Immigrant jailed for groping woman in supermarket after believing it was legal in USA


A lawyer argued that his client should not be jailed for groping a woman in a store because he did not understand that his actions were not allowed in the United States.

43-year-old Azadeen Altom, who now lives in Logan, Utah, was arrested after walking up to a woman in a supermarket and groping her buttocks while she was shopping.

Altom pleaded guilty to one count of forced sexual abuse, reduced to a third-degree felony.

During sentencing, defense attorney Bryan Galloway asked the judge for leniency, saying that Altom, who is originally from Sudan, does not understand the culture here and needs more education to live in society.

“I did not think the defendant was a sex offender or a stalker, he just does not understand what is legal and what is not,” the lawyer said.

However, State prosecutor Griffin Hazzard did not agree. He said that if Altom is not able to understand cultural differences, and not understand that you do not approach women and grab them, then he cannot be in society.

Hazzard also noted that Altom has a criminal history including walking into the Logan Middle School cafeteria, sitting down, and looking at a group of girls.

He was removed by police.

A month later, he was arrested at Walmart after a teenager reported that he was harassing her.

Altom was also charged with failing to register as a sex offender for crimes he committed in Nebraska.

Judge Kevin Allen acknowledged the cultural differences but said he did not know of any culture in which it was appropriate to grab a woman in a supermarket.

He explained that no woman or man should have to tolerate that kind of behavior in our community. Judge Allen sentenced Altom to up to five years in prison.

Last year, Judge Thomas Willmore sentenced Altom to serve 1-year in jail. He refused a lighter sentence of just 3 months, which was recommended by probation officers.

However, after spending 5 months in prison, the judge released Altom so immigration officers could deport him.

Logan City Police Chief Gary Jensen explained that Altom was not deported after his native country refused to take him. Since he couldn’t be deported, he was allowed to walk free until he offended again.



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UK supermarket to eliminate all to-go coffee cups from stores

It would have been nice to know this when I lived in England, but British supermarket Waitrose has long been offering free in-store coffee for its loyalty card customers. While that makes for a nice gesture in terms of customer relations, however, it also generates a lot of unnecessary waste. So as activists urge Starbucks to hurry up with cup recycling, one might also expect brands like Waitrose to seek to get ahead of the game with their own recyclable cups.

Not so, however. Waitrose is going one better. By the Fall of 2018, Waitrose will eliminate all single use, disposable coffee cups from its stores. Here’s how they explain what’s going down:

We have committed to removing all takeaway disposable coffee cups from our shops by autumn 2018. As myWaitrose members you will continue to have the option to enjoy a free tea or coffee from your shop’s self-serve machine as a thank you for shopping with us. But in the coming weeks we will be asking you to bring in your own reusable cup, rather than being offered a disposable coffee cup when you go through the checkout.

The cups will initially be removed in nine test branches only, starting this month. But this appears not to be a trial run—the company has already committed to the removal—but rather an experiment to figure out how best to manage the process with minimal disruption to customers. It’s a pretty cool move. And given that this is a free perk, rather than a service that customers are directly paying for, I think it has the potential to reach a broader cross section of the public and start promoting reusability as a sensible lifestyle choice all round. After all, once a customer has a Waitrose coffee cup, who’s to say they won’t use it at Starbucks too.

Of course, the ultimate solution to single-use plastics is either to ban them, or tax them so punitively that the cost becomes prohibitive. After all, we’re all paying the cost in terms of environmental degradation, so why not shift that payment to the source of the problem?

But still, institutional moves like this are making a real difference—both in the amount of plastic being consumed, and in the broader cultural debate about what is and isn’t acceptable as a society.

And for that, I think we can thank Waitrose heartily.

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CRISPR’d Food, Coming Soon to a Supermarket Near You

CRISPR’d Food, Coming Soon to a Supermarket Near You

April 8th, 2018

Via: Wired:

FOR YEARS NOW, the US Department of Agriculture has been flirting with the latest and greatest DNA manipulation technologies. Since 2016, it has given free passes to at least a dozen gene-edited crops, ruling that they fall outside its regulatory purview. But on Wednesday, March 28, the agency made its relationship status official; effective immediately, certain gene-edited plants can be designed, cultivated, and sold free from regulation. “With this approach, USDA seeks to allow innovation when there is no risk present,� US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue said in a statement.




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“Plastic Attack” – Protesters Ditch Packaging At Supermarket Tills

By Fattima Mahdi Truth Theory

In an effort to tackle plastic pollution, a group of Tesco shoppers in Keynsham, near Bristol, left excess packaging in shopping trolleys and lined up outside the shop to show that food can be bought without creating waste. Ditching plastic at the tills is a good way of letting supermarkets know that customers demand change.

