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Governor Quinn Statement on Passing of Illinois State Trooper James Sauter PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Erin Wilson   
Friday, 29 March 2013 09:37

CHICAGO - Governor Pat Quinn today released the following statement regarding the crash last night that claimed the life of Illinois State Police Trooper James Sauter.

“Today the entire state of Illinois mourns the loss of Trooper James Sauter, who worked tirelessly to protect the people of our state. Illinois is a safer and better place thanks to his bravery and commitment to public safety.

"Trooper Sauter’s untimely passing is a tragic reminder of the dangers our sworn officers face every day in the line of duty.

“I send my condolences to the family and friends of Trooper James Sauter. They are in our thoughts and prayers during these most difficult of times.”

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REP. SMIDDY-SPONSORED BILL TO PREVENT CHILD SEX OFFENDERS FROM ESCAPING PROSECUTION WINS HOUSE APPROVAL PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Rep. Mike Smiddy   
Friday, 29 March 2013 09:36
PORT BYRON, IL – A measure co-sponsored by state Rep. Mike Smiddy (D-Hillsdale) to prevent child sex offenders from escaping prosecution won the approval of the Illinois House last week, in time for the recognition of Sexual Assault Awareness month in April.

“People who commit these terrible crimes against children should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law – not allowed to slide by because a few years have passed,” said Smiddy. “This is especially important when you consider how many child victims are scared to report the crimes, unsure if a crime has occurred, or simply afraid to report someone they know and should trust. This legislation gives child victims of the worst kind of sexual crimes the ability to seek justice when they are ready to face their abuser.”

In general, current law requires crimes to be prosecuted within three years for felony charges and within 1.5 years for misdemeanor charges, although some extensions already exist for sex crimes against minors. House Bill 1063 would eliminate the statute of limitations for certain sex crimes committed against a minor, including criminal sexual assault, aggravated sexual abuse, and predatory criminal sexual assault of a child.

“We are committed to ending the suffering of sexual assault victims and holding sex offenders accountable for their crimes,” said Lyn Schollett, general counsel for the Illinois Coalition Against Sexual Assault. “Children who have been victimized by sexual violence experience unimaginable trauma. Sex offenders often prevent child victims from reporting the crime by blaming or threatening the child. This bill will ensure that when a survivor of childhood sexual abuse is safe enough to report the crime, prosecutors can stand ready to charge the offender.”

House Bill 1063 will move to the Senate for consideration. For more information, contact Smiddy’s constituent services office at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , (309) 848-9098, or toll-free at (855) 243-4988.

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Exclusive UCI Video Exposes the Turkish "Flotilla of Horrors PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Unity Coalition for Israel   
Friday, 29 March 2013 09:26

The Unity Coalition for Israel (UCI) has re-issued a video that was uploaded days after the May 31, 2010 Turkish Flotilla incident just off the coast of Gaza. The video (linked below) is relevant to the March 22, 2013 apology given to Turkey by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

- click to view the video -

As it is made abundantly clear in our video, the Israelis did everything they could to avoid an incident and the well-prepared terrorists aboard the Mavi Marmara did all they could to provoke a fight. This leads UCI to ask the question, "who should be apologizing to whom?"

Amidst an atrocious distortion of facts in which Turkey is demanding $9 million in reparations for the deaths of terrorists aboard the Mavi Marmara, UCI reminds us of the vicious attacks on board the IHH-sponsored vessel (The IHH, Insani Yardim Vakfi, is a Turkish Government-subsidized NGO).

The revealing video report was first released by UCI 4 days after the Mavi Marmara incident. Today's re-release provides a sober reminder of the chilling events. After being attacked at sea and with no other recourse, the Israelis were clearly defending their very lives. At least 50 trained, military-style terrorists were intent on either killing or being killed as martyrs. The stage was set by the terrorists for the Mavi Marmara to become a "ship of horrors."

The Mavi Marmara, the lead ship of 6, ambushed the Israeli Navy that was seeking to peacefully re-route the May 31, 2010 flotilla from its destination to Gaza. The fact that the IHH hid many weapons on board amidst relief supplies and used unarmed civilian passengers as human shields should be considered war crimes.

The video speaks for itself. It clearly shows, as Israeli commandos landed on the ship's deck, they were beaten by men wielding pipes, knives and other weapons. Israeli officials say the initial plan was to use paintball guns to gain control of the ship and handguns for use only if their lives were threatened.

