Twenty-two years in a maximum-security prison was deemed sufficient punishment for the favored hitman of former drug kingpin of Colombia, Pablo Escobar, on Tuesday, August 26, 2014. John Jairo Velásquez, also known by his nickname, “Popeye,” was released early from a prison located 100 miles north of Bogotá, Colombia, a place where he had confessed to atrocities far more numerous than the one murder for which he had spent his time serving.
News and Politics
Early last month the U.S. House of Representatives passed two measures to tackle illegal immigration. The legislation has been lauded by Republicans including the Tea Party, and lambasted by Democrats. The proposal includes $694 million to bolster federal agencies dealing with the surge of immigrants. This number is significantly less than the $3.7 billion President Obama had previously requested (1).
Recently, a group of seven cuban immigrants found themselves on the coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula.1 This group of seven was attempting to traverse the 90-mile stretch of ocean from Cuba to Florida, but instead ended up in Mexico. Due to this longer than expected journey, two died, while the rest were in critical condition upon rescue by the Mexican Navy who found them off the coast of the peninsula. After recovery, the Cubans were deported back to Cuba, while their hopes of making it to the United States remain unfulfilled.
Eduardo Campos, a 2014 Brazilian presidential candidate, died in a plane crash on Wednesday. In addition to Campos, 49, four other passengers and two pilots were killed when the plane crashed in Santos, Brazil, about 35 miles south of São Paulo.2 According to air force officials, after hitting bad weather, the plane lost contact with air traffic control and was unable to land.1 Investigation is said to continue. Seven homes in the highly populated residential area were damaged as a result.2
After two days of intense talks leading up to the extended deadline of July 30th, Argentina was declared in default, its second in 13 years. Although various plans were proposed to avoid this result, such as coupon repayment and Argentine banks buying up the debt, Elliott Management refused any and all proposals to restructure, acting against the other 92% of creditors that accepted reduced repayments in 2005 and 2010.1 If Elliott Management would accept an offer, it would make over 150 times its initial investment.
On June 15, 2014, elections were held for the second time in Colombia in two months to determine who would serve as president for the next four years. Colombian elections, like presidential elections in many Latin American countries, take place in two rounds, if no winner can secure over 50% of the votes in the first round. In 2014, the current president, Juan Manuel Santos, of the center-right Party of the U, faced off against four challengers: Óscar Iván Zuluaga, of the Democratic Center; Clara López Obregón, of the Polo Democrático Alternativo; Marta Lucía Ram