It was a sex bomb, literally...
A jilted lover modified a sex-toy and packed it with explosives to be gifted to his former lover.
Terry Allen, 37, from Minnesota, US, planned to hand over the device as a Christmas gift to one of the three ex-girlfriends, reports Daily Mail.
Now facing charges for felony and possession of incendiary, the man's game was seen through when he vacated the house where he lived with two of the women but left a box containing the toys and other items.
Police arrived after the women made an emergency call over the domestic issue to find that a sex toy had gunpowder and other explosives wedged in it.
The toy also had a battery port and a trigger attached to it. The bomb squad that arrived later rendered the bomb inert.
If convicted he could be jailed for 10 years besides a hefy fine.
Sweets made in toilet
Saudi health inspectors seized five Asian expatriates who have turned the toilet at their apartment into a sweet factory, a local newspaper reported on Friday.
The municipal inspectors raided the flat in the eastern town of Khobar after receiving a tip off and caught the five red handed, Alyoum said.
“The inspectors said the toilet was turned into a real sweet factory and the five admitted they were distributing sweets to some restaurants,” it said.
“They were arrested while the restaurant which had helped them was shut…the inspectors considered this a massive violation of public health rules.”
Man dumps wife for being demon
A Malaysian man abandoned his wife after a temple medium convinced him that she was a demon who wanted to kill him.
The Star newspaper on Thursday quoted the wife, who gave her name as Loh, as saying that her factory manager husband now wants a divorce and also refuses to meet their two teenage children for fear his wife will use them to kill him.
"The medium told my husband I had been casting spells on him for the past 15 years," Loh was quoted as telling a news conference in Kuala Lumpur.
"He refused to eat or drink at home because he thought I poisoned the food."
Loh said the medium was heavily in debt and likely taking advantage of her husband, who had withdrawn their childrens' savings before deserting the family.
Malaysians often seek spiritual aid from an assortment of faith healers, mediums and witch doctors to solve personal problems and work issues.
But there has been a steady increase in complaints of cheating and sexual abuse, which has prompted the government to announce it will table a bill this year requiring faith healers to register with the Ministry of Health.
Software engineers have nation's best job, study says
The year 2011 is the best of times for software engineers and the worst of times for roustabouts, according to a survey of the nation's best and worst jobs released on Wednesday.
Software engineers have the top jobs, thanks to the exploding demand for high-tech gadgets and the appetite for applications for iPods, tablets and other devices, said the survey by online jobs site CareerCast.com.
Software engineers enjoy a strong outlook for employment, low stress, few physical demands and good wages, it said.
Roustabouts, on the other hand, who are oil rig or gas pipeline workers, have the worst job, it said.
A roustabout's job is dangerous, as shown by the explosion aboard the Transocean Ltd. oil drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico that killed 11 workers in April.
Roustabouts routinely work 12-hour shifts in tough conditions, it said.
The top five jobs, which include mathematician, actuary, statistician and computer systems, typically pay more than twice as much as the lowest jobs -- $83,777 compared to $30,735 per year.
The least desirable jobs along with roustabout for 2011 are iron worker, lumberjack, roofer and taxi driver, it said.
CareerCast evaluated 200 professions based on pay, environment, hiring outlook, stress and physical demands, using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labour Statistics, the Census Bureau and trade association studies.
To determine the amount of stress in a job, for example, the study looked at such factors as whether an employee's life was at risk or the number of deadlines and travel.
Man, pregnant wife get escort, ticket
Their son wasn't going to wait to be born, so John Coughlin rushed his laboring wife to the hospital. He called 911 when a state trooper tried to pull their car over, and the trooper turned the chase into an escort — then issued him a speeding ticket.
Baby Kyle was born six minutes after the Coughlins arrived at the hospital in Manchester on Sept. 18. After that, Coughlin said the trooper congratulated him, then gave him a ticket for hitting 102 mph. A trial is scheduled for Monday and Coughlin is contesting the ticket.
"I didn't realize how fast I was going until he gave me the ticket," Coughlin, of Londonderry, said Wednesday on ABC's "Good Morning America." He said he didn't want to plead guilty because "they said I could lose my license."
Major Russell Conte said the trooper did the right thing. The speed limit on Interstate 293 was 55 mph, and he contended Coughlin put his wife, unborn child, himself and the public at risk.
When Coughlin's wife, Angela, heard about ticket, she said she was shocked. "I thought it would get thrown out," she said.
