Uruguay's Senate has approved ground-breaking legislation legalizing marijuana, becoming the first nation in the world to oversee the production and sale of the drug. After a marathon debate, 16 leftist senators out of 29 lawmakers voted Tuesday in favor of the legislation championed by President Jose Mujica, who must now sign it into law. Outside the Senate, hundreds of cannabis-smoking supporters launched fireworks in what they dubbed "the last march with illegal marijuana." "The war against drugs has failed," said Senator Roberto Conde as he presented the bill on behalf of the ruling leftist Broad Front, calling it an "unavoidable response" to that failure.
A world-renowned Indonesian wine dealer on trial in New York for selling counterfeit wine was millions of dollars in debt in the years before his arrest, prosecutors told his fraud trial on Tuesday. Rudy Kurniawan, 37, who has lived illegally in the United States since his asylum bid was rejected in 2003, is accused of blending ordinary wines into fake vintages in his California kitchen to sell to wealthy collectors. The place was covered with bottles at all stages of production and there was a "drying zone" according to FBI agent James Wynne who carried out the raid during Kurniawan's arrest in March 2012. Five years earlier, the man nicknamed "Dr Conti" for his love of Romanee Conti, the fine wine, was considered one of the five top wine collectors in the world, but he owed creditors millions of dollars, prosecutors told the second day of his trial.