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Suu Kyi alleges cash payments from a Myanmar building magnate.

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Suu Kyi alleges cash payments from a Myanmar building magnate.
Suu Kyi alleges cash payments from a Myanmar building magnate.

Suu Kyi alleges cash payments from a Myanmar building magnate.

 

In a broadcast on state television aimed at discrediting the ousted civilian government, a Myanmar construction magnate with links to military rulers said he personally gave more than half a million dollars in cash to deposed leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

The statement by Maung Waik could pave the way for more serious charges to be brought against Suu Kyi, who has been detained since the military took over on Feb. 1, while security forces have steadily used lethal force against a popular rebellion demanding the restoration of democratically elected leaders.

Suu Kyi has also been accused of corruption by the military, which claims she was given $600,000 and gold bars by a political ally. So far, she and President Win Myint have been charged with inciting violence, possessing walkie-talkies, and violating a pandemic order that prohibits public gatherings.

Maung Waik, who has previously been convicted of drug trafficking, said on state television that he gave cash to government ministers to support his businesses. He said the funds included $100,000 given to Suu Kyi in 2018 for a charitable organization named after her mother, $150,000 in 2019 for an unknown cause, $50,000 in February, and $250,000 in April, all for an unknown reason.

Meanwhile, a Myanmar court has released an arrest warrant for the country’s United Nations ambassador, Kyaw Moe Tun, on treason charges, according to Myanmar’s state-run newspaper Global New Light.

The accusation stems from his remarks at the United Nations in New York on Feb. 26, in which he denounced the coup and urged the international community to take “the strongest possible steps” to restore democracy in his country.

The civilian leader of Myanmar’s government in exile, Mahn Win Khaing Than, was also charged with treason, according to the report. On Saturday, the acting vice president and a member of Aung San Suu Kyi’s political party spoke for the first time since the coup, vowing to continue supporting a “revolution” to remove the military from power.

Residents in a Yangon suburb set fire to street barricades on Thursday to prevent riot police from entering.

Big plumes of smoke could be seen rising over the Tha Mine area in the city’s Hlaing township, and another barricade was burning ferociously in the middle of a residential area, according to video. Residents set them on fire after hearing that a column of police vehicles was on its way, according to one resident who did not want to be identified for fear of retaliation.

Building barricades – and sometimes torching them – has been a common technique used by junta opponents around the country to block police and army movement. The barriers also provide protection against the increasingly common use of live ammunition against them.

According to media and social media posts that included images of the victims, at least two people were shot dead in Kalay, Myanmar’s northwestern region, on Wednesday. Since the coup, more than 200 people have been confirmed killed.

Pope Francis has called for a halt to the violence.

“I, too, kneel on the streets of Myanmar and say: may violence cease,” Francis said, referring to widely circulated photographs of a nun kneeling on the street in front of armed security forces asking them not to shoot demonstrators.

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Missouri middle school teacher accused of sending inappropriate photos to student

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Missouri middle school teacher accused of sending inappropriate photos to student

JEFFERSON COUNTY, Mo. — The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a Fox C-6 teacher accused of sending inappropriate pictures to a student.

Investigators tell FOX 2 the teacher taught at Ridgewood Middle School. When FOX 2 asked the district about the investigation earlier in the day on Thursday, the district did not respond, but a letter was sent to parents later Thursday afternoon. 

“When I found out about it, I was pretty upset. I thought it was really disgusting,” Holly Burch tells FOX 2. 

Burch said she has a son who’s a student in the Fox C-6 School District. She said she and other parents got the letter today from the Fox C-6 superintendent, saying the district has received complaints about “inappropriate behavior by a Fox C-6 employee.” 

“I’m glad somebody came forward because I don’t even have the words, I don’t even know how to describe it it’s just sickening,” Burch said.

The Jefferson County Sheriff’s office confirms it’s investigating a 37-year-old female teacher at Ridgewood Middle School for allegedly sending inappropriate photos to a student.  Burch said her son knows the student, who the teacher was sending the photos to. The son had some of the pictures on his phone as well, and she saw some of the photos. She said they were very inappropriate.  

“The pictures I saw it’s pretty disturbing,” Burch explained. “Just like, wow. It’s just shocking. I just don’t understand.” 

The Fox C-6 School District would not say whether the teacher is still employed.  

“I’m hoping that she’s not at the school district — that she won’t be able to ever be a teacher again,” Burch said.

