Category Archives: News (current)

Pastor Murder In Nice

Here are the latest news clips from the murders of Helene Pastor and her chauffeur outside a Nice hospital in May.

June 21, 2014

Around twenty people were arrested late yesterday afternoon by police investigating the murders of Helene Pastor and her chauffeur outside a Nice hospital in May. Two of the arrested are believed to be Mme Pastor’s daughter Sylvia and her son-in-law Wojciech Ratkowski, the Polish consul in Monaco. Further arrests were made in Nice, Marseille and Rennes, with the presumed killers of Comoran origin.
June 25, 2014
23 people have now been arrested in connection with the murders of Helène Pastor and her chauffeur in early May. It is thought that her daughter Sylvia is only in custody to help police with their enquiries, but they are looking at irregular movements of money between Mme Pastor’s bank accounts and those of her son-in-law Wojciech Radowski, who is also in custody.
June 26, 2014
Wojciech Janowski, the son-in-law of billionaire Hélène Pastor, has admitted to ordering the murder of the wealthy Monaco businesswoman and her chauffeur in May. Faced with suspicious movements on his bank account and discriminating statements by alleged accomplices, it appears Janowski was backed into a corner.

The 64-year-old is the husband of Hélène Pastor’s daughter, Sylvia Ratkowski-Pastor. After a number of days in police custody, Janowski confessed to his part in ordering the murder of his mother-in-law as well her chauffeur Mohamed Darwich, to “avoid making it obvious that the heiress was the only target”, reports the AFP.

The former honorary consulate of Poland, who was stripped of his status when news of his arrest broke, has been under arrest since Monday 23rd June.

Janowski’s personal trainer, who has not yet been named, is believed to have been the middleman for his employer, allegedly hiring the gunmen who carried out the attack, as well as negotiating the price of the contract – around €140,000, according to RTL.

This morning both men, as well as the two suspected gunmen, were brought from the Auvare police station in Nice to the courts of Marseille, where they will stand before a judge this afternoon.

Sylvia Ratkowski-Pastor was arrested on Monday along with 20 other people. She was released on 25th June as authorities confirmed that she had been held only to help police with their investigation.

Marseille prosecutor Brice Robin, as well as the interregional director of the Police Judiciaire (PJ) in Marseille, Christian Sainte, and the head of Nice’s branch of the PJ, Philippe Frizon, will hold a press conference at 5pm today to give further details on the developments of the double murder investigation.

Speculation as to a motive revolves largely around the reported reduction in allowance of €500,000 per month which Madame Pastor gave to her children. However, Robin has refused to confirm anything, telling the AFP that “at the moment, it’s too early to think about motives.”

June 27, 2014
Sylvia Pastor has been released without charge as the investigation in to the killing of her mother continues, and she followed another ten of the 23 arrested who were released on Tuesday.
Her partner Wojciech Radowski and a gendarme from the Bouches du Rhone are among those still in custody.
June 30, 2014
The son in law of Helene Pastor who’s being held in custody in connection with her murder has refused to speak to the judge investigating the case. Wojciech Janowski is being held  in Marseille. Reports last week said that he’d confessed to organising the shooting of Helene Pastor and her chauffeur outside a Nice hospital on the 6th of May with the aid of his private fitness coach. A total of 7 people are still being held in custody in connection with the affair. Madame Pastor, who was 77 died from the injuries she sustained in the shooting on the 21st of May. Her chauffeur also died. Janowski is due to appear before a judge again on Wednesday.
July 3, 2014
The son in law of Helene Pastor has withdrawn a confession in which he’s reported to have told police that he organised her murder. Wojciech Janowski appeared before a judge in Marseilles on Wednesday. His lawyer now says that he absolutely denies that he had anything to do with the murder of his mother in law. Helene Pastor and her chauffeur Mohamed Darwich were shot inside their car outside a Nice hospital on May the 6th. Both later died from their injuries. 7 people are still being held in custody in connection with the murders.
Wojciech Janowski, the man accused of ordering the murder of Monaco billionaire Hélène Pastor, has retracted his confession, says his lawyer. Apparently, the Polish national didn’t understand the French “nuances” used by investigators, despite living in the Principality for almost 30 years.

