An East Greenwich man was sentenced on Wednesday to 65 months in federal prison for filing 58 fraudulent tax returns. Anthony DelFarno, former owner of the now-closed SoHo Ristorante at 21 Pier Marketplace in Narragansett, was imprisoned for tax fraud involving stolen identities. DelFarno was indicted on Dec. 18, 2014 and pleaded guilty on June 16, 2015 to 11 counts of mail fraud, 28 counts of stealing government funds and three counts of aggravated identity theft. The 53 year old will also serve three years of supervised release and pay $1.4 million of restitution to the government.
America’s school discipline policies are coming into play again after a white police officer, Ben Fields, was filmed grabbing a black female student seated at her desk, flipping her backward and pulling her and her desk across the floor before handcuffing her at Spring Valley High School in Columbia, South Carolina. According to police, Fields was called because the student was disrupting the class and refused to leave. Since the incident, Deputy Fields has been fired for violating department standards. Debates have started to heat up again about the power the police have and their relations with minorities. Those who have publically supported the student include prominent figures like presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders.
The longest serving republican speaker of the house, J. Dennis Hastert could potentially face anywhere from no jail time to six months behind bars after he plead guilty to trying to evade federal banking laws according to federal prosecutors. Hastert, 75, agreed in 2010 to provide $3.5 million to someone only listed as “Individual A” in a 15-page plea agreement “in order to compensate for, and keep confidential his prior misconduct” committed decades earlier. After an investigation conducted by the FBI, Hastert was found fudging his withdrawals and making purchases with campaign money on things like a fedora that once belonged to Michael Jackson, Build-A-Bear stuffed animals and an elk head from Montana.
Five designs have made the final cut for New Zealand’s new flag out of more than 10,000 entries. Four of the designs include variations of a fern, an indigenous plant to the region as well as a prominent symbol of the Maori culture and logo of the country’s national rugby team. The decision to change the country’s flag has received mixed reviews with many looking forward to a change and others wanting to keep the tradition of the current red, white and blue design alive. Some of the most frequent reasons for change include the flag’s older colonial design and similarities to both the Australian and the United Kingdom’s flags.
Iran has been invited to join talks in Vienna this week along with the United States, Russia and Europe to talk about the future of Syria after millions of its citizens have fled due to civil wars. Senior American officials have begun to accept that serious discussions over the country’s well-being must include Iran. The United States has been weary of joining forces with Iran. U.S. officials expect Iran to make an appearance, though they have not formally accepted the invitation yet. The meeting will be held in Vienna, the same location where Iran’s nuclear negotiations were discussed last month.