Tony Mitchell organised the Tesco protest and said that “three huge trolleys” were filled with discarded plastic. He also said that the response from the supermarket was not at all “hostile”. “The manager was there and he was being distant but friendly and, from what one or two people said, he sort of agreed with this.”

Tesco is not the only supermarket that will be hit by this protest, Mitchell promises to do the sae at the local Sainsbury’s and Waitrose. “We’ll certainly be doing the other supermarkets in the town which have not been making as much effort as they might have done,” he said. “And I personally will be quite happy to just strip my plastics off and drop them into a trolley but I’m not lacking in confidence that way.”

VOICE and Friends of the Earth (FoE) Ireland, are two environmental groups that have been leading the campaign and encouraging the public to remove packaging at the checkout. FoE director, Oisín Coglin, also suggested that supermarkets provide recycle bins so that shoppers could leave the excess plastic. “More and more of the plastics being used for packaging are not recyclable. We want supermarkets to do their bit for reducing packaging,” he said.

Since the campaign launched, supermarkets such as Lidl have responded positively. “We have been listening to your feedback, and we’re excited to be introducing more loose fruit and veg.” A spokesperson for Tesco also released a statement to say that: “We’re absolutely committed to reducing plastic packaging and would be happy to meet with these local campaigners as we develop our plans to make all our packaging fully recyclable or compostable by 2025.”

Image Credit: Kathy Farrell

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Amsterdam now has the first plastic-free supermarket in the world

Image: Amsterdam now has the first plastic-free supermarket in the world

(Natural News)
Last February, the world’s “first plastic-free supermarket aisle” was launched in Amsterdam.

Shoppers at the Jan Pieter Heijestraat branch of Ekoplaza, a Dutch supermarket chain, can now choose from more than 700 plastic-free products such as cereals, chocolate, dairy, fresh fruit, meat, rice, sauces, snacks, vegetables, and yogurt.

All items at the supermarket are packed in either compostable materials or cardboard, glass, and metal instead of plastic. In a statement, Erik Does, chief executive of Ekoplaza, said, “Plastic-free aisles are an important stepping stone to a brighter future for food and drink.”

He added, “We know that our customers are sick to death of products laden in layer after layer of thick plastic packaging.” (Related: Plastic pollution is devastating ocean ecosystems, turning them into “toxic repositories;” documentary spurs action.)

Ekoplaza has 74 stores all over the Netherlands. The supermarket chain also has plans to launch similar aisles at all branches by the end of 2018.

Sian Sutherland, co-founder of A Plastic Planet, the environmental organization behind the project, expressed hope that other food retailers will soon follow suit. Sutherland shared that it is pointless to package “something as fleeting as food in something as indestructible as plastic.”

She continued that Europe’s biggest supermarkets will benefit by following in Ekoplaza’s footsteps since adopting a plastic-free aisle as soon as possible greatly reduces plastic waste.

Humanity’s massive plastic footprint can be traced to all areas around the globe, such as in our oceans and “in the stomachs and cavities of seabirds, turtles, and even tiny plankton.”

According to a recent study published in the journal Science Advances, since the 1950s, over 8.3 billion tonnes (or 9.1 tons) of plastic has been produced, distributed, and thrown away.

At least 6.3 billion tonnes (6.9 tons) of plastic can be categorized as waste. However, only nine percent of that total is recycled, and 12 percent is incinerated. For the remainder, at least 79 percent of plastic waste, is left to pile up in landfills or pollute the environment.

Jenna Jambeck, study co-author and an associate professor of engineering at the University of Georgiacommented that since the bulk of plastics “don’t biodegrade in any meaningful sense,” the plastic waste we produce might remain for at least hundreds or even thousands of years.

She warned that their calculations highlight the need to reconsider “the materials we use and our waste management practices.”

Roland Geyer, the lead author of the study and an industrial ecologist from the University of California, Santa Barbara, added that immediate measures must be put in place to curb the plastic waste that is regularly being produced.

But it looks like more retailers and governments are doing their part to minimize plastic pollution. Earlier in February, Taiwan’s Environmental Protection Agency suggested a bold 12-year timeline to eradicate four types of single-use plastics by 2030. Once successful, the timeline can eliminate the need for disposable tableware, drinking straws, shopping bags, and takeaway beverage cups.

