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When Rubin “Hurricane” Carter died the other day, the newspapers were filled with articles praising him as some sort of a civil-rights activist who was jailed for a crime he didn’t commit.

Nonsense. These guys needed to do their research before parroting untruths.

For one thing, Carter did not do any civil-rights advocacy of any type before he was convicted of murder.

If you can find any proof he did, stop reading this and go to the website of reporter Cal Deal debunking the Carter myth. You can collect a cash reward if you can provide any evidence Carter was an advocate of civil rights before those murders in 1966.

As for the murders themselves, there is ample evidence that both of Carter’s convictions were correct. You will see that both on Cal Deal’s site and in my writings on the subject below. Carter was never cleared of the murders by any court. The prosecutor could have tried him a third time after he was let off by an outrageously liberal judge who was a publicity hound. But the prosecutor decided it was not worth the effort given that Carter had already spent so much time in prison.

The articles below appeared in the Star-Ledger in 2000, when that dreadful movie “The Hurricane” came out. Even Carter’s defenders admit that movie was one big lie. But many of the obituary writers accepted it as true and repeated the scenes as fact, without giving the attribution that journalists are supposed to provide.

Much of the rest came from self-aggrandizing books Carter wrote. That includes that story about how he saved a prison guard in a riot. I spoke to a prisoner who was jailed with him at the time and he said there was no such incident.

By the way, note my interview with John Artis in the last piece. If his plain words are any indication, even Artis didn’t buy into the myth of Carter’s innocence.

Compare those glowing accounts of carter’s life to Cal’s site and to my writings below and see what you think. The headlines are in bold:

This Hurricane is full of hot air

Pop stars come and pop stars go, but amid all this change there is one eternal truth:
Whenever Bob Dylan writes a song about a guy, the guy is guilty as sin.

That was the case with California psychopath George Jackson (“Lord, lord they shot George Jackson down”), New York mobster Joey Gallo (“Joe-eee, Joe-eee, why did they have to come and blow you A-way”) and Paterson’s own Rubin “Hurricane” Carter (In perhaps the dumbest couplet of a dumb career, Dylan rhymes “trigger” with the N-word.)

Juries twice found Carter guilty of a triple murder. The evidence against him was overwhelming. He finally was granted a third trial on a technicality, but no judge ever said or implied that he was framed or that he did not commit the murders.

You wouldn’t know that from the new movie “The Hurricane” – or by the gullible reaction to it by supposedly neutral journalists. In headline after headline, the reviews refer to Carter as a boxer who was “framed” and treat the fictional version of events as if they had occurred in real life.

The movie disregards or distorts virtually every fact of the case. It starts with the fudging of Carter’s criminal record to make it appear that Carter, then 24, was in jail in 1961 because he fought back against a child molester when he was 11. In fact, he was in jail because he mugged people when he was an adult.

Then there’s his fight record. The movie has him pummeling Philadelphian Joey Giardello in a middleweight title bout only to be robbed of a decision. In fact, Giardello won convincingly. Carter griped about the judges, but a poll of ringside sportswriters had Giardello winning 11 rounds to four. Giardello is threatening to sue over his portrayal.

Newark activist Carolyn Kelley in 1976 with John Artis and Hurricane Carter. Not long afterward, Carter beat Kelley within an inch of her life. 

The movie seems to lie compulsively. It even distorts events that had no bearing on the case. The plot involves the efforts of four members of a Canadian commune who move to New Jersey in the early 1980s to free Carter. After months of digging, they discover an investigator’s notes stating that the killings actually happened not at 2:45 a.m. as alleged by the police but at 2:30 a.m. – a fact they deem crucial to Carter’s alleged alibi.
I could have saved them a lot of digging. I checked the Star-Ledger’s clips of the May 1967 trial. The cops testified that the killings happened at 2:30 a.m.

And then there’s the alibi itself. At his first trial, Carter produced witness after witness who testified he was somewhere else at the time of the killing. But in his second trial in 1976, four of the alibi witnesses from the first trial took the stand and admitted they lied. “There were a lot of lies at the last trial,” testified ex-alibi witness Catherine McGuire, who at the first trial had testified she was with Carter at the time of the killings.

Carter won the right to a second trial because of a media campaign based on the theory that the key witness against him, a petty crook named Alfred Bello, had recanted his eyewitness identification of Carter and co-defendant John Artis. But when Bello took the stand at the second trial, he gave the reason he had recanted: He had been promised $27,000 by Carter’s defense team. Whoops. Carter was convicted again.

He did get out of prison for a brief time, though, and he returned to his fighting career. This time he chose his opponents more wisely. In a Maryland hotel room, he beat up the woman who had led the effort to spring him.

That’s another fact curiously left out of the film. But the movie’s biggest distortion concerns the events on the evening of the killings. Earlier that evening, a black bar owner in Paterson had been shot to death by a white man. Seven hours later, two black males entered the Lafayette Bar and Grill and shot everyone in the place without
attempting a holdup.
At the 1976 trial, the prosecution argued that revenge was the motive. After the first shooting, Carter had spoken with the black victim’s relatives and had inquired about a shotgun, evidence showed. And Carter himself had testified to a grand jury that there was talk in the black community of “shaking,” a slang term for revenge.

But on screen, the prosecution argues that the motive for the shootings was simply that the bar did not serve blacks. The movie then debunks its own lie by having a black actress state that she and other blacks drank at the bar regularly.

This is crucial to the technicality that finally sprung Carter. After almost two decades of judge- shopping, Carter’s defense team finally had the good fortune to come up before federal Judge Lee Sarokin, perhaps the most liberal judge in the nation. Sarokin ordered a new trial on the grounds that the prosecution should not have been permitted to argue that racial revenge was the motive.

”For the state to contend that an accused has the motive to commit murder solely because of his membership in a racial group is an argument which should never be permitted to sway a jury or provide the basis of a conviction,” Sarokin wrote.