Appearing before a bail judge on Wednesday 2nd July, Janowski reportedly “recanted his statements made while in custody,” said his lawyer Erick Campana. He also “denies having ordered” the killing of 77-year-old Hélène Pastor on 6th May.

Janowski, husband of Sylvia Pastor for 28 years, “misunderstood the meaning of the words used by the police,” argued his defense lawyer. “He spoke French, but he did not understand all the nuances of our language.”

Late last week, prosecutors revealed that the former honorary consul of Poland had admitted to investigators that he was the “sponsor” of the double murder of his mother-in-law and her driver, 64-year-old Mohammed Darwich, who were both targeted at the l’Archet Hospital in Nice. It was also confirmed that Janowski had confessed that his personal trainer hired the two men who carried out the attack, both of whom have been arrested and charged.

Campana had asked the court to release Janowski and dismiss the statements he made while in custody because he did not have access to a lawyer or interpreter during his 96 hours of interrogation. But the judge did not agree.

“Not surprisingly, he can be kept in custody for a period of one year,” said the defense lawyer. “In a year, at the most, the judge will revisit his case.”

Wojciech Janowski will remain at the Baumettes prison “in total isolation”, according to Campana, who added that his client is in good physical health but “not well at all.”
 As of October 2014,

The lawyer of Wojciech Janowski, under investigation since June in the Helène Pastor murder case, has asked for his client’s case to be thrown out and for Mr Janowski to be freed. Erick Campana claims that his client’s initial incarceration in Nice was laced with irregularities and that he had no legal representation or interpreter.

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Wearable Technology: Do We Have A Privacy Issue?

Wearable technology is creating new privacy headaches for employers, a leading law firm has warned.

Technologies such as Google Glass and smart watches are gradually making their way into the workplace.

But the intrusive nature of these devices, which could be used by employees to take clandestine photographs or videos, are ringing alarm bells among some employers, says lawyer Sue McLean at Morrison and Foerster.  

There are huge privacy and ethical implications around wearable technology,” she said in an interview with Computer Weekly.

She said wearable technology is likely to become more of a pressing issue for employers over the next few years as technologies, such as Google Glass, find new uses in the work place and home.

The market for wearable technology is set to grow from $1.6 billion to $5 billion, according to research by Gartner.

But as its use becomes more widespread, employers will need to put policies in place governing how staff use the technology.

For example, if a person wearing Google Glass videos a meeting with other employees, that could be construed as bullying, says McClean.

Similarly, an employee in a disciplinary action could use a wearable device to surreptitiously record the meeting – and then go on to use the recording in legal proceedings.

Companies have to be very clear on how and why employees use wearable technology, make sure they are clear what the rules are, and that they have taken adequate precautions to comply with privacy regulations and the law,” she says.

Big brother

Research has shown, says McClean, that employees using wearable technology are more productive if they know they are being monitored.

However, the technology raises potential privacy and data protection concerns that will need to be addressed by employers and trade unions.

For example, it may be legitimate to ask a fire fighter to wear Google Glass, showing a floor plan, to help them navigate through a burning building. But there may not be a good case for issuing Google Glass to shop assistants.

It may depend what the job is, and whether employees can require wearable technology from a health and safety point of view, ” she says.

Intellectual Property

Companies may need to restrict or ban the use of wearable technology where employees have access to valuable intellectual property.

Organisations may choose to ban Google Glass from call centres, for example, where staff have access to customer records containing personal details about clients.

The technology could also raise new data protection issues, if companies use it to display sensitive data about their customers.

Virgin Atlantic, for example, has announced plans to issue staff at Heathrow airport Google Glass, to keep first class passengers up to data on flight information, weather and local events at their destination.

