for $200.

    The Nano and Shuffle came out in 2005 as less expensive and smaller alternatives to Apple’s standard iPod. The Cupertino, California, company stopped updating the Nano and Shuffle several years ago. Apple has long predicted iPods would gradually fade away as more people bought iPhones or other smartphones capable of playing music. The company’s sales […]
  • Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and his wife Angela Paxton, arrive for a hearing in the Harris County Criminal District Court in Houston, Thursday, July 27, 2017. A new trial date of Dec. 11 is set for Ken Paxton to face felony securities fraud charges. It's the third time a trial date has been set. (Melissa Phillip/Houston Chronicle via AP)

    Texas attorney general now facing December trial date

    AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A new trial date of Dec. 11 is set for Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton to face felony securities fraud charges.

    It’s the third time a trial date has been set. Paxton’s case was previously scheduled to begin in April, then September. The Houston Chronicle reports that jury selection is now expected to start Dec. 1.

    The case previously was moved from the conservative Dallas suburb of McKinney, where Paxton lives, to Houston after special prosecutors argued Paxton’s allies had spent years tainting the original jury pool. Paxton’s lawyers then successfully had the original judge replaced.

    The attorney general was indicted in 2015 over allegations he duped investors in a tech startup before taking office. He’s pleaded not guilty. Paxton faces 5 to 99 years in prison, if convicted. ___ Information from: Houston Chronicle, http://www.houstonchronicle.com Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten […]
  • Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback talks to the media during a news conference Thursday, July 27, 2017, in Topeka, Kan. President Donald Trump on Wednesday nominated Brownback to be ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

    Kansas’ Brownback still touts tax cuts as he heads to exit

    TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Republican Gov. Sam Brownback said Thursday that he wishes Kansas had preserved part of an income tax break he championed as a boon for small businesses and defended the now-repealed policy that critics said did not work.

    Brownback cited the death of the exemption for more than 330,000 farmers and business owners as one of his regrets during his 6½ years as governor. He reflected on his tenure during a Statehouse news conference following his nomination by President Donald Trump to serve as U.S. ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom.

    His departure would elevate Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer, a fellow GOP conservative, to governor. Brownback said he doesn’t know whether he’ll wait until his ambassador’s appointment is confirmed by the U.S. Senate before resigning in Kansas. The two-term governor saw his standing with voters and his national reputation drop as the state faced ongoing budget […]
  • FILE - In this Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2017, file photo, a model demonstrates a Project Alloy all-in-one merged reality headset during an Intel news conference before CES International, in Las Vegas. Intel Corp. reports earnings, Thursday, July 27, 2017. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)

    Intel’s 2Q results top analyst views, lifting stock

    SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — Intel Corp. more than doubled its second-quarter profit as sales of its personal computer chips strengthened and the company made further inroads in promising new areas of technology.

    The world’s largest chipmaker also brightened its outlook for the remainder of the year.

    The report released Thursday drew a lukewarm reaction from investors as Intel’s stock edged up 13 cents to $35.10 in extended trading.

    Intel earned $2.81 billion, or 58 cents per share during the three-month period ended July 1. That compared to net income of $1.33 billion, or 27 cents per share, at the same time last year. If not for one-time items unrelated to its ongoing business, Intel said it would have earned 72 cents per share. […]
  • Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., speaks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, July 27, 2017. The Senate voted decisively to approve a new package of stiff financial sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea, sending the popular bill to President Donald Trump for his signature after weeks of intense negotiations. The legislation is aimed at punishing Moscow for meddling in the 2016 presidential election and its military aggression in Ukraine and Syria, where the Kremlin has backed President Bashar Assad. McCain said the bill’s passage was long overdue, a jab at Trump and the GOP-controlled Congress. McCain, chairman of the Armed Services Committee, has called Putin a murderer and a thug.(AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

    Russia sanctions bill heads to Trump after Senate approval

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate voted decisively on Thursday to approve a new package of stiff financial sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea, sending the popular bill to President Donald Trump for his signature after weeks of intense negotiations.

    Never in doubt, however, was a cornerstone of the legislation that bars Trump from easing or waiving the additional penalties on Russia unless Congress agrees. The provisions were included to assuage concerns among lawmakers that the president’s push for better relations with Russian President Vladimir Putin might lead him to relax the penalties without first securing concessions from the Kremlin.