By that standard, of course, the prosecution in the Texas dragging death of James Byrd Jr. would have had to find some other motive than the racism that so clearly led to the actions of the three killers.

Even Sarokin did not state Carter was innocent. The Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office could have tried Carter a third time but chose not to. Witnesses had died and Carter was nearing his parole date anyway. Artis was already out on parole.

So the case ended not with a bang but with a whimper. As for the movie, it seems never to end at all. As it entered its third hour, and the Canadians thrashed about looking for clues and Denzel Washington kept making wise observations like Yoda from “Star Wars,” I began to think I was the one who’d been unfairly given a life sentence.

‘Hurricane’ slurs the name of an honest man

Since I wrote last week about the recently released movie “The Hurricane,” I have heard from a number of people that I can only call Hurricane victims.

People he beat up, but not in the ring. People who watched two juries in two separate trials conclude that he killed their relatives. And people who just wish he’d go away, like the citizen of Rubin “Hurricane” Carter’s current adopted home city of Toronto who e-mailed me with a plea for New Jersey take him back.

Okay, if you Canadians will take back all those geese.

Of all the Hurricane victims, James DeSimone seemed to be the angriest. For good reason. The movie’s portrayal of his father, Passaic County Detective Vincent DeSimone, is so dishonest that it may stand as the single sleaziest thing Hollywood does in the third millennium.

In the movie, the character is given another name – Della Pesca instead of DeSimone – but it’s clear who is being portrayed. And the portrayal is neither flattering nor accurate. DeSimone-Della Pesca is shown as a racist neanderthal who lies, cheats and forges a signature in an effort to frame the heroic Hurricane.

None of that happened in real life. And in real life, Carter was never found to have been framed, as his supporters allege. He was convicted by two juries and served 19 years in prison. He was freed on a technicality and was cut loose only because the case was too
old to be tried for a third time.

These distortions of fact are sleazy enough. But the movie really gets down in the gutter when it makes a not-so-subtle point of portraying the DeSimone character as unattractive. As it happens, the real DeSimone was quite a good looking guy before he went off to fight in World War II. But then he took a German bullet in the face, right below the eye. He had 19 plastic surgeries.

That was how he got into police work, his son says. Before the war, he had been a salesman. Afterwards people called him “Scarface” and he didn’t have the confidence to return to his old line of work. So he became a policeman.

He started out as a street cop in Paterson and worked his way up to become the chief detective in the county. He never had a blemish on his record. His 1966 investigation of the Carter case didn’t change that.

In the mid-1970s, Bob Dylan and half of Hollywood accused DeSimone and other members of the prosecution team of encouraging the state’s key witness, Alfred Bello, to falsify testimony. That got Carter a second trial in 1976. But Bello took the stand and testified that he had changed his story only after offers of cash from the Carter groupies.

And as for witness-tampering, it turned out that it was Carter’s side that had been doing the dirty work. Four of Carter’s alibi witnesses from the first trial admitted they’d lied about his whereabouts on the night in question. Carter went back to jail.

A good place for him. Even before the 1966 killings in the Lafayette Bar and Grill in Paterson, Carter had done enough to earn himself a life sentence. At least, if you take his word for it. Cal Deal, a former reporter who covered the case and who now lives in Florida, has compiled a Website about it (”). It includes a Saturday Evening Post article that was published just before Carter’s middleweight title fight against Joey Giardello in 1964.

In the article, Carter bragged of the knifing that caused him to spend most of his teen years in a Jamesburg reformatory: “That’s right, atrocious assault at age eleven. I stuck a man with my knife. I stabbed him everywhere but the bottom of his feet.” He also described how, after he got out of the reformatory for that offense, he and his partner would go out on the streets of Paterson and “shoot at folks.”

”Sometimes just to shoot at ‘em, sometimes to hit ‘em, sometimes to kill ‘em.”

”I couldn’t begin to tell you how many hits, muggings and stickups. No use even trying to count them. We’d just use the guns like we had a license to carry them.”

None of this is in the movie, of course. If the viewers knew that Carter was the type of guy who’d brag about shooting people in 1964, they’d understand why he might be inclined to put his ideas into practice a mere two years later.

Instead, Carter is portrayed as a clean-living, law-abiding guy. Della Pesca-DeSimone, meanwhile, is portrayed as a vicious racist who shadows Carter throughout his life. The evil detective even goes so far as to threaten the lives of the Canadian commune members who worked on Carter’s defense in 1983. Actually, DeSimone died in 1979. That didn’t stop the screenwriter from getting in that last dig – or an allegation that the detective rose from the grave to sabotage the left front wheel of the Canadians’ Volvo, causing a near-fatal crash.

”I came out of the theater and I was absolutely appalled,” says Jim DeSimone, who is 50 and has a family of his own. “I was his only son. I went through a life of him telling me about honesty and integrity. He was regarded as the most honest guy around.

”I sat there and I said to myself, ‘What is Denzel Washington thinking?’ He should have some conscience as to what he’s doing here.”

Conscience? Not in Hollywood. In Hollywood, there’s money to be made by turning a story on its head. The hard-working guy who fought for his country gets mocked for his war wounds and is portrayed as a villain. And the thug who spends his life stabbing, shooting and beating people gets to be the hero.

As the saying goes, that’s showbiz.

A Hurricane victim tells the story of being beaten by Carter

“His rage was just bad timing on my mother’s part; it could have been me. But his thing was always mugging women anyway.” – MICHAEL KELLEY

The movie “The Hurricane” claims to be based on a true story of a boxer’s life. But it leaves out the one fight that truly revealed the nature of Rubin “Hurricane” Carter: his one-punch knockout of Carolyn Kelley.

Newark activist Carolyn Kelley being interviewed by the late Chuck Stone after her beating a the hands of Hurricane Carter.  

Kelley is a nice, hard-working 61-year-old woman from Newark. She was working as a bail bondswoman in 1975 when Muhammad Ali asked her to get involved in the effort to win a new trial for Carter, who claimed he had been framed in a triple murder.

