The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on March 27, 1998 · Page 153
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March 27, 1998

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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 153

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West Palm Beach, Florida
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Friday, March 27, 1998
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Page 153
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t ) f ; T Five teenagers charged with murder in beating IN SPORTS Lady Vols' hard-driving coach t ' 1 i LOCAL NEWS, IB Rama-lama-dmg-dong! One more time! JT5 PANTHERS 5 WEATHER: Partly cloudy with chance of thunderstorms. High 80, low 70 2A CANADIENS 4 SPORTS, 1C 'I. ne rairn JDeacn rose ( FRIDAY, MARCH 27, 1998 SOUTH FINAL 153 PAGES 50 CENTS' : Swiss banks to negotiate with Holocaust victims Previously, the banks have been unwilling to pay out money equivalent to gold, art and real estate that Germany looted throughout Europe and put in Swiss hands for safekeeping. i Europe and put in Swiss hands for safekeeping. A six-page confidential agreement reached between the banks and plaintiffs puts those assets on the table, along with money deposited by German companies that were using slave labor during World War II. The fund, supervised by the federal District Court in Brooklyn, N.Y., will pay claims from victims whose accounts were lost or who can provide evidence that family assets were looted by the Nazis. The framework for settling the dispute was described on Thursday by American officials, New York officials and Jewish groups who have been ne gotiating with the banks, but the banks said nothing about the accord, and their spokesmen did not return calls. j The agreement does not specify how much the banks the Union Bank oi Switzerland, the Swiss Bank Corp. and Credit Suisse will contribute. Not does it include the Swiss government; whose central bank received the vast-majority of the stolen gold. The threats of Please see BANKS7A Switzerland's position. Until Thursday, the banks had agreed to compensate only Holocaust victims who could demonstrate legitimate claims to long-dormant accounts. Recognizing that their reputations were being tarnished and that their businesses hurt by threats of sanctions, the banks agreed to establish what attorneys were calling a "rough justice fund." Until Thursday, the banks have been unwilling to estimate, much less pay out, money equivalent to gold, art and real estate that Germany looted throughout By David L Sanger The New York Times 'i -WASHINGTON Switzerland's three major banks reversed themselves On -Thursday and agreed to negotiate a glo"bal settlement with Holocaust victims, pledging to set up a compensation fund irt the United States to make restitution more than a half-century after World War II ended. The agreement, which came minutes before a meeting in New York of officials who have threatened sanctions against Swiss banks, does not represent a final settlement of the billion-dollar lawsuit filed by American Holocaust victims and their survivors. Nor does it immunize the banks against suits elsewhere in the world. But it marks a dramatic change in B utler g uilty Venus hands Hingis defeat of bribery, conspiracy t lipv-,, - V M fl X ( V; 2 ft t The former candidate for state attorney could face a year in jail for taking $500,000 in illegal campaign money from a client. By Christine Stapleton alm Beach Post Staff Writer WEST PALM BEACH Jurors found former state attorney candidate Phil Butler guilty Thursday of accepting illegal campaign contributions from a businessman hoping to avoid prison. Butler, 52, remained tight-lipped, showing no emotion as a clerk read the five guilty verdicts for bribery, conspiracy and three misdemeanor counts of accepting excessive campaign contributions. The six jurors deliberated for ll1 hours over two days. The bribery charge, the only felony that Butler faced, carries a maximum sentence of one year in jail. Retired Florida Supreme Court Justice James Alderman agreed to let Butler remain free on bail until his sentencing, which has not been set. Butler, who made unsuccessful runs for state attorney in 1992 and 1996, argued that the $500,000 he took from a client, James Clyde Baber III, was a loan, not a bribe. Butler said he repeatedly told Baber that he could not remain on his case if elected, nor could he prosecute Baber. Phil Butler's conviction means an automatic three-year suspension of his license to practice law in Florida. Butler's defense seemed geared more to -appeal than acquittal. Frank Cerabino column 9A r i 1 ' : f-K j ALLEN EYESTONEStaff Photograpner KEY BISCAYNE Richard Williams gives daughter Venus a hug Championships Thursday. 