Somaly Mam and the Dark Side of Charity

Since 1996, a non-governmental organization known as AFESIP (from the French, Acting for Women in Distressing Situations) has been working to rescue and aid young female victims of human trafficking, operating three centres in Cambodia where the young women are housed and educated. The guiding light of this effort is co-founder Somaly Mam, a Cambodian-born... Continue Reading →

The Top 10 Stupidest/Weirdest Theories About Flight MH370

We all know the first part of the story: Early in the morning on March 8, Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, just one hour into its flight, lost radio contact with air traffic controllers. After going silent in the Gulf of Thailand, the plane unexpectedly veered west and flew back across... Continue Reading →

2013: A Very Bad Year for Psychics

A landmark year for extrasensory fail.  Don't Help Me, Rhonda On June 6, 2011, an unassuming ranch near the town of Hardin, Texas (about an hour outside Houston) was swarmed by Liberty County sheriff's deputies, FBI agents, Texas Rangers, and officials from the Texas Department of Public Safety. News choppers buzzed overheard as law enforcement... Continue Reading →

The Iceman Lieth

Was Mafia assassin Richard Kuklinski full of sh**? I've had Richard "Ice Man" Kuklinski's claims on my mind for some time now, and with the FBI recently scouring Detroit for Jimmy Hoffa and a movie starring Michael Shannon as Kuklinski being released in May, this seems as good a time as any to examine what the... Continue Reading →

Wednesday Weirdness Roundup

Do you know this suburban twentysomething wild teenager? For the past nine months, a young Kaspar Hauser clone in Germany has been insisting he was raised in the woods for the past 5 years, knows only his first name ("Ray"), and that he buried his father (his only known relative) in an unmarked forest grave... Continue Reading →

Fake Teens V: Serial Teen Frederic Bourdin

This case bears some resemblance to Arthur Hutchens' 1928 impersonation of the missing Los Angeles boy Walter Collins, but there are darker twists to the tale.A Changeling in Spain13-year-old Nicholas Barclay went missing from San Antonio, Texas, in 1994. On June 10, he phoned home to ask for a ride after playing basketball with his... Continue Reading →

The Lady Vanishes

The media hoo-rah surrounding South Carolina governor Mark Sanford's "disappearance" brought to my mind some far stranger voluntary disappearances, most of them involving the very same thing that supposedly drove Gov. Sanford into the arms of his Argentine mistress: True love. Or, in some cases, the lack of it. Parts I & II: Agatha Christie... Continue Reading →

The Lady Vanishes Part V: Other Notable Cases

1959: Jacqueline Gay Hart Jacqueline Gay Hart, known as Gay to her friends, was the lovely 21-year-old daughter of marketing wizard Ralph Hart, the president of Colgate Palmolive International. Ralph had scraped his way to the top from the humblest of beginnings - trapping muskrats in Alberta to support his widowed mother when he was just... Continue Reading →

The Lady Vanishes Part IV: Dar Heatherington

This is what you get for waking up in Vegas. I don't know if Darlene "Dar" Heatherington is well-known beyond the Canadian border, but around these parts she's a household name. And when people say that name, they either have a very strong opinion on it, or they're utterly confounded by the whole thing and... Continue Reading →

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