She devoted more than a year of her life to raising funds for Carter. That effort was successful, and Carter’s appeal was upheld. In March 1976, Carter was released on bail to await a new trial.

Six weeks later, the tough middleweight boxer beat the 112-pound Kelley into unconsciousness and left her lying in a fetal position on the floor of his hotel room.
Kelley called me after she read my columns pointing out that the movie distorts virtually every fact of Carter’s life story.

For the first time, she revealed the whole story behind the beating.

In the months immediately after it, she says, she was pressured by Carter’s supporters. They knew they had to keep her from getting the whole story out. Her story reveals not just that Carter was a brutal thug but also reveals key defects in his campaign to prove he was framed. In interviews with Kelley and her son Michael, I heard the details of the beatings.

When Kelley joined the campaign and met Carter in Trenton State Prison, she believed every word he said. He described in detail how he had been framed by the racist criminal justice establishment of Passaic County.

A key part of his story was an assertion that the cops had pressured one of his key alibi witnesses, a boxer named “Wild Bill” Hardney, to leave the state so he couldn’t testify in Carter’s behalf. Hardney had gone to Maryland, Kelley recalls Carter saying. If only he could find Hardney, his former sparring partner could testify that Carter was somewhere else when the slayings occurred.

The campaign to win Carter a new trial was successful, due partly to Kelley’s work as national director of his defense fund. A hit song by Bob Dylan helped as well. Carter was released on bail on March 17, 1976, to await a second trial.

Kelley and her son Michael, then 24, became part of a triumphant Carter entourage that traveled to public appearances and fund-raisers. The Kelleys, who are Muslims and don’t drink, noticed some disturbing things about Carter. For one, he drank large amounts of vodka. And when he drank he became abusive. He had a short temper and ordered Michael around like a servant.

But Carolyn Kelley ignored these early warning signs. She still believed Carter had been framed, so she reacted naively when, at an event prior to the Ali-Jimmy Young fight in Landover, Md., a man called for Carter’s attention.

”I heard this voice from across the room, saying, ‘Hey Rube, it’s me, Wild Bill Hardney,’” Kelley recalls. “The name was burned in my mind. He had told me for a year that this man could clear him. I said, ‘Get a statement from him! Get a statement from him! I’m a notary.’”

Instead, Carter recoiled and his expression changed in a way that frightened her, she says.

”You know how a snake is crawling on the ground and suddenly half of his body is up in the air and his tongue is sticking out, wiggling, wiggling, wiggling, and his eyes are closed almost shut?

”Here’s a man he had said for years could prove he was innocent, and he’s backing up and hissing like a snake.”

The incident put Kelley on guard, she says, but not enough. After she returned to her hotel room, she had to phone Carter about a minor discrepancy over who would pay for the room. She called him twice, she says, and each time he cursed at her. She figured he didn’t recognize her voice, so she got in her car and drove across the complex to his room.

Carter opened the door and burst into maniacal laughter, she recalls. Then he went to the bathroom and began gargling with Charlie cologne. “Then it clicked: I had to get out of there. But there he was, between me and the door.

”I didn’t see it coming,” she says of the punch that floored her. “I felt everything getting dark. I remember praying to Allah, ‘Please help me,’ and apparently Allah rolled me over, and he kicked me in the back instead of kicking my guts out. Allah saved my life.”

Shortly thereafter, her son Michael was called to the room by a couple of other members of the entourage who told him “something happened to my mother in Carter’s room.”
”My mother was laying on the floor, near the door; she was in a fetal position with her back to that door,” he said.

The members of the security team wouldn’t say exactly what happened, Kelley recalls. They suggested she had fallen, “but there was nothing in the room where you might fall and hit your back on, like a dresser.”

He said Carter denied hitting her. “He said, ‘You know I wouldn’t touch her.’ He was denying he put any hands on her.

”I was ready to get a weapon that I had at my disposal. I was going to go to jail that night,” he recalls.

Instead, Michael Kelley fought back his anger. He took his mother to a room and iced down the large lump on her cheek and the black eyes. The next day he put her on a plane back to Newark, where she was met by three Newark women. She collapsed when she got off the plane and had to be given oxygen by flight attendants.

She checked into a hospital and was in traction a month later for her back injuries. Rumors of the beating were starting to get out. Finally Chuck Stone, a columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News, broke the story of the beating in a front-page article.

Stone had been a strong supporter of Carter’s. But he knew Kelley from other civil rights struggles. He was troubled by the beating. In his column, Stone quoted Kelley:

”Rubin used to tell me time and time again, ‘You’ve met Rubin and you know Carter, but you’ve never met the Hurricane. The Hurricane’s bad. The Hurricane’s mean.

”He’s right. I know the eye of the Hurricane nobody knows. It is a frightening thing, and unless something is done, somebody else is going to get hurt.”

Even after the beating, Kelley still supported Carter. “I don’t want to press charges
because jail is not the place for Rubin. He needs treatment. I don’t want to do anything to hurt him,” she said at the time.

After Stone’s column ran, the beating became a national story. Carter’s celebrity support melted away.

Even worse for Carter, his seeming paranoia about Wild Bill Hardney turned out not to be paranoia after all. At Carter’s second trial, Hardney testified that Carter had asked him to back up a false alibi that had him drinking at a bar called the Nite Spot at the time of the killings. Three other Carter alibi witnesses also testified that they had lied at the first trial.
Then there was the matter of the alleged recantation of Alfred Bello, the eyewitness who in the first trial testified that he had seen Carter leaving the murder scene but who later said he had made up that story. At the second trial, he recanted his recantation, saying he had been offered money by people close to Carter. The jury quickly convicted Carter and co-defendant John Artis once again.

The movie skips over these events, other than to state falsely that the second trial was before an all-white jury. It wasn’t. In fact, the movie glosses over every crime in Carter’s career. In real life, he earned jail time for a long list of offenses that range from purse-snatchings to brutal muggings. In the movie, he is framed every time. Onscreen, for example, he is sent to a reformatory as a young boy after breaking a bottle over the head of a child molester who is menacing his friend. In real life, he was sent to the reformatory for breaking a bottle over the head of a man from whom he stole a wristwatch and $55.