The devices, to be rolled out following a pilot earlier in the year, are able to alert staff to important passengers, by flashing their names, frequent flyer status and flight numbers on a mini-screen.

Some of the information [in this type of application] could be classified as sensitive information. So if you are Jewish, and you chose Kosher food for your flight, that would show your religious affiliation,” she says.

Companies will need to make sure sensitive data is adequately secured, so it cannot accidently be leaked, she says, or be exposed to hacking risks.

Similarly, employees using Google Glass to make video recordings, will need to make sure that people in the video have consented to be filmed or recorded.


Experiences in the US have shown that so far, people have a tendency to over-react to new technology.

In January, Homeland Security agents removed a man from the cinema, and questioned him for several hours about potential copyright infringement, after he was spotted wearing Google Glass.

The man, who said he had only been wearing the Glass because it was fitted with his prescription lenses, was only able to prove his innocence when he persuaded officials to connect his Glass to a PC to examine its contents.

In another case a woman was accused of distracted driving when she was found to be wearing Google Glasses after being pulled over for speeding in the US. The charges were dropped because there was no evidence she had been distracted or had the device turned on.

Mobile phone cameras produced a similar reaction when they were first introduced, with many organisations responding by banning people with smart  phones, said McClean.

That has gone away now because organisations realise you can’t ban all mobile phones, “ she says.

Meanwhile across the ocean:

Wearable technology must comply with UK data privacy laws, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has warned.

The warning follows the UK launch of Google Glass, which is set to take the collection and processing of data by wearable technology to a new level.

Recent progress in hardware means wearable technology is likely to become as common in the workplace as mobile phones.

This will force UK company owners to start considering their response to Google Glass and other wearable technology, according to Andrew Paterson, senior technology officer at the ICO.

For example, some bar owners in the US have already banned Google Glass from their premises because of customers’ concerns about being filmed without their knowledge, Paterson wrote in a blog post.

Although he believes it will be up to society to decide how comfortable they are with wearables, like any new technology, the devices must comply with the law.

In the UK, this means making sure that these devices operate in line with the requirements of the UK Data Protection Act (DPA),” said Paterson.

Anyone using a wearable technology for their own purposes is unlikely to breach the DPA, which includes an exemption for the collection of personal information for domestic purposes.

But if you were to one day decide that you’d like to start using this information for other purposes outside of your personal use, for example to support a local campaign or to start a business, then this exemption would no longer apply,” said Paterson.

However, organisations that use wearable technology to process personal information will almost always be covered by the DPA, he added.

This means that they must process the information collected by these devices in compliance with the legislation,” he said.

This includes making sure that people are being informed about how their details are being collected and used, only collecting information that is relevant, adequate and not excessive, and ensuring that any information that needs to be collected is kept securely and deleted once it is no longer required.”

If the wearable technology can capture video or pictures, like Google Glass, then organisations must address the issues raised in the ICO’s CCTV Code of Practice.

Paterson notes that an update to the code is currently out for consultation until 1 July 2014.

He said there is also useful guidance on the Surveillance Camera Commissioner’s website, which has direct relevance to the use of wearables containing cameras.

Paterson said the rise of wearable technology raises exciting new possibilities and is set to become widespread in years to come.

But organizations must not lose sight of the fact that wearables must still operate in compliance with the law and consumers’ personal information must be looked after,” he said.

As the use of wearable technology becomes more widespread, employers will need to put policies in place governing how staff use the technology, said lawyer Sue McLean at law firm Morrison and Foerster.  

For example, if a person wearing Google Glass videos a meeting with other employees, that could be construed as bullying, McLean told Computer Weekly.

Similarly, an employee in a disciplinary action could use a wearable device to surreptitiously record the meeting – and then use the recording in legal proceedings.

McLean added: “Companies have to be very clear on how and why employees use wearable technology, make sure they are clear what the rules are, and that they have taken adequate precautions to comply with privacy regulations and the law.”


