Facebook is close to settling a privacy lawsuit related to user data. Yahoo Finance's On the Move panel breaks down the details.
Facebook is close to settling a privacy lawsuit related to user data. Yahoo Finance's On the Move panel breaks down the details.
The 300-million-year-old shark’s teeth were the first sign that it might be a distinct species. “Great for grasping and crushing prey rather than piercing prey,” said discoverer John-Paul Hodnett, who was a graduate student when he unearthed the first fossils of the shark at a dig east of Albuquerque in 2013. This week, Hodnett and a slew of other researchers published their findings in a bulletin of the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science identifying the shark as a separate species.
Indianapolis police were seeking a motive for the shooting that killed at least eight people at a FedEx facility.
All the votes the Texas senator opposed in 2021 – including not one confirmation of a woman to the position of Cabinet secretary
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Jimmy Kimmel and YouTube personality and engineer Mark Rober will host an online fundraiser to benefit those with autism. The three-hour event, “Color The Spectrum: A Livestream To Support The Autism Community,” will be held April 30 (8 p.m. EDT) on Rober's YouTube channel. Maya Rudolph, Adam Sandler, Chris Rock and Mark Hamill are among the celebrities set to take part, according to an announcement Friday by Rober, who has a son on the autism spectrum, and ABC late-night host Kimmel.
Attorneys for a man who killed five people at a Maryland newspaper said Friday they will not seek a delay at this time for the second phase of his trial to determine whether he is not criminally responsible due to insanity for the attack nearly three years ago. Lawyers representing Jarrod Ramos were given a Friday deadline by Judge Michael Wachs to request a postponement based on any objections they had to the COVID-19 protocols that are expected to be in place for the jury trial, which is set to begin in June. For example, attorneys object to see-through barriers between Ramos and his lawyers that they say will impede their ability to talk to him during the proceedings.
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A Facebook meme misrepresents the votes of Democrats on a proposal that would require ICE be notified when an undocumented immigrant purchases a gun.
Oath Keeper life member and metal guitarist Jon Schaffer was one of 13 affiliates of the anti-government extremist group charged in the Capitol riot.
_Tyrannosaurus rex_ spanned all of ancient North America, and about 20,000 lived at once. 1Ado123/Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SAThe Research Brief is a short take about interesting academic work. The big idea During 2.4 million years of existence on Earth, a total of 2.5 billion Tyrannosaurus rex ever lived, and 20,000 individual animals would have been alive at any moment, according to a new calculation method we described in a paper published on April 15, 2021 in the journal Science. To estimate population, our team of paleontologists and scientists had to combine the extraordinarily comprehensive existing research on T. rex with an ecological principle that connects population density to body size. From microscopic growth patterns in bones, researchers inferred that T. rex first mated at around 15 years old. With growth records, scientists can also generate survivorship curves – an estimate of a T. rex‘s chances of living to a given age. Using these two numbers, our team estimated that T. rex generations took 19 years. Finally, T. rex existed as a species for 1.2 to 3.6 million years. With all of this information, we calculate that T. rex existed for 66,000 to 188,000 generations. From the fossil record alone, we had generated a T. rex turnover rate. If our team could estimate the number of individuals in each generation, we would know how many T. rex ever lived. Damouth’s law connects body mass to population density. Sara Volz, CC BY-ND In ecology, there is a well-established relationship between body mass and population density called Damuth’s law. Larger animals need more space to survive – one square mile of grassland can support a lot more bunnies than elephants. This relationship is also dependent on metabolism – animals that burn more energy require more space. Paleontologists have come up with a range of good estimates of T. rex’s body mass and have also estimated its metabolism – slower than mammals but somewhat faster than a large modern lizard, the Komodo dragon. With Damuth’s law, we then estimated that the ancient world held about one T. rex every 42.4 square miles (109.9 square km). That’s about two individuals in the entire area of Washington, D.C. Now we had all the pieces we needed. Multiplying the population density by the area in which T. rex lived gives us an estimate of 20,000 individuals per generation. Knowing the total number of T. rex that ever lived unlocks other pieces of knowledge – like the fraction that turn into fossils and were found. Franz Anthony, CC BY-ND Why it matters Once we figured out the average population size, we