These two events have one thing in common – the bottle.

This, apparently, is what “based on a true story” means.

The movie totally ignores what happened to Kelley, but Carter has given several versions of what happened that night in his motel room. Here’s a surprise: He was framed! Kelley faked the beating because they were having an affair – if you believe Carter’s version in his authorized biography “The Hurricane.” Or maybe they weren’t having an affair, if you believe what he told WNEW-TV’s Marvin Scott in June 1976. Or she made it up because she wanted to blackmail Carter out of $250,000 (Scott interview) or $100,000 (“Hurricane” book).

One problem for Carter: She didn’t make it up. Her son Michael’s account is supported by the records of her extensive injuries. And Stone, who was recently named one of the leading black journalists of the century by the National Association of Black Journalists, has no doubt that Kelley was beaten by Carter.

A court also found that Carter beat Kelley. Passaic County Judge William Marchese held hearings on the incident in July 1976 and changed the terms of Carter’s bail after determining that the assault had occurred.

Other court documents show that Carter had a habit of attacking the weak. His prison record shows that he severely beat a “slight and severely retarded inmate” named Wallace six years before the Kelley beating.

Even in his own book, “The Sixteenth Round,” Carter has made reference to his violent nature and his lack of any remorse.

”If I committed a crime in the eyes of society, I took no blame. I felt no more responsible for my actions than for the winds,” Carter wrote.

Michael Kelley recalls that in the month before the beating, Carter seemed to be constantly on the edge of an explosion.

”His rage was just bad timing on my mother’s part; it could have been me,” he says. “But his thing was always mugging women anyway.”

Carolyn Kelley when I interviewed her at her boxing gym in Newark in 2000. 

Carolyn Kelley has been cured of any illusions about Carter. She chose to speak out because she is appalled that the national media are ignoring the facts of the case. She saw him on the recent telecast of the Golden Globe awards lecturing the gullible showbiz audience on love.

”I sat there and my heart was beating out of my chest. I was in pain. How dare you talk about love? You can’t love anyone, even yourself.”

She has this explanation for how Carter has gotten the nation to ignore his thuggish past and treat him as a hero. “He’s Satan, and Satan can fool a lot of people.”

But she says he is not quite the fighter he claims to be. “As good as he is, he’s not that good. I’m still here.”

”He has brought this into the 17th round and I’m gonna win the 17th round.”

Maybe she will. At the moment, Carter has reduced the journalists of America to the status of starstruck groupies, but maybe her revelations will get a few of them to take a look at the facts of his life. Article after article has Carter being “framed” or “jailed for a crime he didn’t commit” when in fact he was convicted by two juries. He had his conviction overturned only because it was heard by a federal judge who had a reputation for being among the most pro-defense judges in the nation.

The prosecutor could have tried him a third time if the case had not been 22 years old at the time. So the jury is still out on just who killed those three people on that night in 1966.

But Carolyn Kelley is no longer among those who believe Carter was framed.

”If he could do that to me, a woman who was no threat to him, then he has erased in my mind any doubt that he could kill three or four innocent people,” Kelley says.

Rubin Carter and the cult of the avenger

When the Oscars are given out tonight, there is a good chance that Hollywood will rise in unison to commemorate the actor who portrayed Rubin “Hurricane” Carter in his heroic struggle to proclaim his innocence.

But the other day I had a talk with someone who doesn’t buy Carter’s alibi: John Artis.
A curious fact left out of the movie is that Artis, who was Carter’s co-defendant in the triple murder, has never agreed with Carter on exactly what the two were doing on that fateful night in Paterson 34 years ago.

Carter’s alibi involves Artis in a complicated story of how the two men spent the night of the murders driving from one bar to another. But Artis maintains that he spent the evening dancing in one bar, the Nite Spot. He says his contact with Carter in the early hours of June 17, 1966, was limited to a chance meeting around closing time. Artis says he asked for a ride home and then got stopped by the cops and implicated in the murder.

When I called Artis recently, he stuck to his story. He said he had no idea what Carter was doing during the hours when, according to Carter, the two were together.
”I don’t know,” Artis said. “I was a dancer. I wasn’t there monitoring what people were doing.”

The bar closed around 2:30 a.m., roughly the same time three people were gunned down in another bar just a few blocks away. I asked Artis whether it is possible Carter could have killed three people in the moments before he offered Artis a ride home.

”Good question,” Artis said.

So there it is. Hollywood is convinced Rubin Carter was railroaded. But the man who was closest to him at the time is not so sure. Surprising? Not at all.

The Carter case fits a familiar pattern, one that might be called the cult of the avenger. There is always one of these cases in the news. There’s always some guy who claims he was unjustly convicted of killing someone. And there’s always a cult of true believers devoted to proving their hero was denied a fair trial.

The interesting thing is that the weight of evidence against the hero is irrelevant. In fact, the guiltier the better. That is proven by the case of the man who has succeeded Carter as a cult hero, Mumia Abu-Jamal. Unlike Carter, who at least had the good sense not to be stopped at the scene of the crime, Jamal was literally caught with a smoking gun. He was sitting just a few feet away from the Philadelphia cop he had shot to death.

But Jamal’s lack of an alibi put him at no disadvantage. In the years since his conviction in 1982, Jamal has assembled what may be the largest such cult in history. From his cell on death row in Pennsylvania, Jamal inspired a riot in San Francisco. He is idolized in Paris, London and Amsterdam.

But Jamal has virtually no support in Philadelphia, just as Carter has few supporters in New Jersey. Those who know the reality are not prone to buy the myth.