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Metro-North Safety, Bridge and Yard Improvements


MTA Metro-North Railroad officials recently presented to the New York and Connecticut governors a 100-day report on the railroad’s action plan designed to improve safety, restore reliability and improve communications.

Of the plan’s 32 initiatives, 21 have been fully implemented, seven are in progress and two will be pursued after outside entities submit independent reports, Metro-North officials said in a press release. Two additional initiatives — implementing a “back-to-basics” plan for train reliability and service delivery, and communicating service delivery information to customers and elected officials — will continue as ongoing, long-term Metro-North priorities, they said.

Major improvements that have been completed include enhancing track inspection and maintenance, installing alerters and video cameras in engineers’ cabs, beefing up the safety and training departments, expanding employee testing programs to ensure understanding of safety rules, creating a computer-based track worker safety system, and implementing a Confidential Close Call Reporting System.

The Federal Railroad Administration completed its review of Metro-North practices in May, and its recommendations are incorporated into the 100-Day report. Two external reports, from the MTA’s Blue Ribbon Panel and the National Transportation Safety Board, have not yet been submitted, but Metro-North has committed to implementing any recommendations from those entities that have not already been addressed, railroad officials said.

“Metro-North intends to maintain its infrastructure and rolling stock to the highest standards of safety and reliability,” said President Joseph Giulietti. “This requires ensuring that we have established the appropriate inspection, maintenance and replacement plans and that we have the necessary resources to carry them out effectively. This will require ongoing funding, not only for Metro-North’s operating budget, but also for the railroad’s capital needs in New York and Connecticut.”

Metro-North’s action plans were put into place following a series of accidents, including the Dec. 1 derailment near the Bronx, N.Y., that resulted in four deaths. The train derailed after speeding through a curve.

On the recommendation of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) is creating a Transportation Reinvention Commission to ensure the capital plan it submits by Oct. 1 will adequately account for demographic, ridership and climate shifts that will shape mass transit in this century. In Connecticut, Gov. Dannel Malloy and the Congressional delegation have pledged to seek federal funding for their state’s investment needs.

Meanwhile, MTA Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Thomas Prendergast and Giulietti met on Monday with Malloy and Connecticut Transportation Commissioner James Redeker to develop short- and long-term strategies for addressing infrastructure needs of the 118-year-old Walk Bridge that crosses the Norwalk River in downtown Norwalk, Conn. Metro-North and Amtrak service in Connecticut was disrupted for the second time in two weeks earlier this month. On June 6, the swing bridge — which allows marine traffic to pass underneath — got stuck in the open position and failed to close properly.

Teams from the Connecticut Department of Transportation (ConnDOT) and Metro-North will conduct an operation review of procedures at the bridge to minimize future risk of failure; the teams will work together and are expected to report their findings and recommendations by mid-July. Over the long term, both parties will push for federal funding to allow for the replacement of the bridge, according to a Metro-North press release.

Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy and Connecticut Department of Transportation (ConnDOT) Commissioner James Redeker last week toured the New Haven Rail Yard, which is undergoing a $1.15 billion, multi-year upgrade and expansion.

Malloy also announced that a fifth new power supply substation has been put into service on the New Haven commuter-rail line, adding more redundancy and increasing options to reduce the chance of future prolonged power failures, state officials said in a press release.

“This rebuilding and expansion is the best demonstration of our commitment to investing in new facilities, maintaining our rail assets and providing the best and safest possible service to Connecticut commuters,” Malloy said.

Connecticut’s State Bond Commission, chaired by Malloy, recently approved $80 million for the rail yard program. The state funding will pay for a new warehouse for rail-car components, storage tracks for rail cars, demolition of an old storage facility and a pedestrian bridge linking Union Station and the yard so employees can more easily access the facility.

“We have seen what can happen when there’s a major power failure on this railroad – disrupting service, inconveniencing commuters and the ripple effect into the local and regional economy,” said Redeker, referring to last fall’s power outage on the New Haven Line in Mount Vernon, N.Y., which disrupted service for two weeks.

