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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Women shut out of Idaho judge selection

BOISE – It seems that women need not apply to the federal district court bench in Idaho. A secretive selection process that Idaho’s two senators have launched to find a replacement for U.S. District Judge Edward Lodge appears to be ignoring female candidates.

Ninth Circuit Court considers Duncan’s competency in death penalty appeal

Convicted murderer Joseph Duncan made it very clear he didn’t want to appeal his triple death sentence, U.S. Attorney for Idaho Wendy Olson told the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday. Olson noted that Duncan was ruled mentally competent to make that decision after an extensive hearing that the 9th Circuit ordered U.S. District Judge Edward Lodge to hold in 2013.

Boise man faces terrorism charges

BOISE – A 30-year-old Boise man from Uzbekistan was arrested Thursday on federal terrorism charges and indicted by a grand jury for possession of a destructive device and providing material support to terrorists. Fazliddin Kurbanov is accused of providing support to the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, a designated foreign terrorist organization, including computer software, money and his own work. He’s also charged with conducting a bomb-making demonstration in Utah in January in which he “showed Internet videos, provided written recipes and verbal instructions, and conducted instructional shopping trips which informed as to the construction and use of improvised explosive devices.”

Duncan’s competence at sentencing to be reconsidered

Condemned serial killer Joseph E. Duncan is getting another day in court. Duncan, on death row for the torture and slaying of a North Idaho boy he abducted in 2005 after slaughtering much of the youngster’s family, will undergo a hearing to determine whether he was mentally competent when he decided to represent himself and waive his appeal rights.

Sides to work on tribal hunting

Native and non-native residents of the Coeur d’Alene Indian Reservation are going to have to work out a local solution to their latest conflict over the right of tribal members to hunt on private property if they want to avoid a drawn-out court battle, a federal official said Tuesday evening. Speaking at a confrontational meeting at the Plummer Community Hall, Wendy Olson, U.S. attorney for Idaho, said there is no single source of law that answers the question of whether tribal hunters are trespassing on nontribal land.

Eye on Boise: Libraries in Idaho adding pep to the Net

BOISE – Although Idaho achieved the dubious distinction last week of being declared the state with the slowest Internet by the New York Times – some Idahoans apparently are having Internet service problems due to interference by bears – the Idaho Commission for Libraries says there’s a bright spot in the Gem State: libraries. The commission is in the midst of a statewide broadband initiative that’s sharply increasing Internet speeds at some of the state’s least-connected public libraries. It’s funded through grants from the Federal Broadband Technology Opportunities Program and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Grizzly shooter pays $1,000; misdemeanor dropped

The U.S. Attorney’s Office has dropped a misdemeanor charge against a Porthill, Idaho, man who shot and killed a grizzly bear in his yard. Instead, Jeremy M. Hill was issued a noncriminal citation for the May 8 shooting of the 2-year-old male grizzly, and paid a $1,000 fine.

Federal officials giving tribal police more authority

BOISE – Law enforcement is being hampered in Indian Country by what federal authorities describe as jurisdictional gaps. So they’re working with three Idaho tribes, including the Coeur d’Alene Tribe, to federalize tribal police, giving officers the authority to issue citations to non-Indians on the reservation for some minor offenses - with the backing of federal courts.

CdA drug trafficker’s seized assets help police

Former Coeur d'Alene gold and coin dealer Robert Leon Mertens is serving a 37-year term in federal prison for drug trafficking, firearms violations and money laundering - he's been behind bars since 2004 - but his case brought good news to law enforcement agencies in Idaho on Wednesday.

Idaho U.S. attorney a fighter

POCATELLO, Idaho – Idaho U.S. Attorney Wendy Olson began her fight for equality at age 9. Growing up in Pocatello, Olson wanted to play baseball and figured she was just as good as boys her age. So she ignored the “boys only” rule, pinning up her braids under her ball cap and lining up a lawyer in case the league changed its mind about letting her play.