So each cult requires a caste of priests, true believers close to the hero who can translate the texts for the masses far away. What motivates these people is particularly intriguing. Anyone who studies one of these cases soon comes up against the weight of the evidence, which is considerable in the Carter case and overwhelming in the Jamal case. A person intelligent enough to craft a defense is also intelligent enough to grasp that the hero certainly looks like the most likely suspect.

The response is to retreat into legalisms. Both Carter’s and Jamal’s defenders have a habit of dodging questions about innocence and instead focusing on legal loopholes that might give their hero his freedom even if he did commit the crime.

This is most striking in the case of Jamal. He has never denied shooting the police officer. Even his legal team won’t categorically state that he didn’t do it. But by the time this message gets to France and California, it is somehow transmuted into a ringing defense of his unquestioned innocence.

Actually, the real issue here has less to do with questions of guilt and innocence than with the need for armchair intellectuals and Hollywood types to indulge their fantasies of violence. Intellectuals by definition don’t do much that is physical, so they love the fantasy of violence.

Perhaps the only one of these characters who hasn’t become the subject of a cult of innocence was a man spawned by Hollywood itself. This guy had it all. An intriguing look, a nonconformist lifestyle, a charismatic message. And there were quite a few holes in the prosecution’s case that sent him to prison.

But this guy made one crucial mistake: Instead of killing a cop, he killed an actress. If not for that minor oversight, we might have been treated to the spectacle of a Sheen or a Baldwin up there on stage tonight with one hand clutching a statue and another wrapped around the waist of Charles Manson.

ALSO, here’s an in-depth piece on the case that I wrote for Front Page magazine back in 2000.

Article source:

amsterdam rai

EUROPEAmsterdam RAI has reported a 2013 net profit of €3.3m (US$4.56m) compared to €2.1m (US$2.9m) in 2012, due to an “exceptional conference year and growth in the RAI’s international activities”.

The venue’s management said Amsterdam RAI attracted more than 400,000 international visitors for the first time in its history, a 30 per cent increase in five years in the conference segment.

The growth in the number of international conferences is important to Amsterdam RAI, but also to the greater city of Amsterdam, said the venue. Combined with the impact of (RAI-organised) international events, Amsterdam RAI was responsible for over one-fifth of all corporate hotel bookings in 2013.

“In 2013 our international turnover doubled to €6 million compared to the previous year, which is a considerable achievement,” said general director Hans Bakker. “From our home base in Amsterdam we are involved in spin-offs of our own exhibition titles abroad, including events in China, the USA, Poland, India, Mexico and Turkey.”

On the downside, the cancellation of AutoRAI did affect turnover (which fell 15 per cent to €116.6m), as did the transfer of MECC Maastricht, but the venue says the outlook for 2014 is positive. Although the MECC Maastricht business was transferred to the Municipality of Maastricht, the disentanglement of systems and activities is expected to drag on until the end of 2014.

The RAI started construction of the new Amtrium in October; the first of three new-build projects.

The “exceptional conference year”, according to the RAI, included cardiologists, oncologists, hepatologists and thrombosis specialists all among the medical disciplines represented by delegates to the venue last year.

Amsterdam RAI has taken a virtual step forward in exhibitions, by inviting visitors to attend a RAI event online for the first time.

Do you have a news story for Exhibition World? Email Annie Byrne

Article source:

Associated Press

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) – Five former Buffalo Bills cheerleaders on Tuesday sued the team over a pay system they say had them working hundreds of hours for free at games and at mandatory public appearances at which they were subjected to groping and sexual comments, and one said they had to take a jiggle test so their boss could see how firm their bodies were.

The state Supreme Court lawsuit is the third filed this year against a National Football League team by cheerleaders. The Oakland Raiders and Cincinnati Bengals also have pending wage battles.

The case against the Bills says its cheerleaders, the Buffalo Jills, are wrongly classified as independent contractors and are subjected to policies that violate the state’s $8 per hour minimum wage law and other workplace rules. Two members of the Jills squad held a news conference Tuesday with their attorney, Frank Dolce.

“We are Bills fans,” Dolce said. “We definitely want our organization and other organizations in the NFL to respect the rights of these cheerleaders.”

The Bills’ cheerleaders aren’t paid for games or practices and have to make 20-35 appearances, most of which are unpaid, at community and charity events each season, the lawsuit said. On top of that, they have to pay $650 for their uniforms and are not reimbursed for travel or other expenses, the cheerleaders said.

The time and expense, as well as rules governing their personal lives, far exceeded what they signed on for, the women said.

The civil action, which seeks unspecified back pay and legal fees, names Stejon Productions Corp., which assumed management of the Jills in 2011, along with former manager Citadel Communications Co. and the Buffalo Bills.

Stejon President Stephanie Mateczun said she could not comment on the claims. Buffalo Bills spokesman Scott Berchtold said the team’s policy is not to discuss pending litigation. A Citadel spokesman could not be reached for comment.

The cheerleaders are identified only by their first names and last initials in the lawsuit, which cites a provision that allows plaintiffs to remain anonymous “where identification poses a risk of retaliatory physical or mental harm.”

Their complaint describes “demeaning and degrading treatment,” including being required to wear bikinis at various events such as an annual golf tournament at which cheerleaders were “auctioned off like prizes” and subjected to “degrading sexual comments and inappropriate touching.”

Mateczun, the cheerleaders said, controlled everything from their hair and nail polish color to what they could post on Facebook.

“Everything from standing in front of us with a clipboard having us do a jiggle test to see what parts of our body were jiggling,” cheerleader Alyssa U. said, “and if that was something that she saw, you were getting benched.”

Alyssa U. estimated she was paid a total of $420 during the 2012-13 football season. Another cheerleader, Maria P., said she received $105.

The cheerleaders and their attorney said they hope their legal action leads to policy changes within the Bills’ organization that ensure future cheerleaders are paid and treated better.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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ABC7 WEATHER: Mostly sunny, windy with highs in the mid 60s.

‘GOOD MORNING WASHINGTON’: Among the reports – Chris Brown may begin today; Fairfax County schools and the bid for later start times; much more, beginning at 4:30 a.m. M-F.

