News

Kevin Meerschaert

    Jacksonville Sheriff John Rutherford says the arrests of Fraternal Order of Police President Nelson Cuba and Vice-President Robbie Freitas shows no one in his department is above the law.

 Rutherford told reporters on Wednesday about the two officers’ roles in the Allied Veterans of the World conspiracy.

Law enforcement officials say Cuba and Freitas received more than 500-thousand dollars through a shell corporation during an 18-month period.

Florida Department of Law Enforcement has released more information about what they're calling Operation Reveal The Deal: 

Black smoke rose over the Vatican this morning.. a signal that the cardinals' conclave in Rome has not yet chosen a new pope.

The new pontiff will replace retiring Pope Benedict the 16th, and lead 1.2 billion Catholics around the  world.

He’ll also face deep divisions within the church and a scandal-plagued Vatican hierarchy.

Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll Resigns

Mar 13, 2013
Miami Herald

Update 10:30 am: The Governor's Office has confirmed both Matt Dixon's story from the Florida Times Union and Tia Mitchell's piece in the Tampa Bay Times. The Governor will answer questions at 3:00 this afternoon at the Capitol.

Kevin Meerschaert

The Jacksonville City Council has approved legislation authorizing a  long delayed plan to overhaul the old Federal Courthouse to house the State Attorney’s office.

Funding for the 26-million dollar project was always part of the 350-million dollar Courthouse project, but ran into design delays.

The original developer was dropped and the project was rebid but none of the new bids came in under budget.

Channel 4 News/WJXT

Fraternal Order of Police President Nelson Cuba is among the local figures arrested as part of a multi-state gambling investigation into the Allied Veterans of the World and its internet cafes.

Cuba and his second-in-command, Robbie Freitas have reportedly been arrested on racketeering charges. Three executives with Allied Veterans were also arrested including the head of the organization, Jerry Bass, executive Mike Davis, and attorney Kelly Mathis.

According to Federal documents, the charges stem from an investigation into how much money Allied Veterans gave to charity. The organization claimed their facilities were fundraising centers,  but the investigators say they were Internet casinos operating in violation of Florida’s gambling laws. While Allied Veterans said it was donating 70% or more of its proceeds to charity, authorities say they really only gave about 2% of  profits to veterans’ causes.

The investigation is being conducted by the IRS and the United States Secret Service, with help from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and several local agencies in the state including the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.

They received search warrants for 51 Allied Veterans properties in Florida including 8 in Duval County, 2 in Nassau County and 1 each in Flagler, Clay, Putnam and St. Johns counties.

The local chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police issued a statement saying that the arrests of its top leaders were related to the mens’ private business and unrelated to their duties with the F-O-P.

Robin Wright

  The events of the Arab Spring were momentous and for many, exciting to watch as they unfolded in the Middle East. So what now?

That's the domain of acclaimed author and foreign correspondent Robin Wright. She's in town this week to discuss her book, Rock the Casbah: Rage and Rebellion Across the Muslim World.

Three Jacksonville City Council Committees have deferred a vote on legislation that would have waived the city’s mobility fee for three years.

Council members want to try and reach a short term compromise, while a task force is formed to take a longer look at the fee’s formula and structure.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - A Senate committee has essentially killed Gov. Rick Scott's plan to expand Medicaid coverage to roughly 1 million of Florida's poorest residents
      Instead, the committee proposed Monday that the state adopt a managed care system that requires patients have a copayment.
      Sen. Joe Negron says he hopes the state can eventually exit from the Medicaid system entirely and called this proposal the beginning of a transformation. Lawmakers also discussed using state funds to help with copays.

New research from the University of Washington suggests that better economic conditions and healthier lifestyles in St. Johns County have led to a longer life expectancy for residents than in neighboring Putnam County.

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