In Other News

Rapist, Inspired by Bible, Cuts Off Penis
A convicted Brazilian rapist sliced off his own penis and flushed it down the toilet, saying the amputation would bring him closer to God. Prison guards said they found Flavio dos Santos Cruz, 23, screaming and profusely bleeding in his jail cell early Thursday after he cut off his penis with a shaving razor. "He's alive. But since the penis was missing, he now will have to urinate through a tube," said urologist Aerton Barbosa Neves, who operated on Santos Cruz in the town of Andradina, about 410 miles from South America's biggest city of Sao Paulo. Santos Cruz said he was inspired by the Bible. "It is written in Bible that if a part of your body distances you from God, and makes you commit a sin, you should cut it off," he told local news wire Agencia Estado. Since Santos Cruz did not cut off his testicles, Neves said the rapist could still ejaculate – possibly while dreaming – and even impregnate someone, albeit only with medical assistance. Prison officials could not immediately say how many people Santos Cruz had raped and did not know the length of his jail sentence.

Woman Who Bit Off Testicle Is Jailed
A British woman who bit off the testicle of her best friend's husband's in a drunken fight was sentenced to six months in prison Monday. Judge Gerard Harkins said the injury inflicted was so serious that a non-jail sentence could not be justified. Carr, a mother-of-two, was celebrating with her husband the wedding of Neil and Shelley Hutchinson at a flat in Tyneside, North East England, when a drunken argument turned into a violent brawl. Carr, who pleaded guilty to affray, stepped in to defend Shelley Hutchinson after her newly-wed husband attacked her. Neil Hutchinson then pinned Carr to the floor at which point she bit through his jeans and testicle. Carr's lawyer told the court his client acted in self-defense and did not know which part of Hutchison's body she was biting. Police called to the scene found the testicle, which could not be reattached, under a picture frame on the sitting room floor.

Sausages Pile Up But Hot Dogs Off Menu
Brazil's Sao Paulo city government has more frankfurters than it can handle but not a bun in sight because a vengeful supplier has managed to stop deliveries of the soft rolls. The hot dogs were destined for school lunches but bun supplies to Brazil's largest city have been blocked since October as a result of a court order filed by an irate supplier who lost out on the city's bread contract. "We've got sausages coming out of our ears," said Dernal Santos, press spokesman at Sao Paulo's Municipal Supplies Secretariat, which supplies almost one million meals a day to city schools. Time is running out for the city's 122-ton cache of frankfurters which will be rotten by the end of March. City authorities have managed to whittle the wiener pile by cooking up pasta and rice dishes with frankfurter-based sauces to feed Sao Paulo's schoolchildren. With schoolchildren due to return from summer holidays on Feb. 8, officials may have to turn to fresh daily-baked buns instead of the usual packaged hot dog rolls to use up the sausage stack, Santos said.

Deadly Laundromat Games
A laundromat owner in the Welsh seaside town of Tenby is in a spin after youngsters were caught playing a potentially deadly form of dare – in a heavy-duty tumble dryer. The schoolboys, some as young as 10, were paying 20 pence (30 cents) a time to see who could spin inside the dryers the longest. Launderette owner Stuart Fecci, 36, said Wednesday the dryers became dangerously hot once they had been running for a few minutes. In addition, the machines are gas-fired, producing potentially deadly carbon monoxide gas. "It's not harmful to clothes, but it's definitely not designed for humans," Fecci told reporters.

Car Thieves Drink HIV-Infected Blood
Two members of a gang of Brazilian car thieves may have drank vials of HIV-infected blood – thinking it was a yogurt drink – found in a stolen car, officials said on Wednesday. Over the weekend, six armed bandits overpowered a worker at a medical laboratory in the remote western state of Rondonia, and stole his car while he was on the way to the airport to ship blood samples to a distant laboratory, a spokesman for Rondonia's security secretariat told reporters. "The blood samples came from AIDS patients and were being shipped for further tests," the spokesman said. HIV is the virus that causes AIDS. The thieves sped out of town, but made a brief stop at a bar on their way. After a few stiff drinks, two members of the gang uncovered the vials and gulped them down, mistaking them for drinkable yogurt.

Arrow Pierces Woman's Skull in "William Tell" Act
A William Tell-type circus act went horribly wrong when a performer trying to shoot an apple off his wife's head with a crossbow hit her under the eye instead. The woman, whose skull was pierced by the arrow, was in serious condition in hospital after the incident involving the Gray Arrow husband-and-wife team in front of 5,000 spectators at the World Circus Festival Sunday. "It's incomprehensible. They've got that routine down to the nearest thousandth of a millimeter," Gilbert Edelstein, director of the Pinder-Jean Richard circus, told French radio Monday. "There's a serious risk because the arrow pierced her skull. She can't be operated on for another week, so it's especially important that she does not develop an infection," said Edelstein, whose circus hosted the festival. Edelstein said the circus would continue its tour of France despite the accident. "That's circus life. Sometimes there is a catastrophe, but the show must go on."

Cop Stitches Mouth Shut in Protest
One Mexico City policeman Monday stitched his mouth shut and another tried to have himself crucified – by driving a nail through the palm of a hand – to protest their alleged unlawful dismissals. Jose Gonzalez, who claims he and nine of his colleagues were fired by a corrupt superior officer, marched through Mexico City streets bearing a wooden cross before reaching the capital's main square for his planned ritual crucifixion. As masses of curious Mexico City onlookers gathered, officer Humberto Vazquez used a nylon thread to sew his mouth shut. Authorities only showed up and offered to talk to protesters after Vazquez attempted to nail his comrade to the makeshift cross. "We are going to go to the ministry to talk," Vazquez said through sutured lips. "We'll see what happens."

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