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Amid crisis, Puerto Rico cracks down on theft, tax cheats

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Like many small business owners in this struggling U.S. territory, Luis Escribano was having a hard time paying the power bills. So, for at least five years, he did what many others have done: tampered with the electricity meter at his small cafe, illegally cutting his bill by tens of thousands of dollars.
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Obama arrives in Havana for historic visit to former Cold War foe

HAVANA (Reuters) - President Barack Obama arrived in Cuba on Sunday on a historic visit, opening a new chapter in U.S. engagement with the island's Communist government after decades of animosity between the former Cold War foes....
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Drug cartel battle kills 52 in northeastern Mexican prison

MONTERREY, Mexico (Reuters) - A battle between the feared Zetas drug cartel and rivals at a prison left 52 people dead in the northeastern Mexican city of Monterrey, authorities said on Thursday, days ahead of a planned visit by Pope Francis to another jail in Mexico's far north....
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Venezuela president vows to resist ouster

Caracas (AFP) - Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro vowed Thursday the opposition's attempts to drive him from power would not prosper "by fair means or foul" in a political crisis gripping the oil-rich nation....
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More than 3,100 pregnant women in Colombia have Zika virus

More than 3,100 pregnant Colombian women are infected with the mosquito-borne Zika virus, President Juan Manuel Santos said on Saturday, as the disease continues its rapid spread across the Americas....
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Venezuela Is About to Go Bust

...For years, Venezuela has had a massive budget deficit, sustained only by exorbitant oil prices.......
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Parole recommended for former California Mexican Mafia chief

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Acting amid extra tight security, parole commissioners on Friday again recommended the release of a former leader of the Mexican Mafia prison gang who now helps law enforcement, Board of Parole Hearings spokesman Luis Patino said....
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Cuba for sale: ‘Havana is now the big cake – and everyone is trying to get a slice’

Property developers are queuing up to pounce as Cuba opens its doors to the world. Proposals for Havana’s old harbour are described as ‘Las Vegas meets Miami in the Caribbean’. So can the city cope with the commercial storm ahead? ...
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Price of peace: Colombia to seek millions in new U.S. aid

WASHINGTON Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos will visit Washington this week to update President Barack Obama on the historic peace negotiations with Marxist rebels that are nearing completion, thank the United States for its ongoing support – and ask for millions more in aid....
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Surge of Americans tests limits of Cuba's tourism industry

HAVANA (Reuters) - Cuba's tourism industry is under unprecedented strain and struggling to meet demand with record numbers of visitors arriving a year after detente with the United States renewed interest in the Caribbean island....
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