The officials’ tour began at the yard’s $215 million “Component Change-Out Shop,” which features a 35-ton bridge crane and in-floor lifts that can lift cars individually or in pairs.

Last month, a fifth new power supply substation was put into service for the rail yard by United Illuminating Co. in partnership with ConnDOT. Previously, the yard was powered by the Devon Supply Substation in Milford. The new power source and its electric switch heaters will allow additional redundancy and power options to maintain and operate the New Haven Line more efficiently and safely, state officials said.

86-year-old tugboat doing canal work in Utica runs on electricity!


New York’s Governor Cuomo announced a retrofitted electric canal boat to demonstrate benefits of no-emission engine; NYSERDA, NYSDOT partnership with Canal Corp. replaces diesel engine with electric motor

At 86, you might think it was long past time to retire.

Instead, the Tender 4 tugboat has a brand new all-electric engine, combining environmentally-sustainable engineering with retro yellow and blue style of the canal system in 1928.

The boat took Utica Mayor Robert Palmieri for a short ride after it was unveiled. The Tender 4 will be put to work removing buoys and doing canal maintenance work along the Utica section of the Erie Canal, New York State Canal Corporation Director Brian Stratton said.

The upgrade was made possible through collaboration with New York State Canal Corporation, NYSERDA and the New York State DOT, New West Technologies and Elco Motor Yachts.

Right now, about 54,000 homeowners get power supplied by the canal system, Stratton said. The all-electric engine was designed by Elco Motor Yachts and needs only to be charged at night before carrying out its duties on the Utica portion of the canal system.

Read more:

The New York State Canal System is a navigable 524-mile inland waterway that spans upstate New York. The waterway connects the Hudson River with Lake Champlain, Lake Ontario, Cayuga Lake, Seneca Lake, and Lake Erie via the Niagara River.

The Canal System includes four Canals: the Erie, Champlain, Oswego and Cayuga-Seneca; canalized natural waterways, plus five lakes: Oneida, Onondaga, Cross, Cayuga and Seneca; short Canal sections at Ithaca and Watkins Glen; feeder reservoirs, canals and rivers not accessible by boat from the Canal; and Canal terminals on Lake Champlain. The Canal System passes through 25 counties and close to 200 villages, hamlets and towns.

At one time, more than 50,000 people depended on the Erie Canal for their livelihood. From its inception, the Erie Canal helped form a whole new culture revolving around Canal life. For many, canal boats became floating houses, traveling from town to town. The father would serve as captain, while the mother cooked for the family and crew and the children, if old enough, would serve as “hoggees” and would walk alongside the mules to lead them along at a steady pace.

For those who traveled along the Canal in packet boats or passenger vessels, the Canal was an exciting place. Gambling and entertainment were popular pastimes on the Canal and often, families would meet each year at the same locations to share stories and adventures. Today, the Canal has returned to its former glory against a backdrop of tugboats and barges, tour boats and recreational vessels, fishermen and cyclists riding the former towpaths where mules once trod. The excitement of the past is alive and well.

 The Erie Canal is famous in song and story. Proposed in 1808 and completed in 1825, the canal links the waters of Lake Erie in the west to the Hudson River in the east. An engineering marvel when it was built, some called it the Eighth Wonder of the World.

The Story of the New York State Canals


American Memorial Day 2014 in Draguignan, France


My friend had an opportunity on Memorial Day to visit the Rhône American Cemetary in Draguignan, France. His visit was to lay a wreath for the Democrats Abroad France to honor the US soldiers buried there.

While Rhône American Cemetary is the smallest American cemetary in France, the Allied invasion of southern France in the late summer of 1944 was very important and it is only natural to pay hommage to the fallen members of this group.

The government of the United States was represented by Mrs. Ann Chiappetta, Consul General in Marseille. The French government was represented by Mr. Laurent Cayrel, Préfet of the Var. On the military side, we had General Walter M. Piatt, commander of the Joint Multinational Training Command for US Army, Europe. The French military was represented by General Hervé Wattecamps.