Letter sent to parents:

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The New York Giants hire Joe Schoen, who also interviewed for the Chicago Bears general manager job. Here’s the latest in the NFL’s firing and hiring cycle.

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Chicago Bears schedule a 2nd interview with Matt Eberflus, while Ed Dodds reportedly withdraws from the GM search. Here’s the latest in the NFL’s firing and hiring cycle.

Change is in the air. “Black Monday” arrived in the NFL the day after the regular season ended with a flurry of major changes around the league.

A week later, the Chicago Bears, Jacksonville Jaguars, Denver Broncos, Minnesota Vikings, New York Giants, Miami Dolphins and Houston Texans were searching for new head coaches, and the Bears, Vikings, Giants and Las Vegas Raiders needed new general managers.

As a new cycle of firing and hiring proceeds, we’re tracking all of the latest moves.

Friday

The New York Giants have hired Joe Schoen to be their general manager, the team announced.

The scoop: The Bears interviewed Schoen, the Buffalo Bills assistant general manager, for their vacancy Sunday. Now he’s off the market after the Giants chose him over finalists Adam Peters and Ryan Poles. Schoen has been in his current role for five seasons and also worked with the Miami Dolphins and Carolina Panthers. He will now dive into hiring a new head coach, with Bills coordinators — and Bears candidates — Brian Daboll and Leslie Frazier potential connections. Three teams remain in the hunt for a new GM: the Bears, Vikings and Raiders.

Wednesday

Bears GM candidate Ed Dodds withdrew his name from consideration, NFL Network reported.

The scoop: Dodds, the Indianapolis Colts assistant general manager, interviewed with the Bears on Monday. He has been with the Colts since 2017, starting as the vice president of player personnel, and was with the Seattle Seahawks for 10 years before that. Dodds has been a GM candidate for several offseasons, but he reportedly turned down an interview request from the Cleveland Browns in 2020 and withdrew from the Carolina Panthers search in 2021. Dodds is also a candidate this year for the Raiders GM job.

The Bears are scheduling Indianapolis Colts defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus for a second interview, according to multiple reports.

The scoop: Eberflus, who had his first interview with the Bears on Monday, is the first coach reported to make it to the second round of interviews. Eberflus has been the Colts defensive coordinator for four seasons and before that was the Dallas Cowboys linebackers coach for seven seasons. He also has worked for the Cleveland Browns and spent 17 years coaching in college.

Eberflus also made it to the second round of interviews with the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Bears still are interviewing both GMs and coaches, with Tampa Bay Buccaneers coordinators Byron Leftwich and Todd Bowles and Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn reportedly scheduled for coaching interviews later this week.

Other teams reportedly have requested interviews with Bears defensive coordinator Sean Desai and assistant director of player personnel Champ Kelly.

The scoop: The Seattle Seahawks, who fired defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr. on Tuesday, have put in a request to talk to Desai, The Athletic reported. Desai has been with the Bears for nine seasons and was promoted to coordinator in 2021 after Chuck Pagano retired.

Kelly interviewed for the Bears GM position last week, and now he will interview with the Raiders, NFL Network reported. He has been with the Bears for seven seasons, starting as the director of pro scouting before he was promoted to his current role. The Raiders fired GM Mike Mayock on Monday.

Monday

The Las Vegas Raiders fired general manager Mike Mayock, the team announced.

The scoop: Mayock was the Raiders GM for three seasons, and his teams went 25-24, including 10-7 in 2021. The decision comes a day after a 26-19 playoff loss to the Cincinnati Bengals, the Raiders’ only postseason appearance in Mayock’s tenure. Mayock previously was a draft analyst with NFL Network and a TV announcer. Raiders coach Jon Gruden resigned in October after some of Gruden’s old emails containing racist, homophobic and misogynistic language surfaced. Interim coach Rich Bisaccia led the team to a 7-5 record the rest of the way. The Raiders are interviewing candidates for GM and coach, though they haven’t announced what Bisaccia’s future is with the team.

Jan. 13

The Houston Texans fired coach David Culley after one season.

The scoop: The Texans finished 4-13 in the only season under Culley, 66, a longtime NFL assistant in his first job as a head coach. The Texans were playing without Deshaun Watson amid allegations of sexual assault against the quarterback. Week 1 starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor played in only six games because of injury, and the Texans turned to rookie Davis Mills to start 11 games.

