Prosecutor: Human remains discovered in search for 4 men

Law enforcement workers walk down a blocked off drive way in Solebury, Pa., as the search resumes Tuesday, July 11, 2017, for four missing young Pennsylvania men feared to be the victims of foul play. (AP)
Updated 13 July 2017
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Prosecutor: Human remains discovered in search for 4 men

NEW HOPE, Pennsylvania: The body of one of four missing young men was found along with other human remains inside a 12-foot-deep common grave on a Pennsylvania farm linked to a 20-year-old man taken into custody Wednesday.
Bucks County District Attorney Matthew Weintraub pledged at a midnight news conference to “bring each and every one of these lost boys home to their families.” Cadaver dogs had led them to the spot on the 90-acre farm where the FBI has spent days digging up the grave and sifting through the dirt for evidence. The other remains still need to be identified. The cause of deaths of those found in the grave has not yet been announced.
“I don’t understand the science behind it, but those dogs could smell these poor boys 12-1/2 feet below the ground,” Weintraub said.
Cosmo DiNardo was being held on $5 million cash bail after he was charged Wednesday with trying to sell another victim’s car after he disappeared. The car was found on the DiNardo family property.
The body identified early Thursday was that of 19-year-old Dean Finocchiaro. The missing men are 22-year-old Mark Sturgis, 21-year-old Tom Meo and 19-year-old Jimi Tar Patrick. Patrick, who was a year behind DiNardo at a Catholic high school for boys, was last seen on Wednesday, while the other three vanished two days later.
DiNardo also had been arrested Monday and held on $1 million bail on an old gun charge, before his father paid $100,000 to bail him out Tuesday. The charge stems from accusations that DiNardo was caught with a shotgun and ammunition in February despite a prior mental health commitment.
The back-to-back arrests bought investigators time as they scoured the farm and other spots across the county for clues to the men’s disappearance, Weintraub said. He hoped the higher bail would hold him even longer, but acknowledged it might not.
DiNardo’s parents, Antonio and Sandra DiNardo, own the farm in upper Bucks County, a bucolic area with rolling hillsides, new housing developments and historic sites. They also own a nearby farm parcel that was also searched and a concrete company near their home in Bensalem, closer to Philadelphia.
An attorney representing the couple issued a statement earlier Wednesday saying they sympathize with the families of the missing men and are cooperating “in every way possible with the investigation.”
The FBI had been using heavy equipment to dig a deep ditch on the farm property, and then sifting through each bucket of dirt by hand.
At least some of the missing men are friends, but it’s unclear how well they knew DiNardo, if at all.
In the February gun charge he still faces, DiNardo is accused of illegally being in possession of a shotgun and ammunition because of a previous involuntary commitment to a mental health institution. An affidavit in that case said he is “known to be suffering from mental illness.”
His social media posts suggest an avid interest in hunting, fishing and Air Jordan sneakers, which he appeared to sell online. He had enrolled in a nearby college at one point as a commuter student, with hopes of studying abroad in Italy, according to an article on the college website. He had a few other brushes with the law since turning 18 over traffic violations and other minor infractions.


Japan to trial ‘world’s first urine test’ to spot cancer

Updated 17 April 2018
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Japan to trial ‘world’s first urine test’ to spot cancer

  • Previous research has shown a new blood test has potential to detect eight different kinds of tumors before they spread
  • The research starts in April and will run until September

TOKYO: A Japanese firm is poised to carry out what it hailed as the world’s first experiment to test for cancer using urine samples, which would greatly facilitate screening for the deadly disease.
Engineering and IT conglomerate Hitachi developed the basic technology to detect breast or colon cancer from urine samples two years ago.
It will now begin testing the method using some 250 urine samples, to see if samples at room temperature are suitable for analysis, Hitachi spokesman Chiharu Odaira told AFP.
“If this method is put to practical use, it will be a lot easier for people to get a cancer test, as there will be no need to go to a medical organization for a blood test,” he said.
It is also intended to be used to detect paediatric cancers.
“That will be especially beneficial in testing for small children” who are often afraid of needles, added Odaira.
Research published earlier this year demonstrated that a new blood test has shown promise toward detecting eight different kinds of tumors before they spread elsewhere in the body.
Usual diagnostic methods for breast cancer consist of a mammogram followed by a biopsy if a risk is detected.
For colon cancer, screening is generally conducted via a stool test and a colonoscopy for patients at high risk.
The Hitachi technology centers around detecting waste materials inside urine samples that act as a “biomarker” — a naturally occurring substance by which a particular disease can be identified, the company said in a statement.
The procedure aims to improve the early detection of cancer, saving lives and reducing the medical and social cost to the country, Odaira explained.
The experiment will start this month until through September in cooperation with Nagoya University in central Japan.
“We aim to put the technology in use in the 2020s, although this depends on various things such as getting approval from the authorities,” Odaira said.