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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - A federal grand jury in Kansas City has indicted 18 people on charges accusing them of conspiring to transport more than $17 million worth of contraband cigarettes to New York.

The 43-count indictment, unsealed Wednesday, says hundreds of thousands of cartons of contraband cigarettes were taken from the Kansas City area to New York, where they were sold primarily on Indian reservations. Federal prosecutors accuse the group of running the operation from 2010 until last year.

The indictment says two defendants bought about $17.3 million worth of contraband cigarettes from undercover agents and transported about 620,000 cartons to New York without paying the required $4.35 per pack excise tax. Prosecutors estimate the scheme cost New York more than $8 million in state excise taxes.

The defendants are from several states, including Missouri and Kansas.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013 15:43
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The Rams will be without one of their starting linebackers to start the season.

Jo-Lonn Dubar was suspended without pay for the first four games of the season for violating the league's policy on performance enhancing drugs. Dunbar had a career year with the Rams, tallying 91 tackles, 4-and-a-half sacks, 2 forced fumbles, and 2 interceptions.

He will be eligible to return to the roster following the team's September 26 game against the San Francisco 49'ers.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013 15:25
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The St. Louis Zoo has welcomed a new member to the family.

A rare Okapi was born on June 17 and is now on display. The newest animal is name Umeme.

The Okapi is nicknamed the forest giraffe and is on of the rarest mammals in captivity--there are only 94 at American zoos. 

Wednesday, 14 August 2013 15:13
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A woman accused of selling phony Bruno Mars tickets is back in police custody after a short-lived escape from authorities.

Police say Desiree Townsend photocopied tickets to last week's concert and sold them to a customer in Maryland Heights for $85. Officers arrested Townsend on Monday. While in custody, she faked an illness and was taken to Mercy Hospital. Police say while there, she managed to escape. Townsend was arrested later in the day and now faces a charge of escape from custody in additional to felony counts of forgery.

Authorities Townsend may have sold as many as 10 fake tickets.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013 15:12
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