Sunday, May 16, 2021

April 6, 2021  PHILIPSBURG, WILLEMSTAD - The travel restrictions from Aruba and Curaçao to St. Maarten, which went into effect on Monday, April 5, for a two-week period, have forced the Joint Court of Justice to cancel the trip of judges from Curaçao to St. Maarten for the hearing of appeal cases here.

Prior to this decision, penal lawyers expressed their concerns about the continuation of appeal cases to be adjudicated in April by judges flying in from Curaçao. With an eye on public health and public order, the lawyers requested that the April hearings be cancelled.

“At the moment that the decision was taken to continue with the hearings – after considering all the interests at stake and deliberation with the local health authorities in both St. Maarten and Curaçao – the governmental decision to close the borders was not yet in place. As that is the case now and the flights have been cancelled, there is no other choice but to cancel the trip,” Joint Court acting spokesperson Desi Dijkhuizen said in a statement on Saturday.

“In individual cases, based on the stage in which each case is, the appeal judges will decide whether either video conferencing might be a viable method to proceed, or that the hearing in said cases should be cancelled at all,” Dijkhuizen added.

Several major cases were planned for hearings this month, including those against former Members of Parliament (MPs) Silvio Master, Frans Richardson, Theodore Heyliger and Claudius Buncamper. Also planned are appeal hearings in a number of murder and manslaughter cases, such as in the so-called “Mars” and “Lamantijn” investigations.

According to the spokesperson for the lawyers involved, attorney-at-law Cor Merx of the Association for Penal Law Scholars, the magnitude of several major cases in no way justifies treatment via video links.

“The connections between the countries [St. Maarten and Curaçao – Ed.] are bad. This does not benefit the defence’s interest. All the more since during a recent court hearing the video connection broke down and the counsel no longer had any connection with Curaçao, so that a colleague from the Netherlands had to take over and finish the hearing. The proposal is, therefore – short and sweet – to set new dates, but in good consultation with us, to discuss the progress of cases.”

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Entertainment

May 10, 2021  NEW YORK (AP) — Amid growing pressure on the Hollywood Foreign Press Association from studios, stars and large swaths of the film industry, NBC said Monday that will not air the Golden Globes in 2022, putting in doubt the viability of one of Hollywood’s oldest and most-watched award shows. Criticism of the HFPA, which puts on the Globes and has been denounced for a lack of diversity and for ethical impropriates, reached such a pitch Monday that Tom Cruise returned his three Globes to the press association’s headquarters, according to a person who was granted anonymity because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly about the decision.

May 9, 2021 RAVENNA, Italy (AP) — Maestro Riccardo Muti has once again reopened the Italian musical season in his adopted hometown of Ravenna after another — and if all goes well perhaps final — round of pandemic closures. With a purposeful nod and flick of his baton, the 79-year-old conductor on Sunday ended what has been an unexpectedly long silence in Italian theaters, enrapturing a socially distanced and masked audience with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra’s first live performances since the fall — back-to-back evening concerts of Mendelssohn, Schumann and Brahms. The concerts launched a three-stop Italian tour by the Vienna Philharmonic to celebrate 50 years of ties with the conductor and served as a precursor to the summertime Ravenna Festival, this year celebrating the 700th anniversary of Dante’s death.

May 9, 2021  NEW YORK (AP) — It will come as little surprise to its legion of fans that the first professional musical to be mounted in the U.S. during the pandemic was “Godspell.” The Berkshire Theater Group in western Massachusetts put on a production in August with plexiglass partitions between the actors and temperature checks for the audience. Why “Godspell”? Its message of hope and love. ″‘Godspell’ just felt like the one,” says the Berkshire Theater Group’s Artistic Director and CEO Kate Maguire. “All of a sudden the story of ‘Godspell’ and what it’s about became more important.” The John-Michael Tebelak and Stephen Schwartz musical is celebrating its 50th anniversary this month, a golden milestone for a show with roots in the hippie era but which can still speak to those on TikTok.

May 9, 2021  NEW YORK (AP) — A new album from DMX will be released later this month. DMX’s longtime producer and collaborator, Grammy winner Swizz Beatz, announced on Monday that “EXODUS” will feature new material and drop on May 28. “My brother X was one of the most pure and rare souls I’ve ever met. He lived his life dedicated to his family and music. Most of all, he was generous with his giving and loved his fans beyond measure. This album, X couldn’t wait for his fans all around the world to hear and show just how much he valued each and every single person that has supported him unconditionally,” Swizz Beatz said in a statement. The posthumous album will be released on Def Jam, where DMX released most of his albums and made music history. The Grammy-nominated performer’s first five albums all debuted at No. 1 on the all-genre Billboard 200 albums chart. His hits include “Get at Me Dog,” “Ruff Ryders’ Anthem,” “Party Up (Up in Here)” and “X Gon’ Give It to Ya.”

Business News

May 12, 2021  LEMMONS, N.C. (AP) — The nation’s largest fuel pipeline restarted operations Wednesday, days after it was forced to shut down by a gang of hackers. The disruption of Colonial Pipeline caused long lines at gas stations in the Southeast due to distribution problems and panic-buying, draining supplies at thousands of gas stations. Colonial initiated the restart of pipeline operations late Wednesday, saying in a statement that “all lines, including those lateral lines that have been running manually, will return to normal operations.” But it will take several days for deliveries to return to normal, the company said.

May 10, 2021  NEW YORK (AP) — The nation’s consumer watchdog is signaling a more aggressive approach toward the financial services sectors after a few years of being on a tight leash. Under President Biden, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has rescinded or scaled back a number of policies put in place by the Trump administration. And the bureau is staffing up in anticipation of taking a more active role in regulation and enforcement, as it did during the Obama administration. This is all being done without the CFPB having a permanent director, an important position since the bureau’s authority comes from the director who is answerable only to the president. Dave Uejio, a long-time career employee of the bureau, has been the bureau’s acting director since Trump’s appointee Kathy Kraninger resigned the day Biden was sworn into office.

May 10, 2021  STOWE, Vt. (AP) — Eduardo Rovetto is hoping the state of Vermont’s reinstated requirement that people who are collecting unemployment benefits must seek work to qualify will help him hire enough staff for his restaurant in the resort town of Stowe. After more than a year of coronavirus restrictions on his business, Piecasso Pizzeria & Lounge, he’s expecting a breakout summer tourism season. But like employers across the country, he’s worried he won’t have enough workers. “We’ve been getting many excuses as to why not to return,” said Rovetto, who is offering a signing bonus of up to $600 to try to add 15 to 20 employees who agree to stay through the middle of October. “Obviously, it was a legitimate one with COVID, but, you know, I think that’s getting used less and less now. The vaccines are free; they are out there for anyone.”

Fashion News

Today on Good Morning Vogue: The Designers Demanding Diversity in the Italian Fashion System