Kyle is the couple's second child. They have an 11-year-old daughter.
UK sex toy queen punked by nanny
Jacqueline Gold brought sex toys to the British masses one set of pink furry handcuffs at a time, amassing a fortune while reinventing the family lingerie company as a female-focused brand.
But the sex-shop magnate, whose books - including an autobiography titled Good Vibrations - and business acumen made her Britain's 16th richest woman now is in the news for another reason: her nanny was in court on Wednesday, accused of spiking the racy retail boss's soup with windshield-wiper fluid, a substance highly unlikely to be poisonous in small quantities.
The ex-nanny is accused of trying to poison her boss with salt on September 29 and trying again with sugar on October 4 before using windshield wiper fluid on October 5. She was arrested the next day.
She has been charged with three counts of administering poison with the intent to annoy.
The accusations came after Ms Gold, a glamorous brunette, criticised her cook last autumn when her soup tasted odd.
The chef became suspicious and removed the leftover broth from the trash to investigate.
The seemingly made-for-TV drama of sex, money and malice has captivated tabloid watchers from Britain to New York, raising more questions than answers about whether greed, frustration or revenge played a role.
Ms Gold's father, David, built an adult entertainment empire and founded the Ann Summers sex toy and lingerie chain. As chief executive, Ms Gold earned accolades for shifting the company's focus from men to women.
No possible motive for the alleged crimes against Ms Gold has been suggested by police or prosecutors. It is not immediately clear what prompted officials to point the finger at Allison Cox, 33, who looked after Ms Gold's young daughter. The case was unusual because the substances at issue were not all that harmful, said Robert Forrest, a forensic chemistry professor at the University of Sheffield.
"You can give a poisonous substance to someone . . . just to annoy them," Professor Forrest said.
"The satisfaction the perpetrator gets is from knowing that you are humiliating the victim."
It was not possible to verify what, if any, physical side-effects Ms Gold might have suffered from the meals in question. A representative for Ms Gold said his client would not comment on an ongoing legal case.
Some wiper fluids contain types of alcohol that can damage vision and cause blindness if ingested in high doses. Drinking wiper fluids that also contain detergents could also cause nausea.
Salt in large quantities could cause more than excessive thirst- it had also been linked to deaths of babies - but an attempt to spike meals with sugar could be hard to prosecute since sugar was found everywhere and not particularly poisonous, Professor Forrest said.
The brand of wiper fluid used could shed light on possible side-effects of ingesting, toxicology expert John Jackson said, noting that most of the fluids on the market were not labelled as harmful.
Given typical serving sizes, it would be very difficult to incorporate a dangerous amount of windshield-wiper fluid into soup, Dr Jackson said.
"If just eaten or drunk and the person doesn't vomit or inhale, I wouldn't have thought it would do very much harm," he said.
"In all probability, it would be unlikely that there would be any severe effects."
Ms Cox did not enter a plea Wednesday and was released on bail pending a January 20 hearing.
Pet lovers hope to get new law on wills
Pet lovers in Massachusetts are optimistic the governor will sign into law this week that will allow them to designate in a will who should care for a pet after the owner's death.
Governor Deval Patrick has until Sunday to sign the pet trust legislation. Massachusetts lags behind many U.S. states in enacting a law governing pet care after an owner's death.
"It's become clear this is something that's important to people," said Kara Holmquist, director of advocacy for the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
The bill, introduced in January 2009, makes a pet owner's decision about who will care for their pet an enforceable mandate. Currently, if money is left to a specified caretaker and they do not use it for the pet, there is no legal recourse.
Leaving money and instructions behind for pet care is not just a sentimental gesture by animal lovers who consider pets family, said Holmquist.
It also relieves the financial burden on towns that are often left to foot the bill for food and shelter when pets are abandoned.
Donna Turley, a Boston-based attorney who helped draft the legislation, said the Massachusetts bill also allows people who are no longer able to care for pets but still living to set up trusts.
The bill also permits court intervention if the amount of money left for pet care is excessive, said Turley.
In her experience, people tend to leave $5,000 to $10,000 per animal, but notes that care for horses can be much more expensive.
The cost to add a provision to a will leaving money to someone for pet care is minimal, Turley said.
Homeless man with a voice of gold
With a deep, refined voice, Ted Williams simply asked for help to get off the streets.
He's been heard.
