These were the 50 most violent cities in the world in 2017

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In 2017, Latin America retained the ignominious distinction of having the most cities on Mexico’s Citizens’ Council for Public Security’s annual ranking of the world’s most violent cities.

Of the 50 cities on the list, 42 are in Latin America, including 17 in Brazil, 12 in Mexico, and five in Venezuela. Colombia had three, Honduras had two, and El Salvador, Guatemala, and Jamaica all had one.

The region’s violence is in large part driven by drug trafficking and organized crime — in Mexico, fragmentation of criminal groups has stoked more bloodshed in recent months. Insecurity is also exacerbated by political instability, poverty, and poor economic conditions. Corruption, abuses by officials, and impunity also facilitate crime.

The ranking contains cities with populations of more than 300,000 and does not count deaths in combat zones or cities with unavailable data, so some dangerous cities don’t appear on the list

The Council also estimates homicide rates for some cities based on incomplete data.

In Venezuela, for example, the government has not consistently released homicide data (though it did for 2016), and in the past the Council has estimated based on entries at the Bello Monte morgue, which draws from an area larger than Caracas and doesn’t only include homicides. The Council was also unable to gather 2017 full-year data for the city, leading it to calculate last year’s tally based on previous estimates. Two other cities in Venezuela were excluded from this year’s ranking because there was no reliable homicide data for them.

Here’s the top 50:

SEE THE 2016 RANKINGS: The 50 most violent cities in the world

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50. Cucuta, Colombia, had 34.78 homicides per 100,000 residents.

In 2017, Cucuta had a population of 833,743 people and 290 homicides.

49. Vitoria, Brazil, had 36.07 homicides per 100,000 residents.

In 2017, Vitoria had a population of 1,960,213 people and 707 homicides.

48. Teresina, Brazil, had 37.05 homicides per 100,000 residents.

In 2017, Teresina had a population of 850,198 people and 315 homicides.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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'Criminal Minds' Season 13: Kirsten Vangsness on Prentiss … – TVLine – TVLine

CBS’ Criminal Minds team will find their crime-solving style effectively cramped this Wednesday at 10/9c, when haughty FBI honcho Linda Barnes tags along on a case. (Ugh.)

After all, the ambitious Executive Assistant Director of the FBI (played by Kim Rhodes) already has rattled the ranks by benching Prentiss and putting JJ in charge, all while putting the BAU on notice that their admittedly successful strategies sometimes are… suspect.

Here, original cast member (and occasional episode writer) Kirsten Vangness previews Barnes’ butting-in, which will be followed by a stealthy BAU op that fuels one of the actress’ favorite episodes ever.

TVLINE |Criminal Minds is back this week, and we’ve got Barnes tagging along with the team. On a scale of one to 10, how awkward is that for the gang?
Oh, like a 14. It’s weird. It’s real weird. She’s like the Dolores Umbridge of the BAU. Kim Rhodes is so delightful, so it is very weird. It’s like how when I’m talking to Adam Rodriguez as Kirsten, I’m totally normal, and then we go to do a scene and I sneer at him and I give him dirty looks as Garcia. We do scenes with [Kim], and once we hear “Cut!” everybody’s like, “I’m sorry, I’m really sorry,” because Barnes is burning down our house systematically and we’re trying to hose it all down at the same time.

TVLINE | Is Garcia somewhat insulated from Barnes tagging along, given that she typically stays behind?
No one is safe. Trust me. When we were shooting the episode that I wrote [which came two weeks before Rhodes’ debut on the mothership], Erica Messer, our showrunner, said something off-handily to me and I was like, “What?” She was like, “Oh, yeah, leading up to the end of the season we’re doing this arc….” She didn’t want to tell me because she wanted to tell everybody at the same time. So we’re all sitting in the table read for this episode and everybody’s jaws hit the floor. We’re all looking at each other like, “What’s going on?” You keep thinking, “This isn’t really happening, no, no, no,” but it’s really happening. She had to sit us down and kind of talk us through it, and even talking us through what happens is terrifying.

So you’ve got the awkwardness of Barnes, that huge obstacle of having someone that is in charge of your work eagle-eyeing everything you’re doing when your job is entirely based on intuition. It’s a totally impossible situation. And the episode that follows this one builds on that, and the bullet train just goes! That next episode (airing March 14) is certainly on my Top 5 favorite episodes ever of Criminal Minds.