On May 28, 2010, just before the flotilla entered Israeli waters, an Al-Aqsa TV broadcast featured Dr. Abd Al-Fatah Nu’man, a Gaza-based Yemeni professor of Islamic law who stated, "The commander of the (flotilla) fleet said: 'We will not allow the Zionists to come near us, and we will wage resistance against them.' With what will they wage resistance? With their fingernails. These are people who wish to be martyred for the sake of Allah. As much as they want to reach Gaza, the other option (martyrdom) is more desirable to them."

In fact the Mavi Marmara passengers were recorded chanting, "Khaibar, Khaibar ya Yahud Jaysh Muhammed Safayood" ("...Oh Jews! The army of Muhammad will return!"), a taunt threatening a massacre of Jews. The message was clear. The "other option," martyrdom, was the goal of the flotilla.

UCI hopes Israeli leadership will use the abundant video evidence proving their innocence and heed Winston Churchill's words: "An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last."

Exclusive UCI Video Exposes the Turkish "Flotilla of Horrors" - click to view the video.

 
Judge Greve Named Chief Judge of Seventh Judicial District PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Steve Davis   
Friday, 29 March 2013 08:37

Des Moines, March 28, 2013 —The Iowa Supreme Court has appointed District Judge Marlita A. Greve, Bettendorf, as Chief Judge of the Seventh Judicial District. Judge Greve succeeds Judge Bobbi Alpers who will retire April 4, 2013.

"Judge Greve is well respected by both attorneys and her fellow judges in the Seventh District," Chief Justice Mark Cady said. "She has shown a strong commitment to our legal system and our profession. Her experience in business management will complement her excellent legal background."

Judge Greve was appointed to the bench in 2006. She received her undergraduate degree from Upper Iowa University Magna Cum Laude and her law degree from the University of Iowa College of Law with High Distinction. After graduating from law school in 1992, Judge Greve practiced as a trial lawyer in the areas of employment law, civil rights, personal injury and general civil litigation. Judge Greve is a member of the Scott County Bar Association, the Iowa State Bar Association, the Iowa Judges Association and Dillon Inns of Court. She is married and has a daughter.

"It is an honor to be selected as Chief Judge of the Seventh Judicial District," Judge Greve said. "I am pleased, eager and excited to carry on the work of Chief Judge Alpers and those before her. I am so privileged to have such hardworking and dedicated judicial officers and staff. Our goal is to continue to promote our judicial branch to our citizens and to continue to serve their needs as efficiently, promptly and respectfully as we can."

As chief judge, Judge Greve will supervise all judicial officers and court employees in the district, supervise the performance of administrative and judicial business in the district, set the times and places of holding court, designate presiding judges, and serve on the judicial council, which advises the supreme court on administrative matters affecting the trial courts. In addition, she will continue to preside over cases.

The Seventh Judicial District is located in eastern Iowa and comprises five counties: Cedar, Clinton, Jackson, Muscatine, and Scott. The district has twelve district judges, five district associate judges, four senior judges, fifteen part-time magistrates, and 166 employees, with an operating budget for the current fiscal year of approximately $14 million. A total of 85,614 cases were filed in the Seventh Judicial District last year.

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2013

 
Governor Quinn Praises State Employees for Discovering and Reporting Fraud Scheme PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Erin Wilson   
Friday, 29 March 2013 08:18

Capital Development Board Staff Vigilance Resulted in Successful Prosecution of Contractor Who Violated State Law

SPRINGFIELD – Governor Pat Quinn today issued the following statement regarding the investigation of the former president of a Peoria area construction firm who pled guilty to fraud in a scheme to obtain millions in taxpayer-funded state contracts. The fraud was discovered and reported by employees of the state’s Capital Development Board, which oversees all non-road, state-funded construction projects. Governor Quinn has made restoring integrity to Illinois government a top priority.

“The employees of the state’s Capital Development Board who uncovered this fraud scheme and reported it to the proper authorities are to be commended for their vigilance. Because of their careful oversight of state contracts involving millions of dollars, a clear message is being sent that corruption will not be tolerated in Illinois,” Governor Quinn said. “I urge all state employees to follow their example so we can make sure that all state funds are properly spent, and Illinois taxpayers can realize the benefits of state-funded projects.”

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