Circus owner guilty of animal cruelty
LONDON - A court has found a circus owner guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to a performing elephant.
A judge at Northampton Crown Court convicted Bobby Roberts after the court was shown secretly filmed footage of a groom hitting 58-year-old elephant Anne with a pitchfork.
The video, which was recorded by the group Animal Defenders International in 2011, showed the groom kicking and hitting the Asian elephant, which was chained by a foot and a hind leg in a barn.
Roberts, 69, told the court during a five-day trial that he would never have condoned the behavior of the groom, who is believed to have returned to his home in Romania.
He was given a three-year conditional discharge Friday.
'Downton Abbey' will film 4th season
LONDON - British television channel ITV has confirmed that hit drama "Downton Abbey" will return for a fourth season.
Filming of eight new episodes for the award-winning period series will begin in southern England's Highclere Castle and London's Ealing Studios early next year.
ITV said Friday that as before, the opening and closing episodes will be feature-length, and that the series will continue the story of the Crawley family and their servants in the 1920s.
The channel said that an extended special episode for next Christmas is also planned.
"Downton Abbey" has won fans worldwide and an average of 11.9 million viewers in Britain watched its third season, which will premiere in the U.S. on PBS in January.
18 tons of chocolate hijacked and missing
VIENNA - A thief with a huge sweet tooth has driven off with 18 tons of chocolate in Austria.
State broadcaster ORF said on its website that the driver of a Slovak tractor trailer loaded the 33 pallets of milk chocolate onto his vehicle from the producer in the western town of Bludenz earlier this week - supposedly to deliver an order from a company in the Czech Republic.
But, police in the westernmost province of Vorarlberg said, the license plates and papers of the Slovak truck and driver were apparently counterfeit.
The trip should have taken less than a day, but as of Friday - four days after the truck was loaded - the delivery was still outstanding.
Police arrest fugitive on FBI's wanted list
MEXICO CITY - Federal police say they've arrested one of the FBI's most-wanted fugitives, a Los Angeles man sought on charges of murder, kidnapping and rape.
The police agency said Joe Luis Saenz, about 37, was taken into custody in the western city of Guadalajara on Friday. Mexican officials expected extradition proceedings to begin in the coming days.
The FBI said Saenz is accused of fatally shooting two rival gang members in Los Angeles in July 1998 and of kidnapping, raping and murdering his girlfriend less than two weeks later. He is accused of a fourth murder in Los Angeles County in October 2008.
There was a reward of up to $100,000 for information leading to his arrest.
The Associated Press