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Google CEO Sundar Pichaoi to tell Congress company 'supports federal privacy legislation' amid allegations of security violations and political bias

The Independent - Tech

The boss of Google - under fire over allegations of political bias and its failure to protect personal information - is to tell congress it supports government legislation that defends against privacy violations. On the day Google announced it was to terminate earlier than planned its modestly-used social media network Google Plus because of a flaw that had leaked the personal information of 52.5m users, CEO Sundar Pichai made clear he would defend the company against accusations of favouritism or predisposition. "I lead this company without political bias and work to ensure that our products continue to operate that way," Mr Pichai will say in prepared remarks he is due to deliver on Capitol Hill. "To do otherwise would go against our core principles and our business interests." He added: "We are a company that provides platforms for diverse perspectives and opinions - and we have no shortage of them among our own employees. "Some of our Googlers are former servicemen and women who have risked much in defence of our country.


Twitter chief Jack Dorsey faces backlash after promoting tourism to Myanmar despite Rohingya crisis

The Independent - Tech

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey is under fire after posting tweets encouraging followers to visit Myanmar, without mentioning allegations of genocide and gang rape by its military against Rohingya Muslims – nearly a million of whom have been forced out the country. The backlash began on Saturday evening, when Mr Dorsey posted about his 10-day trip to the Myanmar town of Pyin Oo Lwin for a meditation retreat. In the thread, Mr Dorsey wrote about how he had isolated himself from technology to "hack at the deepest layer of the mind and reprogram it" using an intense form of Buddhist meditation called Vipassana. He went on to call the country beautiful, writing "the people are full of joy and the food is amazing". Towards the end of the thread, Mr Dorsey encouraged his 4.12 million followers to try Vipassana for themselves, and even go to the country in the south-east Asian nation: "If you're willing to travel a bit, go to Myanmar."


Who Is Roxana Baldetti? US Requests Extradition Of Former Guatemalan Vice-President For Drug Trafficking

International Business Times

Roxana Baldetti, the former Guatemalan vice-president whose extradition has been formally requested by the United States, late Wednesday after she was indicted in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in February 2017 on drug trafficking charges. Baldetti was charged for distributing nearly five kilograms of cocaine from January 2010 to May 2015, knowing that it would be illegally imported to the U.S. The Depart of Justice had made it clear at the time that the U.S. would be serving a formal extradition notice to the former Guatemalan vice-president at a future date. The news that the U.S. is moving forward with the extradition request was announced by Guatemala's foreign ministry, the Washington Times reported. Guatemalan former vice-president Roxana Baldetti is pictured at a courtroom before the judge suspended the hearing in which he was to decide on whether a trial against her and former President Otto Perez Molina (out of frame) would take place, at the Supreme Court in Guatemala City, March 28, 2016. Baldetti served in former Guatemalan President Otto Perez Molina's government, who was impeached over corruption charges.



Bumble Bee files bankruptcy amid antitrust fines and lawsuits

The Japan Times

NEW YORK – Bumble Bee Foods LLC, the largest North American brand of packaged seafood, filed for bankruptcy amid criminal fines and civil lawsuits stemming from a federal price-fixing case with plans for its assets to be acquired by FCF Co. for about $925 million. The canned-tuna purveyor sought creditor protection under Chapter 11 in Wilmington, Delaware, listing assets and liabilities of as much as $1 billion each, according to court papers. It has arranged an $80 million term loan from its current lenders and a $200 million revolving credit facility to keep operating while in bankruptcy, the documents showed. Bumble Bee, based in San Diego, California, and owned by London-based private equity firm Lion Capital LLC, pleaded guilty in 2017 to conspiring with Starkist Co. and Chicken of the Sea Inc. to fix and raise prices in the U.S. The company flagged its financial distress at the time of sentencing, arguing the $81.5 million fine initially levied could push it into insolvency. The U.S. Department of Justice agreed, cutting the amount to $25 million and giving Bumble Bee an installment plan over several years that required no more than $2 million upfront.