Marijuana Tax eyed by Cash-strapped states

Marijuana tax, Advocates of legalizing marijuana say taxing the weed could pump cash into cash-strapped state coffers while skeptics saying they're blowing smoke.

Some lawmakers say a tax on legal marijuana could put significant dollars into budgets still hurting from the recession, Politico reported Thursday.
A marijuana user displays up a pipe full of marijuana and a marijuana bud during a public consumption of marijuana rally on December 6, 2012 in Seattle. Despite the new law's ban on public marijuana use which is subject to a fine of about $50. In November, Washington state jumped into history becoming the first state along with Colorado to reject federal drug-control policy and legalize recreational marijuana use. UPI/Jim Bryant
A marijuana user displays up a pipe full of marijuana and a marijuana bud during a public consumption of marijuana rally on December 6, 2012 in Seattle. Despite the new law's ban on public marijuana use which is subject to a fine of about $50. In November, Washington state jumped into history becoming the first state along with Colorado to reject federal drug-control policy and legalize recreational marijuana use
"I've seen some estimates in the high tens of millions, as much as $100 million for" Colorado, whose voters legalized recreational marijuana use, said Rep. Jared Polis, D-Colo., who's pushing for federal legalization of marijuana in Congress.

If the projections are correct, Colorado could make "substantial dent in needed school improvements, particularly in poorer districts," Polis said.

Dale Gieringer, director of California National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, said legalizing marijuana would bring in at least $1.2 billion to his state. Politico said Gieringer's study assumes a traditional sales tax plus an additional $50 levy per ounce of marijuana.

Skeptics' comments, however, are more sobering, Politico said.

"This is not a cash cow that can solve anyone's fiscal problems," said Harvard economics professor Jeffrey Miron, a pro-legalization scholar at the Cato Institute.

Miron said Gieringer's numbers were about three times what they should be.

"There is a lot of exaggeration about how big the revenue can be," Miron said.

Miron estimated a nationwide legalization that taxed marijuana similarly to alcohol and tobacco would net about $6.4 billion in new tax revenue -- $4.3 billion for the federal government and $2.1 billion for the states.

Toddler Dies in Ga. After Been Mauled by 7 Dogs

Toddler mauled by 7 dogs, The child who had slipped outside through a doggie door was mauled to death by her family's seven dogs in the backyard while the attack went unnoticed by the child's mother and other relatives inside their home, a southeast Georgia sheriff said Thursday.

Bryan County Sheriff Clyde Smith said the child's grandmother told investigators she was lying in bed when she heard the pit bulls and pit bull mixes barking, and she looked outside her window to see them dragging the girl. Smith said she began yelling, "They're killing Monica!"

http://i.i.com.com/cnwk.1d/i/tim/2013/03/28/ga-dog-attack_620x350.jpg

It was too late. Monica Renee Laminack, who would have turned 2 on June 1, was dead by the time an ambulance arrived Wednesday evening. Animal control officers used drugs to euthanize the dogs at the home on a rural road in tiny Ellabell, about 30 miles west of Savannah. Deputies found the girl's shoes, diaper and shredded clothing scattered across the fenced-in yard, Smith said.

"They had dragged the child all over the yard. ... They tore her clothes all up," Smith said.

The toddler lived in a modest, two-story house tucked away from the main road. The sheriff said four generations of the same family shared the home, including the child's 18-year-old mother, grandparents and two uncles who are still young boys.

The girl's grandmother, Michelle McIntyre, sat weeping on the tailgate of a pickup outside the home Thursday. Summer Laminack, the child's mother, sat next to her staring silently at the ground.

"She's in shock," Barbara Brauda, a friend who was visiting the family, told The Associated Press before a man approached and asked a reporter to leave the property. "She hasn't been doing a whole lot of crying because she's still numb."

The sheriff said at least three adult relatives were inside the home when the dogs killed the girl outside. No criminal charges had been filed Thursday. Smith said he expects charges will be brought after he's had a chance to discuss the case with the district attorney and the girl's family has been given time to hold her funeral.

"I can see child neglect at the very minimum," Smith said.

Relatives told investigators the dogs that mauled the child were essentially family pets — a mother dog and six offspring from a litter she had about 16 months ago, the sheriff said.

The dogs had their own doggie doors that let them come in and out of the house as they pleased. The family told deputies the dogs had never attacked a person, though one of them might have killed a cat, Smith said. He said relatives insisted the toddler would play with the dogs and even "use them as pillows while watching TV."

