Written by Phil Cerroni
A slow, sunny day dawned over New York City as students dusted off last year’s textbooks for the first time that semester. Adults arrived late to work, so they could vote in the primaries. These coincidences meant that Susan Doyle arrived at a thinly staffed office on the 35th floor of the World Trade Center’s North Tower on Tuesday, Sep. 11, 2001.
Her fast paced work week, that started when she flew to New York from Houston every Monday and ended when she returned to Texas on Friday, ground to a shattering halt when American Airlines Flight 11 slammed into the 90th floor. Even 50 floors below the impact, Susan felt as if something wrenched the tower from its seat on New York’s skyline and unceremoniously dropped it back down.
Immediately after the shockwave, the building started to sway. Susan did not panic. An underwriter with 30 years of experience, she had become inured to natural disasters. Since seismic activity was not unheard of in Lower Manhattan, Susan naturally concluded that a blown gas line, ruptured by an earthquake was responsible for the disruption.
But as soon as she looked out the window, Susan knew no earthquake was to blame. If an earthquake had rumbled through downtown New York, people would have crowded the streets, rushing to check for damage or simply satisfy their innate need for sensationalism. As it was a clear day, she could easily see activity on the street from her vantage point. Nowhere Susan looked did she see any activity symptomatic of an earthquake.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 September 2013 12:51
Written by Staff
The City of Coppell again hold the annual Plaza Music Series. The series will take place on Saturdays in September from 7 p.m. – 9p.m.
Petty Theft, a Tom Petty tribute band, will perform on Sep. 14. Southern Chrome will make an appearance on Sep. 21st covering a variety of popular Country music and summing up the series with a new twist is Bubba Hernandez on Sep. 28 playing Worldly Latin Rock.
Visit the Plaza Events page at www.coppelltx.gov for music videos! All concerts are free of charge and will take place in the Town Center Plaza at 255 East Parkway Blvd.
Gather your family and friends, pack your picnic baskets and chairs, and join us for a concert in the Plaza. Kona Ice snow cones will be on site, cash only please, and free popcorn courtesy of the Parks and Recreation Department. For more information regarding the Plaza Music Series, call the Parks and Recreation Department at 972-462-5100, visit www.coppelltx.com, or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
Source: City of Coppell
Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 September 2013 02:28
Written by Staff
In a gesture of appreciation to responsible owners and their pets, the City of Irving is announcing “Responsible Pet Owner Appreciation Days,” which will be held on three Sundays and Mondays in September at the Irving Animal Care Campus, 4140 Valley View Lane. The special event includes spay or neuter surgeries as well as a core vaccine, a rabies vaccine and a microchip.
The first-come, first-served opportunity is only available by appointment Sept. 8, 9, 15, 16, 22 and 23. To participate, pet owners must call the Texas Coalition for Animal Protection (TCAP) at (940) 566-5551 for an appointment and provide proof of Irving residency.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for responsible pet owners to complete the circle of good care with a spay or neuter for their family pet. For a $10 donation to our animal assistance fund, this life-saving service, on average worth $250, is designed to combat animal overpopulation,” said Sandy Grambort, Irving animal services manager.
At the time of surgery, those interested also can schedule a heartworm test for dogs or Felv/FIV test for cats. The additional cost is just $20. There will not be vaccination clinics at the Irving Animal Care Campus during these special surgery days. Vaccines will be administered only to those animals scheduled for spay or neuter surgery.
“All too often pets are relinquished to animal shelters for economic reasons. This special event hopes to provide an alternative for families who may be facing such a decision,” said Grambort. “The Irving Animal Care Campus has partnered with TCAP to limit the number of unwanted animals in our city. TCAP veterinarian teams are prepared to spay or neuter 40 pets a day. Each pregnancy delivers on average four puppies or kittens, and on average each adult animal can produce two litters per year. This special event will save nearly 2,000 animal lives this year alone by preventing unwanted litters.”
Slots are expected to fill quickly so interested owners are encouraged to make appointments as soon as possible. The offer does not apply to rescue groups. For more information, visit cityofirving.org/animal-services, texasforthem.org orfacebook.com/thecityofirving .
Source: City of Irving
Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 September 2013 02:27
Written by Liz Bogard
The Irving Arts Association’s 12th Annual Wildlife & Domestic Animal Juried Art Competition opened Sep. 03 at the Jaycee Park Center for the Arts in Irving.
This year, wild and domestic animal artworks are combined, and it works beautifully. Expect to be astounded at the quality of art selected and judged by juror, Priscilla Krejci. The quality and variety of art from artists across the U.S. is amazing. From lions and bobcats to dogs and birds, there is an animal for everyone. Drawings, pastels, watercolors, oils, acrylics and mixed media are represented in the exciting collection.
The show runs until Sep. 28. The public is invited to an awards reception on Sunday afternoon, Sep. 8, from 2 to 4 p.m. at the center. Exhibit catalogs are provided with four-color photographs of each artwork and a price list.
