SINGAPORE (AP) — Prosecutors in Singapore say they are seeking reform training for a teenager who is refusing probation and who again made public the video and blog posts a court deemed offensive earlier this month.
The court on May 12 found Amos Yee, 16, had offended Christians in a YouTube video and had transmitted online an obscene image of Singapore’s founding leader Lee Kuan Yew and Britain’s Margaret Thatcher.
He initially agreed to take down the two offending posts and to cooperate with arrangements to serve probation, but then failed to attend scheduled interviews and failed to return home by times stipulated on a trial basis by his probation officers. Court documents shown to The Associated Press revealed that Yee’s parents declined to meet with the officers, saying there was no need to do so since Yee himself “was not keen on probation.”
According to the court documents, Yee had told his assigned probation officer that he did not want to be placed on probation. Last Thursday, his case investigation officer discovered that Yee had made his offending video and blog post publicly viewable once again, actions which deputy public prosecutor Hay Hung Chun said were contemptuous of court.
In a statement shared with media Wednesday by the Attorney General’s Chambers, Hay said Yee “is clearly a misguided youth who seeks attention by deliberately posting provocative content, who has no insight into his offending behavior, and who is likely to keep repeating this pattern of conduct.”
Hay recommended reform training because jail time or a fine would not rehabilitate him. Yee may be jailed while his suitability for reform training is assessed, however.
Yee’s defense counsel asked for time to speak with the teenager and his parents, and District Judge Jasvender Kaur is likely to decide on Yee’s next steps when he next appears in court on Tuesday.
Reform training in Singapore is for convicted offenders between 16 and 18 who have been assessed as unsuitable for probation. They are housed in a training center without adult inmates for a set time. Yee, who turns 17 in October, would have term lasting at least 18 months, if the judge accepts the prosecutors’ recommendation.
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Three convicted burglars are sharing tips of their trade in a YouTube crime prevention video produced by the police in Columbus, Ohio.
The men explain how they chose houses they robbed, what they targeted and what they did with the goods.
They also pass on measures they say prevent people like themselves from breaking in, from always keeping windows closed and blinds drawn to having a working security system.
Columbus police teamed up with the Ohio prison system to produce the videos. The inmates’ only incentive was a letter to the parole board outlining their cooperation.
Police Cmdr. Bob Meader says it’s one thing for officers to emphasize crime prevention and another to hear it from expert criminals.
From the Big House to Your House:
CAIRO (AP) — Egyptian authorities have arrested a woman who danced in a racy music video that went viral on the internet and referred her to misdemeanor court for “inciting debauchery.”
The clip, a low-budget production entitled “Hands Off,” or “Sib Eddi” in Egyptian Arabic, contains no nudity but plenty of scantily-clad booty shaking by the woman, Reda el-Fouly, who dances to the voice of a singer called Mena.
Ahmed Bakly of the Giza prosecution said in a statement that the clip “disrupted morality.” He also ordered the arrest of Wael Elsedeki, who he described as el-Fouly’s boyfriend who had left the country for Tunisia after some social media users called the video scandalous, and a third person involved in the video.
WACO, Texas (AP) — When gunfire erupted in the parking lot of a Texas restaurant, most of the leather-clad motorcycle riders watching the confrontation from the patio or inside immediately ran away from the shooting. A few tried to direct people to safety, crawling on all fours heading for cover.
One biker ran away with blood on his face, hands and torso. A woman could be heard screaming, “Oh my God!” Others yelled, “Get down!”
Restaurant security video reviewed exclusively by The Associated Press showed only one of the dozens of bikers recorded was seen firing a gun from the patio of the Twin Peaks restaurant where nine people were killed.
None of the nine video angles shows the parking lot.
Many of the bikers on tape are likely to have been arrested by Waco police, who rounded up about 170 people, charged them with felony engaging in organized criminal activity and set their bonds at $1 million.
Police spokesman Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton declined to comment about the video Wednesday. Swanton has said the people arrested were members of biker gangs with criminal elements that have been monitored by local authorities for months.
“They were not here to drink and eat barbecue,” Swanton said earlier this week. “They came here with violence in mind.”
The video shows bikers on the restaurant patio Sunday, ducking under tables and trying to get inside. At least three people can be seen holding handguns.
Before the shooting, the inside of the restaurant appears to be mostly empty. Bikers and other patrons can be seen walking to the windows facing the parking lot, where most of the shooting happened, when the confrontation was apparently underway.
When gunshots start at 12:24 p.m. on the video, most bikers, other patrons and staff immediately run away from the windows and into the restaurant’s interior.
One camera angle shows bikers running into the men’s bathroom. When there’s no space left in the bathroom, they dash toward the kitchen.
The AP was shown the video Wednesday by representatives of the Twin Peaks franchise, who have said the fighting began outside the restaurant, not inside as police have said. The franchise has not released the video publicly, citing the ongoing investigation.
Video footage shows police with assault rifles entering the door about two minutes after the shooting begins. As two officers enter, bikers can be seen lying on the floor with their hands spread.
