Japan’s ‘Black Widow’ confesses to killing husband number four

A one-time millionairess dubbed the “Black Widow” over the untimely deaths of lovers and a husband, admitted poisoning her last partner at her trial this week in a multiple murder case that has gripped Japan.
Chisako Kakehi, 70, has become notorious over accusations she dispatched a number of elderly men she was involved with, drawing comparisons with the spider that kills its mate after copulation.
Kakehi is on trial for the murders of three men – including a husband –…

Jailed Singaporean banker handed new convictions in 1MDB-linked case

A Singapore court on Wednesday convicted a jailed banker of additional offences in a case linked to the international money-laundering scandal involving neighbouring Malaysia’s state fund 1MDB.
Singaporean Yeo Jiawei, a former wealth manager with Swiss bank BSI, was sentenced to 54 months after admitting charges of money-laundering and cheating.
The jail term will run concurrently with a 30-month sentence for trying to tamper with witnesses involved in the probe into the scandal, which…

Young Thai teen boxes to support her grandmother

By Phubet Faithes A 14-year-old girl taught Muay Thai by her father is boxing successfully in competitions in her home province and nearby, helping support her grandmother and pay off the family house. Wijitra “Ann” Boon-in, a student at Ban Dan Lan Hoi Wittaya School in Ban Dan Lan Hoi district, said on Wednesday her late father was a Muay Thai boxer. He had passed his love of the sport on to her and began training her when she was in Grade six. She started fighting in the…

Thailand approves long-delayed US$5.2 billion rail link to China

Thailand’s military government on Tuesday approved US$5.2 billion to build the first stretch of a high-speed railway that will ultimately link Bangkok to southern China, a massive joint infrastructure project with Beijing that has been dogged by delays. The project is part of China’s huge regional infrastructure plan to build a high-speed rail network connecting the southern city of Kunming with Laos, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore. Construction has already begun in Laos but…

The short arm of the law: Cambodia’s Khmer Rouge tribunal says very few ‘will ever be prosecuted for atrocities’

The UN-backed Cambodian tribunal trying Khmer Rouge leaders for atrocities committed while they ruled the country has acknowledged that only a handful of former high-ranking officials will ever face justice for their crimes.
In a statement released on Monday, the tribunal sought to explain the dismissal in February of a case against Im Chaem, a middle-ranking Khmer Rouge district chief whom prosecutors had charged with crimes against humanity, including murder, extermination and enslavement….

North Korea admits being hit by months-long surge in petrol prices as sanctions bite

North Korean officials on Monday for the first time admitted a months-long surge in petrol prices in the capital city in the wake of international sanctions.
The prices shot up to one and a half times higher than before starting around April and they remained high, the director of the country’s major think tank said in an interview with Kyodo in Pyongyang.
But Kim Chol, who heads the Economic Institute of the Academy of Social Sciences, said: “The situation is not that the prices…

Kids and hostages forced to fight alongside Filipino militants in southern town, army says

Children and hostages are being forced to fight alongside pro-Islamic State gunmen waging a seven-week battle for a Philippine city, the country’s military said on Monday.
Militants seized Marawi, considered the Muslim capital of the largely Catholic Philippines, on May 23 in a bid to create an IS province, and over 100 remain holed up in the city despite intense military efforts to oust them.
Some of the extremists are teenagers who may have been recruited and trained to use guns when…

A break-up of Air India could be an option as Modi pushes for quick sale

India is considering selling state-owned Air India in parts to make it attractive to potential buyers, as it reviews options to divest the loss-making flagship carrier, several government officials familiar with the situation said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet gave the go-ahead last month for the government to try to sell the airline, after successive governments spent billions of dollars in recent years to keep the airline going.
Air India – founded in the 1930s and known…