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    Prosecutors in Massachusetts are basing their murder case against a man whose wife is presumed dead but whose body has not been found in large part on a series of gruesome internet searches. But experts warn that incriminating internet searches are not enough alone to build a case. Prosecutors said at Brian Walshe's arraignment that he used Google to look up ways to dismember and dispose of a body. His wife, Ana Walshe, has not been seen since Jan. 1. Northeastern University School of Law professor Daniel Medwed says prosecutors have plenty of other evidence to make their case, including blood and DNA.

      Asian shares have advanced, boosted by a rally on Wall Street following reports suggesting the economy and corporate profits may be doing better than feared. Markets remained closed in Shanghai for the Lunar New Year holidays. In Tokyo, data showed the core consumer price index was up 4.3%, slightly higher than expected at 4.2%, and higher than the Bank of Japan’s target of 2%. On Thursday, Wall Street stocks climbed to their highest level in nearly eight weeks after the Commerce Department reported that the U.S. economy expanded at a 2.9% annual pace in the last quarter, ending 2022 with momentum despite higher interest rates and widespread fears of a looming recession.

        Colorado lawmakers unanimously voted to push forward a bill that would create a $2 million pilot program to use cameras and artificial intelligence technology to help identify fires before they burn out of control. The bill was approved by a Senate committee Thursday, and comes a year after the most destructive wildfire in the state’s history scorched nearly 1,100 homes. The goal is for cameras and an AI algorithm to detect the plume of smoke and alert first responders who can stomp out the blaze before it grows. The proposed pilot program to help quench increasingly drastic wildfires in Colorado will move to the state Senate Appropriations Committee next.

          Attorney General Merrick Garland and other U.S. officials say the FBI and international partners have at least temporarily disrupted the network of a prolific ransomware gang they infiltrated last year. And as a result they have saved victims, including hospitals and school districts, a potential  $130 million in ransom payments. Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco says that: “Simply put, using lawful means we hacked the hackers.” Officials say the gang known as Hive, operates one of the world’s top five ransomware networks. FBI Director Christopher Wray says the FBI quietly gained access to Hive's control panel in July and was able to obtain software keys to decrypt the network of some 1,300 victims globally.

            Meta's decision to soon reinstate Donald Trump’s Facebook account comes at a critical moment as the former president tries to gain momentum in what has been widely derided as a lackluster start to his third bid for the White House. Trump’s return would allow him to start sharing messages with his 34 million followers, but for the former president, Facebook is mostly about money. The site became a crucial source of funds for Trump’s 2016 and 2020 campaigns, and Wednesday’s decision is seen as a boon for the campaign’s efforts to fundraise, collect emails and identify voters.

              Wireless and fixed-network equipment maker Nokia is reporting strong fourth-quarter results on the back of robust demand for 5G technology and an improved product portfolio. The Espoo, Finland-based company reported net profit of 929 million euros ($1 billion) for the October-December period on Thursday, 27% more than a year earlier. Nokia’s sales were up 16% at 7.4 billion euros. The company’s performance during the quarter exceeded analyst expectations. CEO Pekka Lundmark says he expects 2023 to be “another year of growth” for Nokia, though he noted an uncertain global economic outlook. For full year 2022, Nokia recorded sales of 24.9 billion euros and net profit of 2.5 billion euros, an 18% year-on-year increase.

                Days after India banned a BBC documentary that examines Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s role during 2002 anti-Muslim riots, authorities are scrambling to halt screenings of the program in colleges and universities and restricting clips of it on social media. Critics have decried the moves as an assault on press freedom. The two-part documentary “India: The Modi Question” focuses on bloody riots in western Gujarat when Modi was the state’s chief minister. Modi has denied the accusations that he allowed the riots under his watch, and the Supreme Court has said it found no evidence to prosecute him. India has called the documentary “propaganda."

                The Minnesota Senate debated late into the night on a bill to write broad protections for abortion rights into state statutes, which would make it difficult for future courts to roll back. Democrats have made the bill one of their top priorities in reaction to the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to reverse Roe v. Wade. While a 1995 Minnesota Supreme Court decision protects abortion rights, sponsors want to make sure those protections remain in force no matter who sits on future courts. The House passed the bill last week. Gov. Tim Walz hopes to sign it before the end of the month.

                The U.S. plans to make it easier for gay and bisexual men to give blood. The Food and Drug Administration proposed easing restrictions on groups that typically face higher risks of HIV. The agency wants to drop the three-month abstinence requirement for donations from men who have sex with men. Donors would instead be screened with a questionnaire that evaluates individual risks for HIV, including sexual behavior. As a result, gay and bisexual men in monogamous relationships could soon be able to donate blood for the first time in decades. The U.S. and other countries began restricting blood donations during the AIDS crisis of the early 1980s.


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