Before the shooting, at least 20 members of the Cossacks biker gang can be seen on the patio. Members of the Scimitars, Boozefighters and Leathernecks can also be seen on the tape. While no Bandidos are immediately visible, police and one member of that biker gang have said some of their members were at the event.
Among those arrested was Theron Rhoten, who showed up at the Twin Peaks restaurant for a regional motorcycle club meeting. But, according to his wife, he soon found himself in the middle of a deadly shootout involving scores of other bikers.
Katie Rhoten said her husband ran for cover and was later arrested, along with motorcycle-riding friends and other “nonviolent, noncriminal people.”
Police have said that all those arrested were part of criminal motorcycle gangs, but only five of the nine people killed had criminal histories in Texas, based on court records and a search of their names in a database maintained by the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Police have acknowledged firing on armed bikers, but it is not clear how many of the dead were shot by gang members and how many were shot by officers.
Merchant and Warren reported from Dallas. Associated Press National Writer Allen G. Breed contributed to this report.
NEW YORK (AP) — While saying that it still a music company at heart, Spotify says it is expanding is lineup to include podcasts, news radio and video streaming.
The company says it wants to help people create a soundtrack for their day that includes not only music but videos, newscasts and other content.
CEO Daniel Ek said that the new service launches Wednesday in the U.S., U.K., Germany and Sweden.
Spotify offers free streaming music and also a premium service for a monthly fee that includes extra features. The company didn’t say it is changing its cost structure.
Spotify enters a competitive market for video streaming that is dominated by Netflix, Amazon.com, and Hulu, but it’s getting more crowded of late with the arrival of companies like HBO.
Spotify’s service is a “logical extension of the company’s success in digital music streaming, since these are complementary businesses that use much of the same technology infrastructure, marketing expertise, and vendor relationships,” said Paul Verna, senior analyst at research firm eMarketer.
Verna said the maneuver suggests that Spotify “sees a business opportunity in digital video advertising, which is a much larger and faster-growing sector than Spotify’s core business of digital music.”
EMarketer estimates that spending on U.S. digital video ads will total $7.77 billion in 2015, up from $5.81 billion in 2014.
NEW YORK (AP) — Video is going mobile, and leading TV providers are trying to adapt.
AT&T, for instance, is buying satellite TV provider DirecTV so it can offer packages that marry wireless and wired Internet access with traditional and online video. Verizon is buying AOL for technology to improve advertising on mobile devices. And Comcast tried — unsuccessfully — to get bigger, in part to compete better with online video services such as Netflix and Hulu.
Here’s a look at what those three companies are doing:
If AT&T’s $48.5 billion bid to buy DirecTV goes through this summer, AT&T would become the No. 1 provider of traditional TV services. AT&T’s U-verse video service is already in 6 million households in 21 states. DirecTV’s 20 million households nationwide would give AT&T 26 million video customers in the U.S.
Cable companies now sell packages of video, Internet and phone services through wires to your home. AT&T wants to add a fourth, wireless, to the bundle in the 21 U-verse states. Elsewhere, it would be able to package satellite TV with wireless.
More importantly, AT&T would be able to offer more flexibility in how customers watch video. All cable companies have been embracing TV Everywhere — websites and mobile apps for watching movies and TV shows on the go. But it’s a choppy experience. Providers don’t have the right to offer certain channels on mobile. Some channels work only with some devices.
AT&T says it already has some rights to bring video to mobile. But in other cases, it needs new contracts with TV channels providing the shows. Having DirecTV would give AT&T more bargaining power and would let it deepen relationships with content providers as video transitions to mobile over the next several years.
Verizon’s $4.4 billion bid for AOL is largely about advertising and mobile video. Verizon already offers traditional TV services to 6 million households through FiOS. Having AOL wouldn’t increase that, but would give the country’s biggest wireless carrier more video it can distribute to its phone subscribers.
More importantly, Verizon would have advertising technology from AOL to boost revenue. Although people are using their phones more for video, wireless carriers haven’t seen a corresponding increase in revenue because of price competition. With AOL, Verizon has a better chance of getting additional revenue from advertisers instead.
Comcast, currently the nation’s leading TV provider with 22 million households, wanted to buy Time Warner Cable, which has 11 million households. It abandoned the $45 billion bid, though, after federal regulators objected over worries about a larger company’s ability to undermine online video providers.
But the core of the deal was less about providing mobile video than helping Comcast compete. As people increasingly turn to online services and drop traditional TV channels, Comcast wanted to get bigger so that it could negotiate better deals to carry the channels on its cable lineup. That could have translated into more flexibility for TV Everywhere services on phones.
Comcast still remains primarily a home service provider. It has been improving technology in the home, such as a remote that responds to your voice.
Comcast began diversifying years ago, namely with its purchase of NBCUniversal. Instead of just selling dumb pipes, Comcast was able to make money from content, too. As NBCUniversal channels expand their offerings on mobile, Comcast benefits whether the viewer gets the channels through Comcast, AT&T or Dish.