While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, April 13

Man hospitalised after lighting jacket on fire outside White House

A man in a wheelchair-type electric scooter lit his jacket on fire outside the White House fence on Friday and was hospitalised with what appeared to be non-life threatening injuries, the US Secret Service said.

Secret Service officers responded to the incident on the north side of the executive mansion, extinguished the fire and provided first aid, the agency said on Twitter.

Daniel Kingery, a 57-year-old voter rights activist, said the man was holding up his burning jacket and recording the incident, which appeared to be a demonstration.

"He wasn't obeying their order to put it down, so it was definitely some sort of a protest," Kingery said.


'Smart guy' Florida test taker pleads guilty in US college admissions scandal

A former counsellor at a Florida private school pleaded guilty on Friday to secretly taking college placement tests for the children of wealthy parents as part of the largest admissions fraud scheme uncovered in US history.

Mark Riddell, 36, was charged from a role in the scheme that prosecutors said allowed wealthy parents including the actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin to use cheating and bribes to help their children secure spots at universities like Yale, Georgetown and the University of Southern California.

Riddell pleaded guilty in Boston federal court to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering, prosecutors said on Twitter. Asked at a news conference in March how Riddell knew the exam answers, US Attorney Andrew Lelling said he was "just a really smart guy."


Dutch doctor 'fathered 49 children' in IVF scandal

A Dutch doctor at the centre of an IVF scandal fathered at least 49 children, an organisation representing parents and children born through his now-closed clinic said on Friday.

Jan Karbaat, who died in 2017, is the father of 49 children born after women visited his Rotterdam clinic where he used his own sperm instead of sperm from a chosen donor to inseminate them, Defence for Children said.

Results of DNA tests conducted on Friday at a hospital in the southeastern city of Nijmegen "showed that 49 children in the case are direct descendants of the late Karbaat," the organisation said in a statement.


A white restaurateur promoted 'clean' Chinese food, the backlash didn't take long

Arielle Haspel, a Manhattan nutritionist with a sleek social media presence, wanted to open the kind of Chinese restaurant, she said, where she and her food-sensitive clients could eat. One where the lo mein wouldn't make people feel "bloated and icky" the next day, or one where the food wasn't "too oily" or salty, as she wrote in an Instagram post a few weeks ago.

She chose a name for her new restaurant, Lucky Lee's, that sounded stereotypically Chinese, even though she and her husband, Lee, are not Asian. She decorated the restaurant with bamboo and jade touches, and designed her logo with a chopstick-inspired font.

And then, quite predictably, she was flamed on the Internet for it.


Star Wars' Episode IX Rise Of Skywalker sees evil emperor Palpatine return

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The ninth film in the original Star Wars saga will be called The Rise Of Skywalker and will see the return of the evil emperor Palpatine to threaten the young heroine Rey and the Resistance, Walt Disney revealed on Friday.

Disney showed fans at the Star Wars Celebration convention in Chicago the first footage from the movie, which will be released in theatres in December and will conclude the saga that began in 1977.

A villainous cackle was heard at the end of the trailer, and the actor who played Palpatine in previous films, Ian McDiarmid, walked on stage to loud applause from an audience of roughly 10,000 fans, many waving colourful lightsabers.


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