We had several speakers. New mayor of Draguignan gave his welcoming speech in both French and English (nearly perfect English except confusing 1776 and 1996 …..heck I always confuse dix-sept and dix-neuf when I speak French too). Among other speakers were Mr. Bruce Malone, Superintendent of the Cemetary and Ms. Maura Sullivan, Commissioner of the American Battle Monuments Commission.

The laying of the wreaths was assisted by uniformed firemen-cadets.

French Army uniforms are fantastic. The officers carry swords. They have all kinds of medals and colors.

I really like how all the French mayors and civilian officials wear a Tricolor sash, as a symbol of their office. Most wear their sash from right shoulder to left side. Some, like the Préfet of the Var, wear the sash girding one’s loins.

Noted singer Amy Malone sang the National Anthems of both countries. Beginning with the second verse of La Marseillaise, many of the French, especially the army officers, joined in.

My friend sat in the VIP section. I sat in the outskirts of the crowd. Went up to see him before the ceremony. Didn’t realize his status until I saw his chair: “Lt. Col., US Army Reserve, Retired”.

He also pays his own “personal” hommage to 26 friends that served in his battalion and are recorded on the Viet Nam Memorial in Washington. Also to Newsweek reporter François Sully who was assigned to cover his unit and was lost in a helicopter crash. This year, he has added a fellow officer who survived Viet Nam but recently died.

Lunch was a great outdoor picnic sponsored by Ville de Draguignan.

For transportation from railroad station at Les Arcs to the cemetery, call Christophe at 06 09 57 43 16

More Trains to Hit South Florida


More trains rumbling through South Florida neighborhoods could be coming soon, and with them drivers sitting longer at railroad crossings.

The number of freight trains could more than double after a widened Panama Canal opens. The wider canal and new shipping lane will allow a massive new line of mega-ships to pass through in early 2016, increasing the amount of freight heading to South Florida ports.

After that, the ports likely would be expanded to handle the larger ships. And the goods from those ships would be transported by train.

Some projections estimate that 24 to 28 freight trains a day will travel on railroads in South Florida in the next five years compared to about eight to 11 riding the rails now.

That has many folks worrying about trains blocking roads as they drive to and from work, take their children to school or drive for any reason.

“Some of those freight trains seem extremely long,” said Glenn Smith, of Wilton Manors, who lives three blocks from the Florida East Coast Railroad tracks. “You can back up an intersection real fast with a big train.”

All those lowered railroad gates would back up traffic more often. With passenger trains such as the upcoming All Aboard Florida Miami-to-Orlando passenger service added to the mix, there could be as many 32 trains a day starting in 2016. Tri-Rail has proposed a commuter service on the Florida East Coast Railroad’s freight tracks that could bring as many as 26 to 50 trains a day. It’s unclear when Tri-Rail trains will be on the East Coast Railroad tracks, as the two sides are still negotiating.

To get ready for all those potential trains and delays, the Florida Department of Transportation already is looking at ways to ease the starting and stopping. Minor delays could be fixed with new technology to coordinate gate closings. The department also could align oncoming trains with traffic-signal patterns.

The transportation department is asking railroads to run freight trains at more varied times of the day or double-stack train cars to shorten them, said Jeff Weidner, a strategic development manager for the transportation department.


Read More About Southern Florida Trains


Metro-North New Haven Line Power Upgrade Continues


An ongoing power upgrade for the New Haven Line passed a major milestone with the installation of a second new transformer at Mount Vernon, MTA Metro-North Railroad officials announced.

The effort is part of a project to enable Metro-North to use the regenerative braking technology on its newest rail cars, the M8s, to feed power back into the catenary system each time the cars go into braking mode. This excess electricity reduces Metro-North’s overall power demand.

Four 35-year-old transformers were replaced with two more efficient new ones, ensuring reliability to handle additional power loads and allowing electricity generated by the brakes of the railroad’s new fleet of M8 rail cars to be fed back into the power grid.

