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Vatican dismisses two more Mass. priests

BOSTON The Vatican has dismissed two more Massachusetts priests, Anthony J. Laurano and W. James Nyhan, the Archdiocese of Boston said yesterday. Laurano, former pastor of St. Mary Church in Plymouth, was charged last year with four counts of sexually molesting a 30-year-old mentally retarded man. He had been charged with twice raping an 8-year-old boy in 1991. Nyhan, former pastor of St. Mary Church in Billerica, pleaded guilty last year in South Carolina to assault and battery in a case involving allegations that he had abused two boys in Charleston, S.C., in 1979 and 1980. He had also been accused, but not charged, with abusing a Quincy man in the 1970s.

City to hold a housing conference in April
The city plans to host a housing conference next month to assess Boston's current and future position on housing, Mayor Thomas M. Menino announced yesterday. The conference is intended to review city efforts that have led to permitting of 18,000 new housing units, including 4,800 affordable units, and development or renovation of almost 800 vacant lots in the city. City officials expect to be joined by housing specialists from across the country, including former US secretary of housing and urban development Henry Cisneros. For more information or to register, visit

SJC upholds Marlborough decision
The Supreme Judicial Court upheld a decision yesterday that allowed a public charter school specializing in math and science to open in Marlborough. The high court unanimously ruled that the state Board of Education properly granted a charter to the Advanced Math and Science Academy Charter School. School committees in Marlborough, Maynard, and Hudson had sued the board, contending that it should not have allowed the school to file a revised charter application without allowing time for public comment. The committees also argued that organizers of the academy failed to show the region needed the charter school.


Defendant indicted in attack on his lawyer
A Norfolk County grand jury indicted Che Sosa yesterday on charges of attacking and stabbing his lawyer Feb. 27 in Norfolk Superior Court. Sosa, 36, has been charged with armed assault with intent to murder and battery by means of a dangerous weapon. He was indicted Wednesday on six charges related to a July 2006 attack on two corrections officers at MCI-Cedar Junction. Sosa's rape trial, at which the stabbing allegedly occurred, has been rescheduled for May. No trial date has yet been set for trial on the other indictments.


Authorities find no evidence linking fires
An investigation of 20 serious fires this year in Everett found no evidence linking the blazes or suggesting the work of a serial arsonist, state and local authorities announced yesterday. "Our investigators have conducted a thorough review of their cases and can absolutely find no link," Police Chief Steven Mazzie said in a statement. Of the 20 significant fires, seven were the result of arson, investigators determined. The joint probe included the State Police, State Fire Marshal's office, and the Everett police and fire departments.


Charge is dropped against rape suspect
A rape charge against an Endicott College student from Acton has been dropped, the Essex district attorney's office said yesterday. Spokesman Stephen O'Connell said the woman did not want to pursue the allegation against Brendan C. Agrillo of Acton, who was accused of assaulting the woman on the Beverly campus. Agrillo pleaded not guilty last October, and his lawyer had said the sex was consensual.


Rescuers are unable to free right whale
Rescuers have been unable to reach an endangered North Atlantic right whale seen this week entangled in marine line in Cape Cod Bay. The whale is a 16-year-old female that's had two calves and is at the start of her breeding years, so losing her would be "a blow to the population," said Greg Krutzikowsky, director of the disentanglement program at the Center for Coastal Studies. The whale was spotted about 20 miles southeast of Chatham on March 9. It was spotted again Wednesday about 14 miles southwest of Provincetown. The whale dove so frequently that rescuers were unable to free it or attach a device that could track it, Krutzikowsky said (AP)