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POSTED December 3, 2012 7:57 p.m.

FEDS: DINOSAUR SKULL SEIZED FROM WYOMING HOME : CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — A dinosaur skull seized from a Wyoming home is related to an investigation into fossil smuggling from Mongolia, indicating that efforts to stem the illegal trade are making progress, an attorney said Monday.

Robert Painter, a Houston attorney representing Mongolia President Elbegdorj Tsakhia, said officials hoped that such seizures will have a chilling effect on smuggling.

"It's really part of what we hoped that would happen ... there would be increased awareness across the country of Mongolian law and the U.S. government is cooperating in protecting these cultural treasures," Painter said.

POLICE: GIRL MAY DIE IF NOT RETURNED TO HOSPITAL: PHOENIX (AP) — A young girl with leukemia and a heart catheter could die in a matter of days if she is not brought back to an Arizona hospital after her parents inexplicably took her out of the facility last week, authorities said Monday.

The 11-year-old girl authorities are only calling Emily had been receiving chemotherapy at Phoenix Children's Hospital for about a month, said Phoenix police Sgt. Steve Martos.

An infection forced doctors to amputate her right arm and insert a catheter in her heart. The device was set to be taken out before her mother removed an IV from the girl, changed her clothes, and walked her out of the hospital Wednesday night.

Police said if the catheter is left in too long, it could lead to a deadly infection.

HOMELESS MAN SHOELESS AGAIN IN NYC DESPITE BOOTS: NEW YORK (AP) — The New York City homeless man — whose gift of boots from an NYPD police officer became an online sensation — is back on the streets with no shoes.

The New York Times found him Sunday night wandering barefoot in Manhattan. The paper identified him as Jeffrey Hillman, formerly of South Plainfield, N.J.

Asked about the $100 all-weather boots Officer Larry DePrimo gave him on Nov. 14, Hillman says he's hidden them because "they are worth a lot of money."

He says he's grateful for the gift, but he wants "a piece of the pie" because the photo was posted online "without permission."

An Arizona tourist snapped the photo of the officer presenting new boots to Hillman. It went viral after it was posted on the NYPD's Facebook page.

PAINFUL COUGH KEEPS GEORGE H.W. BUSH HOSPITALIZED: HOUSTON (AP) — Former President George H.W. Bush remains Monday in a Houston hospital, where he is being treated for a painful, lingering bronchitis-related cough, and there is no timeline for his release, his spokesman said.

Initially, aides had said the 88-year-old 41st president would be released from the hospital over the weekend. But he has a "nagging cough" and "we don't have any idea when he'll be released," said Methodist Hospital spokesman George Kovacik.

"They're not in any hurry, so they're just keeping him here, but there's really no change in his condition," Kovacik said. "He's stable and he's still here."

Bush has been in and out of the hospital for treatment of the cough since last month. The former president also has a form of Parkinson's disease that forces him to use a wheelchair or motorized scooter.

JOE KENNEDY III, RFK'S GRANDSON, WEDS IN CALIF. :BOSTON (AP) — Congressman-elect Joe Kennedy III, the grandson of the late Robert F. Kennedy, has married.

A spokeswoman says Kennedy and Lauren Anne Birchfield were married on Saturday at the Community Church in Corona del Mar, Calif., in a ceremony officiated by the bride's father, the Rev. Jim Birchfield.

The marriage comes less than a month after the 32-year-old Kennedy, making his first run for political office, defeated Republican Sean Bielat in Massachusetts' 4th Congressional district. He'll take over the seat of the retiring Democratic Rep. Barney Frank in January.

Kennedy and Birchfield, a fellow Harvard Law School graduate from Houston, announced their engagement in January.

Kennedy is the son of former U.S. Rep. Joseph Kennedy II and grandson of the late Robert F. Kennedy.

MITT ROMNEY REJOINS MARRIOTT BOARD: NEW YORK (AP) — Former presidential candidate and Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney is rejoining Marriott International's board of directors.

He's held the post with the hotel chain twice before. The first time was from 1993 to 2002, when he left to campaign for governor of Massachusetts, and from 2009 to 2011, when he left to start his campaign for the presidency.

Romney has been connected to the Marriott dynasty all of his life. He was named after J.W. Marriott. Romney's full name is Willard Mitt Romney and Marriott's was John Willard Marriott. Marriott, who founded the company in 1927, was close friends with Romney's father.

SENATE OKS OBAMA'S CHOICE FOR AFGHAN COMMANDER: WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate has approved President Barack Obama's choice to be the top commander in Afghanistan.

By voice vote Monday, lawmakers cleared the way for Gen. Joseph Dunford, the assistant commandant of the Marine Corps, to take over as head of U.S. and coalition forces in Afghanistan.

Dunford would replace Gen. John Allen, the current commander who has been nominated to take charge in Europe. Allen's nomination is on hold as he's ensnared in the sex scandal that had led to the resignation of CIA director David Petraeus.

Dunford takes charge at a critical time for Obama and the military as they decide in the coming weeks the pace of drawing down the 66,000 U.S. combat troops in Afghanistan. Dunford has directed combat forces in Iraq.

MAN PLANTING CLONES OF LONG-DEAD REDWOODS: A Michigan nurseryman and his team of tree climbers and horticulturists have cloned the world's biggest redwoods and giant sequoias, bringing some of them back from stumps cut more than 100 years ago.

With the winter rains has come the time to plant them. Two hundred and fifty clones carrying an exact genetic copy from 18 different trees — many of them bigger when they lived than anything left standing today — will start going into the ground Tuesday on a ranch along the southern Oregon Coast.

David Milarch, co-founder of the Archangel Ancient Tree Archive and the Champion Tree Project, hopes the small plantation south of Port Orford, Ore., will give the ancient giants a leg up on moving north to cooler climes as the climate changes and be the start of a campaign to plant some of the world's fastest-growing trees all around the globe.

Only about 5 percent of the ancient redwoods are left standing, and among the sources of the clones is one that fell some 120 years ago— the Fieldbrook Stump near McKinleyville, Calif. Sprouts still come out of the stump, which is 33 ½ feet in diameter without the bark. One of those sprouts provided cuttings for the project.

 

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