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Extra Extra Monday: Drone strikes, wrongful arrests, black lung and surgical device profits

Secret memos reveal explicit nature of U.S., Pakistan agreement on drones | The Washington Post
"Despite repeatedly denouncing the CIA’s drone campaign, top officials in Pakistan’s government have for years secretly endorsed the program and routinely received classified briefings on strikes and casualty counts, according to top-secret CIA documents and Pakistani diplomatic memos obtained by The Washington Post."

St. Louis wrongful arrests mount as fingerprint mismatches are ignored | St. Louis Post-Dispatch
“The Post-Dispatch has identified 100 people arrested in error over the past seven years. Collectively, they spent more than 2,000 days in jail — an average of about three weeks each. One man alone was incarcerated 211 days. About a quarter were held repeatedly — one of them, five times — and 15 were locked up while the right suspect was already behind bars.”

Breathless and Burdened | The Center for Public Integrity
“This yearlong investigation examines how doctors and lawyers, working at the behest of the coal industry, have defeated the benefits claims of miners sick and dying of black lung, even as disease rates are on the rise and an increasing number of miners are turning to a system that was supposed to help alleviate their suffering.”

Surgeon salesmen? Doctors profit from devices they put in patients | CBS
“Reynolds is now suing Sabit for wrongful death. One of his biggest questions centers on the screws and rods used to fuse the spine, which came from a company called Apex Medical Technologies LLC. Apex had no public phone number, website, or listing of its owners. "CBS This Morning" has learned one of its owners was Sabit himself, with a 20 percent stake. From May of 2010 to August of 2012, his share of the profit was about $330,000.”

Did 49ers' Aldon Smith Receive Preferential Treatment from Santa Clara County Sheriff? | NBC Bay Area
“Questions center on an expedited jail process and an invitation to the sheriff’s shooting range while the 49ers' star linebacker was under investigation for owning illegal assault weapons”

Dennis Schrader's "Little Cooperstown" exhibit raises questions about autograph authenticity | 10 News
“As a grand exhibit opens to honor the “World’s Biggest Autographed Baseball Collection,” a WTSP investigation reveals not only do many of the autographs appear to be forged – but the museum exhibiting the collection ignored numerous warnings about the balls’ authenticity.”

Raising a stink about spreading sewage on farms | Al Jazeera America
“EPA regulations for the land application of biosolids are some of the most lenient in the world, requiring wastewater-treatment plants to check for just nine of some 80,000 pollutants that can make it through processing and into sewage sludge.”

The Scholars Who Shill for Wall Street | The Nation
“Academics get paid by financial firms to testify against Dodd-Frank regulations. What’s wrong with this picture?”

EDD's new software has thousands of defects, some 'critical' | KCRA
"In the latest in an ongoing investigation by KCRA into the state’s new unemployment department computer system, insiders tell KCRA’s Sharokina Shams that the system’s computer upgrade is a “system failure.”  The error reports they supplied from just one day’s work show that more than 1,700 problems exist with the system.  This is a steady increase from the initial reports of first a few hundred then close to 1500.  Multiple payments, missed payments, even losing records have occurred as a result and 80-100,000 people are still waiting for their benefit checks.  Meanwhile the state says the backlog has been addressed.  As a result of the computer problems, for 3 straight weeks, the national jobs numbers have been skewed due to California’s inaccurate data."

Man Making Ireland Tax Avoidance Hub Proves Local Hero | Bloomberg
“Google Inc., Facebook Inc. and LinkedIn Corp. wound up in Ireland because they could reduce their tax bills. Their success is leading European and U.S. politicians to label the country a tax haven that must change its ways. The grand architect of much of that success: Feargal O’Rourke, the scion of a political dynasty who heads the tax practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers in Ireland.”

Toddler's death in church day care reveals gaps in Indiana child care laws | Indianapolis Star
“An Indianapolis Star investigation found that ministry day cares can cram as many children into a space as they see fit. In at least one case, a ministry day care had more than five times the number of children recommended for the space it had, according to state records. The usable space per child amounted to at most seven square feet — roughly the size of a doormat.”

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