'I was tired of losing in ridiculous after the 17-year-old upset the No. 1-ranked women's player ways,' said Williams, who advances to Saturday's final after her Martina Hingis in three sets in the semifinals at the Lipton 6-2, 5-7, 6-2 defeat of Hingis. SPORTS, 1C Please see VERDICTa4 Inside The alleged snipers, ages 11 and 13, sit in a juvenile detention center, charged with the ambush that killed four of their schoolmates and one teacher. Boys in shooting ask for mama, pizza; Bill would save Huizenga millions on car liability Rental firms such as National and Alamo would not have to pay more than $100,000 per person or $300,000 per incident. By Charles more Palm Beach Post Capital Bureau ; TALLAHASSEE The man who owns the biggest rental-car operation in America, Wayne Huizenga, stands to save millions of dollars from changes.Thursday to a lawsuit reform plan. It happened in the state Senate, where contributions from Huizenga's companies and lobbyists Sickest patients to get transplants The Clinton administration announces a far-reaching new policy that aims to ensure that the sickest patients recieve organ transplants. 'This is about living or dying. We need a level playing field for all patients,' says Health and Human Services Secretary Donna Shalala. - STORY, 2A Clinton visits South Africa Hailing South Africa's triumph over apartheid as an 'affirmation of humanity at its best,' President Clinton becomes the first American president to set foot in this nation that until four years ago was an international pariah. STORY, 3A 1 V f A r I By Sam Howe Verhovek The New York Times JONESBORO, Ark. The older boy calmly asked for a Bible and a minister Thursday morning, the local sheriff said, while the younger one cried and pleaded that he "wants his mama, and he wants to go home now." Both asked whether they could trade their lunch of corn bread, white beans and baked chicken for a pizza. They were told no. And as 13-year-old Mitchell Johnson and 11-year-old Andrew Golden sat in a juvenile detention center, charged with the shootings on Tuesday that left four of their schoolmates and one teacher dead, Mitchell's father, Scott Johnson, said the boy was full of shame and contrition but had offered no explanation of what had led him to kill. Johnson, 36, a cross-country trucker, said he was driving his truck through Fort Worth on Tuesday when he heard of the shootings on his radio. He called Jonesboro to see whether Mitchell was safe and learned that he was in custody. So Johnson dropped his trailer and drove here in the cab. " Please see SHOOTING724 have exceeded 45,700 in the past two years including $16,750 for members of the committee that made the changes. Companies such as Huizenga's Fort Lauderdale-based Alamo and National would no longer be liable for damages, beyond certain pre-set limits, in acci-Hnt5 involving their cars. The THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Westside Middle School students gather Thursday in the parking lot of a radio station to hear a song dedicated to those who died in the-shooting on Tuesday. Everglades Regional starts moving but patients LOTTERY PEOPLE SCORES STOCKS THEATERS 2A 2A ISC 40 TGtf ANN & ABBY 2F BUSINESS 10 CLASSIHEDS IE COMICS 8F DEATHS 4B EDITORIALS 1 HOROSCOPE 2F CROSSWORDS TV LISTINGS 7T TV SPORTS 2C SECTIONS E,F PALM BEACH Weather. '4y INTERACTIVE news, sports and views uvw GoPBl mm Huizenga caps: $100,000 per person or , $300,000 per incident, according to amendments that passed the state Senate rules committee Thursday. "We're doing this to give the car rental companies more profits and shifting the burden to taxpayers to care for people who are hurt," said Scott Carruthers, executive director of the Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers. Jluizenga's spokesmen said it would bring fairness to the industry. Florida is one of only seven states with "vicarious liability" laws that hold the rental company liable for mistakes a driver may make. Huizenga's companies rent 285,000 cars in the United States. for home Darvonr service 20-4663 l-(00-6S4-l231 the closest Glades General Hospital; in Belle Glade but some went to West, Palm Beach, workers said. The areas new emergency patients' will go to Glades General if they are in good enough condition to make the longer trip, ambulance workers said. Otherwise, they will be treated at Everglades until they are stable enough for a transfer, said nursing supervisor. Rachel Fray said. -; Then, according to Everglades-' spokesman Larry Tucker and the hos- TlAis see HQSPUiUM The announcement isn't a first But with the transfer of all patients stable enough to be moved, the hospital is closer to closing than ever in the seven-year struggle between the private hospital board and the Palm Beach County Health Care District Everglades' administrators told doctors in a letter Thursday to transfer their patients by noon today, said Health District Chief Executive Officer Cecil Bennett who received a copy. Some of Everglades' ambulance workers spent Thursday, ferrying patients to other hospitakS-lost went to By Jennifer Peltz Palm Beach Post Staff Writer In a step toward shutting down, Pa-hokee's hospital on Thursday began sending away patients. The emergency room remains open at Everglades Regional Medical Center, and the hospital-run ambulance corps is expected to keep serving all of far western Palm Beach County for at least two months. But spokesmen said the Everglades' board, seeing no siens of hone in recent negotiations with the Palm Beach County Health Care District, is closing the 60-year-oUi hospital. 199 Put i8341''100JO " ' IlfaseseeWlZDiQAlZA

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