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This Hour: Latest North Dakota news, sports, business and entertainment

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Judge says Crystal CEO should testify in lawsuit

FARGO, N.D. (AP) - A federal judge says American Crystal Sugar Company CEO David Berg should testify in a federal lawsuit pitting the refined sugar manufacturer against the corn syrup industry.

Berg challenged a subpoena from corn syrup marketers who want to ask about his role in opposing a campaign by corn refiners claiming sugar and high-fructose corn syrup are nutritionally the same.

American Crystal didn't agree to participate in the lawsuit and Berg says he can't offer relevant information. Lawyers for the corn syrup group say Berg will be a better witness than the plaintiffs because he's a bystander to the suit.

U.S. District Judge Ralph Erickson ruled Wednesday that the defendants should be allowed to "explore whether Berg has information relevant to the underlying claim for damages."


Oneok plans new North Dakota natural gas factory

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - An Oklahoma energy company says it plans to build another factory in western North Dakota capable of processing 200 million cubic feet of natural gas daily.

Tulsa-based Oneok (ONE'-oak) Incorporated and Governor Jack Dalrymple (DAHL'-rimp-ul) announced the more than $605 million project on Wednesday. The company says the Demicks Lake factory in northeast McKenzie County is expected to be completed in 2016.

The factory would be the seventh the company is operating or building in North Dakota. Oneok says the factory will bring its total investment in North Dakota to about $4 billion.

About a third of the state's natural gas is burned off in a process called flaring and wasted due to lack of infrastructure.

Dalrymple and Oneok officials say the new plant will help curb flaring in the state.


BNSF puts the breaks Devils Lake speed dispute

DEVILS LAKE, N.D. (AP) - U.S. Senator John Hoeven says BNSF Railway has agreed to hold off on a plan to increase speed limits for trains traveling through Devils Lake.

Hoeven says he met with BNSF Railway Executive Chairman Matt Rose on Wednesday. Hoeven says Rose agreed to hold off on increasing speed limits through the community.

BNSF had said it planned to allow faster train speeds on a section of track in Devils Lake, even after hearing city officials' concerns about safety.

BNSF wanted to double the current 30 mile per hour limit on a nearly 1 1/2-mile-long section of upgraded track in the northeastern North Dakota city beginning Friday.

Hoeven says the railroad has pledged to have further discussions with city leaders before proceeding.


Squad car rammed during West Fargo incident

WEST FARGO, N.D. (AP) - A man is in custody in West Fargo after allegedly leading police on a chase, ramming a squad car and trying to force his way into a home.

Authorities say 25-year-old Jean Roubideaux was charged Wednesday with one misdemeanor and several felonies that include reckless endangerment, fleeing and felon in possession of a firearm.

The incident began as a traffic stop about 1 a.m. Wednesday. After police put the driver in a squad car while they identified him, Roubideaux allegedly slid into the driver's seat of the suspect vehicle and took off, ramming a squad car and crashing into a road sign a few blocks away.

Authorities say he also is wanted on a Minnesota warrant.

No one was hurt in the incident.


ND woman charged with horse deaths has seizure

VALLEY CITY, N.D. (AP) - A rural Kathryn woman charged with the deaths of eight horses had a seizure in court and was taken to a hospital.

KOVC Radio reports that Ginger Helland appeared in court on Tuesday. She is awaiting trial on charges of animal neglect, animal abuse and improper disposal of animal carcass.

Judge Jay Schmitz called for emergency workers to assist the woman, who began shaking uncontrollably with a seizure.

Barnes County State's Attorney Carl Martinek says the trial for Helland will be reset and witnesses will be recalled later.


Bond set for ND woman accused of stealing gun

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Bond has been set at $1,000 for a Mandan woman accused of stealing a handgun while performing renovation work at a home.

The Bismarck Tribune reports that 23-year-old Cheryln Sarte is charged with theft of property and appeared in court on Wednesday.

Authorities say Sarte was among several employees of interior design business doing renovation work a home in July 2013. Police say the homeowner reported that a firearm had been stolen.

Authorities say all employees were questioned and denied knowledge of its whereabouts.

During a separate drug investigation, a man told authorities that Sarte had given him the revolver to trade for methamphetamine.


ND woman accused of bogus insurance claims

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - A Mandan woman is accused of submitting more than $7,100 in fraudulent insurance claims.

The Bismarck Tribune reports that 28-year-old Jessi Marie Elmer is charged with felony theft of property and felony forgery.

Elmer made her first appearance in Burleigh County Court on Wednesday with her attorney. She did not enter pleas to the charges.

Authorities allege Elmer billed a total of 148 fraudulent claims for $7,120 worth of chiropractic work from her former employer that never took place.

Elmer also allegedly used facsimile stamp to forge a doctor's signature on several documents.


78 take North Dakota bar exam

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - The North Dakota Supreme Court says 78 applicants took the state bar exam this week.

Officials say the applicants began writing the bar exam on Tuesday and finished on Wednesday afternoon.

The state Supreme Court says 64 percent of the applicants who took the test are graduates from the University of North Dakota School of Law.

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