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News Scan

Trucker With 10 Tons of Marijuana Sentenced to 21 Years: Greg Moran of The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that Carlos Cunningham was sentenced to 21 years and 8 months in prison for hauling almost 19,400 pounds of marijuana in November. Cunningham was stopped at a Southern California checkpoint and agents found the drugs in the back of the rig he was driving. Agents searched the warehouse in Otay Mesa where they had tracked Cunningham from and found a tunnel that ran beneath the border to Tijuana. Authorities seized 16 tons of marijuana from inside the tunnel. A second tunnel was found in Otay Mesa a few weeks after the first, and authorities say they ultimately seized close to 100,000 pounds of marijuana. Ten people have been arrested and are being prosecuted in connection with both tunnels. U.S District Judge Larry Burns stated today during sentencing, "this is a sit-up-and-take-notice amount of narcotics, even in a district where we have become jaded by very large amounts."

Florida Records Lowest Crime Rate in 40 Years: Juan Ortega of the Sun Sentinel (FL) reports Florida officials announced today the number of major crimes reported in the state has fallen below rates recorded four decades ago. Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi and Governor Rick Scott both attest the numbers to the dedication of public safety by law enforcement officers. Governor Scott also noted that six officers have already been killed in the line of duty this year.

Convicted Rapist Turns Down Heart Transplant: The Associated Press reports that Kenneth Pike, an inmate in a New York state prison serving an 18 to 40 year sentence for raping a 12-year-old female relative in 1996, has turned down a heart transplant after the story of his transplant evaluation sparked debate over inmates receiving organ transplants at taxpayer's expense. Pike's procedure could have cost up to $800,000. A relative says Pike recently had a triple bypass and would likely die without the heart transplant.   

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