Tuesday, December 13, 2005

A good cop to the end: "A New York policeman was shot dead yesterday as he tried to stop a former Sopranos actor and an accomplice from allegedly breaking into a house in a search for drugs. Lillo Brancato Jr 29, who played Matt Bevilacqua, a doomed small-time mobster in the 1999-2000 season of the mafia television drama, is the latest in a line of Sopranos stars to have had real-life and violent run-ins with the law. The police officer, Daniel Enchautegui, was shot in the chest allegedly by Mr Brancato's accomplice, Steven Armento. But as he lay dying in his driveway he shot and seriously wounded both men. Mr Brancato, who got his acting break in the 1993 Robert De Niro film A Bronx Tale, was last night critically ill in hospital after being shot twice by Mr Enchautegui. Mr Armento was shot four times and was in a serious condition. In 2002, Robert Iler, who plays Tony Sopranos's son AJ, pleaded guilty to taking part in a mugging. Richard "Richie Blue Eyes" Maldone, who played Albert Barese, a mafia boss, was arrested in 2003 and charged with buying drugs".

Chinese goons reined in: "Four days after Chinese police opened fire on villagers protesting against the appropriation of their land, the Government announced that several were killed and the commander who gave the order to fire had been detained. Amnesty International, the human rights group, said that it was the first time Chinese police had fired on protesters since the crushing of the Tiananmen Square demonstrations in 1989, when hundreds died in the heart of Beijing. The Government placed the death toll at three. Residents put the number of dead at anywhere from two to twenty. The violence erupted on Tuesday in the village of Dongzhou in southern Guangdong province, bordering Hong Kong. Armed police opened fire when villagers gathered to demand more compensation after their land was seized to make way for a wind farm.... The Government defended the shootings, saying police opened fire after protesters with knives, spears and dynamite attacked a power plant and then turned on authorities. But, within hours, the authorities announced that the commander who ordered his men to shoot had been detained. The commander was to blame for the deaths, the provincial government said. "The commander's wrong actions caused deaths and injuries," the Government said"

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