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CALIFORNIA/Neighbor guilty of torture

A jury Tuesday found a neighbor guilty of torturing and beating a teen held captive in a central California home for more than a year. San Joaquin County jurors convicted Anthony Waiters, 31, of all nine counts he faced, including aggravated mayhem, torture, kidnapping and false imprisonment of then-16-year-old Kyle Ramirez. Prosecutors said that between 2007 and 2008, Waiters went to the Tracy home where Ramirez was being held captive by his legal guardian and the homeowners. Ramirez, now 18, testified that Waiters, 31, cut him, lit his pants on fire and beat him unconscious.


Man in bomb case pleads not guilty

An unemployed software consultant pleaded not guilty to running a bomb factory at his home, where prosecutors said they found the largest amount of certain homemade explosives in one location in U.S. history. Reports say that George Djura Jakubec, 54, entered pleas Monday in San Diego County Superior Court to 28 charges, mostly involving possession or manufacture of explosives. It was unclear what he intended to do with the explosives and weapons, Deputy District Attorney Terri Perez said. Authorities said they found at least 9 pounds of dangerous materials at his rented Escondido home. The chemicals have been used by insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan.


OREGON/Sea lions safe from lethal injection

Sea lions won a reprieve Tuesday when a federal appeals court told Oregon and Washington wildlife officials to cease killing them. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the federal government failed to explain why it lets state officials kill sea lions, while humans are allowed to take comparable or larger catches of the endangered salmon and steelhead that the sea lions eat. The appeals court noted that commercial, recreational and tribal fisheries are allowed to catch 5.5 percent to 17 percent of the salmon and steelhead listed under the Endangered Species Act. But that finding is "in apparent conflict" with the finding that a comparable or smaller take by the sea lions would have a "significant negative impact," they said.


IOWA/Jell-O spill cleaned

Northern Iowa authorities say they've cleaned up a slippery mess after a tipped semitrailer spilled Jell-O and pudding cups across a county road. The Floyd County sheriff's office says 52 pallets of gelatin and pudding fell from the trailer when its top ripped open near Rudd early Tuesday. It took crews three hours to clean up the debris. The sheriff's office says semitrailer driver Eric Young, 39, of Charleston, S.C., wasn't able to make a turn and went into the ditch where the rig rolled onto its side.

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