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R. Kelly could finally face justice for the infamous 2008 tape, Merrick Garland defends the FBI raid against Trump, and the internet’s most notorious catfishing victim speaks.

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Attorney General Merrick Garland defended the FBI's raid of Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate.

Merrick Garland wears a suit and glasses and stands at a podium with a department of justice sign and american flag in the background

Three days after the FBI search of Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida, Attorney General Merrick Garland broke his silence on Thursday to discuss the investigation into the former president and to defend the Department of Justice.

Faced with attacks from Trump and his Republican allies who have called for the FBI to be defunded over what they say is a political witch hunt, Garland defended these DOJ officials and said the investigation was being guided by law, not politics. Garland also revealed that he personally approved the decision to ask a court for the search warrant, which appears to be centered on Trump's removal of classified documents from the White House.

The New York Times reported Thursday that Trump had received a subpoena this spring from the DOJ about the documents. Garland declined to immediately provide further information beyond the publicly available search warrant and FBI property receipt from the raid.

Russia struggles in month six of the war

  • Penal colony prisoners in Russia were offered amnesty if they offered to fight against Ukraine. AP described the move as a "covert recruitment effort that includes using prisoners to make up the manpower shortage."

  • US officials say that Russia has experienced unexpectedly heavy casualties, with roughly 500 troops killed or wounded daily, the New York Times reports. These losses come amid a war that's dragged into six months and underwhelming advances by Russian forces.

Snapshots

Google will start warning you when googling something may not lead to the truth. A new algorithmic update is a part of a broader mission that the world’s most popular search engine is making in a world racked by online misinformation and disinformation.

An Instagram model has been charged with murder, four months after allegedly killing her boyfriend in Miami. Courtney Clenney claimed she acted in self-defense, but Christian Obumseli's family has said that his death was "the result of unwarranted and unprovoked violence" in an abusive relationship.

Olivia Wilde accused Jason Sudeikis of attempting to "threaten" and "embarrass" her in "the most aggressive manner possible" by serving her custody papers live onstage. The pair called off their engagement in 2020 and have become embroiled in a legal battle centered around the custody of their two children.

R. Kelly could finally face justice for the 2008 tape of him allegedly sexually abusing a teen.

R. Kelly's side profile in an orange jumpsuit in a courtroom

This story contains graphic descriptions of sexual abuse and coercion.

Less than a year after R. Kelly’s long-anticipated conviction in a federal sex crimes case in New York, federal prosecutors in his hometown of Chicago will attempt to at last hold him accountable for allegedly recording the infamous urination tape involving a 14-year-old girl after their state counterparts failed to do so.

In a new trial set to start Monday, the alleged victim, whose absence in the 2008 trial played a major role in the jury’s decision to acquit Kelly, is cooperating with prosecutors. Kelly faces 13 counts, including charges of producing and receiving child sexual abuse images and obstructing justice. Prosecutors also allege that he schemed with associates to round up the illicit tapes, pay off witnesses, and persuade the girl at the center of the 2008 case and her parents to lie about the true nature of her relationship with Kelly.

A second chance like the one the alleged victim from the 2008 trial will get is rare, but because the charges in the present case are federal and not state, they are considered different offenses for legal purposes. Though Kelly is already — finally — facing a 30-year prison sentence for decades of sexual abuse, his second federal trial may be a reckoning on how he managed to escape accountability for so long.

Manti Te'o, the internet's most notorious catfishing victim, has finally spoken.

Manti Te'O wears a grey hoodie and stares off into the distance, he's outside, it's dusk, and the sky is gray

Manti Te’o, the charismatic, talented, God-fearing linebacker at Notre Dame, was projected to be a first-round pick in the NFL Draft by the end of his junior year in 2012. Then, early in his senior season news broke that his grandmother and his girlfriend Lennay Kekua had died on the same day — only for a Deadspin report to reveal a few months later, in January 2013, that Lennay was reported to be a man who spent years catfishing Te’o online.

For Te’o, months of mourning his grandmother and girlfriend were immediately followed by months of being the subject of one of the most embarrassing public spectacles in recent memory, one that ultimately cost him millions of dollars because it seemed to contribute to him getting selected later in the NFL Draft.

In the sports documentary series Untold, Te'o walks back in time to explain how he could have possibly dated a girl for three years without meeting her in person — and the naivete, loneliness, and tunnel-visioned worldview that shaped him at the time. Viewers also hear firsthand from Naya Tuiasosopo, the trans woman pretending to be Lennay, who found comfort in the Facebook profile that allowed her to be who she felt she was before she transitioned — “an escape where I felt safe,” she says in the film.

At its core, writes Albert Samaha, this is a story about two young people healing from the damage of experiences the rest of us are only beginning to understand.

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