5 people charged after motorcycle stunt-driving incidents kill 1, injure 3

An eight-month investigation has led to charges in two separate cases of aggressive motorcycle riders in the Toronto area, Ontario Provincial Police say. Police say a group of motorcycles was travelling together near Allen Road, slowing traffic and performing stunts. (CBC)In a separate incident last September, police say road rage between a motorist and a group of motorcycle riders led to an assault and a fiery crash in Mississauga. According to investigators, the riders were slowing traffic and performing stunts around 10:40 p.m. on Highway 427 near Dundas Street. OPP officers have seized four motorcycles and say additional arrests and charges are expected in the coming days.

March 28, 2017 20:15 UTC

Panic spreads in Iraq, Syria over record number of civilians reported killed in U.S. strikes

The escalation comes as local ground forces backed by air support from a U.S.-led coalition close in on Daesh’s two main urban bastions: Raqqa in Syria and Mosul in Iraq. Iraqi officials and residents say as many as 200 died in U.S.-led strikes, with more than 100 bodies recovered from a single building. The U.S.-led coalition says it is investigating the reports but has acknowledged carrying out a strike against militants in the area. It happens every day.”The group has stopped monitoring Russian strikes in Syria, in order to focus on accusations linked to the U.S.-led coalition, saying its organization is overwhelmed. “In Raqqa they haven’t yet completed the encircling, and yet there’s been a huge jump in reported casualties from coalition strikes since Trump,” Woods said.

March 28, 2017 20:15 UTC

Sousa says Ottawa's help needed to cool real estate market

Ontario Finance Minister Charles Sousa discusses the federal budget at a news conference in Toronto on Monday, March 22, 2017. ( Frank Gunn / THE CANADIAN PRESS )Finance Minister Charles Sousa is injecting some reality into the real estate market. The provincial government had hoped federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau would increase the capital gains inclusion rate for non-principal residences in last week’s budget. Currently, only 50 per cent of the capital gain on a non-principal home counts taxable income, which has led to speculators flipping houses in the red-hot Greater Toronto market. But provincial insiders warn it would not have as much impact on the Toronto market as it had out west.

March 28, 2017 20:15 UTC

Labrador man denied entry to U.S. accuses border guard of racial profiling

A Happy Valley-Goose Bay man who was blocked from crossing the Canada-United States border over the weekend says an American border officer boasted to colleagues about denying entry to "Muhammads." "[The border officer] kept asking me about … the place I was born," Khan said. Khan, who drove to Toronto after being denied entry into the U.S., said he was never asked directly about his religion, but that it's "common sense." "[The border officer] kept saying, 'Muhammad, Muhammad,'" Khan said. "The way that he was speaking to his superior, that made me realize, that's the reason I'm being denied entry."

March 28, 2017 20:01 UTC

E. coli risk prompts recall of Robin Hood all-purpose flour

A popular brand of all-purpose flour sold in Western Canada is being recalled due to possible E. coli contamination. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says there has been one reported illness associated with the consumption of Robin Hood brand all-purpose flour. The flour, which may be contaminated with E. coli O121 was sold in B.C., Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. The agency says any 10-kilogram bags of Robin Hood brand all-purpose flour with a best-before date of April 17, 2018, should be thrown out or returned to the store. According to the company that produces Robin Hood flour, the recalled product was produced at a mill in Saskatoon.

March 28, 2017 19:56 UTC

Bill Cosby lawyers ask to exclude his testimony about giving women pills, alcohol

PHILADELPHIA—Bill Cosby’s lawyers want to prevent jurors at his Pennsylvania sex assault trial from hearing his lurid deposition testimony about giving pills and alcohol to a string of women before sex. Cosby gave the testimony more than a decade ago as part of Constand’s lawsuit filed against him. Judge Steven O’Neill previously ruled that prosecutors can use Cosby’s deposition about his long history of extramarital relationships as evidence. But in a separate ruling, O’Neill said most of the women Cosby talks about in the deposition won’t be permitted to take the stand. Cosby’s lawyers asked the judge to exclude Cosby’s 2006 testimony about those women.

March 28, 2017 19:52 UTC

Senator Don Meredith will honour ethics committee invite to appear, lawyer says

TORONTO — The lawyer for embattled Sen. Don Meredith says his client will honour an invitation to appear before the Senate ethics committee. Meredith is currently on sick leave following a damning report by the Senate ethics officer on his sexual relationship with a teenager. “The Senate (committee) announced this morning that they’ve invited him to appear,” Trudell said Tuesday. The committee formally invited Meredith to attend the meeting next week to “provide him with an opportunity to be heard by the committee,” according to a public notice. Since the report earlier this month, Meredith has spoken publicly only once and has otherwise dropped out of sight.

March 28, 2017 19:52 UTC

'It's unbelievable': C-Train driver reunites Calgary woman with lost purse containing $1,300

A Calgary woman was stunned by the honesty of a C-Train driver who found and helped return her lost purse containing $1,300 in cash. Train operator Mesfin Tadese was in the midst of a routine walk-through at the end of the line at 69th Street station when he spotted the handbag and turned it into Calgary Transit's lost property department. Li Feng Yang thanks Mesfin Tadese, the C-Train operator who helped return her missing purse, with two colourful flower bouquets Tuesday morning at the Centre Street LRT station. (Terri Trembath/CBC)Yang presented Tadese with two colourful flower bouquets at the Centre Street station Tuesday morning to thank him for his honesty. The Calgary Transit's lost property department receives as many as 100 items a day, with finds ranging from wallets to dentures.

