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Finleyville man held in Nebraska marijuana case

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'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

Saturday, July 27, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
 

Area man arrestedfor drugs in Nebraska

Authorities said two Pennsylvania men, including a Finleyville resident, have been arrested and 127 pounds of marijuana has been seized along Interstate 80 in the Nebraska Panhandle.

The Nebraska State Patrol said the two were taken into custody just off the Sidney exit on Thursday evening.

Police said a trooper reported smelling marijuana when he was checking on a sport utility vehicle that had stopped.

The patrol said the pot, a pound of hashish and a small amount of cocaine were found during a search of the SUV.

Troopers arrested Gabriel Nowak, 30, of Finleyville, and Kenneth Turner, 23 of Pittsburgh.

Officials won't OKsame-sex marriage

Nearly four dozen elected officials who oversee marriage licenses in Pennsylvania have pledged not to approve unions for same-sex couples.

In a resolution that was unanimously approved this week during a registers convention in Washington County, the officials said state law prevents them from following the lead of a Montgomery County colleague who has issued a handful of marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Marriage licenses in Pennsylvania are issued by the Register of Wills in most counties.

“Should the Pa. Legislature or a court of jurisdiction mandate a change to the marriage license law, we shall faithfully and dutifully follow that law,” the resolution states.

Westmoreland County Register of Wills Michael Ginsburg voted in favor of the mission statement.

Ginsburg said state law, which specifically says legal marriage is between a man and a woman, prevents him from issuing licenses to same-sex couples.

“My decision offers no position on the underlying subject matter of this very sensitive issue; rather, it is intended only to clarify my intent to follow the current law of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania,” Ginsburg said.

During an interview, Ginsburg said he supports the existing law.

Officials from two counties, Washington and Bucks, abstained from the vote.

Washington County Register of Wills Mary Jo Poknis could not be reached for comment Friday. Poknis refused to issue a marriage license to a same-sex couple earlier this year, according to the lawsuit that also named Gov. Tom Corbett as a defendant.

Earlier this week, Montgomery County Register of Wills D. Bruce Hanes issued five marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

The statewide register's organization approved its resolution the same day those marriage licenses were issued in Montgomery County.

Fayette County Register of Wills Donald Redman did not attend the convention and was unavailable for comment Friday.

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