TVLINE | Is that the one where the team works a case in secret away from Barnes? Off-book?
Yes. And there are so many Easter eggs and joys for people who watch the show on the reg in that episode and, God, through the whole end of the season. There’s so many cool things that happen. And you have Adam Rodriguez directing one, then you Matthew Gray Gubler directing one, and then you have Joe Mantegna directing one, all back-to-back-to-back, which was dreamy.

It’s the dreamiest place to work anyway. People say that, but I don’t know if everybody gets it. All eight of us were texting each other last night, gushing about how excited we are the show’s coming back on. And I spent all of Sunday with Paget [Brewster] and Aisha [Tyler] and A.J.[Cook] in my hot tub just talking, because we do that once a month…

TVLINE | Wait, how come that doesn’t get Instagram’d?
That’s a real thing! We do that because [Criminal Minds] is such a delightful place to work. I’m just so appreciative I get to do this for a living and I get to do it with these people that are all so kind and creative. It’s an embarrassment of riches.

But these upcoming episodes, I think, are going to be very disturbing for people. And they were very hard to do.

TVLINE | Hell, it was hard to just watching Barnes confront Prentiss in that recent episode.
Oh, that’s nothing, my friend. That is nothing. It’s amazing what the writers did because it’s a complicated, Jenga-like, house of cards/Rubik’s Cube type of thing. They tore it down and that, I think, is a hallmark of a really good writer — the ability to not hold onto a shred of that, to just take it all away and then try to figure out how you go from there.

TVLINE | Well, that’s what’s kind of brilliant. Last season we saw the team get these wins, finally getting Reid out of prison and stuff, but then a year later Barnes presents it all from this completely different point of view and you realize, “Oh, man. They have kind of been breaking rules left and right.”
Erica and I wrote that episode [where Prentiss deleted Reid’s incriminating confession] and we were very cognizant of like, “OK, this is what we could do…. We could make it that she makes not the greatest choices. She could have told the truth about that.” We went into that going, “You know what? Let’s keep this because this could be really satisfying when there’s a payoff.” That’s the great thing about any good antagonist, is that they kind of have a leg to stand on.

Watch a sneak peek from the March 7 Criminal Minds,
then read on for more from Kirsten Vangsness:

[embedded content]

TVLINE | If the team is working surreptitiously in the March 14 episode, does that mean you can’t use the jet and other typical resources?
I can’t even. Like I said, that’s in my Top 5 favorite, you have no idea. It’s extraordinary. That episode is written by Breen Frazier, and he’s really deft at magical realism mixed with the facts and a cool, really good storyline, so he took things away and put things in that no one is used to. It’s really cool and scary and weird, but also funny in ways that you don’t expect.

TVLINE | Before we go, what can you say about the episode later this season where Garcia’s family history is revisited?
That one is really neat; we’re in the middle of shooting it right now. Because the show’s been on this long, the writers put things in one episode like, “Why is her name Garcia?” And in another episode the next season, she makes a reference to four stepbrothers. Well, what they did was they took allll those little moments and put it all together and now you get to see all of her sort of tragic past, and you get to see some of her family. You see her going back home and having to negotiate some stuff, so it’s a quieter show, but we still have a case to whet people’s murder-camp whistle.

Want more scoop on Criminal Minds, or for any other show? Email and your question may be answered via Matt’s Inside Line.

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Who Replaces Liberia's Solicitor General Betty Lamin-Blamo? – Front Page Africa

Monrovia – The February Term of Court has started and the hearings of cases are taking a snail pace in the absence of a Solicitor General (SG).

Report by Bettie K. Johnson Mbayo, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

With the numerous appointments, President George Weah has not named the Solicitor General to replace Cllr. Betty Lamin Blamo, who was appointed in 2014 by ex- president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

Sources close to the Ministry of Justice told FPA that President Weah was expected to name the SG Monday but that did not happen.

Former Chairperson of the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission Francis Johnson Allison who once served as Chief Justice told FrontPageAfrica that in the absence of the SG, the Ministry of Justice’s ability to prosecute cases.

Cllr. Allison: “The SG is a pillar of prosecution at the Ministry of Justice and if he/she is not named, cases at Supreme Court will not be heard.”

“When you cannot go to the Supreme Court, it will delay criminal cases of the ministry, and the defendant who is on trial will not get justice in-time.”

She clarified without the SG, prosecution lawyers can act but such actions wouldn’t be robust and effective as the SG.

