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Leasing News is a web site that posts information, news, and
entertainment for the commercial bank, finance and leasing industry

Monday, May 12, 2014

Today's Equipment Leasing Headlines

Four Salesmen Pay Survey Responses
 Classified Ads---Collections
  Financial Pacific Leasing --Commercial
   Joins Funder List "A"
Northern Leasing Found to Have Diverted
 Proceeds from Lease Servicing Pool
  By Tom McCurnin, Leasing News Legal Editor
   “Can Potential Employer Use Social Media Information?”
     Career Crossroad---By Emily Fitzpatrick/RII
      Classified Ads---Help Wanted
 Leasing 102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP
  Sales 2014
   Expected Bank Branch Closures Detailed
    SNL Financial Report
Public US banks and thrifts still under TARP
 Top Stories May 6--May 8
  (You May Have Missed One)
   Hitachi Capital Canada Corp. Completes Acquisition
    of Canadian Leasing Enterprises Ltd.
     Welsh Terrier
      Norwalk, Connecticut Adopt-a-Dog
       Classified ads—Finance/Human Resources
News Briefs---
 Union Bank Launches PFM App for Kids
  Trinity Industries: Another Beat And Raise
   Nissan Smart Rearview Mirror Changes (2:24)

Broker/Funder/Industry Lists | Features (collection)
Top Ten Stories Chosen by Readers | Top Stories last six months (Be Careful of Doing Business)

  You May have Missed---
   SparkPeople--Live Healthier and Longer
    Sports Briefs---
      California Nuts Brief---
       "Gimme that Wine"    
          This Day in American History
           Daily Puzzle
               Weather, USA or specific area
                 Traffic Live----

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release” and was not written by Leasing News nor information verified, but from the source noted. When an article is signed by the writer, it is considered a “by line.” It reflects the opinion and research of the writer.

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Four Salesmen Pay Survey Responses

From “Direct:”

Base: $70K plus commission
Comm: 1% of origination amount up to 3 MM, then 1.5% for all originations over 3 MM ((The plan for a year from time of employment.)
Phone: Pd.
Car: Liberal allowance
Reimbursed for all business expenses
Liberal benefit package with pd. Vacations, 401K, and minimal cost medical for employee…..employee can upgrade at a cost. Cheap for just employee. Full family is probably like most large companies.
There is an X’mas bonus that can be small if the company does not have a good yr. Or, excellent if a good year. In 2012, everyone in the company got a week’s pay. In 2013, everyone got 1.5 week’s pay.


Base: Between $40-$75,000 plus commission
Commissions: 20% of advance rentals or 10% of advance rentals depending on the sales person
Phone: Paid
Car: Liberal allowance
Expenses All reimbursed
Benefits Medical, dental, vision (small co pay per employee),
401k, two weeks paid vacation
Bonus: 1-3 weeks' salary at management's discretion


50K base plus commission
1.5% of volume over first $180,000 booked each month
.5% of National Account volume from dollar one
65% of Syndication fee income generated
Paid company expenses
Full benefit package
Year-end bonus


$48-$75K base plus 20-40% of margin above internal cost of funds or base plus .5-1.5% of volume depending upon yield, credit and industry risk.

Company pays 100% of marketing, trade show and travel as well as cell and provides all technology.

Company provides 401K with 100% match on 1st 4% as well as pays 70% of health, dental insurance.



Base: $40K
Commission: 12-15% of net profit
Reimbursed for business expenses and travel.
Benefits package, including 18 days of PTO, and medical/dental/lifeinsurance.

(Asked to explain. Editor)

It's a bit odd, and is based on commercial banking compensation structure. The $40K base must be covered by profit. He earns 100% of all profit on deals until his base is covered, and then he earns 12-15% of profit on all other deals once the base is covered. Everything is calculated on a quarterly basis. His last quarter payout was close to $20K, which puts him on track to potentially earn $120K this year.


Please participate.
Your name and company
will not be divulged.



Classified Ads---Collections

(These ads are “free” to those seeking employment or looking
to improve their position)

Long Grove, Illinois

Financial services professional with a proven track record of positively impacting corporate finances through effective management of cash flow, collections and financial assets. Strategic thinker capable of analyzing financial issues and processes in order to implement changes that improve efficiency and profit margins. Well-versed in all aspects of corporate financial affairs. | Resume

Free Posting for those seeking employment in Leasing:

All “free” categories “job wanted” ads:




Joins Funder List “A”

With the merger of Umpqua Bank, after purchasing Financial Pacific Leasing, with Sterling Bank, which purchased Argents Bank, who purchased Commerce National Bank, the Commerce National Bank leasing group is now known as Financial Pacific Leasing Commercial. It unites Steve Reid, CLP, with his former boss, and friend for many years, Paul Menzel, CLP, who is President/CEO of Financial Pacific Leasing, an Umpqua Bank subsidiary.

Financial Pacific Leasing 

(fka Argent Bank, Commerce
National Bank Leasing) 
3818 E. Coronado St. Ste.100
Anaheim, CA  92807 
Steve Reid, CLP 
Direct:  714-678-5306 
Cell:  714-422-7602 

$100K to $500K+

A -Accepts Broker Business | B -Requires Broker be Licensed | C -Sub-Broker Program| D -"Private label Program" | E - Also "in house" salesmen

Full List:


Northern Leasing Found to Have Diverted
Proceeds from Lease Servicing Pool

By Tom McCurnin
Leasing News Legal News Editor

Northern Leasing Sold Pool of Leases and Retained Servicing Rights, Then Diverted the Proceeds. Case Demonstrates the Necessity of Having Both a Servicer and Sub-Servicer in Lease Securitization Agreements

Ascentium Capital LLC v Northern Capital Assoc., 2014 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 1962 | 2014 NY Slip Op 31091 (2014)

“The proverb warns that 'You should not bite the hand that feeds you.' But maybe you should, if it prevents you from feeding yourself. Thomas Szasz, 1973 (Professor at New York Medical University).

