Around the world
REFUSED: Vietnam refused entry to a U.S. human rights activist because he planned to commit "a provocative act" by presenting an award to a jailed dissident, the Foreign Affairs Ministry said Friday. David L. Phillips, president of the Washington, D.C.-based Congressional Human Rights Foundation, flew to Vietnam without first obtaining an entry visa, a statement said. Phillips wanted to present the Raoul Wallenberg Human Rights Award to Nguyen Dan Que, who was sentenced in 1991 to a 20-year term of hard labor for calling on the government to respect human rights and enact political reforms.
BEHEADED: Two convicted drug smugglers and a murderer were beheaded in Saudi Arabia Friday, official Saudi media said. The Saudi Press Agency said two men were beheaded with a sword in the capital Riyadh for smuggling heroin into the kingdom. The third man was beheaded for killing a man after a dispute, an Interior Ministry statement said. According to strict sharia (Islamic) laws in force in Saudi Arabia, convicted rapists, murderers and drug traffickers are executed, usually in public after Friday prayers.
Across the nation
TESTIMONY: A 14-year-old Florida boy who police say crouched in the back seat of a car while his friends fatally shot a British tourist has agreed to testify against them. Cedrick Green, who faced a first-degree murder charge, pleaded no contest Thursday to one count of accessory after the fact, a third-degree felony. Green was 13 last September when Gary Colley was shot and killed during a botched robbery attempt at an Interstate 10 rest stop in Monticello east of Tallahassee. Colley's companion, Margaret Jagger, was wounded.
FEES: A judge ruled that Rodney King owes the Los Angeles Unified School District $237,958 in legal fees because he frivolously named it as a defendant in his civil lawsuit. King's complaint included the country's second-largest school district because two district officers were among the onlookers during his 1991 beating by police. U.S. District Judge John Davies dropped the school district from the lawsuit before the trial. A jury later awarded King $3.8 million in damages from the city. The four white officers who were videotaped beating King didn't pay anything.