Since 1994, Culley has been a wide receivers coach with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Pittsburgh Steelers, Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs, with which he was also the assistant head coach, a quarterbacks coach with the Buffalo Bills and the assistant head coach/wide receivers coach/pass game coordinator with the Baltimore Ravens.

The Carolina Panthers are interviewing Bears special teams coordinator Chris Tabor, according to ESPN.

The scoop: Tabor was the Bears special teams coordinator for all four seasons under Matt Nagy, and he served as interim head coach for one game in 2021 when Nagy had COVID-19. He previously was the Cleveland Brown special teams coordinator for seven seasons, spanning multiple head coaches.

Jan. 12

The Chicago Bears added two more names to their general manager interview pool.

The scoop: The Bears have requested an interview with Pittsburgh Steelers vice president of football and business administration Omar Khan and New England Patriots senior consultant Eliot Wolf, ESPN reported. Khan had GM interviews last year with the Carolina Panthers and Houston Texans. Wolf, the son of former Green Bay Packers GM Ron Wolf, has worked with the Packers, the Seattle Seahawks and Cleveland Browns.

Here are the updated candidate lists:

General managers

Coaches

Jan. 11

The Chicago Bears list of requested interviews has reached at least 8 general manager candidates and 9 coaching candidates.

The scoop: Recently fired Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores was a big name to pop up in a lengthy list of candidates the Bears have contacted about interviews.

NFL Network reported the Bears set up the interview with Flores, who went 24-25 in three seasons with the Dolphins. His last two seasons were winning ones, but the Dolphins didn’t make the playoffs.

Here are the other coaching candidates who reportedly have been requested:

Former Houston Texans general manager Rick Smith is among the biggest names to be expected to interview with the Bears. Here’s a list of others:

The New York Giants fired coach Joe Judge after two seasons.

The scoop: In his first NFL head coaching stint, Judge, 40, went 10-23, including 4-13 in 2021. Playing without quarterback Daniel Jones down the stretch, the Giants lost their final six games by a combined score of 163-56. After the 29-3 loss to the Bears in Week 17, Judge went on an 11-minute rant defending his team while talking to the media.

It is the second big Giants move in two days after general manager Dave Gettleman announced his retirement Monday. With Judge out, there are now seven NFL head coaching jobs open.

Jan. 10

The Chicago Bears fired general manager Ryan Pace and coach Matt Nagy.

The scoop: Pace is out in Chicago after seven seasons during which his teams went 48-65, qualified for the postseason twice and failed to record a playoff victory. In his first NFL head coaching stint, Nagy finished 34-31 with two playoff losses over four seasons.

The Bears never found the right fit between Nagy and a quarterback during his tenure , running through Mitch Trubisky, Nick Foles, Andy Dalton and Justin Fields. Nagy’s offense remained stuck in the bottom third of the league in many categories . The Bears finished 6-11 this season.

The Bears have reached out to former Eagles coach Doug Pederson to schedule an interview for their head coaching role, according to a league source. An ESPN report also indicated the Bears have requested permission to interview Buffalo Bills defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier for the job. The team, according to NFL Network, has also requested to speak with Colts director of college scouting Morocco Brown for the GM opening.

The Minnesota Vikings fired general manager Rick Spielman and coach Mike Zimmer

The scoop: Spielman was with the Vikings since 2006, first as the vice president of player personnel and then as the general manager since 2012. In that time, the Vikings went 132-123-2 with six playoff appearances.

Zimmer, a longtime NFL defensive coordinator, became the Vikings head coach in 2014. He led three seasons of 10 or more wins, three playoff appearances and two playoff victories. The Vikings finished 8-9 after a victory over the Bears on Sunday.

New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman announced his retirement after four seasons in that role.

The scoop: In 2018, Gettleman became the general manager in an organization where he had spent 13 years previously in front office roles. But his efforts to resuscitate the franchise failed with the Giants experiencing their worst four-year stretch of losing in team history.

The Giants went 19-46 under Gettleman’s watch, including a 4-13 faceplant this season during which the offense finished last in the NFC in both total yardage and scoring. Gettleman announced his retirement Monday but may have been fired if he hadn’t. The future of coach Joe Judge remains uncertain and may hinge on what happens with their intensifying GM search.

The Miami Dolphins fired coach Brian Flores after three seasons.