“There are other lawyers to represent the state at the Supreme Court, the SG primarily represents the ministry at the High Court, but if the role is given to another lawyer, they will be taking away important office matters of the ministry,” she said.

She added that in the absence of the SG, county attorneys would have to report to the Minister of Justice – something she said would be burdensome on the Minister.

FrontPageAfrica has gathered that names like Cllrs. Arthur Johnson, Nyenati Tuan and Darku Mulbah are among the favorites for the post.

Cllr. Arthur Johnson

THE LOWDOWN: A number of cases started by the former SG are currently at the Supreme Court and other lower courts have not been completed. Key among them, economic sabotage, criminal conspiracy, including Sable Mining, former NPA managing Director Matilda Parker, and other major cases. The incoming SG faces a daunting task to continue on the gains made by the former SG.

Many at times, the Supreme Court fined the Ministry of Justice for failure to file their legal briefs within statutory period, something the high court continuously frowned upon.

UPSIDE: Cllr. Johnson has worth of experience in the Criminal Justice and criminal law. He’s one of youngest lawyers who started his law career as public defender and later ascended to establishing his own law firm.

Cllr. Johnson is considered as one of the best criminal lawyers following the death of Cllr. Theophilus Gould. He has in recent times been hired by the Ministry of Justice to serve as prosecution lawyer.

Having Cllr. Musa Dean at the Ministry, some in the legal professionals believe Cllr. Johnson will be of great help to Weah-led government and he is a good face to represent the government.

DOWNSIDE: Cllr. Johnson was recently slammed by the Justices of Supreme Court for not advising his client (Abu Kamara) rightfully that he had violated the Code of Conduct.

Kamara, serving as Assistant Minister for Administration at the Ministry of Post and Telecommunications, filed a Writ of Prohibition on the NEC for allegedly violating his right and rejecting him without due process.

Cllr. Johnson representing his client at the Supreme Court was criticized, “Your presence here is a violation of the Court’s ruling and you all have to be sincere to the practice,” Justice Kabina Ja’neh burst out during the hearing.

But Cllr. Johnson told FrontPage Africa that he is not interested in becoming the SG.

ODDS: 3-1 

Cllr. Nyenati Tuan

UPSIDE: Cllr. Tuan reportedly has been with CDC for a long time and worked hard in ensuring that Weah became President. He is described as smart man with a graduate degree from the Louis Arthur Grimes School of Law in 1985.

He is known to knowledgeable of the law. Cllr. Tuan served as Deputy Commissioner of the then Bureau of Immigration now Liberia Immigration Service.

“All my life I have been practicing law, and this job will not bring any new experience,” he told FrontPageAfrica when quizzed on whether he would accept the post.

DOWNSIDE: Cllr. Tuan is one of lawyers who was reportedly tipped to replace Cllr. Charles Gibson whose nomination was withdrawn due to integrity issues, but was not named.

Critics say he may be lacking the experience to head the SG office because of little experience on criminal cases. Some legal observers say he may have a steep learning curve to make immediate impact as his strength is primarily with civil law.

ODDS: 7-1

Cllr. J. Daku Mulbah

THE LOWDOWN: Cllr. Mulbah has served as the attorney of Montserrado County since 2009 with a responsibility of supervising the remaining 14 counties in the republic.

He owned the Liberty law firm prior to his ascendency as Monsterrado County Attorney, he was one of the original advisors of former SG Betty Lamin Blamo. He has worked in the legal sector for a long period.

Cllr. Mulbah, leading a team of lawyers was successful in prosecuting the mercenary case involving Liberians who crossed into Ivory Coast to cause mayhem and several sexual abuse cases.

Legal observers say Cllr. Mulbah has helped to rehabilitate many defendants who were accused of robbery and theft.

He is currently leading a team to prosecute former and current lawmakers who were allegedly involved in the Sable mining bribery.

DOWNSIDE: Cllr. Mulbah’s refusal to draw an indictment against ex-president’s son Fomba Sirleaf involvement in the Sable mining trial was seen as a sheer cover-up.

He also didn’t draw an indictment against Atty. George Kailondo who was charged for negligence homicide following revelation on the death of G.T Bank Dan Orogun at his (Kailondo’s) residence outside Monrovia.

Some say though Cllr. Mulbah brings a lot of experience to the job following years of serving as County Attorney of Montserrado, some legal pundits doubt whether he has the willpower to bring about the robust changed needed at the Ministry of Justice and the Liberian justice system.

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