It’s no secret that high volume, small ticket leases need expert servicing. So when Northern Leasing sold its portfolio of POS leases to Texas-based Ascentium Capital, the Pooling Agreement appointed seller Northern Leasing as sole servicer. Most Servicing Agreements I’m familiar with have two layers of servicers, and this case demonstrates why this structure is necessary. Northern Leasing apparently misappropriated millions from Ascentium’s lease pools, and then refused to account for the monies. So the question is why did Northern Leasing bite the hand that fed it? The facts follow:

In 2006, Northern Capital, as seller, Northern Leasing, as originator/servicer, and New World Equipment Funding, as purchaser, entered into Lease Purchase Agreement, relating to two pools of 9,000 commercial equipment leases for point of sale credit card processing machines. Ultimately, Main Street Bank purchased the pools, and Ascentium in turn acquired the pools from Main Street Bank. Northern Leasing was appointed as servicer of the pools. Northern Leasing would ACH the lessees’ accounts, and the funds were deposited into a discreet account in the name of Ascentium Capital, held at First Premier Bank. Ascentium also held a perfected security interest in Northern’s contracts.

If the revenue stream from the lease pools was insufficient to pay the amortized purchase price, Northern was obligated to pay the shortfall. As is typical in these securitizations, the seller, in this case Northern Leasing, was obligated to repurchase the pool under specified terms, so while perhaps structured like a sale, the transaction was more like a loan.

Northern Leasing failed to pay the shortfall from the pools, failed to repurchase the pools, and also failed to provide servicer reports. On November 21, 2013, judgment was entered against Northern Leasing for $1.7 million dollars. Ascentium moved the Court for an injunction preventing Northern from diverting funds from another pool which Ascentium claimed cross-collateralized the two pool agreements at issue.

Undaunted, Northern Leasing instructed its bank to deposit the ACH’ed funds to Northern’s own bank account, rather than the agreed upon account in control of Ascentium, which was First Premier Bank. Northern also went radio silent, by failing to provide Ascentium with servicer reports, which would detail the amount of the diverted funds and the resulting deficiency.

Northern took the odd position that that it had no intention of returning Ascentium’s misappropriated monies, but did not indicate why Northern believed it had the right to keep those collections. Northern simply stated that it would not return the monies and that the court lacked jurisdiction to require such return.

The trial court granted the injunction, which compelled Northern Leasing to stop diverting the ACH’ed funds from First Premier Bank, and to compel Northern to issue servicer reports. The Court required Ascentium to post a meager $10,000 bond. The Court found that Northern had no legal basis for diverting the funds, and Northern Leasing was required to account, in the form of servicer reports, to disclose the extent of the misappropriation.

What are the lessons here?

First, I don’t understand why Northern Leasing would divert the funds, and refuse to account for the misappropriated funds, without any legal justification. Was it because they were in a financial bind? Or was it pride and bad judgment? In this business, a reputation is earned and lost by one’s actions, and I wonder why Northern Leasing would want to risk losing financial sources for its pools over this issue. If the money is owed, at least be honest about it.

Second, most securitization agreements appoint a neutral party like U.S. Bank, as the servicer, but give the rights as a “sub-servicer” to the seller of the pool, albeit on a temporary basis. That right of being a sub-servicer can be revoked at the whim of the pool purchaser. This case demonstrates the necessity of have two levels of servicers, so when a seller-servicer like Northern diverts funds, the plug can be easily pulled without a lawsuit.

The bottom line is that Northern Leasing, which doesn’t enjoy the best of reputations in the leasing world, suffered another blow to its stature. One wonders if any company would risk buying Northern’s paper at this point.

Ascentium Capital vs. Northern Leasing (7 pages)

Tom McCurnin is a partner at Barton, Klugman & Oetting in Los Angeles, California.

Tom McCurnin
Barton, Klugman & Oetting
350 South Grand Ave.
Suite 2200
Los Angeles, CA 90071
Direct Phone: (213) 617-6129
Cell (213) 268-8291
Visit our web site at

Previous Tom McCurnin Articles:



Can Potential Employer Use Social Media Information?”
Career Crossroad---By Emily Fitzpatrick/RII

Question: Are potential employers (hiring managers/ HR reps) allowed to access my social media profiles and use my information to assist in their decision-making?

Answer: Legally, you will have to speak to an attorney or contact the National Labor Board directly. There are pros and cons, but issues, e.g. privacy, accuracy, and discrimination, could come into play.

“… Employers have discovered a treasure trove of information on potential job applicants by using social networking sites and search engines. However, the unrestricted use of the Web by employers or human resources professionals is not without risks. Just because something is online, does not mean it is true, or can legally be used…” 

“… Federal and state legislators have responded with efforts to prohibit employers from requiring candidates to disclose their social network credentials. These efforts have included calling for federal investigations about the practice, introducing bills in Congress that would prohibit the practice, and numerous state legislators introducing, and passing, legislation that prohibits employers from requiring candidates to disclose their access credentials to the content posted on social media cites…” 

Let us be real; many decision makers will review professional/social media sites to get a better overall picture of a particular Candidate. So make sure your information is professional and up to date … I strongly recommend NOT including your resume on your profiles UNLESS you are unemployed or being downsized; current employers could see this as a RED FLAG. Contact us for more advice! 

If you are a hiring manager, practices may include ensuring written permission to conduct background checks via various methods.

Emily Fitzpatrick
Sr. Recruiter
Recruiters International, Inc.
Phone: 954-885-9241
Cell: 954-612-0567
Invite me to Connect on LinkedIn
Also follow us on Twitter #RIIINFO

Career Crossroads Previous Columns



Leasing Industry Help Wanted


We are looking to grow our sales team!
Sales Managers and Sr. Account Executives

CalFirst is seeking seasoned sales professionals to join our sales team in Irvine, CA. Our sales professionals are responsible for originating equipment leasing and
secured loan opportunities with middle to
large size companies located nationwide.
Transactions range from $1,000,000 to $30,000,000.
For more information, please contact
recruiting at: (949) 255-0500 ext. 392


National Sales Representatives
Experienced, with existing business to bring, all industries. Salary plus commission, good benefit package. AXIS - A, B, C lender for small and mid-ticket markets. Call Jean Harlow– 800.994.0016
email or forward resumes to:
   Growing with fast approvals and quick fundings


For information on placing a help wanted ad, please click here:

Please see our Job Wanted section for possible new employees. 