In Chile, the sale of single-use plastic bags is prohibited in 102 coastal villages and towns. Meanwhile, Kenya has introduced a law that will fine or give anyone a jail sentence if they manufacture, sell, or carry a plastic bag. In Scotland, there have been plans to ban the manufacture and sale of plastic-stemmed cotton buds along with plastic straws.

If governments and retailers all around the world do their part, it’s possible that plastic pollution can be minimized to manageable levels.

Tips to minimize plastic waste

Every effort counts, and below are some tips to help minimize the plastic waste that you produce daily:

  • Always use your own reusable steel or ceramic mugs/tumblers, especially when you’re at a coffeehouse.
  • Avoid buying convenience foods packaged in plastic.
  • Buy fresh produce at a farmer’s market, which is usually not packaged in plastic.
  • Choose glass beverages bottles instead of plastic bottles.
  • Clean with baking soda and vinegar instead of cleaners in plastic packaging.
  • Make your own bread.
  • Skip the straws when you’re ordering drinks, or buy reusable glass, silicone, or stainless steel straws.
  • Use cloth bags when you shop.

Read more articles on how to minimize your plastic waste at

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ISIS takes control of supermarket with hostages in France

Home » Breaking News, Eurabia, Europe, Terrorism » ISIS takes control of supermarket with hostages in France


The hostage-taker at the supermarket in southern France has claimed allegiance to Islamic State (IS, formerly known as ISIS) AFP cited the prosecutor’s office as saying. A police operation is underway in the area.

Policeman shot and possibly killed, in Carcassonne, and hostages taken in the nearby town of Trèbes, by a gunman pledging allegiance to ISIS.

The man was shouting “Allahu Akbar” when he entered the supermarket, a witness told Europe 1.

The incident took place in the town of Trebes in the south of the country, the French Interior Ministry said on Twitter.

Local residents told the LCI TV channel that they saw many police and gendarmerie units deployed around the supermarket.

Responding to the incident, Prime Minister Edouard Philippe called the situation “very serious.”



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Rise of the machines: A.I. technology could soon be taking over the jobs of supermarket managers

Image: Rise of the machines: A.I. technology could soon be taking over the jobs of supermarket managers

(Natural News)
The idea that robots will replace entry-level workers in places likes supermarkets has been around for quite some time now. As a matter of fact, an online retail giant has already gone ahead and implemented the idea in its own experimental stores called Amazon Go, where customers can walk in, take whatever items they want, and walk out without needing to talk with anyone or hand over any money or credit information to anything, as the payment for whatever products they buy will be charged directly to their Amazon account.

It’s a simple idea, but the Chinese want to take it even further. Chinese search engine Baidu has started conducting its own experiments related to the subject of using Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) and robotics in retail stores. But instead of just displacing low-level workers like cashiers and stockmen, they want to implement new technology that could take away the jobs of supermarket managers as well.

According to a report from the South China Morning Post, Baidu’s plan revolves around the use of A.I. to tell, with great accuracy, the exact quantity of food products that are needed in order to meet customer demands without creating any excess waste that needs to be disposed by the end of the day. It does this by using historical data from a total of 70 different metrics, which include store food purchases, sales, festivals, and even the weather. The Beijing-based company is currently testing an algorithm that takes all of this and comes up with actionable data that could somehow make store managers entirely obsolete.

Of course, the intention of Baidu is not to cause supermarket managers grief. Rather, the idea is to cut back on expenses even further, not just by removing the managers but also by reducing the amount of wasted products that need to be thrown out because they weren’t purchased by customers by their proverbial data of expiry. This is especially true of fresh food products, which need to be cleared out quickly. Otherwise, they will just end up in the garbage disposal.

According to Liu Yongfeng, the senior project manager of Baidu’s deep learning platform and the person in charge of this whole project, they are already looking forward to deploying the technology based on their current model some time later this year. “We expect to bring the technology to about 200 stores in central China’s Wuhan city in 2018 through our partnership with convenience store chain Today,” she explained. “The more data we can gather, the higher the accuracy we can achieve.”

With the current rise of A.I. applications in the retail industry, this move by Baidu should be of no surprise to anyone. And when even China, where the costs of labor are known to be the lowest in the entire world, wants to save money even further by eliminating more jobs held by human workers, you know that’s something worth paying attention to.

According to Wen Ying, the branding director of Today Convenience, the move is necessary to solve other problems in the industry. Instead of focusing on customer experience, retailers can turn to this new technology to try and solve an industry-wide challenge. “Time is money in the fresh food business. We have to throw away all food not sold within 24 hours,” said Wen. “For now, the demand prediction is all based on human experience.”

