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New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson was honored on Tuesday with a statue of himself on the steps of the Superdome overlooking Champions Square.

The statue, of Benson in suit smiling and holding the Lombardi Trophy aloft, is to serve as a lasting reminder of his longtime commitment and contributions to the New Orleans community and the people of Louisiana as a sports owner, businessman and philanthropist

The bronze statue was sculpted by artist Brian Hanlon, who also did the Steve Gleason statue and the Shaquille O'Neal statue at LSU.

Gill Pratt begins prison term in Fla.
Tuesday, 02 September 2014 19:45

More than three years after she was convicted in a corruption scheme, former New Orleans City Councilwoman Renee Gill Pratt has reported to a minimum-security federal prison camp in Florida to begin serving a four-year sentence.

Gill Pratt, 60, was assigned to the Bureau of Prisons facility in Marianna, Florida, according to her lawyer, Mike Fawer. Marianna is between Pensacola and Tallahassee, about a four-hour drive from New Orleans.

Gill Pratt was convicted of racketeering in July 2011 for her role in a scheme to steer taxpayer money to a string of charities controlled by the political organization headed by former U.S.

Water reports investigated
Tuesday, 02 September 2014 19:45

State Police are investigating the possibility of fraud after “significant inconsistencies” were discovered between reports compiled by St. John the Baptist Parish employees involved in testing the local water supply and reports compiled by the state Department of Health and Hospitals. The discrepancies came to light last week after the discovery of a rare brain-eating amoeba in one area of the parish’s water lines.

Sgt. Nick Manale, a State Police spokesman, said Tuesday that law enforcement authorities were contacted by state health officials who became concerned that their sampling of the parish water system differed sharply from internal parish reports that preceded the discovery of the amoeba.

Three vying for seats ruled out from races
Tuesday, 02 September 2014 19:45

A judge on Tuesday disqualified defense attorney Lionel “Lon” Burns in his bid to unseat Orleans Parish District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro, ruling that Burns failed to prove that he paid his state taxes for four years prior to filing his candidacy papers last month.

Burns, a former Orleans Parish prosecutor, said he “absolutely” would appeal Civil District Court Judge Tiffany Chase’s ruling. He has until Wednesday to do so.

Also on Tuesday, U.S. Rep. Cedric Richmond won the first round in a bid to knock two of his four challengers out of the race, while Jefferson Parish judicial candidate Angel Varnado beat back a residency challenge.

High noon at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome brought a who's who of New Orleans sports, the city and the state.

"We are gathered here for a most appropriate statement of gratitude and appreciation
and a love for a man who has had one of the single positive impacts on the psyche of the people of New Orleans and Louisiana," said Tourism leader Mark Romig.

The gathering was to share an honor with Saints Owner Tom Benson.


Mick Jagger was born on July 26, 1943. That makes him 71 years old, and he still can wow an audience. But a St. Bernard Parish elected official who is the same age was recently targeted by a lawsuit because of her age.

"I'm the only woman constable in St. Bernard Parish, and I'm proud of that, and I do a good job," said Hillary Miller, Constable for Ward F.

Critics say a controversial new state law fosters age discrimination.

SAN ANTONIO – The first Air Force instructor convicted of rape in a sex scandal at one of the nation's busiest military training centers has died in prison.

Staff Sgt. Luis Walker died at a hospital Sunday night after being found unresponsive two days earlier in his cell at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.



Prison spokeswoman Denise Haeussler says the cause of death is being investigated.

She says no further details will be available until the Army criminal investigators have completed their work.

Corruption 'costs millions of lives'
Tuesday, 02 September 2014 19:17
3 September 2014Last updated at 00:58
Pile of dollars (file picture)The ONE group says money lost because of corruption would otherwise be spent on school and medicine

An estimated $1tn (£600bn) a year is being taken out of poor countries and millions of lives are lost because of corruption, according to campaigners.

“This calls into question Mr Juneau’s ability to carry out his duties and creates an unacceptable appearance of bias.”

BP’s attack against the claims administrator is the latest twist in a long-running row over the way payouts are being awarded for the 2010 spill, which killed 11 men and caused billions of dollars’ worth of damage to businesses along the American coastline.


AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

Apple has said that none of its systems were breached in the cyberattack that saw leaked photos of nude celebrities posted online.

The FBI and Apple are investigating allegations that the online accounts of a number of celebrities, including Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton, were hacked.



“After more than 40 hours of investigation, we have discovered that certain celebrity accounts were compromised by a very targeted attack on user names, passwords and security questions, a practice that has become all too common on the Internet,” Apple said, in a statement released on Tuesday.

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