were able to calculate the fossilization rate for T. rex – the chance that a single skeleton would survive to be discovered by humans 66 million years later. The answer: about 1 in 80 million. That is, for every 80 million adult T. rex, there is only one clearly identifiable specimen in a museum. This number highlights how incomplete the fossil record is and allows researchers to ask how rare a species could be without disappearing entirely from the fossil record. Beyond calculating the T. rex fossilization rate, our new method could be used to calculate population size for other extinct species. What still isn’t known Estimates about extinct animals always include some amount of uncertainty. Our estimate of T. rex population density ranges from one individual for every 2.7 square miles (7 square km) to one for every 665.7 square miles (1,724 square km). But surprisingly, the largest source of this uncertainty comes from Damuth’s law. There is a lot of variation in modern animals. For example, Arctic foxes and Tasmanian devils have similar body mass, but devils have six times the population density. Further study of living animals could tighten up our estimates on T. rex. We also don’t know fossilization rates of other long extinct dinosaurs. If we have many fossils of one species, does that mean they were more common than T. rex, or do we simply recover their fossils more often? The huge amount of research that has been done on T. rex played an important role in making this calculation. Evolutionnumber9/Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA What’s next This study might lead to other hidden facts about T. rex biology and ecology. For instance, we might be able to learn whether T. rex populations fluctuated up and down with Triceratops – similar to wolf and moose predator and prey relationships today. However, most other dinosaurs do not yet have the incredibly rich data from decades of careful fieldwork that allowed our team to tally up T. rex. If scientists want to apply this powerful technique to other extinct animals, we’ve got some more digging to do.This article is republished from The Conversation, a nonprofit news site dedicated to sharing ideas from academic experts. It was written by: Ashley Poust, University of California, Berkeley and Daniel Varajão de Latorre, University of California, Berkeley. Read more:Dinosaurs: how our understanding of what they looked like keeps changingBeyond dinosaurs, what would we need to create a Jurassic World? The authors do not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organization that would benefit from this article, and have disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.
Officials hope that missing crew members may have survived in air pockets on overturned ship
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The body-camera video was released Thursday in the police shooting of 13-year-old Adam Toledo. What we know about the gun and the officer involved.
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Friday marked the fourth time since March 18 the White House flag has been lowered following violence. "We must act," President Joe Biden says.
The Oversight Board, Facebook's 'Supreme Court,' is getting ready for the most consequential decision in its short existence.
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast / Photo via GettyAfter private equity billionaire Robert Smith admitted to a 15-year tax fraud scheme to hide $225 million from the Internal Revenue Service, he signed a rare non-prosecution agreement with law enforcement, allowing him to avoid any charges and return to civilian life.But while Smith attends birthday parties and New York Times conferences, the man he hired to help execute the fraud faces federal charges and up to 14 years in prison.On Thursday, a grand jury in San Francisco indicted Smith’s long-time attorney, 82-year-old Carlos Kepke, on charges of conspiring with the CEO to defraud the IRS. If found guilty, the octogenarian could see as much as five years in prison for conspiracy and up to three years for each charge of filing a false return; Kepke is alleged to have filed three.In the indictment, prosecutors claim the attorney helped Smith create a network of offshore trusts and LLCs in Belize and the Caribbean island of Nevis to conceal about $225 million in income Smith had earned from capital gains from 1999 until 2014. In the first months of the new millennium, Kepke allegedly established an LLC on Nevis called Flash Holdings, and a Belizean trust called Excelsior. Neither entity, according to the indictment, had any purpose other than to hold Smith’s assets.This Billionaire Wants Everyone to Move on From His CrimesInvestigators believe Kepke established Excelsior under the name of Smith’s ex-wife’s elderly uncle, giving Smith a lesser role (but one with the power to appoint and remove the trustee). He then allegedly set it up such that the trust, rather than Smith, officially owned Flash Holdings. As a result, when the investor would deposit funds into Flash’s bank accounts, held in the tax-evasion hotspots of Switzerland and the British Virgin Islands, the money did not, nominally, belong