Nation briefs 8/6/04

Ferry director arraigned on manslaughter charge

NEW YORK -- The city's director of ferries pleaded not guilty Thursday to 11 counts of manslaughter in last year's wreck of a Staten Island ferry. Patrick Ryan left the federal courthouse without speaking to reporters. His attorney, Tom Fitzpatrick, said he and Ryan were taken aback by the harshness of the charges.

Priests accused of abuse removed in Ariz.

PHOENIX -- Two Roman Catholic priests in the Tucson diocese who were suspended years ago because of sexual abuse allegations have been removed from the priesthood, church officials said Thursday. The priests, Robert Trupia and Michael Teta, can no longer perform church ceremonies, wear clerical garb or identify themselves by any church title. The church also will stop its financial support of the men.

Agents search N.Y., N.J. in anthrax probe

WELLSVILLE, N.Y. -- Federal agents investigating the deadly 2001 anthrax attacks searched homes Thursday belonging to the founder of an organization that trains medical professionals to respond to chemical and biological attacks. More than three dozen agents, some in protective suits, combed through two homes in this upstate New York village at the same time as a similar search occurred in New Jersey.

Federal agents arrest two in missile scheme

WASHINGTON -- Two leaders of a mosque in Albany, N.Y., have been arrested in an alleged plot involving a scheme to buy a shoulder-fired missile, the Justice Department announced Thursday. Court papers filed in the case alleged that the weapon was to be used to assassinate the Pakistani ambassador at that country's consulate in New York.

-- From wire reports