Leasing 102
by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP

Sales 2014

It appears that commercial leasing is coming back. Tax leasing is growing fast. However, the past few lean years have taken their toll on our sales staff, and we need to gear up for the future. The hiring of new sales personnel is a major task, and how to get them trained quickly, is an important question. Training is an expensive business and so some lessors expect them to learn on the job. That does not cut it in today’s fast paced marketplace because the untrained salespeople will run into some brick walls.

Larger companies have training sessions for employees, that include consultants and trainers. To compete, you need to budget time and money. To compete, especially considering the growth of technology and use of both new software programs and sales effort, you need to budget time and money. To compete, especially in the growing technology and use of both new software program and sales effort, you need to send your new people to industry training classes or establish classes once a week and try and cover all the types of leases.

Thanks to the Certified Lease Professionals (CLP) program, we have seen a rise in people that understand the finer parts of our business, and are in a position to teach it.

The best, and most economical, is the Certified Lease Professional program. The more CLP’s we have, the better it is for the industry. There has been enough ignorance and false statements about the lease rules and regulations to fill a book.

And it is getting more complicated. Training is a necessary requirement and nothing says that you have learned the requirements of leasing than receiving the CLP badge of accomplishment. I have watched the increase in CLP's of late and am overjoyed that it has taken off so well. Soon if you do not carry a CLP, you will not fit in and have your professionalism questioned.

I know that some think: knowing all about the industry is not necessary, because they are selling financing in lease clothing, but if you do not know your competitor’s product, and how to compete against it, your chances of success are limited. I would suggest you get a copy of the “body of knowledge” requirement from the CLP website to determine how much you should know. It might surprise you.

To fill your need for new salespeople, look for those who enjoy calling on the industries you are competitive in. The more they can talk “equipment,” and its “use,” the better they can learn how leasing fits in. If they have little equipment knowledge, or equipment leasing experience, it is a double whammy for the learning curve.

Hire people that are sales people that enjoy outside sales and are skilled in ouside sales, and then train them well!

4th edition, third printing, January 21, 2014, 400 pages
Authored by Certified Leasing Professionals $59.95

For more information, please go here:

Mr. Terry Winders, CLP, has been a teacher, consultant, expert witness for the leasing industry for thirty years and can be reached at or 502-649-0448.

He invites your questions and queries.

Previous #102 Columns: Top%20Stories/Leasing_102/Index.htm


Mr. Terry Winders available as Expert Witness. 35 years as a professional instructor to the top equipment leasing and finance companies in the United States, author of several books, including DVD's, as well as weekly columnist to Leasing News. He also performs audits of leasing companies as an expert on documentation, and has acted as an expert witness on leasing for litigation in legal and tax disputes, including before the IRS. He also has taught the senior bank examiners, how to review a bank leasing department, for the Federal Reserve in Washington D.C. and has trained the examiners for the FDIC on how to prepare a lease portfolio for sale.

Mr. Winders received his Master of Business Administration and his Bachelor of Science degrees from the College of Notre Dame.


(This ad is a “trade” for the writing of this column. Opinions
contained in the column are those of Mr. Terry Winders, CLP)


Expected Bank Branch Closures Detailed
By Divya Lulla and Tahir Ali

A SNL Financial Report

As more banking customers opt for virtual platforms over physical branches, total bank branches across the U.S. continue to fall. As of May 1, U.S. banks and thrifts have announced 98 planned branch openings and 59 expected branch closings that had not yet been executed, according to data collected by SNL. In total, U.S. banks and thrifts operate 95,555 branches in the country. However, this may not be a definitive indicator of the total number of openings and closings for 2014.

According to the Federal Reserve, a national bank must file a 90-day advance branch closing notice whenever it intends to close a traditional brick-and-mortar branch, or any similar banking facility at which deposits are received, checks paid, or money lent. The notice must detail the reasons for closing the branch, as well as statistical or other information in support of those reasons. The banks are also required to notify customers of the proposed closing, both by posting a notice at the branch slated for closure and by mailing a notice to affected consumers.

While the industry as a whole is trimming branches, new branches are still being built. JPMorgan Chase & Co. is expected to open 17 branches by year end, 12 of which are scheduled to be opened in the second quarter. The new branches would be spread across the country, with five in Florida, four in California, three in Illinois, two in Georgia, two in New Jersey and one in Louisiana. According to the company's first-quarter earnings transcript from April 11, CFO Marianne Lake said that the company has been focusing on building its branch network in order to strengthen its distribution capacity.

Full SNL Financial Data Dispatch:




Public US banks and thrifts still under TARP
SNL Financial Chart

Full story by SNL Financial journalist Divya Lulla




Top Stories May 6--May 8
(You May Have Missed One)

Here are the top stories opened the most by readers:

(1) Report on NAELB Orlando Florida Conference by Dwight Galloway, CLP, RLC Funding

(2) Seeking Confirmation: Direct Capital Sold to CIT by

(3) Leasing Association Membership Down
by Christopher Menkin

(4) Salesman Survey—Response
Plus Questionnaire Form

(5) Leasing 102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP
Tools for Leasing Sales

(6) CEO Bill Cooper makes money and news at TCF

(7) New Hires---Promotions

(8) Tesla Motors reports $50 million loss, shares slide

(9) Salesman Survey Request

Not Counted for Technical Reasons
Direct Capital Sold to CIT?



##### Press Release ############################

Hitachi Capital Canada Corp. Completes Acquisition
of Canadian Leasing Enterprises Ltd.

Hitachi Capital Canada Corp. announces the closing of the previously announced share purchase agreement to acquire 100% of the shares of CLE Canadian Leasing Enterprise Ltd.

Hitachi Capital Canada Corp. (Hitachi) a 100% owned subsidiary of Hitachi Capital America Corp., announced today that it has closed its previously announced share purchase agreement to acquire 100% of the shares of CLE Canadian Leasing Enterprise Ltd., (CLE). CLE has been a trusted business partner of Hitachi in Canada since 2012. The acquisition of CLE strengthens Hitachi’s Canadian business base while improving Hitachi’s ability to grow financing activity in Canada.

CLE will add assets of $198.4 million and annual originations of $129.6 million to Hitachi Capital Canada.

Bill Besgen, President/CEO

“We are pleased to have completed the transaction as planned. The acquisition of CLE expands our footprint in Canada, which we view as an attractive operating environment and we have the utmost confidence in our new partners’ ability to expand Hitachi’s commercial financing capabilities in Canada” stated Bill Besgen, President and CEO of Hitachi Capital Canada.

