National news briefs: 11/17/12
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WASHINGTON -- Medicare premiums are going up $5 a month in 2013, the government said Friday. It's less than expected, but still enough to eat up about one-fourth of a typical retiree's cost-of-living raise next year.
Medicare chief Marilyn Tavenner said the new "Part B" premium for outpatient care will be $104.90 a month. In most cases, it's deducted directly from a beneficiary's monthly Social Security check. Currently the premium is $99.90 a month.
Earlier this year, the government projected an increase of as much as $9 for 2013, but health care inflation has remained modest.
NEW YORK -- A Bosnian immigrant convicted of plotting to blow up New York City subways and other targets was sentenced Friday to spend his life in prison, the first member of a three-man team of would-be jihadists to be punished in connection with a plan that collapsed shortly before the eighth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.
Adis Medunjanin, 28, a naturalized U.S. citizen who attended high school in the Flushing neighborhood of Queens, was convicted in federal court last May on terrorism charges that included conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction, conspiracy to commit murder and providing material support to al-Qaida.
Prosecutors said he had teamed up with Najibullah Zazi and Zarein Ahmedzay, Afghan immigrants from the same neighborhood.
WASHINGTON -- JPMorgan Chase and Credit Suisse have agreed to pay a combined $417 million to settle federal civil charges that they sold risky mortgage bonds to investors ahead of the 2008 financial crisis that the banks knew could fail.
Under the settlement announced Friday, New York-based JPMorgan is paying $296.9 million. Credit Suisse, which is based in Zurich, will pay $120 million. The banks agreed to settle the charges without admitting or denying wrongdoing. The money will go to the investors burned by the risky mortgage bonds.
BERLIN -- Ikea has long been famous for its inexpensive, some-assembly-required furniture. On Friday the company admitted that political prisoners in the former East Germany provided some of the labor that helped it keep its prices so low.
A report by auditors at Ernst & Young concluded that Ikea, a Swedish company, knowingly benefited from forced labor in the former East Germany to manufacture some of its products in the 1980s. Ikea had commissioned the report in May as a result of accusations that both political and criminal prisoners were involved in making components of Ikea furniture and that some Ikea employees knew about it.
WASHINGTON -- Prominent Republicans are launching a new super-PAC they hope will help begin repairing the political damage left by years of anti-illegal immigrant rhetoric that has dominated GOP primaries and alienated crucial Hispanic voters.
The organization, Republicans for Immigration Reform, aims to undermine what organizers call the "extremists" who have pushed party nominees to stake out far-right positions such as opposing a pathway to legalization for millions of illegal workers, students and children.
The move comes in the aftermath of President Barack Obama's election victory in which he won the Hispanic vote.
First Published November 17, 2012 12:00 am