Across Georgia

Airport workers admit guilt in drug operation


ATLANTA --- Two former employees of the Transportation Security Administration and a former Delta Air Lines employee assigned to Atlanta's airport pleaded guilty Wednesday to involvement in a drug-smuggling operation.

Former Delta employee Leslie Adgar, 42, and one of the former TSA workers, 44-year-old Jon Patton, admitted conspiring to distribute cocaine and heroin.

Andre Mays, 24, the other ex-TSA worker, pleaded guilty to entering a secure airport area in violation of screening requirements. Sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 17.

Prosecutors said a confidential source working for the Drug Enforcement Administration arranged in December to smuggle 2 kilograms of what was purported to be cocaine to New York in luggage carried past security in Atlanta and onto a Delta flight in exchange for $8,000.

Unemployment rate up despite gaining jobs

ATLANTA --- The Georgia Department of Labor says the state's unemployment rate rose to 5.8 percent last month, a jump of a half-point since April.

State Labor Commissioner Michael Thurmond says the state gained 9,400 jobs during the period, not enough to keep up with the increase in job-seekers.

Mr. Thurmond cited layoffs in manufacturing and other industries as contributing to the trend.

Sea turtle center lures thousands of tourists

JEKYLL ISLAND, GA. --- The Georgia Sea Turtle Center is already a hit with tourists since opening a year ago on Jekyll Island.

Officials say the center has attracted more than 120,000 visitors as it approaches its anniversary June 28. The center treats sick and injured sea turtles and gives tourists a chance to see the rare and endangered turtles.

The center's staff veterinarian, Terry Norton, says allowing people to get up close to turtles that have been harmed by boats, fishing nets and other human contraptions has helped send a strong message to visitors.

-- Edited from wire reports