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Oklahoma prosecutors deny arranging a meeting between the mother of a missing girl and the Kansas man charged with killing the girl and three other people in 1999.

The Tulsa World reports that prosecutors responded Friday to a motion by attorneys for Ronnie Busick of Wichita, saying Busick had said he would talk to relatives of the girls, whose bodies have never been found, and sent a note to the sheriff saying he wanted to talk to Lorene Bible.

Busick faces four counts of murder and other charges in the deaths Danny and Kathy Freeman of Welch and the disappearance of their 16-year-old daughter Ashley Freeman and Bible's 16-year-old Lauria Bible from the Freeman's home.

Defense attorneys are seeking any recordings of Busick's meeting with Lorene Bible and her personal notes.


A U.S. appeals court says a shoe made by American footwear giant Skechers is nearly identical to an iconic Adidas shoe and would likely confuse consumers about the manufacturers.

A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday upheld a lower court ruling blocking Skechers from selling its Onix shoe.
Adidas argued in a lawsuit that the Onix was a rip-off of its Stan Smith tennis shoe.

The 9th Circuit judges said the shoes had only minor differences, and there was evidence that Skechers intended to confuse consumers.
A spokeswoman for Skechers, Jennifer Clay, said the company does not comment on pending litigation.
The 9th Circuit allowed Skechers to sell its Cross Court shoe, saying Germany-based Adidas failed to show irreparable harm from the sale of that footwear.


Nevada prison officials got the go-ahead Thursday to execute the state's first death-row inmate in 12 years, after the state Supreme Court ruled that defense lawyers and a rights group used the wrong process to try to stop the lethal injection.

Justices sidestepped the question of whether the state should use a never-before-tried combination of drugs that prison officials drew up for the execution of Scott Raymond Dozier.
The protocol includes a powerful painkiller that is fueling much of the nation's opioid epidemic and a paralyzing drug that could mask any signs of trouble.

The American Civil Liberties Union argued the drug is not legal to use for euthanizing pets in Nevada.

"Although we recognize the importance of this matter, both to Dozier and the citizens of the State of Nevada, the fact that this case has serious implications was all the more reason to follow established rules and procedures," the court said.

The blunt and unanimous order came just two days after the seven justices heard oral arguments in Carson City.


A program out of Chicago’s federal court building designed to give non-violent suspects a chance to stay out of prison has held its first graduation.
It’s a pretrial diversionary program emphasizing teamwork and counseling on living constructive, crime-free lives.

A statement from the U.S. District Court for northern Illinois says five participants whose alleged crimes ranged from computer fraud to drug possession graduated at a ceremony Thursday. Successful completion keeps participants out of prison. It can lead to reductions of felonies to misdemeanors and even to dismissal of charges.

Participants can’t have felony records. They attend bi-monthly court sessions for up to two years. Judges, prosecutors and defense attorneys help oversee the program. It’s called Sentencing Options that Achieve Results, or SOAR for short. It was established in 2016.


A Paraguayan court on Tuesday confirmed the extradition of Nicolas Leoz, the former president of South America's soccer confederation.

However, his defense attorney said they would appeal the decision at the country's Supreme Court.

The 89-year-old Leoz was charged in a corruption scandal being investigated by the U.S. Justice Department, and has been held under house arrest in Asuncion fighting the extradition order.

A court in November approved his extradition to the United States, where he has been wanted since 2015 on charges of receiving millions of dollars in bribes from marketing companies in exchange for TV and marketing rights to soccer tournaments. Leoz denies any wrongdoing.

An appeals court on Tuesday confirmed the decision by denying an appeal. "Two of the three members of the appeals court voted for his extradition, while one of them voted in favor of our position to deny the extradition because Paraguay doesn't have similar legislation to the U.S., where bribery in the private sector is considered a crime," Leoz's attorney, Nicolas Preda, told The Associated Press.

Preda said his legal team would soon appeal to the Supreme Court, which he said doesn't have a deadline to rule.


The Ohio Supreme Court won't reconsider its decision upholding the death sentence for a man convicted of killing three down-and-out men lured by fake Craigslist job offers.

Death row inmate Richard Beasley was convicted of partnering with a teenage boy in 2011 to lure victims with promises of jobs on an Ohio farm.

The court in February upheld Beasley's death sentence. On Wednesday the court unanimously rejected Beasley's arguments that Justice Patrick DeWine should have excused himself because his father is Attorney General Mike DeWine.

Justice Pat Fischer said Beasley lost the chance to argue over the DeWine family connection by failing to raise it initially. Fischer also said the connection wouldn't violate current judicial codes of conduct.

Beasley's attorney plans an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.


Veterans and their families asked a federal appeals court Wednesday to reinstate dozens of lawsuits alleging that a government contractor caused health problems by using burn pits during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

More than 60 lawsuits allege that KBR Inc. — a former Halliburton subsidiary — dumped tires, batteries, medical waste and other materials into open burn pits, creating harmful smoke that caused gastrointestinal illnesses, neurological problems, respiratory problems, cancers and other health issues in more than 800 service members.

The lawsuits, which were filed in multiple districts around the country and then consolidated, also alleged that at least 12 service members died from illnesses caused by the burn pits.

Last year, a judge in Maryland dismissed the lawsuits, finding that the U.S. military made all of the key decisions and had control over KBR's use and operation of burn pits. The lower court found that analyzing military decision-making during war is a political question not appropriate for judicial review.

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