Police in Baton Rouge say they have arrested three people who stole guns with the goal of killing police officers. They are still looking for a fourth suspect in the alleged plot, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

"Police say the thefts were at a Baton Rouge pawn shop early Saturday morning," Greg says. "One person was arrested at the scene. Since then, two others have been arrested and six of the eight stolen handguns have been recovered. Police are still looking for one other man."

A 13-year-old boy is among those arrested, Greg says.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

After an international tribunal invalidated Beijing's claims to the South China Sea, Chinese authorities have declared in no uncertain terms that they will be ignoring the ruling.

The Philippines brought the case to the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, objecting to China's claims to maritime rights in the disputed waters. The tribunal agreed that China had no legal authority to claim the waters, and was infringing on the sovereign rights of the Philippines.

Donald Trump is firing back at Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg after she made disparaging comments about him in several media interviews. He tweeted late Tuesday that she "has embarrassed all" with her "very dumb" comments about the candidate. Trump ended his tweet with "Her mind is shot - resign!":

Donald Trump wrapped up his public tryout of potential vice presidential candidates in Indiana Tuesday night with Gov. Mike Pence giving the final audition.

The Indiana governor's stock as Trump's possible running mate is believed to be on the rise, with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich also atop the list. Sources tell NPR the presumptive GOP presidential nominee is close to making a decision, which he's widely expected to announce by Friday.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The unassuming hero of Jonas Karlsson's clever, Kafkaesque parable is the opposite of a malcontent. Despite scant education, a limited social life, and no prospects for success as it is usually defined, he's that rarity, a most happy fella with an amazing ability to content himself with very little. But one day, returning to his barebones flat from his dead-end, part-time job at a video store, he finds an astronomical bill from an entity called W.R.D. He assumes it's a scam. Actually, it is more sinister-- and it forces him to take a good hard look at his life and values.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Donald Trump picked a military town — Virginia Beach, Va. — to give a speech Monday on how he would go about overhauling the Department of Veterans Affairs if elected.

He blamed the Obama administration for a string of scandals at the VA during the past two years, and claimed that his rival, Hillary Clinton, has downplayed the problems and won't fix them.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.


Congressman Proposes Stiffer Penalties For Those Who Lie To Buy Guns

Mar 8, 2012

A Democratic Congressman has introduced legislation that would impose tough new penalties on people who lie when they buy guns.

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Ca.) says the bill, the Straw Purchaser Penalty Enhancement Act, would give federal agents new tools to crack down on the flow of weapons across the Southwest border into Mexico.

Nowadays, many episodes where people lie about the true identity of the purchaser of guns, or engage in straw purchases, never get prosecuted at all, Schiff says in an interview with NPR.

"The penalties are so insufficient that prosecutors don't want to bring the cases and more than that you can't get sufficient cooperation when you indict them to roll them up and use their testimony against higher ups in the gun smuggling organization," he says.

Under Schiff's proposal, people engaged in straw purchasing could face a mandatory two year minimum prison sentence, which he says could "put some teeth" in the law and help prosecutors compel the gun buyers to provide information about higher ranking people who receive the weapons.

The proposal comes after a year long congressional investigation into the flawed gun trafficking operation known as Fast and Furious. In that case, agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Arizona lost track of more than 1,000 weapons purchased under suspicious circumstances. Many later turned up at crime scenes on both sides of the Mexican border, including near the body of slain U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.

"Part of the reason that such desperate and flawed techniques were used," in Fast and Furious, Schiff says, is because agents testified they didn't have more potent legal tools at their disposal.

"If we can provide prosecutors...with a hammer to place over the head of those who are knowingly and willingly participating in the smuggling of weapons to these traffickers, then hopefully we can put a dent in this mutually destructive trade with Mexico where they send their drugs north and we send our arms south," Schiff says.

The prospects for his bill are unclear. The National Rifle Association has opposed most new gun controls, citing the Second Amendment, and Republicans on Capitol Hill have tried to block the Obama administration's efforts to get more disclosure about multiple gun purchases in border states.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.