JD wrote a new blog post: Shout Out To @HennessyUS For Hosting My Son @bowwow 27th Birthday Dinner 1 hour, 1 minute ago · View
Mom, dad, daughter accused in $7M shoplift spree
A father, mother and daughter from a posh Chicago suburb stole $7 million in merchandise during a decadelong shoplifting spree — traveling to stores nationwide and targeting dolls, toys, cosmetics and other valuables — according to a federal complaint released Wednesday.
The three were arrested earlier this week at their $1.3 million Northbrook home after returning from a three-day trip through Oklahoma, Texas and Louisiana, where authorities say they shoplifted from stores. Working in tandem, the family traveled from their Chicago-area residence to hit businesses in multiple states, including Maryland, Tennessee and Florida, according to the 20-page complaint.
Branko Bogdanov, 58, Lela Bogdanov, 52, and their 34-year-old daughter, Julia Bogdanov, are charged with one count each of interstate transportation of stolen property. They made initial appearances Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Chicago, but did not enter pleas; they’ll be held at least until a detention hearing next week. Someone who answered a phone at their Northbrook residence declined any comment
Lela Bogdanov frequently donned a long black skirt with large compartments sewn on the inside during the alleged shoplifting binges and was caught on surveillance cameras leaving some stores with her skirt looking notably fuller than when she entered, the complaint says.
Standing in orange jail clothes Wednesday in federal court, Lela Bogdanov wiped away tears as U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael Mason explained her rights. She followed the proceedings through a Romani interpreter.
An unnamed cooperating witness bought many of the stolen items — which included everything from American Girl dolls and Furby robotic toys to coffee and steak knives — at the Bogdanov home, then sold them online through eBay, the complaint says. On their own, Bogdanovs directly sold more than $690,000 in merchandise through eBay, the complaint says.
The United States Secret Service led the investigation after Barnes and Noble Inc. and Toys R Us Inc. contacted the agency about what the complaint describes as ”a huge loss in merchandise.” With the help of those companies and eBay, authorities traced stolen items to an the online trading account of the cooperating witnesses, who, in turn, agreed to help in the investigation of the Bogdanovs.
Speaking to reporters later Wednesday, the head of the Secret Service office in Chicago, Frank P. Benedetto, said large-scale shoplifting ultimately hurts both stores and their consumers.
”If this type of crime continues unchecked, the costs … will be passed from the retailer to the common shopper,” he said.
A conviction on the one count of interstate transportation of stolen property carries sentence of up to 10 years.
By Michael Tarm
André 3000 as Jimi Hendrix
China takes aim at pollution after years of growth
Huge chunks of concrete and broken machinery are all that is left of a cement plant that once spewed clouds of pollution over China’s most polluted province, Hebei. Demolished in December, the factory was one of 35 closed or torn down in Pingshan county as part of the government’s drive to clear up China’s notoriously smoggy skies.
Combatting pollution has shot up the agenda of the ruling Communist Party, which for years pushed for rapid economic development with little concern about the environmental impact. Under public pressure to reduce the air pollution that blankets Beijing and cities across China, the country’s leaders are rebalancing their priorities.
That was evident during this week’s ceremonial National People’s Congress. Premier Li Keqiang said Wednesday the government would ”declare war” on pollution in the same way China had fought poverty. Smog, he said, was ”nature’s red-light warning against the model of inefficient and blind development.”
The drive to clean up China’s industry has added impetus to the government’s campaign over the past several years to reduce excess production capacity in the polluting steel and cement industries.
But shutting plants has taken a human and economic toll in lost jobs and income. The demolition or closure of the 35 plants in Hebei’s Pingshan county, about a four-hour drive southwest of Beijing, resulted in layoffs of 3,780 workers, according to state media reports.
”I do want the government to do something to improve the air quality. If the air gets better, it is good for everyone,” said Guo Quanquan, 52, one of those laid off. ”But my life has gotten worse after the closure.”
He hasn’t been able to find another job and now lives off the earnings of his two 20-something sons.
Another resident in Guo’s village, Jia Shufang, said that most of its 200 households had depended directly or indirectly on the cement industry, with workers earning an average monthly wage of 3,000 yuan ($490). Former employees could work in restaurants or on farms raising pigs, cattle and poultry, she said, although ”now most of them are sitting at home doing nothing.”