Smith said the dogs looked healthy and well-fed, and investigators found no signs they were being used as fighting dogs by their owners.

"They said they have never been aggressive to other people," he said. "Why they got started I have no idea."

Summer isn't far away': Victoria Beckham prepares her bikini body

She's the fitness guru to the stars, and has transformed the bodies of the likes of Gwyneth Paltrow, Jennifer Lopez and Madonna.
And Victoria Beckham has now become the latest star to enlist the services of celebrity trainer Tracy Anderson.
The 38-year-old fashion designer revealed she has been working out alongside the exercise expert to get her bikini body ready for the summer months.

Bikini ready: Victoria Beckham has been training alongside fitness guru Tracy Anderson (L) to get in shape for the summer
Bikini ready: Victoria Beckham has been training alongside fitness guru Tracy Anderson (L) to get in shape for the summer

Bikini ready: Victoria Beckham has been training alongside fitness guru Tracy Anderson (L) to get in shape for the summer
Writing on her Twitter page on Thursday morning, she said: 'Good morning fashion bunnies! Sun is shining!! Work out with @TracyAnderson summer isn't far away! x vb.'

However, it would appear the busy mother-of-four is following the famed Tracy Anderson Method remotely, with the trainer currently working her magic on a detox week in Hawaii.
Tracy tweeted yesterday: 'It's day four in Hawaii, and my detox weekers are looking and feeling amazing!!'

Celebrity following: The 38-year-old fashion designer told her Twitter followers she was adhering to the Tracy Anderson MethodCelebrity following: The 38-year-old fashion designer told her Twitter followers she was adhering to the Tracy Anderson Method


The fitness guru is known for her pre and post pregnancy workouts, and has previously worked with the likes of Gwyneth Paltrow, Jennifer Lopez, Cheryl Cole, Kim Kardashian and Shakira.
And she famously helped Madonna achieve her perfectly sculpted body, but they parted company back in 2009.
Speaking of her work, Tracy previously said: 'When I can transform someone, I get happy tears.'

Yummy mummy: Victoria has been fitting in her workouts around her busy job and being a mother to four children Yummy mummy: Victoria has been fitting in her workouts around her busy job and being a mother to four children
Meanwhile, Gwyneth Paltrow paid tribute to the fitness guru in an interview with Self magazine, saying: 'I never thought that I'd be considered to have a good body. I was bony up top and kind of dumpy on the bottom.
'But my trainer, Tracy Anderson, completely changed my legs, butt, arms and stomach. I feel better than ever, too.
'When Tracy met me, she said that I had a long, square butt that she was going to redesign, and I was, like, "Yeah? Good luck. The amazing thing is, she was right.'

Fans: Gwyneth Paltrow and Madonna have previously followed the Tracy Anderson Method to get in shape
Fans: Gwyneth Paltrow and Madonna have previously followed the Tracy Anderson Method to get in shape

Fans: Gwyneth Paltrow and Madonna have previously followed the Tracy Anderson Method to get in shape
At the height of its success, The Tracy Anderson Method DVD was shifting around 1,000 copies a week, with the programme advising participants to exercise for two hours every day, six days a week, and adhere to a strict diet plan.
But the trainer found herself at the centre of controversy in August 2012 when she commented that many women use pregnancy as 'an excuse to let their bodies go'.
She later apologised for the remarks on Good Morning America, saying: 'I am so mortified, it sounds so bad when it comes back like that. It's not what I meant.'

Enviable figures: Pregnant Kim Kardashian is currently working out with Tracy, while Cheryl Cole has also followed her methods in the past
Enviable figures: Pregnant Kim Kardashian is currently working out with Tracy, while Cheryl Cole has also followed her methods in the past

Enviable figures: Pregnant Kim Kardashian is currently working out with Tracy, while Cheryl Cole has also followed her methods in the past
'I've spent 14 years very focused creating all of this original content, testing on women to make sure I can give women something that really works so they can be their most empowered self.

'So the last thing I would do is judge a woman, especially after children.'
As well as her DVDs and books, Tracy has four gyms, operating in Los Angeles, New York City, The Hamptons, and London.

