Wednesday morning news: February 6, 2018

Prosecutors investigate Trump inauguration committee » Federal prosecutors in New York issued a subpoena this week seeking documents from President Trump’s inaugural committee. The move is part of an inquiry into how the committee raised and spent $107 million to celebrate Trump’s inauguration.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters Tuesday that the probe is of no concern to the president.

SANDERS: This doesn’t have anything to do with the White House, and I think the biggest focus and the thing that most Americans care about has nothing to do with the inaugural and it has everything to do with what the path forward looks like. 

Sanders said the investigation is part of continued “hysteria” by Trump’s opponents over his election.

The Wall Street Journal reports that federal prosecutors demanded “all documents” related to the committee’s donors and vendors  as well as records relating to “benefits” donors received after making contributions.

The newspaper reported late last year that prosecutors were investigating whether committee donors made contributions in exchange for political favors.

The subpoena also reportedly asked for documents relating to donations “made by or on behalf of foreign nationals.”

UN experts: North Korea protecting nukes, violating sanctions » UN experts say North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs “remain intact” and that Pyongyang is actively working to protect those operations. WORLD Radio’s Sarah Schweinsberg reports.

SARAH SCHWEINSBERG, REPORTER: The experts’ report to the UN Security Council says North Korea is dispersing its missile assembly and testing to prevent what the report called “decapitation” strikes.

The country also reportedly continues to defy UN sanctions. The report cites “a massive increase” in illegal ship-to-ship transfers of petroleum products and coal at sea.

The experts said Pyongyang also continues to violate an arms embargo, a ban on luxury goods, and financial sanctions.

The report came as President Trump prepares for a second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Sarah Schweinsberg.

DOJ, Homeland Security submit report on 2018 election interference » Acting Attorney General Matt Whitaker and Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen issued a joint statement on Tuesday saying they have submitted a report to President Trump about foreign interference in the 2018 election.

Specific details are classified, but Whitaker and Nielsen said the bottom line is that foreign entities did not impact the 2018 election.

They said the Justice Department and Homeland Security worked closely with state, local, and private sector partners to protect election infrastructure and limit foreign influence campaigns. They said those measures were successful and the government’s already working to safeguard the 2020 election.

Pope acknowledges clergy sexual abuse of nuns » Pope Francis on Tuesday publicly acknowledged the scandal of priests and bishops sexually abusing nuns. WORLD Radio’s Leigh Jones has that story.

LEIGH JONES, NEWS EDITOR: Francis admitted to the problem for the first time in public during a news conference aboard the papal plane. The pope was flying back to Rome after visiting the United Arab Emirates.

He said “there have been priests and bishops who have” committed acts of sexual abuse. He added, quote—“Should we do something more? Yes. Is there the will? Yes. But it’s a path that we have already begun.”

The acknowledgment comes just two weeks before Francis hosts an unprecedented gathering of bishops. They’ll work to craft a global response to the scandal of priestly predators who target children and the superiors who covered up the crimes.

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Leigh Jones.

Virginia Lt. Gov says assault accusation is a political smear » Virginia Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax has emphatically denied an accusation of sexual assault that emerged over the weekend. Fairfax told reporters…

FAIRFAX: If you read through the story, you will see it’s completely uncorroborated. And the fact that they would run a story on an uncorroborated allegation from 15 years ago tells you exactly what the smear is all about. 

A California woman claims Fairfax assaulted her in 2004 at the Democratic National Convention in Boston.

Big League Politics first reported the accusations on Sunday. That’s the same outlet that published the photo of two men dressed in racist costumes from Virginia Governor Ralph Northam’s medical school yearbook. Northam is under pressure to resign, which would make Fairfax governor.

The woman accusing Fairfax of assault contacted The Washington Post last year, but the paper declined to publish a story about the accusation, saying it could not corroborate the account. Fairfax called the 2004 sexual encounter consensual.

His accuser has reportedly hired the same law firm that represented Christine Blasey Ford. She’s the woman who accused then-Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of assaulting her in high school.

Boston fans celebrate Super Bowl victory » AUDIO: [Sound of Patriots parade]

Hundreds of thousands of New England Patriots fans jammed downtown Boston on Tuesday for yet another victory parade, as the team celebrated its sixth Super Bowl title.

Fans cheered on players and coaches as red, white, and blue confetti rained down. And one fan said there’s no reason quarterback Tom Brady should settle for six rings.

AUDIO: Go for number seven. He still has how many fingers left? Four more rings to go, so… 

It’s a familiar feeling in Boston. Tuesday’s parade came just four months after the city feted the Red Sox for their fourth World Series championship in 15 years.

(AP Photo/Elise Amendola) Confetti flies as fans watch the New England Patriots parade through downtown Boston, Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019.

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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