    The Senate passed the bill, 98-2, two days after the House pushed the measure through by an overwhelming margin, 419-3. Both are veto proof numbers as the White House has wavered on whether the president would sign the measure into law. The legislation is aimed at punishing Moscow for meddling in the 2016 presidential election […]
  • Florida’s cost for losing lawsuits keeps growing

    TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida’s price tag for losing legal battles — which has included courtroom fights over drug testing, voting rights and gay marriage — continues to grow under Gov. Rick Scott.

    Scott recently agreed to pay $1.1 million to cover the legal bills of physicians and medical organizations in their successful challenge of a law that restricted doctors’ ability to talk to patients about guns. The law had been pushed through the Florida Legislature at the urging of the National Rifle Association.

    In early July, the state also agreed to a $2 million payment that will go to lawyers who sued on behalf of disabled inmates. A review of records by The Associated Press shows that since Scott took office in 2011 the state has paid at least $19 million to cover expenses and fees for lawyers […]
  • US court asked to hold off on decision over fracking rules

    DENVER (AP) — The Trump administration asked three federal judges from the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday to hold off on a decision regarding a major federal fracking rule implemented by the Obama administration.

    In March, Trump moved to roll back the rule, which was first issued in 2015 by the Interior Department and required drilling companies to disclose what chemicals they used within 30 days of any fracking.

    It was put on hold last year after a federal district judge in Wyoming said the Bureau of Land Management had no authority to set such a rule. In the court hearing Thursday, the government asked judges not to decide on the case and instead leave the district court’s current ruling in effect until it […]
  • Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., flanked by Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., left, and Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., speaks to reporters at the Capitol as the Republican-controlled Senate unable to fulfill their political promise to repeal and replace "Obamacare" because of opposition and wavering within the GOP ranks, in Washington, Thursday, July 27, 2017. McCain returned to Capitol Hill after being diagnosed with an aggressive type of brain cancer recently. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

    Analysis: Vote yes, hope no for Senate GOP on health care

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Vote yes, hope no.

    Senate Republicans want to back a still-being-written bill to erase some of Democrat Barack Obama’s health care law, but they don’t want the House to quickly approve it, send it to President Donald Trump and have him sign it into law. The uncharacteristic behavior was on full display Thursday, creating a surreal situation on Capitol Hill that would be comical if what lawmakers were doing didn’t affect one-sixth of the economy and health coverage for tens of millions of Americans.

    “It won’t end with this,” Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., said of the bill. “It’s going to go to conference.” That’s the GOP hope, that whatever they pass — skinny, a bit more robust, anything — is the means to an end. And the end is a House-Senate conference in which lawmakers hammer out a final […]
  • North Dakota woman who threatened Muslims hugs one of them

    FARGO, N.D. (AP) — A North Dakota woman who threatened some Muslim women in a Walmart parking lot met with two of them Thursday and all “expressed their sincere regrets” about the incident and apologized, Fargo’s police chief said Thursday.

    Police Chief David Todd posted a photo on Facebook Thursday of Amber Hensley of Mapleton with her arms around Leyla Hassan and Sarah Hassan, with Todd in the background.

    Todd said the women “have come together and talked through this incident.” “We have some ugliness in our community that needs to be addressed and worked on,” Todd said. “However, perhaps we can all take a lesson from what was an ugly unfortunate interaction and how even despite words being said that cannot be taken […]
  • Facebook and Verizon advance while AstraZeneca dives

    NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks that moved substantially or traded heavily Thursday:

    Facebook Inc., up $4.83 to $170.44

    The social media network announced strong earnings and revenue in the second quarter.

    AstraZeneca PLC, down $5.06 to $28.88

    The British drugmaker reported disappointing results from a study of its lung cancer drug Imfinzi.

    Verizon Communications Inc., up $3.41 to $47.81

    The largest U.S. cellphone carrier had a better second quarter than analysts had expected.

