A former elected official from the scandal-plagued California city of Bell was sentenced on Friday to one year in jail for inflating his salary by sitting on bogus boards, prosecutors said. George Mirabal is the first of five former city council members from Bell, a working class municipality of about 35,000 residents near Los Angeles, to be sentenced in the case. The five ex-officials were convicted last year of five counts of misappropriation of public funds and acquitted of five other counts of the same charge. The case stemmed from a scandal that began with revelations in 2010 that the Bell city manager, Robert Rizzo, was paid a salary of $787,000 - or nearly twice that of President Barack Obama.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Vice President Joe Biden on Friday condemned the political gridlock crippling Washington, calling on Republican and Democratic governors alike to lead the nation "out of this mess" while insisting that Congress approve billions of dollars to repair the country's aging infrastructure.
MEXICALI, Mexico (AP) — A U.S. effort to discourage immigrants' repeated attempts to enter the country illegally by dropping them back in Mexico hundreds of miles away from where they were caught has been sharply scaled back after producing relatively modest gains.