CBS grants $A28m to women’s rights groups

CBS grants $A28m to women’s rights groups

There is news surfacing of other instances of sexual misconduct by top exec Les Moonves at CBS.CBS has pledged to give $US20 million ($A28 million) to 18 organisations dedicated to eliminating sexual harassment in the workplace as the network tries to recover from a scandal that led to the ouster of its top executive, Les Moonves.
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The announcement comes as the network's crisis deepens, with details emerging from an ongoing investigation into Moonves' conduct and news surfacing of other instances of sexual misconduct at CBS.

In the latest revelation, CBS acknowledged that it reached a $US9.5 million ($A13.2 million) confidential settlement last year with actress Eliza Dushku, who said she was written off the show Bull in March 2017 after complaining about on-set sexual comments from its star, Michael Weatherly.

The funds for the grants to the 18 organisations are being deducted from severance owed to Moonves under his contract, and the company had previously said the former CEO would have a say in which groups would receive the money.

CBS said its donation to the 18 groups will go toward helping expand their work and "ties into the company's ongoing commitment to strengthening its own workplace culture."

The 18 organisations issued a joint statement praising the donations as a first step while calling on CBS to disclose the results of the Moonves investigation and the company's efforts to rectify practices that may have enabled misconduct.

"We thank CBS for these donations. We also recognise these funds are not a panacea, nor do they erase or absolve decades of bad behaviour," the groups said.

Moonves was ousted in September after the New Yorker published allegations from 12 women who said he subjected them to mistreatment that included forced oral sex, groping and retaliation if they resisted. Moonves has denied having any non-consensual sexual relationships.



Remains of Pearl Harbor sailor identified

Remains of Pearl Harbor sailor identified

Charles C. Gomez Jr was among the more than 2300 American military personnel killed at Pearl Harbor.Full military honours will be given to a Louisiana sailor whose remains have been identified more than 75 years after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.
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The remains of Navy Seaman 2nd Class Charles C. Gomez Jr. were accounted in September, the US's Defence POW/MIA Accounting Agency announced on Friday.

Gomez was assigned to the USS Oklahoma battleship on December 7, 1941 when Japanese aircraft attacked it at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor.

Among the more than 2300 American military personnel killed that day were 429 USS Oklahoma crewmen, including then-19-year-old Gomez.

His family was informed of the identity match earlier this week.

"I still can't believe it," said Charles Fogg, Gomez's nephew.

"It's unbelievable after all this time."

Fogg, 65, of Pearl River, Louisiana, never met his uncle but often heard his mother and her siblings talk about him during family gatherings.

"As a kid, I'd often hear my grandpa say, 'Pray for my son to be found.' I guess I was 6 or 7 at the time. But it all comes in God's time I guess," he said.

Until now, Gomez's remains had been interred among 46 plots at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu, Hawaii.

His name is recorded on the Walls of the Missing at the site. Officials say a rosette will be placed by his name to indicate he has been accounted for.

Fogg said the DPAA took DNA samples from his mother and one of her brothers to help identify the remains.

"We were hoping the identification would happen in their lifetime," he said. "We almost made it. Both of them recently passed away."

Fogg said a memorial service will be held at the Veterans Administration facility in Slidell on June 3, 2019, on what would have been Gomez's 97th birthday.

"That gives us time to really plan it and line things up right and give family time to get here. We're really excited about it. He's going to get full military honours," he said. "We're looking forward to it. It's a sad but exciting time, knowing that he's finally coming home."



Jets’ Jair wants flood of A-League goals

Jets’ Jair wants flood of A-League goals

Newcastle's Jair (L) hopes for a flood of goals after breaking his A-League duck against Brisbane.Jair hopes the rain won't be the only thing that pours this weekend in Newcastle.
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The Jets' import has ended a frustrating 18 months after breaking his A-League goal drought in last week's 2-0 win over Brisbane.

His first goal since scoring in April, 2017 in the K-League, the Brazilian celebrated emotionally with home fans at McDonald Jones Stadium.

"It's the first one and I have to celebrate a lot because, today, I'm here three months," Jair said.

"That's why I put too hot my emotion because it wasn't easy for me. So I prepare myself and also it's a big challenge to change the weight. But I'm happy."

The 30-year-old struggled to adapt to his new home, as well as attempting to shed weight over the pre-season.

He only signed in September with the Jets.

"I work so hard to lose my fat; I lost eight kilos between this time," he said.

"I got this gift (of a goal) and, hopefully, I'm keeping this weight, now with more confidence and hopefully score more.

"It's not easy. It's a new country, also.

"The language - sometimes is difficult to understand what the players will do. But (after) today, I think things will happen more naturally."

A confident Jair will be a huge boost for the Jets who have struggled to match last season's fairytale campaign that had ended in a title shot.

Failing to win a game over the opening month, they have triumphed in two of their past three and sit sixth on the table.