    Charter Communications Inc., up $18.13 to $366.90 Media companies traded higher as Wall Street was pleased with Charter’s second-quarter report. Buffalo Wild Wings Inc., down $13.60 to $109.05 The restaurant chain had a weak quarter as chicken-wing costs grew and sales at older stores fell. Southwest Airlines Co., down $2.95 to $56.57 Analysts were disappointed […]
  • Ng Lap Seng, center, leavesfederal court in Manhattan, Thursday, July 27, 2017.  Ng, a Chinese billionaire who wanted to build a United Nations center in Macau was convicted Thursday of paying over $1.5 million in bribes to U.N. ambassadors to get it done.  (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

    Chinese billionaire convicted in United Nations bribery case

    NEW YORK (AP) — A Chinese billionaire who wanted to build a United Nations center in Macau was convicted on Thursday of paying more than $1.7 million in bribes to U.N. ambassadors to get it done.

    The verdict was returned after a day of deliberations in Manhattan federal court against Ng Lap Seng, one of China’s richest men. Ng was convicted of bribery, conspiracy and money laundering charges.

    Prosecutors presented evidence that Ng from 2010 to 2015 bribed two U.N. ambassadors, including a U.N. General Assembly president, paying one $50,000 monthly at the scheme’s peak to create a center to serve struggling Southern Hemisphere nations.

    Defense lawyers contended the payments were ordinary. But the center was never built. Ng looked at jurors as the verdict was announced but otherwise did not display emotion. U.S. District Judge Vernon S. Broderick tightened Ng’s bail conditions, saying he was now “literally under house arrest,” confined under $50 million bail to a luxury Manhattan […]
  • FILE- In this Thursday, July 20, 2017 file photo, leader of the ruling Law and Justice party, Jaroslaw Kaczynski votes to approve a law on court control, in the parliament in Warsaw, Poland. The leader of Poland's ruling party says the government intends to "decentralize" the media after it completes an overhaul of the judicial system that the European Union has denounced as violating democratic norms. (AP Photo/Alik Keplicz, File)

    Polish leader says government will target media after courts

    WARSAW, Poland (AP) — The leader of Poland’s ruling party said Thursday that the government intends to “decentralize” the media after it completes a “radical” overhaul of the judicial system that the European Union has denounced as violating democratic norms.

    Law and Justice party leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski, the most powerful politician in Poland, said he expects “very strong resistance” to his conservative nationalist movement’s plans to decentralize the media. He didn’t give details, but his party leaders have previously announced plans to limit foreign ownership of private media companies in Poland.

    Many Polish newspapers have German or Swiss owners, while an American company owns a major private television broadcaster, TVN. The party has consolidated power since 2015 in a way that has alarmed human rights officials and the EU, taking control of public media and the constitutional court and purging civil servants and military leaders to […]
  • How major US stock market indexes fared on Thursday

    NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stock indexes pulled back from their record highs Thursday after an afternoon swoon for technology companies helped overshadow another big day for telecoms.

    On Thursday:

    The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell 2.41 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,475.42.

    The Dow Jones industrial average rose 85.54, or 0.4 percent, to 21,796.55.

    The Nasdaq composite fell 40.56, or 0.6 percent, to 6,382.19.

    The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks lost 8.66 points, or 0.6 percent, to 1,433.62. For the week: The S&P 500 is up 2.88 points, or 0.1 percent. The Dow is up 216.48 points, or 1 percent. The Nasdaq is down 5.57 points, or 0.1 percent. The Russell 2000 is down 2.22 points, or 0.2 […]
  • New deal reached to fix VA budget crisis after vets protest

    WASHINGTON (AP) — House Republicans and Democrats reached agreement Thursday on a $3.9 billion emergency spending package to fill a shortfall in the Department of Veterans Affairs’ program of private-sector care, seeking to avert a disruption to medical care for thousands of veterans.

    The deal includes additional money for core VA health programs, something insisted on by veterans’ groups.

    The plan sets aside $2.1 billion over six months to continue funding the Choice program, which provides federally paid medical care outside the VA and is a priority of President Donald Trump. VA Secretary David Shulkin has warned that without legislative action Choice would run out of money by mid-August, causing delays in health care.

    The proposal also would devote $1.8 billion to authorize 28 leases for new VA medical facilities and establish programs to make it easier to hire health specialists. That cost would be paid for by trimming pensions for some Medicaid-eligible veterans and collecting fees for housing loans. A House vote was planned Friday, before members were […]