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September 09, 2010 - Image 6

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The Michigan Daily, 2010-09-09

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6A - Thursday, September 9, 2010

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Secs. Clinton, Gates denounce
planned Quran burning in Fla.

Former NBA, 'U'
basketball player
guilty of fraud

Top national security
advisors say burning
could put Americans
at risk overseas
top two national security advis-
ers in President Barack Obama's
Cabinet yesterday denounced
plans by a small church in Florida
to burn the Muslim holy book to
commemorate the Sept. 11, 2001,
terrorist attacks, saying it would
inflame tensions and put Ameri-
cans abroad at risk.
Secretary of State Hillary Rod-
ham Clinton and Defense Secre-
tary Robert Gates said the plan was
ill-advised and echoed concerns
first raised by the U.S. commander
in Afghanistan, Gen. David Petrae-
us, who warned that the proposed
weekend event would place the
lives of American troops in jeop-
ardy there and elsewhere. U.S. offi-
cials in Iraq agreed.

Underscoring the administra-
tion's concern about the potential
impact of the Quran burning, the
State Department ordered U.S.
embassies and consulates around
the world to assess their secu-
rity and warn Americans if they
believe anti-American protests
may occur. At least one post, the
U.S. Embassy in Algeria, issued a
security alert yesterday.
In remarks to the Council on
Foreign Relations think tank in
Washington, Clinton called the
plans "outrageous" and "aberra-
tional" and said they do not repre-
sent America or American values
of religious tolerance and inclu-
She also lamented that the tiny
Dove World Outreach Center con-
gregation in Gainesville had got-
ten so much attention for what she
called a "distrustful and disgrace-
ful" means of marking the ninth
anniversary of the Sept. 11 terror-
ist attacks.
"It is regrettable that a pastor in
Gainesville, Fla., with a church of

no more than 50 people can make
this outrageous and distrust-
ful, disgraceful plan and get the
world's attention, but that's the
world we live in right now," Clin-
ton said. "It is unfortunate, it is not
who we are."
Through a Pentagon spokes-
man, Col. David Lapan, Gates
added his voice to the growing
"No one is questioning the right
to do these things. We are ques-
tioning whether that's advisable
considering the consequences that
could occur," Lapan said. "Gen.
Petraeus has been very vocal and
very public on this, and his position
reflects the secretary's as well."
Petraeus on Tuesday said that
"images of the burning of a Quran
would undoubtedly be used by
extremists in Afghanistan - and
around the world - to inflame pub-
lic opinion and incite violence." In
addition, Gen. Ray Odierno, the
former top commander in Iraq, said
Wednesday he feared extremists
will use the incident to sow hatred

against U.S. troops overseas.
In Iraq, where almost 50,000
American troops are still serving,
U.S. Ambassador to Iraq James
Jeffrey and the commander of U.S.
forces in Iraq, Gen. Lloyd Austin,
joined in the condemnation, call-
ing the plan "disrespectful, divi-
sive and disgraceful."
"As this holy month of Rama-
dan comes to a close and Iraqis
prepare to celebrate Eid al-Fitr, we
join with the citizens of Iraq and
of every nation to repudiate reli-
gious intolerance and to respect
and defend the diversity of faiths
of our fellow man," they said in
a joint statement released by the
U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.
Despite the widespread con-
demnation, church Pastor Terry
Jones has vowed to go ahead with
the event.
Clinton appealed for Jones to
reconsider and cancel. And, in the
event he goes ahead with the plan,
she suggested to laughter from
the audience, that the news media
ignore it.

Jury finds Rumeal
Robinson guilty on
11 counts of fraud
Rumeal Robinson, who led Michi-
gan to the NCAA men's basketball
championship in 1989 and later
played intheNBA,was convicted in
federal court yesterday of borrow-
ing more than $700,000 for a sham
business deal andthenspendingthe
money on a condominium, expen-
sive furniture and cars.
A jury found Robinson guilty of
11 counts, including bank bribery,
wire fraud, conspiracy to commit
bank fraud and making a false state-
ment to a financial institution. He
faces up to 30 years in prison and a
$1 million fine on each count. A date
for sentencing hasn't been set.
Among a lengthy list of accusa-
tionsby prosecutorswas one accus-
ing Robinson of scheming to sell
his mother's home in Cambridge,
Mass., without her knowledge.
A telephone message left for
Robinson's attorney, J. Keith Rigg
of Des Moines, wasn'timmediately
Robinson grew up in Cambridge
and was a star at Michigan best
known for sinkingtwo free throws
that helped the Wolverines beat
Seton Hall in the 1989 national title
game. He was drafted 10th overall
by Atlanta in 1990 and went on to
play six seasons in the NBA with
the Hawks, Nets, Hornets, Trail
Blazers, Suns and Lakers.
Federal prosecutors say Robin-
son schemed between 2004 and
2005 to borrow the money from
Community State Bank in the Des
Moines suburb of Ankeny. He had
the help of Brian Williams, a loan
officer at the bank who pleaded
guiltytoconspiracy tocommitbank
fraud before Robinson's trial began.
Prosecutors said Williams

