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EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (AP) - A southwestern Illinois doctor has been sentenced to a year and a day in federal prison for defrauding the state's Medicaid program and illegally dispensing prescription medications.
 
Sixty-nine-year-old Viwathna Bhuthimethee of Alton also was fined $5,000 on Thursday in East St. Louis and ordered to spend two years on post-prison supervised release.
Bhuthimethee pleaded guilty in February to one count of health care fraud and 14 counts of illegal distribution of a controlled substance.
 
Authorities say Bhuthimethee ran an Alton walk-in clinic with his wife. He was indicted in 2012.
 
Investigators accused him of operating a "pill mill" in which he prescribed more than 2,000 painkiller or anti-anxiety pills to four women from 2008 through 2010 outside the course of his professional practice.
   
 
Friday, 04 April 2014 07:59
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COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - The widow of a firefighter who was killed in February after a walkway collapsed at a University of Missouri apartment complex has filed a wrongful death suit against the school's board of curators.
 
The Columbia Daily Tribune reports Leigh Britt and her daughter are plaintiffs in the lawsuit filed Monday. Britt says the curators are responsible for her husband's death because they failed to properly maintain or construct the University Village Apartments.
 
Bruce Britt was killed Feb. 22 after responding to reports of a possible building collapse at the apartment complex. He was crushed when part of a concrete walkway collapsed while he was trying to get residents out of the building.
A spokesman for the University of Missouri system says the university doesn't comment on active litigation.
 
Friday, 04 April 2014 07:36
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri lawmakers have passed a resolution encouraging President Barack Obama's administration to approve a proposed oil pipeline route through the middle of the United States.
 
The Senate approved the measure endorsing the Keystone XL pipeline with a 24-5 vote on Thursday. The same resolution passed the House earlier this year.
 
Obama told a group of governors at a White House meeting in February that he expects to make a decision on the project's future in a couple of months.
 
The Missouri resolution also encourages the U.S. to drill for oil off the northern coast of Alaska.
Missouri's two U.S. senators and Gov. Jay Nixon have also come out in favor of the Keystone pipeline project.
 
Friday, 04 April 2014 07:31
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ST. LOUIS (AP) – Some fans of the St. Louis Rams are planning a weekend rally to help keep the city’s NFL team from leaving.
 
The Keep the Rams rally is scheduled for Saturday afternoon in Laclede’s Landing and comes amid growing unease over the team’s future.
 
The Rams are free to break their Edward Jones Dome lease after the 2014 season and want more upgrades to the publicly-owned stadium than local officials can afford. A company tied to team owner Stan Kroenke has purchased a prime piece of Los Angeles land, fueling speculation of a return to the city it left for the Midwest nearly two decades ago.
 
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that a group known as Save the Rams unsuccessfully fought to keep the team from leaving southern California.
Thursday, 03 April 2014 15:32
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