Single-engine plane lands on New York City expressway

January 4
NEW YORK
Single-engine plane lands on expressway

A small plane made an emergency landing on a New York City expressway Saturday, resulting in minor injuries to the three on board and backing up traffic on the major thoroughfare, emergency officials said.

The single-engine plane landed on the Major Deegan Expressway in the Bronx about 3:20 p.m. The situation was quickly brought “under control,” according to the New York City Fire Department.

The plane had departed Danbury, Conn., for a look at the Statue of Liberty and was on its way back when it experienced an onboard emergency, according to the city’s Office of Emergency Management.

The three people in the plane were treated at the scene for minor injuries and transported to a hospital for further evaluation, officials said.

There were no reports of car accidents linked to the surprise landing of the four-seat 1966 Piper PA. Crews removed the plane and the highway was reopened, although traffic was backed up in both directions.

— Reuters

NEW JERSEY
Son of mob boss, others to be tried

In many ways, it is your run-of-the-mill white-collar case. But this one has a mob twist.

The son of a Philadelphia-area Mafia boss and six others are scheduled to be tried starting this week on charges including racketeering. But the U.S. government says Nicodemo S. Scarfo and his co-defendants used threats of harm to take over the board of FirstPlus Financial Group, a publicly traded mortgage company based in Irving, Tex., and had the company buy shell companies they owned so they could take out the assets. The company is now defunct.

In court filings, the U.S. government said the conspirators plundered $12 million in less than a year, buying homes, weapons, ammunition, a plane, luxury cars, jewelry and an $850,000 yacht they named “Priceless.”

Michael Riley, the attorney for Scarfo — the son of imprisoned Philadelphia and southern New Jersey crime-family boss Nicodemo D. “Little Nicky” Scarfo — said part of his argument is that it is not a mob case at all. “What spices it up is the organized-crime allegations,” Riley said. “We can’t defend the case and say Nick Scarfo is not and has never been associated with the mob.” But he said his client had scant involvement with the business deals at the heart of the case.

Government lawyers declined to give interviews.

— Associated Press

Barbara Bush leaves hospital after illness: Former first lady Barbara Bush was discharged from the Houston Methodist Hospital on Saturday after six days of treatment for pneumonia. The 88-year-old wife of former president George H.W. Bush was admitted to the hospital Monday, after returning home from a family vacation in Florida, where she had felt “under the weather,” family spokesman Jim McGrath said. Her pneumonia never progressed beyond the early stages, he said.

Hawaii girl dies after dental procedure: A 3-year-old Hawaii girl who suffered massive brain injuries last month after a dental procedure died late Friday, said an attorney for the child’s family. Earlier this week, the family of Finley Boyle, 3, filed a lawsuit against dentist Lilly Geyer and Island Dentistry for Children in Honolulu, alleging that the child was given incorrect dosages of sedatives and that the hospital staff was not properly trained for emergencies. Island Dentistry for Children has closed permanently, according to a statement on the firm’s Web site, which does not provide any further details or explanation.

— From news services

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