However, Wen also notes that the employee turnover rate, especially for supermarket managers, is rather high in the business. “More often than now, an experienced store managers leaves without passing on his or her knowledge to their successor,” Wen explained. “With the technology offered by Baidu, we can make sure our store managers order the right quantity of rice boxes even when they don’t have enough experience.”

That it will help save supermarkets money is a certainty. But whether or not that’s good for humanity in the long run remains a mystery.

Find out more about tomorrow’s robotic solutions for today’s problems in

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World’s first plastic-free supermarket aisle debuts in Amsterdam

To start with, more than 700 products will be available without plastic packaging in the designated section.

Today marks a milestone in the fight against plastic pollution. At 11 o’clock local time, a supermarket in Amsterdam called Ekoplaza opened the first-ever plastic-free aisle. The aisle features more than 700 food items, including meats, sauces, yogurts, cereals, and chocolate; and, as unbelievable as it sounds, there’s not a speck of plastic in sight — only cardboard, glass, metal, and compostable materials.

Sian Sutherland is the co-founder of A Plastic Planet, the environmental organization behind supermarket chain Ekoplaza’s initiative to rid its shelves of plastic. She is celebrating today, calling it a “landmark moment for the global fight against plastic pollution.” She told the Guardian:

“For decades shoppers have been sold the lie that we can’t live without plastic in food and drink. A plastic-free aisle dispels all that. Finally we can see a future where the public have a choice about whether to buy plastic or plastic-free. Right now we have no choice.”

Ekoplaza CEO Erik Does says this is something his company has been working on for years, that it’s “not just a marketing trick.” The company plans to add plastic-free aisles to all of its 74 stores by the end of 2018.

What’s interesting about the plastic-free aisle concept is that the products are still packaged, only in better, more eco-friendly versions of packaging. I suspect it will do extremely well because most shoppers value convenience above all else. Many cannot be bothered to remember their own containers or bags for filling at a bulk food store, but dislike the idea of hauling all that extra plastic home. This offers the perfect middle ground.

It’s not entirely accurate for Sutherland to say that plastic-free choices did not exist before. They did, and continue to exist in every other supermarket; it just takes time, stubbornness, and money to sniff them out. For example, I can buy plastic mesh bags of 5 avocados for $4, or loose avocados at $2 apiece. Peanut butter in plastic is $4.99, whereas it’s $6.99 in a smaller glass jar. The choice is there, but it’s not a convenient one, which is why the plastic-free aisle should do well.

The good news is that campaigners say the products will not be any more expensive than plastic-wrapped goods. (That seems surprising, but great if it’s actually the case.) The Guardian reports that items will be “scalable and convenient, using alternative biodegradable packing where necessary rather than ditching packaging altogether.”

Don’t confuse a plastic-free aisle with zero-waste shopping, however. The two concepts are quite different, and zero waste advocates would likely point out that a plastic-free aisle still results in excessive and unnecessary packaging that must go through the recycling process (which we know is fairly useless) or into the trash, neither of which is desirable. Reduction and avoidance should be our ultimate goal.

Nevertheless, kudos to Ekoplaza and A Plastic Planet for their fabulous work on this front. This is only the beginning of a major shift in the way people buy their food. Learn more in the short video below.

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Amazon Go: The World’s First Checkout-less Supermarket

By Fattima Mahdi Truth Theory

Since December 2016, Amazon have been testing their ‘checkoutless’ supermarket in Seattle, Washington. To identify each customer and what they’ve purchased, ceiling-mounted cameras and sensors have been installed, as well as a phone application that the customer would use to enter the store. Shelved items sit on sensors that track inventory. When the already identified customer picks an item off the shelf, that items is deducted from the store inventory and logged in the customer’s digital shopping cart.

Image Credit Amazon/youtube

The store was expected to open to customers far earlier in 2017, however, problems identifying shoppers of similar body types, as well as items being moved to different places on shelves have led to setbacks. Head of Amazon Go, Gianna Puerini said, “This technology didn’t exist – it was really advancing the state of the art of computer vision and machine learning”.

The tech conglomerate has been running brick and mortar retail stores since 2015, beginning with a book store in Seattle before expanding to another 12 stores across the rest of the US. As yet, Amazon has no plans to introduce their ‘checkoutless’ technology to their Whole Foods stores, a chain they acquired in 2016 for $13.7billion.