Luc Robitaille, CEO

Luc Robitaille, CEO of CLE added, “We are excited to have joined the Hitachi family of companies, a relationship which will enhance our growth opportunities and capabilities with our customers and vendors.

About Hitachi Capital America
Hitachi Capital America Corp. was incorporated in October 1989 and commenced business operations in April 1990. Headquartered in Norwalk, CT and is wholly owned by Hitachi Capital Corporation, Tokyo, Japan. The parent company was founded in 1957 as a subsidiary of Hitachi Ltd., and has become one of the leading financial institutions in Japan. Through their sister companies located in the United Kingdom, Singapore, Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and China, Hitachi Capital has established a presence in the global market place to better serve Hitachi customers and Hitachi group of companies worldwide.

About CLE Leasing
CLE Canadian Leasing Enterprise Ltd. is an independent financial institution who understands the reality of the business world. Since its foundation in 1979, CLE has been supporting very small, small and medium businesses as well as self-employed and owner operators by offering financing solutions that are tailored to their unique requirements. CLE is synonymous with simplicity, speed and efficiency. Its’ staff is both attentive and creative when it comes to finding a personalized solution and supporting brokers, vendors and clients throughout the financing acquisition process.

Cassels Brock served as legal counsel to Hitachi. The Alta Group Canada served as the lead financial advisor to Hitachi and Three Keys Capital Advisors LLC served as financial advisor to Hitachi Capital America Corp.

Fasken Martineau served as legal counsel and National Bank Financial served as lead financial advisor to CLE.

##### Press Release #############################

John Kenny 
Receivables Management

• End of Lease Negotiations & Enforcement
• Fraud Investigations
• Credit Investigations • Asset Searches 
• Skip-tracing • Third-party Commercial Collections | ph 315-866-1167|

(Leasing News provides this ad as a trade for investigations
and background information provided by John Kenny)


Welsh Terrier
Norwalk, Connecticut Adopt-a-Dog


"I am a 3-yr old Welsh Terrier who likes long walks and playing in the pool! I am very smart – you can teach me to do many tricks! I also enjoy playing with toys, but sometimes I find them too excitable and don’t want to give them up. Therefore, I would do best in an adult only household, and require an experienced owner who understands resource guarding. While I like spending time with other dogs, I would be best as the only pet in the home. No cats, please.

"I am neutered, vaccinated and microchipped for my new home."

PAWS (Pet Animal Welfare Society)
504 Main Ave.
Norwalk, CT 06851
(203) 750-9572

PAWS is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit shelter dedicated to rescuing homeless animals and placing them in loving new homes for over 50 years.


Adopt a Pet



Classified ads—Finance/Human Resources

Leasing Industry Outsourcing
(Providing Services and Products)

Finance: New York, NY
“Think Outside the Bank”. Barrett Capital is a merchant banking and consulting firm, specializing in asset based financing: equipment, vehicles, receivables and real estate.

Finance: Naperville, IL
Your guide to the right questions and answers in finance. Expert in capital raising, GAAP, acquisitions, lease economics. CPA. MBA. 
Information System: North Detroit, MI 
INFOLEASE EXPERT - 18 years experience.  Since being downsized in 2002, working as a consultant for several leasing companies. 
Seeking consulting projects nationwide. 

All "Outsourcing" Classified ads (advertisers are both requested and responsible to keep their free ads up to date:

How to Post a free "Outsourcing" classified ad:



National Sales Representatives
Experienced, with existing business to bring, all industries. Salary plus commission, good benefit package. AXIS - A, B, C lender for small and mid-ticket markets. Call Jean Harlow– 800.994.0016
email or forward resumes to:
   Growing with fast approvals and quick fundings



News Briefs----

Union Bank Launches PFM App for Kids

Trinity Industries: Another Beat And Raise; Is It Nearing A Top?

Nissan Smart Rearview Mirror Changes (2:24)



--You May Have Missed It

A Memoir From the Eye of a Financial Storm


SparkPeople--Live Healthier and Longer

The 9 Healthiest Coffee Drinks and Smoothies


All Men are Dogs
by Barry M. Marks, Esq.

egg sucking dog
dope sniffing dog
black dog
smack dog
mack dog
matter-of-fact dog
blunt dog
hunt dog
runt dog

(other dog)
ubi sunt dog?
all men are dogs for something

big dog
pig dog
want-a-big-rig dog
hog dog
dog dog
modern-day blog dog

other dog

mud dog
bud dog
druggie drugged drug dog
lover dog
mother dog
sister-loving brother dog

always there are other dogs
always there's another dog

name dog
blame dog
they may seem the same dog
hot dog
bot dog
bored until they rot dog
that is what I'm not dog
you are but I'm not dog
this is what I've got dog
always there's another dog
always there's an other dog

from Possible Crocodiles
Poems by Barry Marks



Sports Briefs----

Grading the NFL Draft

Sterling's wife vows to keep Clippers share, NBA says no

Cavendish wins first stage of the Amgen Tour of California

Donald Sterling Tells Anderson Cooper: 'I Made A Terrible Mistake. I'm Here To Apologize'

What Warriors need is a salesman, not a preacher

49ers threaten to block Joe Montana's project over parking

Dr. Dre closes on Tom Brady’s $50M mansion

((Please click on ad to learn more))
(Leasing News provides this ad “gratis” as a means
to help support the growth of Lease Police)


California Nuts Briefs---

At 78, Johnny Mathis still quietly elegant on- and offstage


“Gimme that Wine”