Controversial: Anderson found herself at the centre of controversy in August 2012 when she commented that many women use pregnancy as 'an excuse to let their bodies go'Controversial: Anderson found herself at the centre of controversy in August 2012 when she commented that many women use pregnancy as 'an excuse to let their bodies go'


Sporty: Victoria's footballer husband, David Beckham was spotted leaving Paris Saint Germain training centre Camp des Loges on Thursday afternoon
Sporty: Victoria's footballer husband, David Beckham was spotted leaving Paris Saint Germain training centre Camp des Loges on Thursday afternoon

Sporty: Victoria's footballer husband, David Beckham was spotted leaving Paris Saint Germain training centre Camp des Loges on Thursday afternoon

We've already got a record deal underway,' admits Natasha Hamilton

They've enjoyed somewhat of a comeback thanks to being part of TV show The Big Reunion and are preparing to set off on a tour with their fellow reformed bands.
And it seems the series has done the world of good for Atomic Kitten, as Natasha Hamilton has now revealed they're recording their new album and are in the midst of recording their 'comeback single'.
The singer revealed to the MailOnline that they're even in the middle of setting in stone a recording contract.
 
Ready for new songs: Natasha Hamilton has revealed Atomic Kitten are working on new material and are currently recording their comeback singleReady for new songs: Natasha Hamilton has revealed Atomic Kitten are working on new material and are currently recording their comeback single
 
New music: Natasha told the MailOnline they're closed to signing a new record deal and revealed on Twitter they're working on their comeback singleNew music: Natasha told the MailOnline they're closed to signing a new record deal and revealed on Twitter they're working on their comeback single
When asked what their plans are for when The Big Reunion tour ends, Natasha said: 'We're definitely, definitely concentrating on the band. We've already got a record deal underway.'
She then added to the MailOnline: 'We are writing songs for our new album as well.'
Her interview comes as she also revealed on Twitter that she spent her Wednesday morning recording what they think could be their new comeback single.
The 30-year-old wrote: 'I'm off the studio to vocal @AtomicKOfficial potential come-back single!! Could today get anymore freakin' exciting!'
The comment caused lots of messages from lots of followers, to which she responded revealing they had plenty of material: 'Well, we have that many to choose from!;).'
 
As they were: On The Big Reunion they've been singing their old hits but Natasha has now revealed they have plenty of new songs they'll be bringing outAs they were: On The Big Reunion they've been singing their old hits but Natasha has now revealed they have plenty of new songs they'll be bringing out
And it seems performing back on stage has given the singer the taste for continuing her pop career once more.
She said of the tour, which kicks off in May: 'Can not wait, it's quite intense though. It's every night for two and a half weeks.
'We're going to have to be well behaved. We won't be able to go to the bar, we'll have to rest our voices!
'We've had the best time. I'm not going to lie, going into it I was nervous because I thought what if we don't have the chemistry that we had when we were kids? But literally the first day back to work together was back to business and we all slotted back into our old funny ways... Loud and hyperactive.'
Natasha added: 'I mean, I just love working, working defines me. I love being a mum and being at home with my kids but I feel really inspired when I'm working and being on stage performing, doing what I love doing.'
 
Getting the taste for it: Natasha and her bandmates Liz McLarnon and Kerry Katona reunited for TV show the Big Reunion and are about to go on a tour in MayGetting the taste for it: Natasha and her bandmates Liz McLarnon and Kerry Katona reunited for TV show the Big Reunion and are about to go on a tour in May
This week it was revealed that Atomic Kitten and the rest of the Big Reunion bands will also take part in the Big Reunion Christmas tour in December.
Natasha was speaking to the MailOnline as part of her bid to raise awareness for Macmillan Cancer Support.
Hamilton is helping to support Macmillan’s new fundraising event, 'A Really Good Night In', which will take place nationally on the evening of Friday 26 April.
Cancer has affected Natasha’s family ever since she can remember - her nannies, aunts, uncles, both mother and father-in-law have all been diagnosed with or died from cancer.
 
They're back: Hamilton revealed they'll still be concentrating on the band once the Big Reunion tour wraps upThey're back: Hamilton revealed they'll still be concentrating on the band once the Big Reunion tour wraps up
And so she wants to do everything she can to raise funds and awareness to help beat cancer, including holding her own Really Good Night In with her friends.
She told the MailOnline about the campaign: 'Well, it's all about having a really good night in. We want everybody to get all your friends and their family around, either have a dinner party or a girlie pamper night or a poker night - or anything that just gets you to interact with your friends. And charge on the door or put a donation in the pot. It's just a new fun way of bringing awareness.
'As a young child my grandmother had throat cancer so that was many years of tough times.
'We have to be really careful, we have to have more checks. One in three people will end up with some form of cancer, it's a lot of people. And we need awareness and that's what Macmillan gives.'
 