FOCUS, PEOPLE: So says The Danny, per the Associated Press, “Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder said Tuesday it’s time for people to “focus on reality” concerning Native American matters instead of criticizing the team’s nickname. “We understand the issues out there, and we’re not an issue,” Snyder said. “The real issues are real-life issues, real-life needs, and I think it’s time that people focus on reality.”

Challenged by those who consider the name “Redskins” offensive, Snyder and his staff recently traveled to Native American reservations and last month established a foundation to assist American Indian tribes. He had declined requests to answer questions about the foundation until Tuesday.

“Snyder has insisted he will not change the Redskins’ name, calling it a “badge of honor.” He did not directly answer when asked to respond to those who say the foundation is a way of throwing money at the problem to placate critics. . . Snyder rarely takes questions from reporters, and his brief remarks came Tuesday after a ceremony at a local high school. The Redskins are donating one-tenth of the $1 million cost to refurbish the school’s sports field.”

GOV. TOURIST: And pubs, per the Baltimore Sun, “Gov. Martin O’Malley left Tuesday for a five-day trip to Europe that includes a “congressional pilgrimage” to northern Ireland and a conference in Amsterdam. The governor, whose Irish heritage inspired his Celtic rock band and his taste in poetry, will first visit Dublin along with civil rights leader U.S. Rep. John Lewis of Georgia as part of a 50-person delegation to learn about the island’s historic divide and reconciliation efforts, organizers said.

“O’Malley then plans to attend a conference on progressive governance in Amsterdam on Thursday and Friday before returning to Ireland, his office spokeswoman said. The governor also traveled to Dublin last June and gave a speech at Iveagh House, headquarters of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s visit to Ireland.”

GIFTGATE: Did anyone say free money?, per the Virginian-Pilot, “Donors such as former presidential candidate Mitt Romney produced a recent spike in contributions to a charity set up to raise money for former governor Bob McDonnell’s legal defense. The $149,242 in donations to the Virginia Beach-based Restoration Fund from January to March, according to Virginia Public Access Project data, dwarfs the $11,554 it raised over the prior six months.

“Much of the newer giving from Romney and other deep-pocketed contributors came after McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, were charged in a 14-count federal indictment in January alleging they misused their public positions for personal benefit. . .Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee supported by McDonnell, gave $10,000 to the fund in March.”

ZOO SHOOTING: Details, per the Washington Post, “Shortly past 5 p.m. Monday, the main entrance to the National Zoo teemed with people enjoying one of the attraction’s busiest days of the year. Tourists and mothers pushing baby carriages jostled for position as other visitors, enjoying the annual family day at the zoo, poured onto Connecticut Avenue.

“Just then, a large crowd of men and women arrived at the zoo’s entrance. That came as authorities inside were in the process of expelling about three dozen disruptive youngsters from near the elephant exhibit. All of a sudden, hundreds of people milled about at the zoo’s entrance. Then, at 5:17, someone pulled a gun and fired several shots. Once again — just like in 2000, when seven people were shot, and again in 2011, when a young boy was stabbed — an Easter Monday at the zoo became a day of terror and chaos for out-of-towners and native Washingtonians alike.”

SHUTDOWN SHOWDOWN: Of another try, per the Richmond Times-Dispatch, “It was supposed to be the end of the 2014 legislative season. But lawmakers return to Richmond Wednesday to consider Governor Terry McAuliffe’s vetoes and amendments with the most important piece of legislation — the budget — still unresolved, and unlikely to shift from its partisan standoff.

“McAuliffe vetoed only five pieces of legislation — including two public prayer bills and one regarding storing guns in secured containers in cars. With the Senate controlled by Democrats and the House dominated by Republicans, lawmakers at odds with the governor are unlikely to muster the two-thirds vote in both chambers necessary to overturn his vetoes.”

AFFIRMATIVE ACTION: SCOTUS not a fan, per the New York Times, “In a fractured decision that revealed deep divisions over what role the judiciary should play in protecting racial and ethnic minorities, the Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld a Michigan constitutional amendment that bans affirmative action in admissions to the state’s public universities.

“The 6-to-2 ruling effectively endorsed similar measures in seven other states. It may also encourage more states to enact measures banning the use of race in admissions or to consider race-neutral alternatives to ensure diversity.”

CONFLICTED ABOUT FERRY: Collective grief, shame, per the Los Angeles Times, “For South Korea, a country that pulled itself out of abject poverty to become the world’s 15th-largest economy, the most stinging accusation about last week’s ferry sinking is that it looks like a Third-World disaster.

“While the captain escaped and the crew dithered and bickered with emergency officials, hundreds of passengers, most of them high school students, obediently remained in their cabins as the ferry rolled and slipped beneath the surface of the cold, gray sea.”

IN THIS CORNER. . .: Check your listings, per The Hill, “A long-running feud between Netflix and Comcast is on the verge of becoming all-out war. Netflix threw down the gauntlet on Monday by coming out against Comcast’s proposed $45 billion agreement to merge with Time Warner Cable.

“The deal, for which Comcast has hired an army of lobbyists to sell and defend, had attracted little opposition from other major companies or from lawmakers on Capitol Hill. But in a letter to shareholders, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings and CFO David Wells warned the deal would give the resulting company too much market power and leverage over Internet companies.”

POLITICO PLAY: “When Bob Dole ran for president in 1996 at the age of 73, Democrats derided him as a relic and a man out of place in the electronic age. Late-night comics mocked him, he tumbled off a stage and President Bill Clinton charged in his convention speech that Dole wanted to “build a bridge to the past.”

“Nearly two decades later, Dole is having the last laugh — and letting present-day Republicans know they might learn a thing or two from the deal-making glory days of the iconic Kansas war hero.”

