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Archive for Wednesday, October 30, 2002

News briefs

October 30, 2002

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Vietnam: Fire kills more than 50

A massive blaze Tuesday tore through a large building in downtown Ho Chi Minh City, killing at least 55 people and injuring more than 100.

Firefighters battled the inferno for hours, but inadequate equipment and intense flames and heat kept them from reaching many victims trapped inside the Saigon International Trade Center, a six-story building that housed shops, offices and a disco.

Ho Chi Minh City, formerly Saigon, is Vietnam's southern commercial center and largest city. Ho Chi Minh City Mayor Le Thanh Hai said the fire was the city's worst in both loss of life and property damage.

San Francisco: Court sanctions advice on medical marijuana

A federal appeals court ruled for the first time Tuesday that the government cannot revoke doctors' prescription licenses for recommending marijuana to sick patients.

A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously found that the Justice Department's policy interferes with the free-speech rights of doctors and patients.

The government argued that doctors were aiding and abetting criminal activity for recommending marijuana because it is an illegal drug under federal narcotics laws.

Washington, D.C.: Bloomberg richest politician

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is the richest American politician with a net worth of $4.8 billion, according to a new list by Forbes magazine.

Arkansas Lt. Gov. Winthrop Rockefeller is the second wealthiest politician, with $1.2 billion. New York gubernatorial candidate B. Thomas Golisano was third with $1.1 billion.

The list of America's richest politicians was posted Tuesday on www.Forbes.com, the magazine's Web site. To be considered, people had to be now holding elective office or running in next week's election.

Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., was the wealthiest congressional member with a net worth of $550 million. He ranked fourth on the list.

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