3 Tips You Must Read Before Buying That Winery

Amazon's top-selling wines: They're not all Chardonnay

Free Mobile Wine Program

Wine Prices by vintage

US/International Wine Events

Winery Atlas\

Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page


This Day in History

   1780 - Charleston, SC, fell to the British in the US Revolutionary War after a two month siege. Three Continental Navy frigates (Boston, Providence, and Ranger) were captured; and one American frigate (Queen of France) was sunk to prevent capture.
    1812-John Langdon of New Hampshire was nominated to run by the Republican party, but turned it down. He had 64 votes to James Madison’s 82. A very popular man in his time, he refused the job due to his age and health. A second caucus was held and Elbridge Gerry was nominated.
    1847- Mormon pioneer William Clayton, the personal secretary to the Mormon prophet, Joseph Smith, invented the first odometer while crossing the plains in a covered wagon. Previous to this, mileage was calculated by counting the revolutions of a rag tied to a spoke of a wagon wheel. He is also known for his journal entries about the Mormons' trek west to the Salt Lake valley. When introduced to plural marriage, he was reluctant, but eventually became one of its most enthusiastic proponents, marrying ten women and fathering forty-two children.
    1848-Gold Fever was begun by Sam Brannan in San Francisco when he waved a bottle of gold dust and shouted "Gold! Gold!” He went on to receive gold as payment for goods that he sold in his store at Sutter's Fort. During this period, Calistoga Hot Springs resort was developed by then successful pioneer, promoter, publisher, entrepreneur, and California's first millionaire, Sam Brannan. The “resort” exists today: There are many fine wineries in the area:
As a side note, most of the prospectors did very poorly. The most money was made by the merchants and those that provided food, goods, and supplies to those who were prospecting for gold. There were only a few who profited, some of it stolen, too. The most money was made from the discovery of silver in Nevada. Sutter, where gold was originally found, died a pauper, primarily from the prospectors who ruined his ranch and destroyed a lot of his land looking to get rich.
See: “American History Revised: 200 Startling Facts That Never Made It into the Textbooks” by Morris Jr., Seymour
    1869-The first news reporter at a political convention who was a woman was Mary Ashton Rice Livermore, one of the editors of the New Covenant, who covered the Republican National Convention, May 12-18, 1860, at the Chicago Wigwam, Chicago, IL.

    1863-The first Confederate ship to surrender to the Union was the Planter, a 313-ton side-wheel steamer serving as an armed dispatch boat. It was surrendered off the harbor in Charleston, SC, by Robert Smalls, an African-American salve who was its pilot. He and the African-American crew took charge of the ship, while the captain was ashore. Flying the Confederate flag, they saluted with cannon fire the forts on their voyage northward. When out of reach of ammunition, Smalls hoisted a white flag of truce and turned over the ship to the U.S.S. Onward. In appreciation, a special act of Congress was passed on May 30, 1982, awarding Smalls and his partners one-half the value of the Planter and its cargo.
    1864- The heaviest action of the Battle of Spotsylvania, Virginia, began at dawn, when Gen. Winfield Scott Hancock, with 20,000 men, attacked a Confederate salient. Creating a gap, Hancock’s men captured some 4000 men and 20 large guns. In another part of the Battle of the Wilderness, the two great generals met again. After Hancock made this gap, Lee had positioned his troops in breastworks (a temporary, quickly constructed fortification, usually breast high--a popular war move seen often in Mathew Brady photographs) along a horseshoe formation utilizing the natural features of the landscape. During Grant's attack on the very strong and fortified position, both sides suffered losses of more than 12,000 in what became known as "the Bloody Angle." Lee was forced to use every available man in order to protect the position and so ordered his troops to pull back during the night. Neither side won and both sides suffered heavy losses, perhaps a lesson well remembered by General Lee and General Grant, who was in favor of a different reconstruction of the South than transpired, even when president. They were to meet for the surrender less than a year from this battle.
    1883- Hazel Lucille Harrison birthday: Afro-American concert pianist who made her debut with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra in 1904. She was blocked from concerts with major American orchestras because of her race and sex. Her technique and ability was praised for years in Europe. Her mother, a hairdresser and manicurist, was the daughter of slaves who followed the underground railway to the north.
    1893- Georgia Lee Witt Lusk birthday. Educator, state government official, and congressional representative is known as the first lady of New Mexico. In 1924, she was elected superintendent of schools in her home county and elected superintendent of public instruction for the state in 1930. She moved on to the U.S. Congress in 1946, and was a member of the War Claims Commission (1949-1953). Lusk was instrumental in getting free textbooks in all the New Mexico schools.
    1902 – By the dawn of the twentieth century, trouble was clearly brewing in the nation’s coal mines. Indeed, miners had long toiled in foul conditions for paltry pay; moreover, managers often forced workers to rent space in company houses and to purchase items at company-owned stores. Duly fed up with these conditions, miners across the country held a number of strikes during the later years of the nineteenth century. The mine companies, now largely run by America’s imperious rail barons, steadfastly ignored their workers’ pleas. The situation came to something of a boil on this day in 1902, as union chief John Mitchell raised the call for a nationwide strike; 140,000 members of the United Mine Workers heeded his charge. The ensuing strike dragged on for five months, as mine owners, firmly anticipating that the Federal government would rush to their side, smugly refused to acknowledge the coal union, or to enter negotiations. Meanwhile, coal prices skyrocketed, fraying the public’s collective nerves and inciting calls for the government to negotiate a settlement. Though the Constitution was silent regarding intervention by the White House, President Teddy Roosevelt grew impatient and stepped in to speed up the negotiations. The mine owners rebuffed these efforts, prompting the president to threaten to hand control of the mines to the Army. Roosevelt’s gambit proved effective and the mine owners finally sat down for a serious round of negotiations. By October of 1902, the strikers had returned to work and a newly formed Commission of Arbitration had kicked off a probe into the conditions at the nation’s mines. That following spring, the Commission handed down its findings, which included recommendations of pay hikes and reduced hours for workers, and that mine owners recognize the coal union.
    1903—President Theodore Roosevelt’s visit to San Francisco is caught on film by H.J. Miles. [ has video playback, which is needed to see black and white silent film. The president turns away from the camera at the closet point, but to see the people and the times is quite interesting (Note: the date on the film is the date it was released, not the actual day of May 12):