New tunes: Natasha has admitted she's been thrilled with the response and getting back on stageNew tunes: Natasha has admitted she's been thrilled with the response and getting back on stage
Speaking of her own Really Good Night In, she added: 'I'm going to have a dinner party. I'm going to cook a dinner, I've got my meal planned already, mozzarella and dried tomatoes and I'm going to have champagne and nice pedicures and manicures.
'I've been so busy with the girls and working so it will be a nice night for us all. It's just close family and friends this time. I wish I could invite my Big Reunion family but we all live miles away from each other. We should do another night and get them to donate as well.
The event focuses on close friendships and could include a variety of themes from a girly pamper night; a chance to get crafty and swap skills or simply drinks and nibbles, to help make sure no one goes through cancer alone.
Natasha Hamilton will be having A Really Good Night In for Macmillan Cancer Support on Friday 26 April. Why not host your own at home? Whether it’s a few drinks and nibbles, a girly pamper night or a chance to get crafty and swap skills, sign up and help Macmillan ensure no one goes through cancer alone. Visit www.macmillan.org.uk/nightin or call 0845 070 1318.

'I pray for him': Justin Bieber's mother Patti Mallette

She's known for being a hands-on mother to her son Justin Bieber.
But even Pattie Mallette doesn't quite know what to make of her 19-year-old son's recent erratic behaviour.
'Him being 19, you know, I've just gotta let go a little and let him make some of his own decisions,' the 37-year-old told Access Hollywood Live. 'He's growing up. He's 19. He's not my baby.'
Scroll down for video
Turned to faith: Justin Bieber's mother Patti Mallette admitted during an E! News interview on Wednesday that she has turned to her faith as she tries to make sense of her son's recent erratic behaviour
Turned to faith: Justin Bieber's mother Patti Mallette admitted during an E! News interview on Wednesday that she has turned to her faith as she tries to make sense of her son's recent erratic behaviour

Unaware: The 37-year-old said she found out about his recent assault charge on the internet
Unaware: The 37-year-old said she found out about his recent assault charge on the internet

Patti, who brought Justin up as a single mother, made the comments while promoting her new short film Crescendo, which she produced.
She admitted that she has turned to her faith as she tries to make sense of her son's actions, which include allegedly assaulting his California neighbour.
'Of course I pray for him and I encourage him,' she later told E! News. 'I can't really speak to how he handles that part of his life.'
Despite she and her son's famously close relationship, Patti hinted she plays less of a prominent role in his life than she once did.
'Sometimes I learn about things on the internet the same as everybody else,' she said, referring to the assault incident. 'And that was the case this time.'
Patti's comments come a day after her son was accused of spitting in his neighbour's face during an altercation.
The neighbour - a 47-year-old successful businessman and father of three - is said to have asked Justin on Tuesday to slow down his driving in the quiet neighbourhood in Calabasas, California, leading to Justin responding with foul language.
Apparently he said, 'Get the f**k out of here. I'm gonna f**king kill you,' at the same time projecting saliva onto the man's face. 
Candid: Despite she and her son's famously close relationship, Patti admitted during the interview that she sometimes learns about his antic via the internet
Candid: Despite she and her son's famously close relationship, Patti admitted during the interview that she sometimes learns about his antic via the internet


Under investigation: Justin has been accused of assaulting his neighbour in Calabasas, California after the man asked him to slow down in driving in the exclusive neighbourhood
Under investigation: Justin has been accused of assaulting his neighbour in Calabasas, California after the man asked him to slow down in driving in the exclusive neighbourhood
Meanwhile, Justin has blamed his recent behaviour on youthful mishaps.
'The biggest misconception about me is that I'm a bad person,' Bieber told US Weekly on Wednesday. 'I get upset about that. I have a big heart. I want to be a good role model, but some people want me to fail.'
'I'm young and I make mistakes. That's part of growing up,' he said, referring to when he walked shirtless in London as well as when he wore a gas mask. 'I mess up sometimes. It's part of growing up.'
Justin also hinted that he wants a break from the spotlight, admitting he isn't sure what his next career move should be since wrapping up his latest tour in Europe earlier this month.
'I'm thinking about my next album, next tour. Or maybe I'll take a break. I'm figuring it out. Isn't that what you're supposed to do at 19?'
Taking a step back: Justin, pictured in London earlier this month, has hinted that he wants to take a break from the spotlight since wrapping up his latest tour in Europe
Taking a step back: Justin, pictured in London earlier this month, has hinted that he wants to take a break from the spotlight since wrapping up his latest tour in Europe