The scoop: Flores was fired in his third season despite posting back-to-back winning seasons. The Dolphins were 5-11 in his first year, 10-6 in 2020 and 9-8 this season, but they didn’t make the playoffs in his tenure.

Dolphins owner Stephen Ross released a statement saying he “determined that key dynamics of our football organization weren’t functioning at a level I want it to be and felt that this decision was in the best interest of the Miami Dolphins.” General manager Chris Grier will remain with the team in his current role, ESPN reported.

Jan. 9

The Denver Broncos have fired head coach Vic Fangio after three seasons.

The scoop: Fangio didn’t record a winning season in his three in Denver. He finished 19-30 in his first stint as an NFL head coach, including 7-10 this season. Fangio, 63, was a defensive coordinator in the NFL for 19 seasons, including four in Chicago, before he joined the Broncos in 2019.

Fangio’s defense this season ranked in the top 10 in yards and points allowed. But the Broncos offense didn’t produce well enough under Teddy Bridgewater and Drew Lock, the latest in a revolving door of quarterbacks in Denver recent years.

Dec. 30-Jan. 7

The Jaguars have conducted at least five interviews to replace Urban Meyer.

The scoop: The Jaguars fired Urban Meyer on Dec. 16 after just 13 games with the team.

The team already has gotten deep into their search to replace him, reportedly interviewing former Philadelphia Eagles coach Doug Pederson, former Indianapolis Colts and Detroit Lions coach Jim Caldwell, Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive coordinator Todd Bowles and offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich and Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator Kellen Moore.

Read more of our coverage from Black Monday and beyond.

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Alijah Vera-Tucker came at a high price, but it may have been worth it

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Alijah Vera-Tucker came at a high price, but it may have been worth it

Joe Douglas moved aggressively last spring to acquire Alijah Vera-Tucker, and the early results indicate that the deal is paying off.

The Jets traded the No. 23, 66 and 86 overall picks to the Vikings to secure the No. 14 overall pick to select Vera-Tucker in the 2021 draft. After his rookie season, it looks like it could be a slam dunk move.

“I feel like it went well. Obviously, there were some ups and downs from a personal standpoint,” Vera-Tucker said after he met with reporters after the season finale against the Bills. “I feel like this rookie year took some time to evaluate this NFL life, it was a great opportunity for me.”

Vera-Tucker wasn’t always perfect, but the Jets couldn’t expect greatness in year one.

But there were plenty of plays where Vera-Tucker looked like a seasoned pro.

The former USC standout showed signs of becoming a force in the run blocking game. And while it wasn’t always consistent, Vera-Tucker’s showed impressive athleticism. He can pull across the line of scrimmage, or block two blitzing defenders in pass protection to give his QB enough time to fire a strike.

Mike White’s touchdown pass to Braxton Berrios against the Bengals is a prime example of this.

In the running game, Vera-Tucker can double-team a defensive tackle then sprint up to the second level and quickly latch onto a linebacker.

The Jets rushing attack averaged 4.3 yards when running left, which is solid, but leaves room for improvement.

Vera-Tucker needs to be better in pass protection. He allowed 42 pressures (34 hurries, six QBs hits and two sacks), sixth most among NFL guards, according to Pro Football Focus. Growth in that area will come with time as he gets stronger and cleans up his technique.

“I think there’s always room for improvement. From what I could say now without looking at every single game in close detail, I’d say pass pro,” Vera-Tucker said. “I’d definitely like to get better at that. I know my strengths and weaknesses with that. Also in the run game, too. I just always want to be violent in the run and pass game. I feel like I was able to show that this season. But I definitely need to pass well, just techniques and stuff like that. Being able to just perfect my craft.”

The three picks after Zach Wilson were Vera-Tucker, Elijah Moore and Michael Carter and all three have shown they are building blocks. The offensive quartet could become the core that changes the course of the franchise.

“It’s really exciting just the rookie class this year, everybody taking this year to grow and stuff like that, getting used to playing in the NFL,” Vera-Tucker said. “I’m excited for it. I know everybody else is excited for it. Go into this offseason and evaluate what we did right, what we do wrong, look at the tape and just get better.”

Overall, Vera-Tucker’s rookie year revealed he could become a premier guard in the NFL. He already flashed promise in the run game, and as he acknowledges, his pass blocking needs improvement.

The trade up to the No. 14 pick is paying early dividends.

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