The substation sits in an area surrounded by a chain link fence that also was replaced with a more secure fire wall as part of the $51 million project.

One new transformer was installed at Mount Vernon last fall and was adequate to serve the power needs of the line. The second new transformer was installed and cut over this past weekend bringing redundancy to the system.

The remaining work entails completely replacing the remaining components of the substation including replacing the secondary switchgear at New Rochelle, supplementing underground feeder cables from Mt. Vernon to New Rochelle with aerial, high tension wires, replacing the existing signal substation and installing a new circuit breaker house at Pelham.

In March, a similar upgrade was completed, doubling the capacity at the Cos Cob West substation. The railroad was then able to deliver power to the New York segment of the New Haven Line from Cos Cob through an upgraded tie system at the Harrison and Rye switching substations. This contingency was available but not needed during the recent installation.

The Con Edison power supply into the substation is 138 kilovolts, which the transformers step down (convert) to 27 kilovolts in order to feed the overhead catenary wires that supply electricity to the trains.

The project allows Metro-North to use the regenerative braking technology on its newest rail cars, the M8s, to feed power back into the catenary system each time the cars go into braking mode. This excess electricity reduces Metro-North’s overall power demand. To take advantage of this potential power savings, the existing controls and metering at the Mount Vernon East substation are also being reconfigured.

Before the work began, Metro-North, Con Edison and the New York Power Authority (“NYPA”) developed a contingency plan to assure continued power service to the Mount Vernon substation and submitted it to the New York State Department of Public Service (“DPS”) for an independent, third party review and approval.

All Aboard Florida shows new proposals for Miami Railroad Station


All Aboard Florida is a privately funded, 235-mile express passenger rail service that will transport passengers to and from central Florida and Miami, with stops in Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach.

South Florida leaders and All Aboard Florida executives touted the Miami station as a nine-acre transportation hub, which will be situated just east of Miami-Dade County Hall.

The new Miami station will be built near Florida East Coast Railway’s old downtown train depot.

Opened in 1912, it operated during the glory days of railroad travel. Henry Flagler founded Florida East Coast Railway in 1895 and is credited with making South Florida a tourist destination through his passenger rail service. It was demolished in 1963.

All Aboard Florida is expected to create more than 10,000 jobs during construction.

Opponents argue the train will bring more noise and congestion.

The express train is scheduled to begin service in 2016.

Hélène Pastor dies from shooting


Prominent Monegasque businesswoman Hélène Pastor has died from her injuries sustained in a shooting in Nice on 6th May, despite earlier signs that the 77-year-old’s health was improving. Police are yet to make any arrests in what can now be considered one of the Riviera’s most high profile double murder investigations.

After more than two weeks in a critical condition at Saint Roch hospital in Nice, Hélène Pastor died on the morning of Wednesday 21st May at around 6am. Contacted by The Riviera Times, the hospital confirmed Pastor’s death but did not provide any further comment.

The information came as a shock to many. Hélène Pastor’s condition had been improving and doctors revealed that she had awakened from her coma on 16th May.

The Palace of Monaco today released a statement, saying, “HSH the Prince expresses his deep compassion to the children of Mrs Hélène Pastor-Pallanca at the announcement of her tragic passing.”

Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi also expressed his condolences. “My thoughts go out to Gildo, Hélène Pastor’s son, as well as all of her relatives. I share their pain and grief. My thoughts also go out to all the Monegasques who were devastated by this tragedy.”

A source close to the investigation told The Riviera Times that investigators weren’t able to obtain any relevant information from the victim before she died.

“They saw her, but her health condition didn’t allow for an in-depth questioning,” he said.

Hélène Pastor and her driver Mohamed Darwich were shot on 6th May while exiting L’Archet hospital, where she was visiting her son Gildo Pallanca Pastor, who was being treated for a stroke.

According to witnesses, the killer fired through the window twice with what may have been a sawn-off shotgun, before fleeing with an accomplice.

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