Left homeless after his life and career were ruined by drugs and alcohol, Williams has been offered a job by the NBA's Cleveland Cavaliers and is being pursued by NFL Films for possible work. He and his compelling tale became an online sensation after The Columbus Dispatch posted a clip of Williams demonstrating his voiceover skills by the side of the road.
"This has been totally, totally amazing," Williams said in a phone interview with The Associated Press on Wednesday, his voice choking with emotion. "I'm just so thankful. God has blessed me so deeply. I'm getting a second chance. Amazing."
Williams was contacted Wednesday by the Cavaliers, who have offered him a position that could include announcing work at Quicken Loans Arena, the team's downtown facility. Williams said the team has offered him a two-year contract and said they would pay his living expenses.
"I can't believe what's going on," said Williams, a father of nine, adding he feels like Susan Boyle, the Scottish singing sensation who became an overnight star. "God gave me a million-dollar voice, and I just hope I can do right by him."
It's been a whirlwind for the golden-voiced man, who was recently living in a tent and whose past includes a lengthy list of arrests. He has served time in prison for theft and forgery and has been cited with numerous misdemeanors, including drug abuse.
Williams was most recently arrested on May 14. He pleaded guilty to a first-degree misdemeanor theft charge. In court records, his address is listed as "Streets of Columbus."
Upon learning of Williams' criminal history, the Cavaliers said their offer still stands.
"We believe in second chances and second opportunities," said Tracy Marek, the team's senior vice president of marketing. "The gentleman deserves an opportunity to explain certain situations. We're not jumping to conclusions. It's not fair."
Cavaliers spokesman Tad Carper said exact details of the team's offer and their plans to help Williams with housing were still being worked out.
The Cavaliers did not know much about him, but were touched by Williams' ordeal.
"When you know something's right, you just have to launch," Marek said. "One of the big things that we talk about here, with our organization, is how important urgency is - when you see something that feels good and seems right. The important thing that we wanted to do is to let Ted know that we have something here for him."
During a timeout in the first quarter of Wednesday night's game against Toronto, the Cavaliers put a picture of Williams on their giant scoreboard and urged fans to send him messages at www.wewanttedwilliams.com.
"We hope Ted accepts our offer," said Cavaliers announcer Olivia Sedra.
The 53-year-old Williams will appear Thursday on NBC's "Today" show. According to a network spokesperson, he was on his way Wednesday night to see his 90-year-old mother, who lives in Brooklyn and has stood by him during his battles with addiction.
"She has always been my best friend," he said, crying. "When I was a kid, she would take me down to Radio City Music Hall and on the subway. I'm just glad that she is still around. I prayed that she would live long enough that I could make her proud and see could her son do something other than stand along the side of the road with a sign asking for money."
Julia Williams is thrilled her only child is turning his life around. She can't wait to see him.
"This will be my day to see my son get up and do something to help himself," she said. "He has so much talent. I hope this will be the thing for him. He came from a nice family. And then he went poor, poor. So, maybe this will build him up and let him see that there's more in life than hanging around with the wrong people, and taking drugs."
Williams said his life began spiraling downward in 1996 when he began drinking alcohol "pretty bad." He used marijuana and cocaine and lost interest in his radio career. He eventually wound up on the streets, despite the best efforts of his children, seven daughters and two sons who all live in the Columbus area.
"They have mixed emotions about what is going on," Williams said. "During my detox stages, I had a tendency to eat up everybody's food. I'm a grandfather, too, and I was eating what should have gone to their kids."
Williams said he celebrated two years of sobriety "around Thanksgiving. I just hope everyone will pray for me."
Williams initially was spotted by the Columbus newspaper standing near an exit ramp off Interstate 71. In a video interview that quickly became wildly popular, Williams - holding a cardboard sign that asked motorists for help and says, "I'm an ex-radio announcer who has fallen on hard times" - explained in his smooth, bottomless voice that he was drawn to radio at the age of 14.
When he first heard Williams' soothing delivery, Kevin McLoughlin of NFL Films, which has chronicled pro football for nearly 50 years, knew he had to contact the unknown man.
"It's that voice," said McLoughlin, director of post-production films for the NFL told AP. "When he was telling his story, I said, 'That's what we do. This guy can tell a story.' Somehow, some way, I need to get a demo with him. He could be that diamond in the rough."
McLoughlin has not been able to contact Williams, but he intends to track him down.
"The man deserves a second chance," he said.
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