D.C. BUDGET: And the lawsuit, per City Paper, “The D.C. Council’s fight with Mayor Vince Gray over budget autonomy could be resolved only two weeks before the Council has to make its first vote on the mayor’s budget, according to a schedule laid out in a federal court hearing over the lawsuit filed by the Council and Chairman Phil Mendelson against Gray and Chief Financial Officer Jeff DeWitt.”

MEDS AND SMOKES: Just say no, per Gazette.Net, “Members of the Montgomery County Council are asking stores with pharmacies in them to stop selling cigarettes in their Montgomery locations, claiming the practice is contradictory.”

TUTORING TERPS: Or something like that, per the Frederick News-Post, “The University of Maryland hopes to have a profound, long-lasting impact on the way the city of Frederick does business, said Gerrit Knaap, executive director of the National Center for Smart Growth Research and Education at the university.

“The university has selected the city as its partner to pilot the Action Learning Program, to start this fall. Entire courses will be created based on the city’s needs, Knaap said, and students will be asked to dig deep into big issues and projects the city thinks are worthwhile and come up with new ideas for how city staff can take them on.”

WHAT TO DO?: Of a wide-open space, per ARLnow, “Arlington County surveyed more than 250 residents, workers and visitors to Courthouse Square to assess public opinion of the area’s future. The survey was conducted as part of the county’s “Envision Courthouse Square” initiative, which is trying to get the public involved in the process of planning the future development of the 9-acre area surrounding the county’s large surface parking lot.

“. . . More than 13 percent of respondents listed “market events” as their preferred future use of open space in Courthouse Square, followed by 12.2 percent in favor of outdoor movies and evening events. Social gathering and social seating received 11.7 and 9.8 percent of the vote, respectively.”

SPORTS, BRIEFLY: Wizards beat Chicago 101-99; Nationals lose 7-2 against L.A. Angels.

TRENDING ON ABC7 FACEBOOK: “Fairfax County Police are on the hunt for a serial groper. The male suspect is reported to be responsible for a total of seven forcible fondling incidents that occurred in three shopping areas – Skyline, Bailey’s Crossroads, and Seven Corners. The incidents took place between March 22 and April 19 in the afternoon or early evening between 2 p.m. and 9 p.m.”

NEWSTALK: Among today’s guests (10 a.m., NewsChannel 8) is Bliss Requa-Trautz of the Massachusetts group “Just Communities,” will be asked about the anti-deportation demonstrations taking place at the White House.

Skip Wood

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AMSTERDAM, April 23, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Constellium N.V. (NYSE and NYSE Euronext: CSTM) (“Constellium” or the “Company”) today announced that the Company intends to offer, subject to market and other conditions, approximately €590 million of senior unsecured notes (the “Notes”) consisting of U.S. dollar denominated senior notes due 2024 and euro denominated notes due 2021 (the “Offering”). The Notes will be guaranteed on a senior unsecured basis by certain of the Company’s subsidiaries.

The Company intends to use a portion of the proceeds from the Offering to repay all amounts outstanding under its existing term loan, with the balance to be used for general corporate purposes. There can be no assurance that the Company will successfully complete the Offering on the terms described herein or at all.

The Notes will be offered and sold to qualified institutional buyers in the United States pursuant to Rule 144A and outside the United States pursuant to Regulation S under the Securities Act of 1933.

Concurrently with the Offering, the Company expects to enter into a new €120 million unsecured revolving credit facility with a term of three years, which the Company expects will be available upon consummation of the Offering.

The Notes have not been registered under the Securities Act of 1933 or any state securities laws and may not be offered or sold in the United States absent registration or an applicable exemption from the registration requirements of the Securities Act of 1933 and applicable state laws.

This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to purchase the Notes or any other securities, shall not constitute an offer, solicitation or sale in any state or jurisdiction in which such an offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful. This news release is being issued pursuant to and in accordance with Rule 135c under the Securities Act of 1933.

In relation to each member state of the European Economic Area which has implemented the 2003/71/EC directive as amended (the “Prospectus Directive”) (each a “Relevant Member State”), an offer of securities to the public has not been made and will not be made in that Relevant Member State, except that an offer in that Relevant Member State of securities may be made at any time to any legal entity which is a qualified investor as defined in the Prospectus Directive, if the qualified investor prospectus exemption has been implemented in that Relevant Member State and provided that no such offer shall result in a requirement for the publication of a prospectus in that Member State.

About Constellium

Constellium is a global sector leader that develops innovative, value added aluminium products for a broad scope of markets and applications, including aerospace, automotive and packaging. Constellium generated approximately €3.5 billion of revenue in 2013.

Forward-looking Statements

Certain statements contained in this press release may constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. This press release may contain “forward-looking statements” with respect to our business, results of operations and financial condition, and our expectations or beliefs concerning future events and conditions. You can identify forward-looking statements because they contain words such as, but not limited to, “believes,” “expects,” “may,” “should,” “approximately,” “anticipates,” “estimates,” “intends,” “plans,” “targets,” likely,” “will,” “would,” “could” and similar expressions (or the negative of these terminologies or expressions). All forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties. Many risks and uncertainties are inherent in our industry and markets. Others are more specific to our business and operations. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to those set forth under the heading “Risk Factors” in our most recent annual report on Form 20-F and as described from time to time in subsequent reports filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The occurrence of the events described and the achievement of the expected results depend on many events, some or all of which are not predictable or within our control. Consequently, actual results may differ materially from the forward-looking statements contained in this press release. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.

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SOURCE Constellium


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Vragen of opmerkingen?

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ROCKANJE – De bedriegers bedrogen is de titel van een toneelstuk door toneelvereniging ZieZo uit Rockanje. Op zaterdag 22 maart in de theaterzaal van Stuifakker aan de Briggemandreef.
Als de heer des huizes, Maarten, van zijn vrije dag probeert te genieten, komen er allemaal vreemde mensen op bezoek.
En wat is dat toch allemaal met die vaas van zijn vrouw Maria?
Waarom zijn sommige mensen zo geïnteresseerd in dat lelijke erfstuk. Aanvang 20.00 uur, Kaarten kosten 7,50 euro, inclusief een consumptie.
Reserveren kan op: ,

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The Australian dollar is almost level with its previous local close, in quiet post-Easter trading with no economic data or events to give investors direction.