Justin has been in hot water quite a lot in recent times.
Earlier this year a security guard filed a lawsuit against the Beauty And The Beat singer claiming not only did he owe him  $420,000 in unpaid wages but that the singer repetitively struck him.
In October Los Angeles prosecutors declined to file charges against Bieber after finding insufficient evidence that he punched and kicked a photographer outside a movie theater near his home a month earlier.
Justin was also caught on film earlier this month while in London losing his cool and threatening a photographer.
The 5ft7in star had to held back as he rushed photographers yelling: 'What the f**k you say? What did you say? I'll f**king beat the f**k out of you, man!'
As for what's ahead, the star told Us Weekly:
'I'm thinking about my next album, next tour. Or maybe I'll take a break,' he said. 'I'm figuring it out. Isn't that what you're supposed to do at 19?'

Take it from me: Christina Aguilera, meanwhile, has urged Justin to take time out to recharge himself
Take it from me: Christina Aguilera, meanwhile, has urged Justin to take time out to recharge himself
Justin was recently urged to take some time off to recharge by former child star Christina Aguilera.
'You live life and it's hard to grow up in front of a camera. You learn as you get older to take moments for yourself, step away from the camera, re-inspire yourself as an artist, rejuvenate and refresh,' said the 32-year-old singer.
'I would tell [Justin], don't let anything morph you or push you around or have you be something you're not. I've always been really honest and true to my own roots and been really grounded, not letting myself stray too much.'
Meanwhile Jon M. Chu, who directed Justin's Never Say Never documentary, insisted the youngster is fine and just 'figuring stuff out'.
'I love the kid. The kid's a good guy. He's amazingly talented. And he's growing up. He's figuring his stuff out,' said the director.
'I think it's good to keep him in check in everything he does. I know he takes that as well and grows as a human being. But yeah, I think he's a good kid and he'll continue to be a good kid.'

Don't give up the day job! Kelly Brook does her best dad dancing

There's no denying that Kelly Brook has a number of discernible talents.
But it doesn't seem that dancing is top of the list, as she showed off a few cringe-worthy moves in a behind-the-scenes video from her New Look Spring Summer 2013 shoot.
The model vamped it up in the short black and white film, posing for the camera in a series of staged scenes in between her photo shoot for the new collection.
 
Spinning around: Kelly Brook does a little dad dancing as she's filmed behind-the-scenes at the New Look Spring Summer 2013 collection shoot in MiamiSpinning around: Kelly Brook does a little dad dancing as she's filmed behind-the-scenes at the New Look Spring Summer 2013 collection shoot in Miami
The film starts with the Celebrity Juice team captain poking her head out from behind a palm tree while on location in Miami, giving her best sultry pose.
 
She then heads into a beach bar where she's handed a refreshing drink in a large coconut, taking a sip through the straw while looking at the camera.
The star wears clothes from the high street store's collection, looking stylish in a number of retro, Americana outfits, twirling around to show them off.
 
Still smiling: Kelly grins at the camera despite the slightly cringe-worthy moves that she's doingStill smiling: Kelly grins at the camera despite the slightly cringe-worthy moves that she's doing

 
The shoulder shuffle: The model shrugs her shoulder up and down during her impromptu routineThe shoulder shuffle: The model shrugs her shoulder up and down during her impromptu routine

 
Throwing some shapes: Wearing a retro style New Look outfit the 33-year-old spins herself aroundThrowing some shapes: Wearing a retro style New Look outfit the 33-year-old spins herself around
Wearing a cardigan and black trousers Kelly tries her hand at a little dancing on her own in front of the camera, spinning herself around.
Instead of showing off her prowess on the dance floor, the 33-year-old seemed a little awkward as she does a little shoulder shrug.
She's then filmed walking down the street in a plunging black playsuit, being snapped by photographs as she struts along, flicking her hair.