signed off on an initial $377,000
loan to Robinson for his business,
Megaladon Development Inc.,
which was supposedly pursuing
a development deal in Jamaica.
Instead, Robinson bought a condo,
plasma TVs and designer furni-
ture, prosecutors said.
They said Robinson put the
condo in the name of his girlfriend,
listing her as his company's mar-
keting director thoughshe actually
worked in a strip club.
Williams later approved an
$80,000 loan for Robinson, which
was supposed to be used for busi-
ness butagain was spenton person-
al items, includingcars, clothes and
more furniture, prosecutors said.
When Williams' lending author-
ity at the bank ran out, he and Rob-
inson circumvented the $500,000
limit by having the mother-in-law
of Robinson's business partner,
Jorge Rodriguez, sign documents
for a $150,000 loan that was wired
directly to Robinson's company.
Prosecutors said the woman was
told she was signing the documents
to invest in Robinson's company,
buthe spent $44,000 to buy or lease
10 vehicles, including three Mer-
cedes, two BMWs and five motor-
cycles. He also spent $3,000 atstrip
clubs, bought a dog for $1,000 and
spent $28,000 on house-related
payments, prosecutors said.
They said Robinson later
obtained three more loans from
the Ankeny Bank totaling more
than $111,000 in the name of his
When it became obvious the
Jamaica deal would fail, Robinson
and Williams became involved in
an energy project with a company
called Fairway Energy. Williams
loaned $495,000 to the company
in exchange for a promise of a pay-
ment of that same amount to Wil-
liams. Another $101,000 loan was
made by Williams in connection
with the energy company.

Mexican mayor killed, suspects arrested

Slaying of mayor
was country's third
in less than a month
gunmen killed the mayor of a small
town in the northern Mexico state
of San Luis Potosi yesterday, and
prosecutors announced the arrest
of seven suspects in the massacre
of 72 migrants in August.
President Felipe Calderon's
office issued a statement saying
he "energetically condemned" the
slaying of the mayor of El Naranjo
- the third mayor to be killed in
Mexico in less than a month.
Amid the violence, U.S. Sec-
retary of State Hillary Rodham

Clinton said that Mexico is "look-
ing more and more like Colombia
looked 20 years ago, where the
narco-traffickers control certain
parts of the country, not signifi-
cant parts."
Her comments raised hackles in
"Of course we do not agree with
the statement in this regard, given
that there are very important dif-
ferences between what Colom-
bia faced then and what Mexico
faces today," Mexican government
security spokesman Alejandro
Poire said.
Mexican officials say drug car-
tels are not allied with domestic
rebel insurgencies, do not have
political influence or following
and do not control of large swaths

of the country.
In Colombia in the 1980s and
1990s, the Medellin drug cartel
waged a full frontal assault on the
state, endangering its very integ-
rity. It used bullets and bribes
against police, politicians and
judges and turned to terror attacks
against civilians.
Attacks like yesterday's shoot-
ing death of El Naranjo Mayor
Alexander Lopez Garcia suggest
Mexico's cartels are indeed tar-
geting civilian government, using
both violence and corruption.
The San Luis Potosi state
prosecutors' office said Lopez
Garcia was killed by a squad of
four hitmen who pulled up in a
Two of the attackers burst into

Lopez Garcia's office and killed
him before fleeing. The rural
township of about 20,000 people
borders the violent-wracked state
of Tamaulipas, where 72 migrants
were massacred by drug gunmen
in August.
There was no immediate infor-
mation onthe motive inthe attack,
but the style of the slaying resem-
bles methods used by Mexico's
drug cartels.
Lopez Garciawathethird Mexi-
can mayor slain in the last month.
On Aug. 29, the mayor of a town
just across the state line in Tam-
aulipas was shot to death and his
daughter wounded. The mayor of
Santiago, a town in the neighbor-
ing state of Nuevo Leon, was found
murdered Aug.18.


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RELEASE DATE- Thursday, September 9,2010
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