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The newest judge to the Rhode Island Superior Court was sworn in Saturday.

Democratic Gov. Dan McKee presided over the swearing in of R. David Cruise, a longtime political operative and state senator, at the Boys & Girls Club location in Cumberland.

McKee, a former Cumberland mayor who has known Cruise for years, said in a statement that he’s an “honest, fair and thoughtful leader who brings decades of legal and government experience to the bench.”

Cruise is a former state senator and Cumberland town councilor. In recent years, he’s served as former Gov. Gina Raimondo’s director of legislative affairs, former administrative magistrate with the Rhode Island Traffic Tribunal and chief of staff to the Rhode Island Senate, among other posts, according to McKee’s office.

In the 1990s, Cruise worked in the commerce department under President Bill Clinton and chief of staff to former Governor Bruce Sundlun. In the 1980s, he was a state senator and before that served on the Cumberland Town Council.

Cruise, who graduated from Providence College and the Suffolk University School of Law, replaces former Superior Court Judge Bennett Gallo, who retired in February.

The Rhode Island Superior Court has 22 judges and five magistrates. It handles both civil and criminal matters.



Israel on Sunday revoked the VIP permit of the Palestinian foreign minister after he returned to the West Bank from a trip to the International Criminal Court in the Hague, Israeli and Palestinian officials confirmed.

The move appeared to be Israeli retaliation for Palestinian support for the ICC’s war crimes investigation against Israel.

A Palestinian official said Foreign Minister Riad Malki was stopped Sunday as he entered the West Bank from Jordan through the Israeli-controlled crossing. Malki’s VIP card was seized, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was discussing a sensitive diplomatic issue. Losing the VIP status makes it harder for him to move through Israeli military checkpoints in the West Bank, and traveling abroad will require Israeli permission.

Israeli officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter, confirmed the incident, but directed questions to the Shin Bet security agency, which declined comment. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office declined comment.

The ICC’s chief prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, announced earlier this month that she was opening an investigation  into possible war crimes by Israel committed in the occupied West Bank and blockaded Gaza Strip.

The investigation is expected to look at the Israeli military’s conduct in a 2014 war against Hamas militants and during months of mass protests along Gaza’s frontier with Israel in which dozens of Palestinian were killed or wounded by Israeli gunfire. Israel has said its actions were legitimate acts of defense.

The probe also is set to examine Israel’s settlement policies in the West Bank and east Jerusalem, areas captured in 1967 and claimed by the Palestinians for a hoped-for independent state.

According to the Palestinian Foreign Ministry, Malki met with Bensouda last Thursday and urged her to expedite the investigations “to end the era of impunity and to start the path of accountability” of Israel.

The investigation was launched in response to a request by the Palestinians, who joined the court in 2015 after being granted nonmember observer status in the U.N. General Assembly.

Israel has fiercely condemned the investigation, accusing the ICC of bias and saying it has no jurisdiction since the Palestinians do not have a state. Israel is not a member of the ICC, but its citizens could be subject to arrest abroad if warrants are issued.

The court said last week it has sent formal notices to both sides about the impending investigation, giving them a month to seek deferral  by proving they are carrying out their own investigations.




The Texas Supreme Court sidestepped a ruling Friday on whether the state’s embattled power grid operator that remains under fire following February’s deadly blackouts can be sued.

The 5-4 decision comes a month after one of the worst power outages in U.S. history, which left millions of people without electricity for days in subfreezing weather. More than 50 people died, a toll that authorities say will likely climb as autopsies are completed.

The ruling was criticized by Chief Justice Nathan Hecht, who called it wasting “everyone’s time” at a moment when interest is high following the storm. The question of whether the Electric Reliability Council of Texas is immune to lawsuits was raised not by the recent blackouts but by an unrelated case that has dragged on for years.

The majority ruled that they had no jurisdiction in that case, making any determination moot.

Wrongful death lawsuits have piled up since the storm, and ERCOT faces an overhaul from state lawmakers. Outgoing CEO Bill Magness has claimed the outages were necessary to avert an event more catastrophic blackout that could have lasted for months.

Magness was fired, and several ERCOT board members have also resigned.



Many of us will be getting the third “stimulus” check from the US Treasury as a part of the American Rescue Plan Act signed by the President on March 10th. People who qualify (those who earn less than $75,000.00 for singles and $150,000 for married people who filed their taxes jointly), will get $1400.00 per person. That can add up to a lot of money for families!!

But, if you owe money to creditors, some of those that you owe may be able to garnish (seize) it right away. Which ones can get it and which cannot?

Who cannot get the money? Someone you owe for child support, and tax debts owed to the IRS.

Who can get the money and seize your bank account once the money comes in? Anyone else you owe, called “private debts”. So if there’s a lawsuit against you for unpaid credit card, medical debt, or damages from a car accident, these creditors can freeze your bank account and take the money.

The COVID-19 pandemic has damaged the economy, leaving many families and business owners worried about how they will pay for even the most basic expenses. In the midst of this crisis, you might be considering filing for bankruptcy or wondering how COVID-19 will affect an existing bankruptcy filing.

Chicago Bankruptcy Law Firm of Daniel J. Winter




A Georgia man has been sentenced to five years in federal prison for setting fire to a Savannah city government office building.

Stephen Charles Setter, 19, was sentenced by a U.S. District Court judge after pleading guilty to a charge of arson, federal prosecutors said in a news release. In his plea, Setter admitted to setting a blaze that destroyed the city’s code enforcement office last year on May 3.

Setter also told the court he had activated a fire alarm at a local marina that same night to draw firefighters away from their station. He said that allowed him to slip into the station and steal a radio, which he used to listen to fire department communications.

The fire at the code enforcement office spread to the attic and the roof. The building was declared a total loss with damage estimated at nearly $1 million. The fire was set late at night, when the building was unoccupied. No one was injured.

In addition to the prison sentence, the judge ordered Setter to pay $1.2 million in restitution.



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