USA

US federal agents arrested Zhenli Ye Gon, a Chinese-Mexican businessman wanted in connection with a major drug-trafficking ring, at a Maryland restaurant on Monday. Four months ago, law-enforcement officials found $207 million in cash in his Mexico City mansion. Ye Gon is suspected of providing the main chemical in methamphetamine to a drug cartel.

Two federal judges found California's $7.8 billion plan to build 53,000 new jail cells an inadequate strategy for addressing prison overcrowding and ordered the creation of a judicial panel to recommend a better plan, which could include judicial reforms. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) said he would appeal the decision.

Aides to Gov. Eliot Spitzer (R) of New York improperly enlisted state police to conduct a smear campaign against State Senate majority leader Joseph Bruno, according to the New York attorney general's office, which said Monday that Bruno's use of state aircraft was proper. Spitzer said he knew nothing of the operation.

Two-thirds of US adults said they would consider voting for an independent presidential candidate in the 2008 election, according to a new Harris Interactive poll. Among so-called "echo boomers" (ages 18 to 30), 74 percent said they might vote for an independent.

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick, who will be arraigned Thursday on dogfighting charges, will have to stay away from training camp until the league determines if his conduct was either criminal or a breach of the league's personal conduct policy, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said Monday.

In a first for a US city, New Haven, Conn., began Tuesday to offer as many as 12,000 illegal immigrants identification cards as part of a community-wide ID effort. The cards will allow immigrants to open bank accounts and use other services.

Part of a national effort targeting street gangs yielded 121 arrests during a week of raids in Dallas and other north Texas cities, US immigration officials said Monday. Some gang members have been deported. Others have been charged with reentering the US after deportation.

Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D) of Illinois signed smoking-ban legislation Monday that makes it the latest state to outlaw smoking in public places, including bars, restaurants, and work sites.

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