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Bay Area briefs
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Cell towers blamed for Oakland's police radio ills

OAKLAND  (AP) — Oakland officials say cell phone towers are partially to blame for disrupting the city's police radio communications system, including a failure on the night President Obama came to town.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports that AT&T Wireless towers were interfering with the radio system used by police and firefighters on city streets, especially when personnel were close to a tower.

AT&T Wireless says it is working with the city to see if the troubles with the radio system are related to the its network. The company released a statement saying as a "cautionary measure" they have taken some frequencies out of service at some cell sites in Oakland.

David Cruise, Oakland's public safety systems adviser, says the partial disabling of towers has already helped improve the radio system's performance.

Bicyclist runs into truck and is run over

BURLINGAME (AP) — An elderly bicyclist has crashed into a moving tree-trimming truck and died on a Northern California street.

Burlingame police say the 75-year-old bicyclist was killed when he was run over by the truck Monday afternoon. His name is being withheld.

The bicyclist was legally riding on the right side of the roadway when he turned into left into the side of the tree-trimming truck traveling in the same direction.

The truck driver was questioned and released. No charges are expected

Lawsuit says travel agencies conspired with hotels

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A California lawsuit claims online travel agencies like Travelocity conspired with hotels to fix room prices nationwide.

The suit filed Monday in San Francisco federal court claims the Hilton Hotels, Sheraton Hotels & Resorts, Marriott International and others fixed prices with Expedia, Travelocity and other online sites.

Although travel websites say they buy blocks of unsold rooms to give consumers low hotel rates, the lawsuit claims hotels set a minimum room rate for online travel websites to offer to consumers.

The Los Angeles Times says hotels agree to the fixed prices for fear of losing online travel business.

The suit filed on behalf of travelers Nakita Turik of Chicago and Eric Balk of Cedar Falls, Iowa, seeks an injunction to prevent further price fixing as well as unspecified damages.

San Francisco man gets 5 years for investment scam

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A San Francisco man has been sentenced to five years in prison for an investment scam involving foreclosed properties.

The San Francisco Chronicle says 56-year-old Keith Wilson told investors that his Tribecca Properties and Lone Cedar Corp. bought foreclosed properties in Alameda, Contra Costa and Santa Clara counties and resold them for profit.

Wilson pleaded guilty last month to the $347,000 scam.

District Attorney George Gascon says Wilson used most of the money on shopping sprees and political contributions.