While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Sept 24

Protests erupt in US over charges filed in Breonna Taylor shooting

Angry protesters demanded justice in the US city of Louisville on Wednesday after charges were filed against only one policeman involved in the controversial fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor, the 26-year-old black woman whose name has become a rallying cry of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Detective Brett Hankison, who was fired in June, was charged by a grand jury with three counts of “wanton endangerment” over shots he fired into apartments adjoining Taylor’s home.

But neither Hankison nor the two officers who fired the shots that killed Taylor were charged in direct connection with her death.

Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of Louisville, the largest city in Kentucky, following the announcement, and Ben Crump, a lawyer for the Taylor family, condemned the grand jury decision as “outrageous and offensive.” Police in riot gear were seen making several arrests.


Pompeo warns US politicians to be alert to Chinese ‘influence and espionage’

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Wednesday warned US politicians at the state and local level to be vigilant around Chinese diplomats who he said could be trying to woo them as part of Beijing’s propaganda and espionage campaign.

Speaking in the Wisconsin state capitol, Pompeo said the State Department was reviewing the activities of the US-China Friendship Association and the China Council for the Promotion of Peaceful Reunification over suspicions they are trying to influence US schools, business groups and local politicians.

The two groups are linked to China’s United Front Work Department, an organ of the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Committee, he said.


Former ‘world’s heaviest man’ defeats coronavirus

A Mexican who was once the world’s heaviest man (see video) has beaten the coronavirus, helped – he believes – by several years of dieting, exercise and stomach-reduction surgery that saw him shed hundreds of kilos.

Juan Pedro Franco used to weigh 595 kilos – more than the average male polar bear and enough to be certified by Guinness World Records in 2017.

The 36-year-old now weighs around 208 kilos, but his history of diabetes, high blood pressure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease made his battle against the virus particularly gruelling.


Football: Atletico-bound Luis Suarez leaves last Barca training in tears

Luis Suarez left his last Barcelona training session in tears on Wednesday as he prepares for a move to La Liga rivals Atletico Madrid.

Spanish television channel Gol showed the Uruguayan striker wiping away tears with his sleeve as he drove off after saying his last goodbyes. Suarez had become close friends with above all Lionel Messi since his arrival at the Catalan club in 2014.

Catalan daily Sport confirmed: “Luis Suarez left the Sant Joan Despi training centre in tears. The Uruguayan player greeted his teammates for his last training before signing his exit papers.”


Bollywood superstar Deepika Padukone summoned by police in drugs probe

Bollywood superstar Deepika Padukone has been summoned for questioning as part of an escalating drugs probe into the suicide of actor Sushant Singh Rajput, Indian police said late on Wednesday.

The investigation has already seen actress Rhea Chakraborty arrested for allegedly buying drugs for her former boyfriend Rajput, who was found dead in June in his Mumbai apartment – with police saying he took his own life.

A star with many hit movies to his name, the 34-year-old’s suicide initially triggered a debate over mental health in the multibillion-dollar industry.


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