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FARGO—This time of year, many people are getting ready to file their 2017 tax returns, but it's not too early to start thinking about the 2018 tax year because of the recently approved tax overhaul signed by President Donald Trump, according to one Fargo-area tax preparer. "The way you calculate your taxes in 2018 is going to be different than 2017, which is really not much changed from prior years. It's 2018 where we're going to see the changes," said Kent Busek, a partner at Busek Olson & Associates, which advises businesses on tax matters.
MOORHEAD, Minn. — A man who earlier pleaded to charges stemming from the theft of thousands of dollars worth of collectables from a rural Barnesville, Minn., home, including Nazi memorabilia, was sentenced Tuesday, Jan. 2, in Clay County District Court to 180 days in jail. As part of a plea agreement, Justin R. Marlen, who had no permanent address listed, was also ordered to pay fees of $1,160. He will also have to pay restitution if that is ordered. Marlen was given credit for having served six months.
FARGO — In February, a fire at a home in Carrington, N.D., took the lives of three children. To much of the world, it was a sad news story. For Dawn and Brandon Tufte, it was much more. "They were our world," Dawn Tufte said, referring to the couple's three children: Spencer, 7, Melody, 8, and Alex, 11, who died in the fire. Tufte said unless someone experiences such a loss themselves, it may not be possible to understand what the fire took from them. "We lost the most important thing that was dear to us," she said.
FERGUS FALLS, Minn. — A Fergus Falls auto dealership has filed a defamation suit against a Twin Cities-based TV news station, alleging that KARE 11 published false and misleading statements in stories about a former dealership employee and claims of overcharging law enforcement agencies. The suit filed Thursday, Dec. 28, in U.S. District Court by Nelson Auto Center names KARE 11 as a defendant along with related business entities Multimedia Holdings Corp., a South Carolina corporation with offices in McLean, Va., and Tegna Inc., which also has offices in McLean.
CROOKSTON, Minn. — The Catholic Diocese of Crookston has reinstated a priest who was placed on administrative leave as pastor of parishes in Dilworth and Hawley after allegations of abuse surfaced in early 2016. Father Patrick Sullivan has been reinstated to priestly ministry at St. Elizabeth's Parish in Dilworth and St. Andrew's Parish in Hawley, the diocese said in a statement released Tuesday, Dec. 26.
MOORHEAD, Minn. — A Hawley, Minn., man already facing a charge in Clay County District Court of sexually assaulting an acquaintance is now accused of trying to bribe the victim to make the case go away by offering to buy her a mobile home. Alexander John Cookson, 28, is charged with third-degree criminal sexual conduct, false imprisonment, conspiracy to commit bribery and attempted bribery, all felonies.
FARGO — A federal judge on Thursday, Dec. 21, sentenced a Chicago man to 40 years in prison for the sex trafficking of five women, including one minor. Prosecutors had asked for a life sentence for Anthony Collier, 30, but U.S. District Judge Ralph Erickson said it was possible Collier might someday grow up and put his intelligence and talents to legitimate use.
ADA, Minn. — A 20-year-old woman has pleaded guilty in Norman County District Court to second-degree manslaughter in the shooting death of her boyfriend last summer. Under a plea agreement between the prosecution and defense, Monalisa Perez would serve 180 days in jail and spend 10 years on supervised probation. The judge, however, will have the final say on her sentence.
FARGO — A former Catholic priest who faces charges of sexually molesting two boys in North Dakota churches in the 1990s may soon be extradited to the U.S. to face those charges. The Philippine government is preparing to extradite Fernando Laude Sayasaya, who was arrested over the weekend by police in the city of Calamba south of Manila, according to a CBS News report, which quoted Chief State Counsel Ricardo Paras.
MOORHEAD, Minn. — A former Moorhead man who was charged earlier this year with three felony counts of mistreating or torturing animals in connection with the death of three cats was sentenced Monday, Nov. 20, to 60 days in jail. In September, Jalan Isaac Greer, 24, of Rapid City, S.D., entered what's known as an Alford plea to one count of mistreating or torturing an animal. Under such a plea, a defendant does not take responsibility but agrees a jury might reach a guilty verdict based on the evidence.