( lower half of: )
Two days after the Market Street procession, Roosevelt was filmed again as he dedicated Dewey Monument in the city's Union Square. The monument, which is still in place, commemorates the victory of Admiral George Dewey and the American fleet over Spanish forces at Manila Bay during the Spanish-American War. It is also a tribute to the sailors of the U.S. Navy. Called actuality films, short documentaries such as these of Roosevelt, appeared in nickelodeons throughout America alongside policemen and firemen in action, buildings under construction, and new inventions at work. The themes and conventions of these short films were borrowed from nineteenth century commercial photography. Early audiences, while amazed by the moving images, were very familiar with the subject matter. What is perhaps most interesting about these two actuality films is the view they offer of a city devastated by a massive earthquake and fire just three years after the president's 1903 visit.
    1907—American actress Katherine Houghton Hepburn was born at Hartford, Ct. Nominated for 12 Oscars over the course of her career, she won four times: for 1933’s “Morning Glory”, 1967’s “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner;” 1968’s “the Lion in Winter” and 1981’s “ On Golden Pond”. She is best remembered for her on-and off-screen pairing with Spencer Tracy, with whom she made nine films. Hepburn famously shunned the Hollywood publicity machine, and refused to conform to society's expectations of women. She was outspoken, assertive, athletic, and wore trousers before it was fashionable for women to do so. She married once, as a young woman, but thereafter lived independently. A 26-year affair with Tracy was hidden from the public. With her unconventional lifestyle and the independent characters she brought to the screen, Hepburn came to epitomize the "modern woman" in 20th-century America, and is remembered as an important cultural figure. She died at Fenwick, CT, June 29, 2003, at age 96.
    1912-Alto sax player Marshall Royal birthday in Sapulpa, OK. Played lead sax for Count Basie for over 20 years, plus was the band manager.
    1928- Burt Bacharach birthday.
1925-Birthday of Hall of Fame baseball player, former coach and manager, Lawrence Peter “Yogi” Berra, St. Louis, Missouri. He played his entire 19-year baseball career (1946–1965) for the New York Yankees. Berra is one of only four players to be named the Most Valuable Player of the American League three times and is one of seven managers to lead both American and National League teams to the World Series. As a player, coach, or manager, Berra appeared in 21 World Series and as a player in fourteen World Series, winning ten championships, both of which are records. He established World Series records for the most games (75), at-bats (259), hits (71), doubles (10), singles (49), games caught (63), and catcher putouts (457). In Game 3 of the 1947 World Series, Berra hit the first pinch-hit home run in World Series history, off Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher Ralph Branca. His service in the U.S. Navy during World War II where he served as a gunner's mate on the USS Bayfield during the D-Day invasion.
    1934- A great dust bowl storm darkened the skies from Oklahoma east to the Atlantic Coast.
    1944 – Allied attacks by forces of the US 5th Army makes some progress against the German-held defenses. The French Expeditionary Corps (General Juin) encounters only the German 71st Division along its line and captures Monte Faito. The Polish 2nd Corps is held with heavy losses, north of Cassino. The British 13th Corps establishes two small bridgeheads over the Rapido River, opposite Cassino. The US 2nd Corps, on the western coast of the advance, experiences difficulty advancing.
    1944--SHEA, CHARLES W. Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant, U.S. Army, Company F, 350th Infantry. 88th Infantry Division. Place and date: Near Mount Damiano, Italy, 12 May 1944. Entered service at: New York, N.Y. Birth: New York, NY. G.O. No.: 4, 12 January 1945. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at risk of life above and beyond the call of duty, on 12 May 1944, near Mount Damiano, Italy. As 2d Lt. Shea and his company were advancing toward a hill occupied by the enemy, 3 enemy machineguns suddenly opened fire, inflicting heavy casualties upon the company and halting its advance. 2d Lt. Shea immediately moved forward to eliminate these machinegun nests in order to enable his company to continue its attack. The deadly hail of machinegun fire at first pinned him down, but, boldly continuing his advance, 2d Lt. Shea crept up to the first nest. Throwing several hand grenades, he forced the 4 enemy soldiers manning this position to surrender, and disarming them, he sent them to the rear. He then crawled to the second machinegun position, and after a short fire fight forced 2 more German soldiers to surrender. At this time, the third machinegun fired at him, and while deadly small arms fire pitted the earth around him, 2d Lt. Shea crawled toward the nest. Suddenly he stood up and rushed the emplacement and with well-directed fire from his rifle, he killed all 3 of the enemy machine gunners. 2d Lt. Shea's display of personal valor was an inspiration to the officers and men of his company.
    1948-- Rock guitarist and keyboards player Steve Winwood was born in Birmingham, England. He was only 16 when he burst on the British pop music scene as the lead vocalist and organist with the Spencer Davis Group. They had hits with "I'm a Man" and "Gimme Some Lovin'." In 1967, Winwood formed the group Traffic with Dave Mason, Chris Wood and Jim Capaldi, and led that band to the top of the British charts. Traffic lasted only a year, and Winwood then joined Blind Faith, the first rock supergroup. The other members were Eric Clapton and Ginger Baker from Cream and Rick Grech of the group Family. Blind Faith made only one album before breaking up. Traffic reformed for a couple of albums in the 1970's, and since then Steve Winwood has pursued a solo career. His 1980 album "Arc of a Diver" sold a million copies, and his 1987 release "Chronicles" was also a big hit.
    1949 – An early crisis of the Cold War comes to an end when the Soviet Union lifts its 11-month blockade against West Berlin. The blockade had been broken by a massive U.S.-British airlift of vital supplies to West Berlin’s two million citizens. At the end of World War II, Germany was divided into four sectors administered by the four major Allied powers: the USSR, the United States, Britain, and France. Berlin, the German capital, was likewise divided into four sectors, even though it was located deep within the Soviet sector of eastern Germany. The future of Germany and Berlin was a major sticking point in postwar treaty talks, especially after the United States, Britain, and France sought to unite their occupation zones into a single economic zone. In March 1948, the Soviet Union quit the Allied Control Council governing occupied Germany over this issue. In May, the three Western powers agreed to the imminent formation of West Germany, a nation that would exist entirely independent of Soviet-occupied eastern Germany. The three western sectors of Berlin were united as West Berlin, which was to be under the administration of West Germany. On June 20, as a major step toward the establishment of a West German government, the Western powers introduced a new Deutsche Mark in West Germany and West Berlin. The Soviets condemned this move as an attack on the East German currency and on June 24 began a blockade of all rail, road, and water communications between Berlin and the West. The four-power administration of Berlin had ceased with the unification of West Berlin, the Soviets said, and the Western powers no longer had a right to be there. With West Berlin’s food, fuel, and other necessities cut off, the Soviets reasoned, it would soon have to submit to Communist control. Britain and the United States responded by initiating the largest airlift in history, flying 278,288 relief missions to the city during the next 14 months, resulting in the delivery of 2,326,406 tons of supplies. As the Soviets had cut off power to West Berlin, coal accounted for over two-thirds of the material delivered. In the opposite direction, return flights transported West Berlin’s industrial exports to the West. Flights were made around the clock, and at the height of the Berlin airlift, in April 1949, planes were landing in the city every minute. Tensions were high during the airlift, and three groups of U.S. strategic bombers were sent as reinforcements to Britain while the Soviet army presence in eastern Germany increased dramatically. The Soviets made no major effort to disrupt the airlift. As a countermeasure against the Soviet blockade, the Western powers also launched a trade embargo against eastern Germany and other Soviet bloc countries. On May 12, 1949, the Soviets abandoned the blockade, and the first British and American convoys drove through 110 miles of Soviet Germany to reach West Berlin. On May 23, the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) was formally established. On October 7, the German Democratic Republic, a Communist state, was proclaimed in East Germany. The Berlin airlift continued until September 30, in an effort to build up a year’s supply of essential goods for West Berlin in the event of another Soviet blockade. Another blockade did not occur, but Cold War tensions over Berlin remained high, culminating in the construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961.
    1951-The number one record on America's R&B chart was a song called "Rocket 88" by Jackie Brenston and The Delta Cats. Many Rock historians say that this was the first true Rock and Roll record. Although Brenston sang, played sax and is credited as composer, 'His Delta Cats' were actually Ike Turner and His Kings of Rhythm. 
    1955 - Sam Jones of the Chicago Cubs pitched a no-hitter against the Pittsburgh Pirates, winning 4-0. Jones became the first black pitcher to throw a major-league no-hitter.
