Around the region-Jan.10

Published: Sunday, January 10, 2010 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, January 10, 2010 at 12:12 a.m.


Judge denies 'Girls Gone Wild' founder's motion

PANAMA CITY - A Panama City judge has denied a motion for summary judgment in the 'Girls Gone Wild' civil suit.

The attorneys for the founder of the soft porn empire, Joe Francis, had argued that the evidence in the case was not sufficient to move forward to trial. In a Friday afternoon ruling, the judge disagreed and said the case could be presented to a jury.

The trial is scheduled for next month.

Four girls filed suit in 2008. They said they were 13 to 17 years old when they were filmed in stages of undress or engaged in sexual activity by Francis company, which produces "Girls Gone Wild" videos. The plaintiffs are now adults.

Disbarred Boca lawyer sentenced for mafia role

FORT LAUDERDALE - A disbarred South Florida attorney will spend time behind bars for his role in laundering money and other schemes orchestrated by a local mafia crew affiliated with New York's Bonanno crime family.

Kenneth Dunn of Boca Raton was sentenced Friday in Fort Lauderdale federal court to 43 months in prison. He had faced up to 57 months in prison.

Dunn acted as the crew's legal advisor. He told a federal judge that his drug habit clouded his judgment. He admitted he became entangled with organized crime two years ago, conspiring to forge checks, launder money and sell off documents that contained people's personal information, including their Social Security numbers.

FBI agents arrested Dunn and 10 other people from Broward and Palm Beach counties last May.

Three teens, one toddler injured in bus crash

GONZALEZ - Three teenagers and a toddler were treated for minor injuries after a minivan hit an Escambia County school bus.

Authorities say the crash occurred Friday afternoon in Gonzalez. The three teens were on the bus, and the 15-month-old child was in the minivan.

All four were reportedly taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.

Two men get life for kidnapping, raping girl

ORLANDO - Two men convicted of kidnapping and raping a 12-year-old Central Florida girl have been sentenced to life in prison.

An Orange County judge sentenced 25-year-old Juan Hernandez-Monzalvo and 24-year-old Richard Morales-Marin on Thursday. They were convicted in October of kidnapping with sexual battery, as well as several other charges.

The girl told authorities that she was walking to school one morning in February 2009 when the two men pulled her into a car at knifepoint, drove her to a vacant house and raped her.

Hernandez-Monzalvo testified that he was forced to take part in the assault, and Morales-Marin testified that the girl went with them willingly.

Man being held, tests done on spilled liquid

FORT LAUDERDALE - Authorities still aren't exactly sure what type of liquid forced an evacuation at Terminal Four at Port Everglades.

Authorities say tests conducted to identify the liquid suggested it wasn't hazardous, although the results were inconclusive. Additional samples are being tested.

Hundreds of people were evacuated Friday after a customs agent stopped a man with the suspicious liquid. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent was taken to a hospital after inhaling fumes and complained of lightheadedness and a rapid heart rate. The agent was treated and later released.

The man accused of having the liquid was being held on a charge of marijuana possession. Charges from the liquid incident are pending.

Compiled from The Associated Press

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