For years, the central government has issued various environmental targets and pushed for industries to reduce excess capacity that had built up during China’s years of booming growth, but they were resisted by local officials whose performances were judged more on their region’s economic growth than the cleanliness of their skies.
Pressure has increased on local governments since September, when China’s Cabinet released an action plan to control and prevent air pollution through 2017. Since then, more than half the country’s provinces have released their own plans, including new restrictions on coal and heavy industry. The Cabinet also announced a $1.6 billion fund last month to reward the prevention and control of air pollution in key areas.
And in December, the party required local governments to revise the criteria used to evaluate their officials away from economic growth to their ”overall work,” including ”ecological civilization.” The quality of the environment is now among the main criteria used to assess officials’ performances in Shijiazhuang city, which oversees Pingshan county, according to a report in the Hebei Daily in December.
”What’s very important when assessing how likely it is for local officials to implement these policies is what are their incentives,” said Brian Jackson, a China economist at IHS Economics. ”This shows that the issue is being taken much more seriously even at the provincial level and they are adjusting their incentives accordingly to make sure that there is follow-through this round.”
In Pingshan county, cement factories that had failed to meet national pollutant emissions standards had been targeted in the round of closures with the aim of reducing overcapacity and combating pollution, said Jia Taosha of Shijiazhuang’s Development and Reform Commission. Shijiazhuang is one of seven Hebei cities that made it on to a recent environment ministry list of the top 10 most polluted cities in China.
The overall impact of these moves on China’s economy is hard to judge at this point and no official estimates have been released.
”We may suffer slow economic growth in the short term, but this will work in upgrading the economic structure and result in a good living environment for our people, so it is worthwhile,” the China Daily newspaper quoted Sun Ruibin, Shijiazhuang’s Communist Party chief, as saying.
Across the city, the local government is organizing job fairs for thousands of laid-off workers and encouraging them to work in farming and food processing, according to its website.
After years of break-neck growth, China’s battle against pollution isn’t going to bear results quickly.
Despite the plant closings in Pingshan, the air quality doesn’t seem to have improved much. The area was whitened by a seven-day stretch of hazardous thick smog, prompting authorities to order 200 factories to suspend operations, 550 others to halve production and a fifth of private vehicles to stay off the roads.
”The cement factories are all closed,” said Guo, the laid-off cement worker, ”but the air pollution is still the same as before.”
By LOUISE WATT
JD wrote a new blog post: Louis Vuitton’s New Petite-Malle Bags Unveiled At Paris Fashion Week 17 hours, 4 minutes ago · updated 15 hours, 6 minutes ago · View
LADIES WHATS UP !!!!
Louis Vuitton has sidelined large bag trend and made way for mini trunk-shaped bags for its autumn/winter 2014 collection.
Alotta people don’t fuck wit ross but he be saying some real shit
RICK ROSS INTERVIEW AT THE BREAKFAST CLUB – POWER 105.1
JD wrote a new blog post: Tech Billionaire Launches ‘NetJet for Yachts’ With Fleet Miami 15 hours, 25 minutes ago · View
His newest venture, Fleet Miami , lets members purchase blocks of credits to be exchanged for charter across a fleet of luxury yachts, many of which are part of Saylor’s personal collection. Buy in to rent the 154′, five-stateroom “Usher,” the acclaimed 147′, Feadship “Harle” with its crew of nine, the 87′ “Moksha” or the more manageable [...]
The compact sport ute/crossover will feature TwinPower engines that will come in two options: a xDrive28i which boasts a 240 horsepower 2.0-liter four cylinder engine and the top-of-the-line xDrive35i which produces 300 hp from a 3.0L inline six. Both will feature 8 speed transmissions, all-wheel-drive, and will hit BMW showrooms this Spring.
http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/gossip/confidential/idina-menzel-dazeem-true-article-1.1712156 Mike Coppola/Getty Images Bow Wow , above on ‘106 & Park,’ celebrates his 27th birthday with pals Thursday Bring a doggie bag. Jermaine Dupri and Hennessy V.S. are hosting a dinner Thursday night honoring Bow Wow , the “Basketball” singer who turns 27 on Sunday. Angela Simmons, Fabolous and Bow Wow’s “106 & Park” co-host Keshia Chanté are expected to drop into Chelsea’s Tao Downtown club-staurant for food, [...]