At 0630 AEST on Wednesday, the local unit was trading at 93.66 US cents, a touch down from 93.67 cents on Tuesday.

And the Australian share market looks set to open higher after Wall Street was pushed upward by solid earnings and major pharmaceutical-sector deals.

At 0645 AEST on Wednesday, the June share price index futures contract was up 18 points at 5,490.


MADRID – Credit rating agency Moody’s says Spain is “now firmly on an improving trend” with exports boosting the euro zone’s fourth-biggest economy as it crawls out of recession.

HARARE – Zimbabwe will not take any foreign investment capital as part of its controversial indigenisation policy, the finance minister says.

BRUSSELS – Belgium has announced that it had reached an agreement with the United States on sharing bank account information as part of international efforts to crack down on tax evasion.

WASHINGTON – Sales of existing US homes slipped in March to their lowest level since July 2012 as rising prices and a tight supply of available homes discouraged many would-be buyers.

NEW YORK – McDonald’s has pledged to boost its performance in Australia and other key markets after reporting a first-quarter drop in profits of 5.2 per cent.

AMSTERDAM – Unilever PLC, the producer of countless disposable containers that clutter the landfills of the world, says it is adopting technology that will cut the amount of plastic it needs to use in each bottle by 15 per cent.

NEW YORK – General Motors asked a US bankruptcy court to bar most suits filed over its faulty ignition system, arguing its 2009 court-approved bankruptcy re-organisation shields it from liability in most cases.

MILWAUKEE – Shares of Harley-Davidson have jumped almost 7 per cent in premarket trading after the company reported first-quarter earnings that were 18.7 per cent higher than a year ago.

PHILADELPHIA – Comcast Corp says its first-quarter net income rose by 30 per cent as ad revenue surged at broadcast network NBC.

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April 23 (Reuters) – For other related diaries, please

DIARY – U.S. Federal Reserve

DIARY – European Central Bank

DIARY – Polling Unit Diary

DIARY – Today in Washington

DIARY – Key World Financial Events

DIARY – Political and General news

DIARY – Index of all Diaries

DIARY – economic data forecast

DIARY – Major Central Bank Events

** This Diary is filed daily **


LONDON – Bank of England will release the minutes of April
Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting – 0830 GMT.
HELSINKI – Finnish Prime Minister Jyrki Katainen, Finance
Minister Jutta Urpilainen and The Finns Party leader Timo Soini
participate in a election debate – 1300 GMT.
KYOTO, Japan – Bank of Japan Deputy Governor Hiroshi Nakaso
speaks at an International Association of Deposit Insurers’
conference in Kyoto – 0025 GMT.
HALMSTAD, Sweden – Sveriges Riksbank Deputy Governor Cecilia
Skingsley speaks on “The Riksbank’s View of the Economic
TALLINN – Estonian Central Bank to hold its Financial Stability
news conference.


AMSTERDAM, Netherlands – ECB President Mario Draghi gives a
keynote speech at the conference “De Nederlandsche Bank 200
years: central banking in the next two decades” organized by De
Nederlandsche Bank in Amsterdam – 0900 GMT.
STOCKHOLM – Swedish Riksbank will release the minutes of April
monetary policy meeting – 0730 GMT.
MADRID – ECB Vice President Vitor Constancio speaks at a
conference on Banking Union organized by Master in Banking and
Financial Regulation/Center for Banking Studies, University of
Navarra in Madrid – 1615 GMT.
SASKATOON, Canada – Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz
speaks to the Saskatchewan Trade and Export Partnership in
Saskatoon – 1845 GMT.
WELLINGTON – Reserve Bank of New Zealand announces Official
Cash Rate (OCR) – 2100 GMT.


BERNE – Swiss National Bank (SNB) Chairman of Governing Board
Thomas Jordan and President Jean Studer speaks at the SNB’s
General Shareholders Meeting in Berne – 0800 GMT.
AMSTERDAM – ECB Supervisory Chair Daniele Nouy speaks on
supervision at DNB conference on “Central banking in the next
two decades” in Amsterdam – 0830 GMT.
AMSTERDAM – Bank for International Settlements (BIS) General
Manager Jaime Caruana speaks at a conference in Amsterdam to
mark the 200th anniversary of the Dutch central bank – 1330 GMT.
CALGARY, Canada – Canadian Finance Minister Joe Oliver delivers
a speech to the Calgary chapter of the Economic Club of Canada -
1400 GMT.


BONN, Germany – ECB President Mario Draghi speaks at the joint
conference of the coalition party groups of the German
government in Bonn, Germany – 1430 GMT.
FRANKFURT – ECB Executive Board members Vitor Constancio,
Benoit Coeure and Peter Praet speak at the conference “Financial
integration and stability in a new financial architecture”
jointly organized by the ECB and the European Commission in
Frankfurt, Germany.
NEW YORK – Former Federal Reserve chair Alan Greenspan speaks
before the Economic Club of New York.
PARIS – Bank of France Governor Christian Noyer holds news
conference on “The stakes for economic and monetary policy – the
situation in France and the euro zone” – 0800 GMT.


WASHINGTON – Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA)
Annual 2014 Washington Policy Summit (to May 2). Federal Reserve
Chair Janet Yellen speaks on the third day of the conference -
1230 GMT.
DUBLIN – Central Bank of Ireland Conference on “Macro to Micro
- A New Era in Financial Statistics”.


WASHINGTON – U.S. Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market
Committee (FOMC) announces decision on interest rates.
TOKYO – Bank of Japan monetary policy meeting.


BRUSSELS – Eurogroup meeting.


BRUSSELS – Meeting of the Economic and Financial Affairs
Council (ECOFIN).
SYDNEY – Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) holds interest rate


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NOTE: The inclusion of diary items does not necessarily mean
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