Jaycee Park Center for the Arts is located at 1975 Puritan, Irving, TX 75061. Gallery hours are Sun., Mon., and Wed., from 1 to 4 p.m. and Tues. and Thurs., from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Contact IAA on the web at http://irvingart.org or call 972-721-2488 for more information.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 September 2013 02:27
Written by Staff
Michael J. Moore, United States Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia, announced that Angel Food Ministries (AFM) Founder Wesley Joseph (Joe) Wingo; his son, Andrew (Andy) Wingo; and his wife, AFM Co-Founder Linda Wingo, were sentenced Aug. 29 by the Honorable C. Ashley Royal, Chief United States District Judge, for illegal financial activities involving AFM.
AFM, based in Monroe, Walton County, GA, was a non-profit, tax exempt 501(c) organization founded in 1994 by defendants Joe and Linda Wingo. AFM’s primary stated mission was to provide food to the nation’s needy at discounted prices. After receiving almost $7 million in a low-interest community facilities direct loan from the United States Department of Agriculture in 2005, AFM purchased a large distribution center in Monroe, GA, and used its considerable purchasing power and its tax-exempt status to gain volume discounts from various food vendors. In the process of growing from a local to a regional to a national nonprofit organization, AFM utilized churches from around the country, known as host sites, to coordinate the charitable efforts of thousands of volunteers to distribute food to the needy in over 40 states.
The fact that AFM was tax exempt, that it was able to purchase in large volume at a discount, and that its distribution network was in large part manned by volunteer labor resulted in a large amount of annual revenue, an amount well in excess of expenses.
Joe Wingo entered a plea of guilty on Feb. 25, 2013, to one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. As an AFM founder, and its former president, chief operating officer, and member of the Board of Directors, Joe Wingo oversaw all the operations of AFM, which included his involvement in all aspects of the financial operations of AFM. Joe Wingo admitted that he used his position and control over AFM to make several purchases and expenditures for his personal benefit, including a classic car, without the knowledge and approval of the AFM Board of Directors. Mr. Wesley Joseph Wingo also permitted other members of his family to do the same on many occasions, only later to issue “bonuses” to family members in an effort to conceal misapplied AFM funds used to pay for personal expenses.
Joe Wingo, age 64, of Good Hope, GA, was sentenced to serve 84 months in prison for conspiracy to commit money laundering. As a part of his sentence, he was ordered to forfeit $1,503,285 and to pay a $15,000 criminal fine.
Andy Wingo also entered a plea of guilty on Feb. 25, 2013, to one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. During his tenure with AFM, Andy Wingo held various titles including chief operating officer and head of Procurement. Andy Wingo admitted that while serving in these positions, he used various illegal schemes to convert funds that belonged to AFM to his own personal benefit, including purchasing a new home for himself.
Andy Wingo, age 40, of Good Hope, GA, was sentenced to serve 84 months in prison for conspiracy to commit money laundering. As a part of his sentence, he was ordered to forfeit $2,400,000.
Mrs. Linda Wingo likewise entered a plea of guilty on Feb. 25, 2013, to one count of misprision of a felony (having knowledge of but concealing the commission of a crime). Mrs. Wingo, along with her husband, Joe Wingo, was an AFM founder. In her plea of guilty, she admitted that she was aware that AFM was generating more money than was needed to meet its overhead as the result of the illegal financial transactions that were being made by her son, Andy Wingo. She admitted to having knowledge that her son was obtaining money illegally from specific vendors doing business with AFM and using it for personal benefit instead of providing services to the needy. Additionally, she admitted that when a search warrant was executed on AFM during the investigation, she attempted to conceal facts relating to these financial crimes.
Mrs. Linda Wingo, age 64, was sentenced to a term of five years of probation for misprision of a felony. She was ordered to pay a $25,000 criminal fine.
“Pure and simple, this case is about greed,” United States Attorney Michael Moore said. “The Wingos solicited donations of time from kind, good-hearted people in the name of God’s call for us to feed the hungry and help those in need. Then, instead of using that generosity to fill the pantries of the people they claimed to be called to minister to, the Wingos filled their garage with a classic automobile, their hangar with a private plane, and their pockets with cash.
“When people gave their volunteer labor to Angel Food Ministries because they believed they were supposed to help their fellow man, little did they know that they were supporting the Wingos’ lavish lifestyle. When I think about the people who didn’t get food because Mr. Wingo wanted a new car and a new plane, it is both sad and troubling that these individuals preyed on the goodness of the many God-fearing folks around the country who made donations of their time simply to enrich themselves.”
“The Wingos exploited family, friends, and neighbors by perpetrating a scheme that was based on lies,” stated Veronica Hyman-Pillot, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation. “IRS-CI is committed to unraveling financial transactions and money laundering schemes where individuals attempt to conceal the true source of their money. The sentences announced today reinforce the commitment by law enforcement and the United States Attorney’s Office that individuals who line their pockets with profits from fraudulent schemes will be held accountable.”
"Today’s sentencings bring to a close an extensive and complex federal investigation involving, at its core, abuses of charitable activities related tax laws and diversion of funds derived from those charitable activities,” said Mark F. Giuliano, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation-Atlanta Field Office. “In order for these various non-profit based laws to be able to provide benefit and relief to groups and organizations as intended, the FBI, in conjunction with its various law enforcement partners, is duty-bound to investigate these types of allegations of criminal conduct within those organizations operating under non-profit status as Angel Food Ministries claimed to be."
The case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigations and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Sharon T. Ratley, Danial E. Bennett, and Graham A. Thorpe.
Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation
Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 September 2013 02:26
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