to Smith––who in turn, did not report it on his taxes. “In reality,” the filing reads, “as Kepke knew, Smith actually earned this income, and retained full dominion and control over it.”Between 2007 and 2014, Smith allegedly paid Kepke nearly $1 million for the creation and management of the two entities, alongside a slew of other services, including filing three false tax returns on Smith’s behalf from 2012 to 2014. According to the indictment, since at least 2009, Kepke’s compensation included a fee to “purge” or as he put it, “securitize,” his files on Smith or his entities by destroying records.The charging document arrived on April 15—Tax Day—just two days after IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig told a Senate panel that tax evasion in the U.S. could easily exceed $1 trillion a year. A source close to Smith told The Daily Beast that the indictment marked the latest in the Department of Justice’s effort to pursue, not only those who fail to pay taxes, “but those who enable tax evasion by creating the ‘infrastructure’ of tax evasion.” That, the source said, “can include bankers, accountants, notaries, trust advisors, and even lawyers.”As part of Smith’s non-prosecution agreement, he agreed to testify against his former business partner, Robert Brockman, who was charged in October for an alleged 20-year scheme to conceal $2 billion in income from the Internal Revenue Service—the largest tax evasion charge in United States history.The 39-count indictment detailed a cartoonish conspiracy in which Brockman and associates communicated via code names like “Bonefish” and “Snapper,” used hidden income to buy a luxury yacht called “Turmoil,” and destroyed evidence with hammers. At one point, Brockman allegedly invited a wealth manager to adopt an alias and attend a “money laundering conference.”Brockman, who pleaded not guilty, has so far avoided trial. In court filings, attorneys representing the Reynolds and Reynolds CEO have claimed he suffers from a case of rapidly deteriorating dementia. The billionaire will be assessed at a mental competency hearing in June.Kepke also has alleged ties to Brockman. In Smith’s statement of facts, delivered to prosecutors for the landmark case, he indicated that Brockman, identified in the document as “Individual A,” had introduced him to an attorney, named only as “Individual B”—whom the indictment indicates was Kepke. Neither Kepke nor Smith agreed to comment for this article, but a source close to Smith confirmed the identity of Individual B to The Daily Beast.“The indictment is not a surprise as you know since in the Statement of Facts released last year as part of Robert's Non Prosecution Agreement (NPA), there were two individuals of interest to the DOJ—Bob Brockman (now known to be Individual A), and Carlos Kepke as Brockman's lawyer (now known to be Individual B)—and that Robert's cooperation represented DOJ's best avenue to prosecuting each of those individuals,” the source said.The DOJ could not have prosecuted Kepke on the basis of his role as Brockman’s lawyer, the source said, due to a statute of limitations—hence the indictment’s focus on Smith. Prosecutors may have hoped Kepke would cooperate, like Smith, in their case against Brockman. But to former federal prosecutor Paul Pelletier, who spent 27 years in the Department of Justice’s Tax Division, the indictment suggests that Kepke declined to follow Smith’s lead.“Between Smith's non-prosecution agreement [in October] and now, you know [Kepke's] been given ample time to cooperate, and he hasn't,” Pelletier said. “So they had to charge him."Typically, there are two ways to prosecute someone in the federal system. One way is to secure an indictment through a grand jury. The other way is by “information”—or through a charging document drafted with the consent of the defendant. If someone chooses to cooperate, they often plead guilty to an information, because it allows them greater influence on what they’re charged with. “If Kepke was cooperating,” Pelletier said, “I presume they would have charged him by information.”Former IRS investigator Martin Sheil, who has written for The Daily Beast, argued that prosecutors need to crack down on what he called the “wealth facilitators”—the lawyers, accountants, and financial consultants who enable tax evasion. “The entitled wealthy class seem to fully embrace Leona Helmsley’s famous aphorism that ‘only the little people pay taxes,’” Sheil told The Daily Beast. “And it is the lawyers and accountants that continue to engender this sense of entitlement by aiding and abetting the wealthy in their tax fraud pursuits.”But in the juxtaposition of Smith and Kepke’s cases, Pelletier saw a clear double standard. “It looks like the government is putting the heavy hand on an 82-year-old yet obviously didn’t put the same heavy hand on Smith,” he said. “If you want to indict Kepke, indict Kepke. But we know they didn’t charge Smith? The government has to treat equally situated people equally.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
President Joe Biden signed an emergency determination Friday that keeps refugees admissions to the U.S. at a Trump-era cap of 15,000.