The technology behind Amazon Go was patented in 2014, before they released a video introducing the frictionless shopping concept to the world. Stores using this technology will have an enormous competitive advantage over all others, as it is known that the faster customers can make their purchases, the more likely they are to return. Just as they dominate the internet with Amazon Web Services – the cloud computing ‘super server’ used to host and organise such sites as Netflix, Pintrest and NASA – Amazon have set themselves up to dominate the $25trillion retail industry by becoming the sole suppliers of the frictionless shopping technology. “You will see more expansion from us”, said Amazon’s CFO, Brian Olsavsky, “it’s still early, so those plans will develop over time”.

Read More: World’s First Self-Driving Grocery Store Just Hit The Streets In Shanghai

Image Credit: Amazon

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Chickens From British Supermarket Show Record Levels of Antibiotic Resistant Superbugs

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Chickens on sale for human consumption in Britain’s supermarkets are now testing for record levels of superbugs that are resistant to some of the strongest antibiotics in use today, according to new research from the UK government. 

These results are alarming because resistance to antibiotics among livestock can very easily affect the resistance among humans, which could essentially render vital medicines ineffective against potentially serious diseases. Antibiotics were an extremely important discovery that have helped cure many ailments and save many lives, but the more they are used, the more ineffective they become because the bacteria becomes immune to them and thus becomes stronger and stronger.This is the cause for the development of what we have come to know as antibiotic resistant or “superbugs.” That being said, many people have also experienced detrimental health consequences as a result of antibiotic use.

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) tested a large sample of fresh whole chickens from various retailers and found “significantly higher proportions”of campylobacter within the last 10 years. This is a harmful pathogen that was found to be resistant to the antibiotics that are commonly used to treat it.

The agency issued a warning, “This survey provides evidence that AMR (anti-microbial resistant) campylobacter are to be found on whole fresh chickens sold at retail in the UK. It is therefore important to handle the chicken hygienically and cook thoroughly to reduce the risk to public health.”

Also noted by the FSA was that the proportion of campylobacter-infected chickens, which showed resistance to key antibiotics in this instance ciprofloxacin, “has increased significantly” when compared with a previous survey of chickens sold in retail stores 10 years ago. The study sampled more than 4000 chickens from their samples of smaller numbers which were exhibiting campylobacter infections, which were were retested in order to detect whether or not they carried the bacteria that was resistant to the key antibiotics. In more than half of the samples, Ciprofloxacin resistance was identified – 237 out of 437 tests on Campylobacter jejuni and in almost half, 53 out of 108 another strain, Campylobacter coli.

These results clearly show that the amount of antibiotics being used to treat farm animals is directly contributing to the rise and spread of resistant bacteria, which in turn can have major effects on human health. One of the main methods of transmission to many of the strains of resistant bacteria is through direct contact with animals livestock. Proper handling, hygiene and thorough cooking can kill these bugs but any small mistakes can result in serious infections that antibiotics will not be able to treat.

Save Our Antibiotics?

Cóilín Nunan, scientific adviser to the Alliance to Save Our Antibiotics, told the Guardian: “It is scandalous that [government rules] still allow for poultry to be mass-medicated with fluoroquinolone antibiotics. Twenty years ago, a House of Lords report said this should be stopped. Even the US banned the practice over 10 years ago because of the strength of the scientific evidence. So why are British and European authorities still refusing to take action?”

Even the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control is aware of the issue and the European Food Safety Authority have advised: “Given the high levels of resistance to fluoroquinolones in broilers [chickens bred for meat], and the assessment that a large proportion of human campylobacteriosis infections comes from the handling, preparation and consumption of broiler meat, this is a compelling example of how antimicrobial resistance in food and animals may impact the availability of effective antimicrobial agents for treating severe human campylobacter infections.”

Related CE Article:

Be Warned, FDA Issues New Stronger Warnings About Risks of Fluoroquinolone Antibiotics

What Can We Do?

To state the obvious, you can stop buying meat that comes from factory farms or that isn’t free of antibiotics. Yes, it is more expensive to buy organic, pasture raised, antibiotic free chicken, but you can certainly limit your intake in order to compensate for the higher price. Or, maybe this is all serving as a lesson that we should consider moving towards a plant-based diet.

There are last resort antibiotics, but once these are used then there is nothing left, and we will have no way to treat serious illnesses. We have to stop using so many antibiotics now, and given that in the U.S.  80% of all antibiotics used are given to treat animals in factory farms, it would be wise that we limit our consumption of meat coming from these places. This is just one reason out of many.

We can all do our part to protect ourselves, the animals and the environment – what is realistic for you? What can you do to help alleviate this problem?

Related CE Article: 10 Alarming Facts About Factory Farms That Will Break Your Heart

Warning: Graphic Images That The Egg Industry Does Not Want You To See

9 Things That Happen When You Stop Eating Meat 

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