On Sunday, they take on undefeated ladder leaders Perth, who are off to the best start to a season in the club's history under new coach Tony Popovic.

The contest appears set to be soggy, with storms predicted to bash the eastern seaboard over the weekend.

Popovic identified the Jets' attack - which also includes Dimi Petratos and Ronald Vargas - as their most-dangerous asset.

"They've got four very dangerous players in attack," he said.

"They showed that last year, and they've shown glimpses of it this year without getting the result. There were certainly longer periods of that against Brisbane.

"We have to be aware of it. We don't have to fear it, certainly not."

STATS THAT MATTER:

* Newcastle have won just two of their past 20 matches against Perth. Their last win at home came more than seven years ago

* Newcastle are one of just two teams - including Brisbane - who are yet to score in the opening 15 minutes of a game this season

* Perth defender Ivan Franjic has made nine successful crosses from open play this campaign - three more than any other player.



Trump’s 2016 inaugural committee probed

Trump’s 2016 inaugural committee probed

The investigation marks the latest potential threat to Trump and people in his inner circle.US federal prosecutors are reportedly investigating the finances of President Donald Trump's inaugural committee and whether foreigners contributed to its events using straw donors.
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The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that prosecutors in New York are investigating whether some of the committee's donors made contributions in exchange for political favours and access to the Trump administration - a potential violation of federal corruption laws.

The inquiry, which the newspaper said is in its early stages, is also focused on whether the inauguration committee misspent some of the $US107 million ($A149 million) it raised to stage events celebrating Trump's inauguration.

The New York Times reported that prosecutors are examining whether people from Qatar, Saudi Arabia and other Middle Eastern countries made illegal payments to the committee and a pro-Trump super political action committee in a bid to influence American policy. Foreign contributions to inaugural funds and PACs are prohibited under federal law.

Both newspapers cited anonymous sources familiar with the inquiry.

The US attorney's office in Manhattan did not respond to a request for comment Friday.

The inaugural committee said it has not been contacted by federal prosecutors and is not aware of any investigations.

The investigation marks the latest potential threat to the president and people in his inner circle.

The Times and Wall Street Journal reported that it stemmed in part from materials the FBI seized earlier this year while probing the business dealings of Michael Cohen, Trump's longtime fixer and personal lawyer.

Cohen was sentenced to three years in federal prison this week for tax evasion and campaign-finance violations.



Mueller: FBI not to blame for Flynn’s lies

Mueller: FBI not to blame for Flynn’s lies

Flynn's crime of lying to the FBI carries a statutory maximum sentence of five years in prison.US President Donald Trump's former national security adviser Michael Flynn knew better than to lie to the FBI and does not deserve sentencing leniency because he was not warned that lying to federal agents was a crime, US prosecutors say.
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The rebuke by Special Counsel Robert Mueller came after Flynn's lawyers argued that the lack of an explicit warning before an interview with FBI agents in January 2017 should be a mitigating factor in his sentencing on Tuesday.

"A sitting National Security Adviser, former head of an intelligence agency, retired Lieutenant General, and 33-year veteran of the armed forces knows he should not lie to federal agents," Mueller's office said in a court filing.

"He does not need to be warned it is a crime to lie to federal agents to know the importance of telling them the truth."

Flynn pleaded guilty in December 2017 to lying to the FBI agents about his conversations with Russia's then-ambassador, Sergei Kislyak, and has been cooperating with Mueller's probe into Russia's meddling in the 2016 US election.

The FBI interview took place on January 24, 2017, soon after Trump took office.

In the filing Mueller said Flynn lied to the media and senior administration officials in the weeks leading up to the interview, telling them he had not discussed US sanctions against Russia with Kislyak when in fact he had.

"Thus, by the time of the FBI interview, the defendant was committed to his false story," Mueller's prosecutors wrote.

Mueller's filing was in response to an order by the judge to turn over documents related to the interview.

That order, in turn, followed a sentencing memo earlier this week by Flynn's lawyers in which they argued for leniency.

As mitigating factors, Flynn's lawyers cited both the lack of a warning about lying and a suggestion by then-FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe to Flynn that the "quickest way" to conduct the interview was without counsel present.

Critics of the Mueller probe had jumped on those assertions to promote the idea that Flynn had been set up.

Flynn's crime of lying to the FBI carries a statutory maximum sentence of five years in prison. His plea agreement states, however, that he is eligible for a sentence of zero to six months and can ask the court not to impose a fine.

Mueller, who last week cited Flynn's "substantial" co-oepration in recommending no prison time, said in Friday's filing that Flynn still deserved a sentence at the low end of the federal guideline range providing "the defendant continues to accept responsibility for his actions".

Trump has denied there was collusion between his presidential campaign and Russia, and has labelled Mueller's probe a "witch hunt."

Russia has denied it meddled in the election, contrary to the conclusion of US intelligence agencies.