    1955 - Gisele MacKenzie played a singer on the NBC-TV program, "Justice". She introduced her soon-to-be hit song, "Hard to Get". The song went to number four on the "Billboard" pop music chart by September.
    1955 - Passengers crowded in to ride the last run of the Third Avenue elevated, "The El", in New York City. The way-above-ground train trip down memory lane went from Chinatown to The Bronx.
    1956-- The Sun Record Company in Memphis ran an ad in the music trade papers announcing the first record by what was termed "one of the truly great talent finds." The artist was Johnny Cash, and the record was "I Walk the Line."
    1956---Top Hits
Heartbreak Hotel/I Was the One - Elvis Presley
Standing on the Corner - The Four Lads
The Wayward Wind - Gogi Grant
Blue Suede Shoes - Carl Perkins
    1957 - A.J. Foyt earned his first auto racing victory in Kansas City, Missouri. He went on to become a four-time winner of the Indianapolis 500 - in 1961, 1964, 1967 and 1977.
    1958-Link Wray's guitar instrumental "Rumble" first appears on American music charts. Even though it has no lyrics what so ever, the song was banned by many US radio stations who feared the title would promote teen violence. Despite the boycott, the song would still rise to #16 and sell over a million copies. Link would follow it with a tune called "Jack the Ripper". 
    1958-The Everly Brothers enjoy their second Billboard chart topper, "All I Have To Do Is Dream", which will also rise to number one in the UK in July. 
    1960 - Frank Sinatra's TV special, Timex Spectacular is broadcast on ABC-TV. Sinatra and Elvis Presley trade hits, Elvis singing "Witchcraft" and Sinatra belting out "Love Me Tender". It will be Presley's last TV appearance for eight years. 
    1962- Billboard reports last year's most-played jukebox disc was country star Jimmy Dean's "Big Bad John." One vote behind was Chubby Checker's "The Twist."
    1963-When CBS censors tell him he cannot perform his "Talking John Birch Society Blues", Bob Dylan walks out of dress rehearsals for The Ed Sullivan Show. When told the tune may be libelous, Dylan refuses to appear on the show. 
    1964---Top Hits
Hello Dolly! - Louis Armstrong
Do You Want to Know a Secret - The Beatles
My Guy - Mary Wells
My Heart Skips a Beat - Buck Owens
    1964-Barbra Streisand wins the Grammy Award for Best Female Vocalist for “The Barbra Streisand Album”
    1965- The Rolling Stones began a two-day recording session at Chess Studios in Chicago, laying down the basic tracks for "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction."
    1968--JACKSON, JOE M. Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Air Force, 311th Air Commando Squadron, Da Nang, Republic of Vietnam. Place and date: Kham Duc, Republic of Vietnam, 12 May 1968. Entered service at: Newman, Ga. Born: 14 March 1923, Newman, Ga. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Lt. Col. Jackson distinguished himself as pilot of a C-123 aircraft. Lt. Col. Jackson volunteered to attempt the rescue of a 3-man USAF Combat Control Team from the Special Forces camp at Kham Duc. Hostile forces had overrun the forward outpost and established gun positions on the airstrip. They were raking the camp with small arms, mortars, light and heavy automatic weapons, and recoilless rifle fire. The camp was engulfed in flames and ammunition dumps were continuously exploding and littering the runway with debris. In addition, 8 aircraft had been destroyed by the intense enemy fire and 1 aircraft remained on the runway reducing its usable length to only 2,200 feet. To further complicate the landing, the weather was deteriorating rapidly, thereby permitting only 1 air strike prior to his landing. Although fully aware of the extreme danger and likely failure of such an attempt, Lt. Col. Jackson elected to land his aircraft and attempt to rescue. Displaying superb airmanship and extraordinary heroism, he landed his aircraft near the point where the combat control team was reported to be hiding. While on the ground, his aircraft was the target of intense hostile fire. A rocket landed in front of the nose of the aircraft but failed to explode. Once the combat control team was aboard, Lt. Col. Jackson succeeded in getting airborne despite the hostile fire directed across the runway in front of his aircraft. Lt. Col. Jackson's profound concern for his fellowmen, at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of the U.S. Air Force and reflect great credit upon himself, and the Armed Forces of his country.
    1969-The first transpacific sailboat crossing by a woman was made by Sharon Sites Adams, who sailed from Yokohma, Japan in a 31-foot fiberglass ketch, the “Sea Sharp.” She arrived at San Diego, CA, on July 25, having covered a distance of approximately 5,620 miles in 74 days. 
    1969-Chevrolet announced that it would discontinue production of the Corvair. The Corvair, which had come under heavy attack in Ralph Nader's 1965 diatribe "Unsafe at Any Speed,” never achieved great success, thanks mostly to its reputation for poor safety. Nader called the Corvair "one of the nastiest-handling cars ever built." The front-wheel drive model was accused of flipping over in moderately severe accident conditions. In the end, over five hundred individual court cases dealing with the Corvair were filed against General Motors. GM never lost one of these cases, although it did settle out of court in a number of them. Debate continues over whether or not the Corvair was actually an unsafe car. Some contend that the front-wheel drive and the heavy horsepower of the car were too much for some drivers to handle. Whatever the case, the public's attitude toward the Big Three car executives changed dramatically during the course of the debate over Nader's book. The insidious tactics used by GM to silence Nader may have been more damaging to the company's reputation than the poor handling of the Corvair. In the end, the debate killed the sale of the Corvair, and its discontinuation followed a 200 percent decrease in the model's sales between 1965 and 1969. Today it is a “collector’s item.”
    1970- At Wrigley Field in Chicago, only 5,264 fans see Ernie Banks hit his 500th career home run, but on hand to witness the historic home run is umpire Frank Secory who was also one of the umps in the September 20, 1953 game in which Mr. Cub hit is initial round-tripper. The second-inning line drive off Braves' pitcher Pat Jarvis into the left-field bleachers, is retrieved by Atlanta outfielder, Rico Carty after it bounces back onto the field and gives the ball to the Cub first baseman.
    1971 -- Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones married Nicaraguan fashion model Bianca Perez Morena de Macias in the town hall of St. Tropez on the French Riviera. Besides other members of the Stones, guests included Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton and Stephen Stills.
    1972---Top Hits
The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face - Roberta Flack
I Gotcha - Joe Tex
Betcha By Golly, Wow - The Stylistics
Grandma Harp - Merle Haggard
    1972 -A cloudburst dumped 16 inches of rain north of New Braunfels, Texas sending a 30 foot wall of water down Blueders Creek into the Comal and Guadalupe Rivers. The flood claimed 18 lives and caused more than 20 million dollars in damage. 
    1972-Police clash with 3,000 anti-war protesters in San Francisco.
    1977 - The Eagles earned a gold record for the hit, "Hotel California". The award was the second of three gold record singles for the group. The other million sellers were "New Kid in Town" and "Heartache Tonight". Two number one songs by The Eagles - "Best of My Love" and "One of These Nights" - didn’t quite make the million-seller mark.
    1979- The new Jefferson Starship, with Mickey Thomas replacing Grace Slick as lead vocalist, debuted at a free concert in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. Thomas had been the lead singer on Elvin Bishop's 1976 hit "Fooled Around and Fell in Love."
    1980---Top Hits
Call Me - Blondie
Ride like the Wind - Christopher Cross
Lost in Love - Air Supply
Beneath Still Waters - Emmylou Harris
    1984-Lionel Richie reaches the top of the Billboard Hot 100 for the fourth time with "Hello", a song that was left off his first solo album and was nearly cut from his second LP. The record was also#1 in the UK. 
    1985-The Jewish conservative movement ordained the first female rabbi, Amy Eilberg at the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York City.
    1985 - Lionel Richie received an honorary Doctor of Music degree from Tuskegee Institute in Alabama - his alma mater. Richie had put 14 hits on the pop charts in the 1980s, including one platinum smash, with Diana Ross, "Endless Love" and four gold records ("Truly", "All Night Long", "Hello" and "Say You, Say Me"). All but one song ("Se La") of the 14 charted made it to the top ten. 
    1987 - In Washington, actor-director Woody Allen and others testified in Congress against film colorization. Ted Turner, multi-millionaire businessman, was transforming black-and-white films he had purchased to colorize. Many people regarded his alterations of original films as criminal acts.
    1987 - A heat wave persisted in central California. Afternoon highs of 100 degrees at Fresno CA and 102 degrees at Sacramento CA were records for the date.
    1988 - Unseasonably warm weather prevailed in the western U.S. Eight cities reported record high temperatures for the date, including Pendleton OR with a high of 92 degrees and Phoenix AZ with a reading of 106 degrees
    1988---Top Hits
Wishing Well - Terence Trent D’Arby
Anything for You - Gloria Estefan & Miami Sound Machine
Pink Cadillac - Natalie Cole
Cry, Cry, Cry - Highway 101
    1989 - Showers and thunderstorms associated with a low pressure system stalled over New York State and drenched Portland ME with 4.50 inches of rain in 24 hours. Rains of 5 to 7 inches soaked the state of Maine over a four day period causing 1.3 million dollars damage.

