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Nation / World

4 family members plead guilty in $25 million IRS wages scam

Friday, August 29, 2014

LOWELL — Four members of a Lowell family have pleaded guilty to charges that they schemed to hide $25 million in wages from the Internal Revenue Service, federal prosecutors say. The family ran a temporary employment agency from 2004 to 2009, during which time they reported to the IRS that their employees made about $2.2 million in wages, when in fact they had made $30 million, the U.S. attorney’s office … 0

Bombing suspect wants trial delay to 2015

Friday, August 29, 2014

BOSTON — Lawyers for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev asked Friday to delay his trial until at least September 2015. “We recognize that the government and many members of the public, especially in the Boston area, may want the trial to begin quickly,” the lawyers said in a court filing, but it is critically important that both sides have time “to uncover … 0

US judge halts key part of Texas abortion law

Friday, August 29, 2014

AUSTIN, Texas — A federal judge Friday threw out new Texas abortion restrictions that would have effectively closed more than a dozen clinics in the state. U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel sided with clinics that sued over one of the most disputed measures of a sweeping anti-abortion bill signed by Republican Gov. Rick … 0

Israel kills 3 Hamas military commanders in Gaza Hamas leader admits group behind kidnapping, killing of 3 teens

Thursday, August 21, 2014

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Israel stepped up its campaign against Gaza’s ruling Hamas on Thursday, killing three of the group’s senior military commanders in an airstrike that pulverized a four-story home, the second such attack targeting top … 0

US mission to rescue hostages in Syria failed

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama sent special operations troops to Syria this summer on a secret mission to rescue American hostages, including journalist James Foley, held by Islamic State extremists, but they did not find them, the Obama administration said Wednesday. Officials said the rescue mission was authorized … 0

Beheading spurs attacks on Islamic militants

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

WASHINGTON — The United States launched a new barrage of airstrikes against Islamic State extremists Wednesday and weighed sending more troops to Iraq as President Barack Obama vowed to be relentless in pursuit of the terrorist group that … 0

44 overdoses in New Hampshire, prompts local officials to step up monitoring of synthetic marijuana 'smacked'

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — While New Hampshire officials deal with a rash of overdoses caused by a potent type of synthetic marijuana called “Smacked,” a merchant who helps run two downtown head shops said the product is unfamiliar to him. … 0

States’ leading lethal injection expert ends role

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

COLUMBUS, Ohio — An anesthesiologist said he would no longer act as an expert witness for states defending their lethal injection methods, creating another hurdle for corrections departments scrambling to find workable execution systems. Mark Dershwitz, a University of Massachusetts Memorial Medical Center of Worcester anesthesiologist and pharmacologist, … 0

Study: Toothless ‘dragon’ pterosaurs once ruled skies

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Ancient winged reptiles called pterosaurs were so successful that they ruled Earth’s skies for tens of millions of years, according to a study published in the journal ZooKeys. The fearsome fliers, part of a family of pterosaurs named Azhdarchidae, get their name from azdarha, the Persian word for … 0

Court tosses conviction in Massachusetts killing

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

BOSTON — The highest court in Massachusetts on Tuesday overturned a first-degree murder conviction against a Boston man who stabbed his girlfriend to death, finding that jurors were given faulty instructions on how they could consider his use of alcohol the night of the killing. The Supreme Judicial … 0

Interim schools chief seeks to keep steady course, foster communication

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

BELCHERTOWN — Continuity will be a goal for the upcoming school year as the district adjusts to an interim educational leader while the School Committee resumes its search for a permanent superintendent. Robert Gazda, who is taking a … 0

New leadership, college-credit classes in the mix at Smith Voke

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — New administrators, new classes and new animals are just some of the changes that will greet Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School students in September. “Next year is going to be a very, very exciting year … 0

Inside

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Hatfield, Smith Vocational Page C2 Amherst, Chinese Immersion Charter, Leverett, Shutesbury Page C3 Belchertown, Berkshire Trail, Hadley Page C4 Hampshire Regional, Gateway Regional Page C5 Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter, South Hadley Page C6 Frontier Regional/Union 28, Granby … 0