Toddler mauled by 7 dogs, is Dead

The Dogs
Toddler mauled by 7 dogs, Toddler who slipped outside through a doggie door was mauled to death by her family's seven dogs in the backyard while the attack went unnoticed by the child's mother and other relatives inside their home, a southeast Georgia sheriff said Thursday.

Bryan County Sheriff Clyde Smith said the child's grandmother told investigators she was lying in bed when she heard the pit bulls and pit bull mixes barking, and she looked outside her window to see them dragging the girl. Smith said she began yelling, "They're killing Monica!"

It was too late. Monica Renee Laminack, who would have turned 2 years old June 1, was dead by the time an ambulance arrived Wednesday evening. Animal control officers used drugs to euthanize the dogs at the home on a rural road in tiny Ellabell, about 30 miles west of Savannah. Deputies found the girl's shoes, diaper and shredded clothing scattered across the fenced-in yard, Smith said.

"They had dragged the child all over the yard and chewed her and chewed her," Smith said. "They tore her clothes all up."

The toddler lived in a modest, two-story house tucked away from the main road. The sheriff said four generations of the same family shared the home, including the child's 18-year-old mother, grandparents and two uncles who are still young boys.

The girl's grandmother, Michelle McIntyre, sat weeping on the tailgate of a pickup outside the home Thursday. Summer Laminack, the child's mother, sat next to her staring silently at the ground.

"She's in shock," Barbara Brauda, a friend who was visiting the family, told The Associated Press before a man approached and asked a reporter to leave the property. "She hasn't been doing a whole lot of crying because she's still numb."

The sheriff said at least three adult relatives were inside the home when the dogs killed the girl outside. No criminal charges had been filed Thursday. Smith said he expects charges will be brought after he's had a chance to discuss the case with the district attorney and the girl's family has been given time to hold her funeral.

"I can see child neglect at the very minimum," Smith said.

Relatives told investigators the dogs that mauled the child were essentially family pets — a mother dog and six offspring from a litter she had about 16 months ago, the sheriff said.

The dogs had their own doggie doors that let them come in and out of the house as they pleased. The family told deputies the dogs had never attacked a person, though one of them might have killed a cat, Smith said. He said relatives insisted the toddler would play with the dogs and even "use them as pillows while watching TV."

Smith said the dogs looked healthy and well-fed, and investigators found no signs they were being used as fighting dogs by their owners.

"They said they have never been aggressive to other people," he said. "Why they got started I have no idea."

We are not married!': Angelina Jolie says that she


She had removed her $250,000 engagement ring for her trip to Rwanda where she was acting as an  UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador.
And while it appeared that she had taken the ring off for her official duties, many speculated that perhaps she and fiance Brad Pitt had already secretly tied the knot.
But the 37-year-old actress set the record straight when she touched down at LAX airport on Wednesday following her trip to the Congo.
 
Setting the record straight: Angelina Jolie confirmed that she and fiance Brad Pitt had not secretly married as she touched down in Los Angeles on Wednesday Setting the record straight: Angelina Jolie confirmed that she and fiance Brad Pitt had not secretly married as she touched down in Los Angeles on Wednesday
When asked by TMZ if her ring was in fact a wedding ring, she flatly answered 'no' as she climbed into her awaiting chauffeured car.
Smiling as she headed out of the terminals at LAX airport, the Oscar-winning star would have looked like any other traveller if it wasn't for her famous good looks.
Sparking rumours: Speculation ran rife that the couple had wed when she wore this gold band on her wedding finger for her trip to Rwanda Sparking rumours: Speculation ran rife that the couple had wed when she wore this gold band on her wedding finger for her trip to Rwanda
She had travelled comfortably on the trip home wearing a billowing black maxi dress paired with an oversized blazer.
She also strutted along in the same black loafers she had been wearing for several days as well as the same simple pieces of gold jewellery around her neck and on her wrists.
With barely any make-up on her flawless complexion, she shielded her eyes with one of her pairs of trusty Aviator sunglasses.
Angelina was in the African country of Rwanda for several days. 

She had removed her $250,000 bling for the trip and wore a gold band in it's place.

Her original expensive ring in question features an oblong-shaped rock which is inset into a thick ribbed band.
Brad designed the ring for the mother of his six children in collaboration with jeweller Robert Procop who broke the news of the engagement in a statement last year.
 
