WASHINGTON

Lawyer takes stand to

deny foreign lobbying

A prominent Washington lawyer testified Wednesday that he never misled the Justice Department about his work for the government of Ukraine as he sought to challenge allegations that his legal services crossed a line into foreign lobbying.

Greg Craig took the stand in his own defense in a case that emerged as an offshoot of special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation and has spotlighted foreign lobbying in Washington.

The criminal prosecution marks a dramatic fall for the now-retired attorney who previously served as White House counsel in President Barack Obama's administration and has represented a roster of high-profile clients.

 

PORTO VELHO, BRAZIL 

President says Amazon

countries will meet

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro said Wednesday that Latin America's Amazon countries will meet in September to discuss both protecting and developing the rainforest region, which has been hit by weeks of devastating fires.

The Brazilian leader also escalated a deeply personal dispute with French President Emmanuel Macron, accusing him of portraying himself as "the one and only person" concerned about the environment.

Bolsonaro's remarks pushed back at international allegations that, on his watch, the weakening of environmental safeguards in Brazil had set the stage for farmers, developers and others to set fires more aggressively this year as a way to clear land, much of it already deforested.

 

NEW YORK

Teen sails across Atlantic

to go to climate meeting

Swedish teen climate activist Greta Thunberg arrived in New York City to chants and cheers Wednesday after a trans-Atlantic trip on a sailboat to attend a global warming conference.

Thunberg, 16, and her crew were escorted into a lower Manhattan marina at about 4 p.m., concluding a two-week crossing from Plymouth, England. Hundreds of activists gathered on a Hudson River promenade to cheer her arrival.

The teenager refused to fly because of the carbon cost of plane travel.

 

 

CHATHAM, VA.

Family of minor league

baseball pitcher slain

The brother-in-law of a minor league baseball pitcher killed the athlete's wife, toddler son and mother-in-law before he was captured naked during a manhunt in a tiny southern Virginia community, authorities said Wednesday.

Matthew Thomas Bernard, an 18-year-old relative of the victims, was arrested after police warned of a dangerous gunman on the loose upon finding the bodies Tuesday morning at a home in Keeling.

Bernard's sister, one of the victims, was married to Blake Bivens, a 24-year-old pitcher for Alabama's Montgomery Biscuits, a Double-A affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays.

 

RENO, NEV.

Woman cleared of murder

after 35 years gets $3M

A woman who spent 35 years in prison for a Nevada murder she didn't commit before she was exonerated by DNA evidence on a crime-scene cigarette butt will get $3 million in a partial settlement of a federal civil rights lawsuit, her lawyer said Wednesday.

Cathy Woods, 68, will continue to seek additional damages from the city of Reno and former detectives she accuses of coercing a fabricated confession from her while she was a patient at a Louisiana mental hospital in 1979, according to her lawyer, Elizabeth Wang.

 

ROME

Political parties to form

coalition government

Two Italian political parties agreed Wednesday to try to form a new coalition government, putting aside past rivalry to forestall an election that could put right-wing nationalist Matteo Salvini in power as premier.

Luigi di Maio, the leader of the populist 5-Star Movement, said he had informed Italy's president of his party's potential partnership with the opposition Democratic Party that would see Giuseppe Conte return as prime minister.

 

 

BUÑOL, SPAIN 

Thousands drenched

in red in tomato fight

More than 20,000 people pelted each other with ripe tomatoes Wednesday in the annual "Tomatina" street battle in a town in eastern Spain that has become a major tourist attraction.

The party saw 145 tons of tomatoes offloaded from six trucks into crowds packing Buñol's streets for the midday hour-long battle.

The fight left participants and the surrounding streets awash in red pulp. Participants donned swimming goggles to protect their eyes.

 

Beacon Journal/Ohio.com wires