Democratic U.S. Congressman Chaka Fattah of Pennsylvania and four associates were charged on Wednesday in a political corruption case with bribery and misusing hundreds of thousands of dollars of federal, charitable and campaign funds. Fattah, 58, who has represented Philadelphia in the U.S. House of Representatives for two decades and is one of the senior black lawmakers in Congress, and the others were indicted by a federal grand jury on 29 counts in an alleged racketeering conspiracy, the U.S. Department of Justice said. Fattah said in a statement that "I have never participated in any illegal activity or misappropriation of taxpayer dollars as an elected official." He said he would not resign from the House but he did step down as the top Democrat on the House subcommittee overseeing Justice Department spending.
Legal bills for love-struck prison worker Joyce Mitchell may be paid by taxpayers, including residents living near the upstate New York prison who were terrified by a three-week manhunt for the convicted killers she helped escape, authorities said on Wednesday. Mitchell, 51, who was a prison tailor shop supervisor at Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora, New York, and her husband both held prison jobs that paid $57,697 a year. A manhunt estimated to cost more than $20 million ended in late June with escapees Richard Matt, 49, shot and killed and David Sweat, 35, shot and captured.
NEW YORK (AP) — Priests, nuns and canon lawyers who advocate for molestation victims urged Pope Francis on Wednesday to use the new Vatican tribunal he formed on negligent bishops to investigate the archbishop of Newark, New Jersey, who has long been accused of sheltering abusive priests.