Kennedy doing well after surgery

RALEIGH, N.C. - Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D., Mass.) emerged from the most precarious period after brain-tumor surgery without complications, spending yesterday walking hallways at Duke University Medical Center, spending time with his family, and "keeping up with the news of the day," his office said.

Kennedy, 76, had a restful night's sleep after Monday's operation, a statement said, and he is expected to stay at the hospital about a week before returning to Massachusetts for further treatment.

Kennedy's doctor has not said how much of the tumor was removed. He has said the senator will begin targeted radiation and chemotherapy treatment. That usually begins at least two weeks after surgery, experts said.

- AP

A guilty plea in Spitzer scandal

NEW YORK - A woman accused of helping run the prostitution ring patronized by former Gov. Eliot Spitzer pleaded guilty yesterday to conspiring to launder money and conspiring to violate federal prostitution laws.

Prosecutors said Cecil Suwal, 23, ran the day-to-day operations of the Emperors Club V.I.P. escort service, which charged clients up to $5,500 an hour.

Suwal was accused of supervising the company's booking agents, paying hundreds of thousands of dollars to prostitutes and controlling shell companies used to hide the ring's profits. Her lawyer, Alberto Ebanks, said Suwal "deeply regrets her actions."

Temeka Lewis, a booking agent for the service, pleaded guilty to similar charges in May. Spitzer resigned March 12; prosecutors have declined to say whether he will face any charges.

- AP

Sect's members returning in Texas

ELDORADO, Texas - Families from a polygamist sect began trickling back to the Yearning for Zion Ranch yesterday, two months after child-welfare authorities and law enforcement first arrived there looking for a caller to a domestic-abuse hot line.

Willie Jessop, an elder with the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, said some of the more than 400 children seized from the ranch in April had returned with their families, though he was unsure how many.

Others were expected, but Jessop said some families were cautious about returning children to the 1,700-acre spread they last saw when police in body armor raided the ranch's homes, school and temple, looking for evidence of underage girls pressed into marriage and sex.

The Texas Supreme Court ruled last week that the state overreached by taking all children from the ranch.

- AP

Elsewhere:

An outbreak of salmonella

food poisoning first linked to uncooked tomatoes has now been reported in nine states, U.S. health officials said yesterday. At least 17 people in Texas and New Mexico have been hospitalized.

A Greyhound bus

carrying 42 people tipped over yesterday as it drove down Interstate 65 in northwest Indiana, injuring more than two dozen, officials said. Police said the driver probably fell asleep.

The International Spy Museum

in Washington is offering tactile maps, audio tours and other features to help visually and hearing-impaired visitors under an agreement that settles a federal investigation.