March 28, 2017 19:52 UTC

Renowned B.C. Indigenous artist Beau Dick has died

Indigenous artist Beau Dick has died. Dick was a master carver and hereditary chief from the 'Namgis First Nation in Alert Bay, just off the coast of northern Vancouver Island. Beau Dick was known for taking the time to teach young artists in his home community of Alert Bay. (Michael R. Barrick/Macaulay & Co. Fine Art)Dick was not afraid to take risks with his art, said Sarah Macaulay from Macaulay & Co. Fine Art in Vancouver. There are plans for a service and memorial potlatch in Alert Bay in memory of Dick, Cranmer said.

March 28, 2017 19:49 UTC

Conservative senators come to Lynn Beyak's defence while others say 'shame'

"Senator Beyak has exercised her right to free speech. As for the outrage expressed by some of her fellow senators and residential school survivors, Plett said, "Life will go on. She said she doesn't "need any more education" about their horrors because she has lived in northwestern Ontario for 40 years, and that she "suffered" alongside residential school survivors. 'She's really made a fool of herself'Despite the Conservative defence, Independent and Liberal members of the committee are losing patience with Beyak. Liberal Senator Lillian Dyck said Beyak has 'made a fool of herself in public' for defending the residential school system.

March 28, 2017 19:43 UTC

White House calls for $18 billion in cuts to medical research, community grants to fund Trump’s wall

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is proposing immediate budget cuts of $18 billion from programs like medical research, infrastructure and community grants so U.S. taxpayers, not Mexico, can cover the down payment on the border wall. But they could create bad political optics for the struggling Trump White House, since the administration asked earlier for $3 billion to pay for the Trump’s controversial U.S.-Mexico border wall and other immigration enforcement plans. And many Republicans aren’t very enthusiastic about it and say the White House hasn’t given them many specifics to go on. RelatedBut the White House badly wants funding for the Mexico wall and hasn’t fully engaged in the Capitol Hill negotiations. White House budget office spokesman John Czwartacki said the proposals were not being shared with the media.

March 28, 2017 19:41 UTC

Photos: Remote Australian peninsula reveals richest collection of dinosaur tracks ever found

Scientists have just confirmed the discovery of the world’s richest collection of dinosaur tracks — and it’s in a remote corner of western Australia. Dubbed by discoverers as both “Australia’s Jurassic Park” and the “Cretaceous Serengeti,” the site has tracks from as many as 21 dinosaur species — including the largest single dinosaur footprint ever found. The prevalence of dragon myths in so many world cultures has often been attributed to early human discoveries of dinosaur bones. Following European settlement, the tracks started to be noticed by white Australians in the early 20th century. As researchers noted, they were motivated in part due to fears that the tracks could be damaged by a planned natural gas facility.

March 28, 2017 19:30 UTC

Metrolinx president steps down

After nearly seven years at the helm of Metrolinx, Bruce McCuaig is stepping down as president and CEO of the regional transit agency. “Bruce's decision is a big loss for Metrolinx but an equally big win for Canada's ambitions to finance and build infrastructure,” said Rob Prichard, Chair of the Metrolinx board of directors. “Bruce has consistently demonstrated exemplary leadership, both at Metrolinx and during his time in the Ontario public service, and I am grateful to him for his hard work and dedication,” he said. McCuaig assumed the top job at Metrolinx in September 2010, four years after the agency was formed. Prior to that, he had worked in the public service for more than 25 years, including a stint as deputy minister at the Ontario transportation ministry.

March 28, 2017 19:30 UTC

Diamond & Diamond personal injury lawyers say Bill 103 leaves victims out in the cold

The CCS Group’s public filings with the provincial lobbyist registry show the firm is targeting numerous MPPs, including those in Barrie, London, Hamilton and Mississauga, where Diamond & Diamond has offices. Neither the CCS Group nor Diamond & Diamond has responded to the Star’s requests for comment. Colle’s proposed private member’s bill calls for contingency fees to be capped at 15 per cent of the settlements awarded to accident victims. It diminishes injuries and has the potential to leave many financially destitute.” At such a cap, lawyers “would not be able to operate and would switch to hourly billing,” the Diamond & Diamond statement said. Diamond & Diamond has told the Star it has a growing number of lawyers working cases at the firm, but would not say how many cases are referred out.

March 28, 2017 19:28 UTC

Council discuss next steps on Scarborough subway extension

Toronto city council are discussing next steps on the Scarborough subway extension. Yesterday Mayor John Tory cited unsubstantiated numbers in defence of his preferred Scarborough subway plan, contradicting both data from staff and independent academic analysis. Tory touted the plan to build a one-stop, $3.35-billion subway extension as a wise investment during a lunchtime speech in front of an enthusiastic Scarborough business crowd before debate resumes at city hall today. Follow here:

March 28, 2017 19:18 UTC

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