1990 - Thunderstorms produced severe weather from eastern Texas and the Central Gulf Coast States into Missouri and Illinois. Thunderstorms spawned six tornadoes, including one which injured four persons at Doloroso MS. Thunderstorms also produced hail three inches in diameter west of Vicksburg MS, and wind gusts to 83 mph in southern Illinois, north of Vevay Park and at the Coles County Airport. High winds and heavy rain caused 1.6 million dollars crop damage in Calhoun County IL, and in southeastern Louisiana, Saint Joseph was deluged with eight inches of rain.
    1996- IBM and Sears signed a deal to sell Prodigy to an investment group called International Wireless. The two companies co-founded the online company in 1984 and invested more than $1 billion in the venture. It was one of the first internet companies. The buyout was welcomed by Prodigy's management, who received an ownership stake in the company
    1998-Top Hits
Too Close-Next 
My All- Mariah Carey
You’re Still The One- Shania Twain 
Everybody [Backstreet s Back]- Backstreet Boys 
    2001- Striking out 15 Orioles, Boston's Pedro Martinez ties an American League record set in 1968 by Indian hurler Luis Tiant for most strikeouts over two games, 32. The Red Sox fireballer had 17 strikeouts in his last start against the Devil Rays.

2003 – In Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, multiple, simultaneous car bombings at 3 foreign compounds killed 30 people, including 8 Americans and 9 suicide bombers. The next day, Saudi authorities linked Khaled Jehani (29) head of a 19-member al-Qaeda team, to the carnage. Ali Abd al-Rahman al-Faqasi al-Ghamdi, a senior al-Qaeda figure, surrendered Jun 26. On Jan 8, 2004, 8 accomplices were arrested in Switzerland.



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