Beaming: The actress was beaming as she emerged from LAX on Wednesday Beaming: The actress was beaming as she emerged from LAX on Wednesday
 
Standing out: The Oscar-winning star would have looked like any other traveller if it wasn't for her famous good looks
Standing out: The Oscar-winning star would have looked like any other traveller if it wasn't for her famous good looks
 
Standing out: The Oscar-winning star would have looked like any other traveller if it wasn't for her famous good looks

 
Comfortable flying attire: The 37-year-old actress travelled comfortably on the trip home wearing a billowing black maxi dress paired with an oversized blazer Comfortable flying attire: The 37-year-old actress travelled comfortably on the trip home wearing a billowing black maxi dress paired with an oversized blazer
He said: 'Brad had a specific vision for this ring, which he realised over a year-long collaboration with Robert,' Procop’s team said in a statement.
'He wanted every aspect of it to be perfect.'
The Hollywood power couple later confirmed their engagement in a statement - and their six children were said to be especially happy about the news.
 
In good spirits: It appears that Angelina was looking forward to being reunited with her familyIn good spirits: It appears that Angelina was looking forward to being reunited with her family
Their spokeswoman said: 'It is a promise for the future and their kids are very happy. There's no date set at this time.'
Procop said: 'Brad had a specific vision for this ring, which he realised over a yearlong collaboration. He wanted every aspect of it to be perfect, so I was able to locate a diamond of the finest quality and cut it to an exact custom size and shape to suite Angelina's hand.
He continued: 'Brad was always heavily involved, overseeing every aspect of the creative design evolution.
Flawless: With barely any make-up on her flawless complexion, she shielded her eyes with one of her pairs of trusty Aviator sunglasses
Flawless: With barely any make-up on her flawless complexion, she shielded her eyes with one of her pairs of trusty Aviator sunglasses
'The side diamonds are specially cut to encircle her finger. Each diamond is of the highest gem quality.'
Experts estimate the ring cost around $250,000.
On Sunday during her trip to the Congo, the actress was seen in a reflective mood as she laid wreaths at the Gisozi genocide memorial in the Rwandan capital of Kigali.
 
Super bling: Brad Pitt gave Angelina her $250,000 engagement ring last year Super bling: Brad Pitt gave Angelina her $250,000 engagement ring last year

 
Swap: Angelina had swapped the impressive jewel for a simple gold band during her official trip
Swap: Angelina had swapped the impressive jewel for a simple gold band during her official trip
 
Swap: Angelina had swapped the impressive jewel for a simple gold band during her official trip
 
 
Family affair: Brad and Angelina out with their brood in London back in December Family affair: Brad and Angelina out with their brood in London back in December
The star was joined by UK Foreign Secretary William Hague in her capacity as UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador.
The ceremony took place close to the 19th anniversary of the country's 1994 genocide in which an estimated 800,000 victims died as a result of tribal violence between Hutus and Tutsis.
With her light brown hair loose around her shoulders, the actress wore a black suit and top, again with minimal make-up teamed a simple gold necklace for the ceremony.
 
Laying down flowers: Angelina Jolie lay wreaths Gisozi genocide memorial in Kigali, the capital of Rwanda on Sunday Laying down flowers: Angelina Jolie lay wreaths Gisozi genocide memorial in Kigali, the capital of Rwanda on Sunday
For her trip, Angelina was not wearing her extravagant $250,000 engagement ring from her fiancé Brad Pitt.
The star was spotted without her bling as she arrived first in Rwanda and also paid a visit to the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Instead The Girl Interrupted star wore a more modest gold band on her wedding finger.
While there is no news that the couple have in fact already tied the knot, it appeared that Angelina had merely exchanged the jewellery for her official UN work duties.
 
Back to black: The actress sported a black jacket over a black top and a simple gold necklace for her visitBack to black: The actress sported  a black jacket over a black top and a simple gold necklace for her visit
According to USA Today, Angelina was in the African country acting as a representative for the UN's refugee agency.
Hague and the star met with survivors of rape and sexual violence, which is frequent in the country.
Their trip to central Africa was aimed at forcing the Group of Eight world powers to address the issue more seriously.
Hague said he would be making the issue his priority when he hosts the annual meeting of G8 foreign ministers next month in London.
 