DID YALL SEE THIS ?
Mom Drives Minivan Into Ocean With Three Kids In Car
hree children and their pregnant mother were rescued from their partially submerged minivan as it was battered by the surf off the coast of Dayton Beach, Fla. on Tuesday afternoon.
Tim Tesseneer was the first to scramble through the rising waves and make it to the distressed minivan, according to WESH. Inside he found three children, aged 3, 9 and 10. One child was crying, saying that his mother was trying to kill them. Tesseneer and another man were able to quickly rescue two of the children, but the waves quickly began to overtake the vehicle and the rescuers as they struggled to pull the youngest child from the car. Fortunately, they were eventually able to pull the child out to safety.
The mother seemed confused at the scene. She is currently at a local hospital for a mental health evaluation. All of the children are safe and will be heading home with relatives.
Hey Lifers how do y’all feel about this ?
Ludacris Says Custody Battle Case Is Ruining His Reputation
According to Radar Online:
Embroiled in a nasty custody battle, rapper Ludacris has asked a judge to seal the entire case because he claims it is ruining his reputation, RadarOnline.com has exclusively learned.
In exclusive court documents we’ve obtained, the “Get Back” rapper claimed he has been “publicly humiliated” all because his baby mama Tamika Fuller isn’t happy with the amount of child support the Georgia guidelines calculate he pay.
“Because the media is able to read and misinterpret the documents in the Court’s file in this case, every day since Jan. 1, 2014, I have been publicly humiliated and called a deadbeat dad, who does not want to see or support his minor child. Nothing could be further from the truth,” the entrepreneur, born Christopher Brian Bridges, said.
Ludacris claimed that Fuller, who gave birth to their baby in December 2013, has not allowed him to see their daughter. Nevertheless, he said he’d already paid almost $3,500 in child support before their daughter was two weeks old.
In the court filing, Ludacris also noted a story titled “Ludacris Baby Mama – You Treat Our Kid Worse Than a Dog,” saying it appears to be the media’s goal to tear down his reputation.
“In the event that an ex parte order is not granted, and people are able to continue to read and misinterpret the documents in the Court’s file, my name, reputation, character, goodwill and brand will continue to suffer irreversible harm and damage, which may eventually jeopardize my earning potential,” he said.
THIS IS CRAZY!!!!!
NBC is coming down like a hammer on celebs who want to get on Jimmy Fallon’s show … if they dare do a show on CBS or ABC … they can forget about ”The Tonight Show.”
Sources connected to CBS, NBC and ABC tell TMZ … the Peacock network believes Jimmy Fallon’s ratings success gives them extreme bargaining power. They put the word out to celebs, agents and publicists … if they want to be on Fallon they can’t appear on ANY other network … and not just shows that go head-to-head with Jimmy, but morning shows as well.
We’re told NBC is saying the stars who go on Fallon are also allowed to appear on ”Today,” ”Dateline” and any similar shows they air, but that’s it.
A GMA source tells TMZ … they’ve already gotten fallout from people they were trying to book.
Fallon is dominating late night …. crushing Jimmy Kimmel by bringing in more than twice the number of viewers.
JD wrote a new blog post: Lupita Nyong’o Speech on Black Beauty Essence Magazine Black Women In Hollywood Award 22 hours, 57 minutes ago · View
Lamar Odom’s Drug Dealers Possibly Linked To Jewelry Heist
According to TMZ:
Lamar Odom’s drug dealers could be linked to the $250,000 jewelry heist at Lamar and Khloe’s house … because we’re told the dealers threatened to break in to get the money Lamar never paid.
Multiple sources involved in Lamar’s drug deals last year tell TMZ … Lamar wasn’t paying his tab. In fact, our sources say he was in the hole $15K to just one dealer back in Sept. and he owed another more than $40K.
Lamar would fend them off by saying he was loaded and therefore good for it. He would also justify not paying from time to time because the quality of the drugs was “wack.”
We’re told Lamar owed 10s of thousands of dollars to drug dealers when he left for Spain last month.
Now the plot thickens. We’re told Lamar was getting text messages threatening his safety and also warning him they would break into his home to get even.
Cops don’t know who stole the expensive jewelry but we’re told there was no sign of forced entry. One source says he has reason to believe one of the dealers had connections to someone who works for the family and had lawful access to the house.
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