A handout photo released on Philanthropist: Angelina sits next to Foreign Secretary William Hague as they listen to refugees during a visit to he Nzolo refugee camp on MondayA handout photo released on Philanthropist: Angelina sits next to Foreign Secretary William Hague as they listen to refugees during a visit to he Nzolo refugee camp on Monday
'This visit is about hearing first hand from people who have endured rape and sexual violence during the conflict in the eastern DRC,' Angelina said.
'We want to learn the lessons that their experience holds for how the world can protect thousands of women, men and children at risk of rape in many other conflict zones.
'And we want to persuade governments around the world to give this issue the attention it deserves.
'Unless the world acts, we will always be reacting to atrocities, treating survivors rather than preventing rape in the first place.'
Angelina and Mr Hague are calling on the G8 to agree that rape and sexual violence constitute breaches of the Geneva Conventions governing warfare.
They also want a new international protocol on the documentation and investigation of the issue.
 
Swapping rings: Angelina has been spotted wearing a less expensive version of her wedding ring during her recent trip to the Democratic Republic of Congo and RwandaSwapping rings: Angelina has been spotted wearing a less expensive version of her wedding ring during her recent trip to the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda
'More often than not the international community looks away, the perpetrators of these brutal crimes walk free and the cycle of injustice and conflict is repeated. We have to shatter this culture of impunity,' Hague said.
'It is time for real, meaningful action by the governments of the world to say that the use of rape as a weapon of war is unacceptable, to bring perpetrators to justice and to lift the stigma from survivors.
'This is my personal priority for the meeting of G8 foreign ministers.'
The campaign will also be taken to the UN Security Council in June and the UN General Assembly in September.
Discussions on solutions to the conflict with political leaders are also set to take place.
 
Taking the role seriously: Jolie joined British Foreign Secretary William Hague on a visit to the Democratic Republic of Congo on Monday in a bid to encourage world powers to do more to tackle rape and sexual assault in war zones
Taking the role seriously: Jolie joined British Foreign Secretary William Hague on a visit to the Democratic Republic of Congo on Monday in a bid to encourage world powers to do more to tackle rape and sexual assault in war zones

Could he get any cuter? After getting a fluffy kitten,

Just in case his adoring fans weren't in love with him enough, Tom Daley has just succeeded in  increasing his likeability factor tenfold.

The Olympic diver made his Twitter followers swoon as he posted an adorable picture of the new addition to his family on the site - a micro pig.

Tom, 18, can be seen cradling the tiny animal in his arms as he smiles widely at the camera - clearly thrilled with his new pet.
 
The cutest: Tom Daley has shared a picture of himself and his new micro-pig called Robby-Ray The cutest: Tom Daley has shared a picture of himself and his new micro-pig called Robby-Ray
Even though the pint-sized athlete is small himself, the minute pig is dwarfed in his arms.

Along with the photograph of the pig Tom added the caption: 'My pig is called Robby-Ray for those asking :D'.

The piglet would have cost Tom somewhere in the region of £200, and will grow to anything between 16in and 22 inches in height.
But Tom isn't the only celebrity fan of the tiny animals. Other stars thought to have splashed out on the pets to add to their families include Paris Hilton and reportedly David and Victoria Beckham.
 
The sweetest: Tom also took in a small kitten that he wants his twitter followers to nameThe sweetest: Tom also took in a small kitten that he wants his twitter followers to name
Pig breeder Jane Croft told Mail Online previously: 'People love them. Not only do they have these incredibly cute faces but, contrary to popular opinion, they're really clean.

'They're easier to house train than a cat. They're incredibly intelligent.'

She added: 'People have got to know that micro pigs are not fashion accessories.

'I can't bear it when people say, "I want one with more spots" or "I don't like the black ones". Those people don't get one at all.'
 
Adorable animals: Tom could start a farm if he gets any more cute animals in at his houseAdorable animals: Tom could start a farm if he gets any more cute animals in at his house
Robby-Ray is not the first animal that Daley has taken into his home as he recently acquired a pet kitten.

His feline friend is a girl and Tom asked his followers on Twitter to come up with a good name for the adorable pet.
Meanwhile, the diving champion's now-famous Team GB swimming trunks have gone on display at the Museum Of London from Thursday onwards as part of a London 2012 exhibition.
 
Famous: The diving champion's Team GB swimming trunks have gone on display at the Museum Of London from Thursday onwards as part of a London 2012 exhibitionFamous: The diving champion's Team GB swimming trunks have gone on display at the Museum Of London from Thursday onwards as part of a London 2012 exhibition

 
Medal-winner: Tom took home a bronze medal from the London 2012 Olympic Games Medal-winner: Tom took home a bronze medal from the London 2012 Olympic Games