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May 28, 2013 | By Shan Li
A Redlands broker allegedly stole $4.2 million from two client accounts, including one set up for an Alzheimer's patient, and gave the money to two friends who spent lavishly on a vacation home and casino gambling, according to a complaint by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. John Thomas Thornes, 46, and his firm, Thornes & Associates Inc. Investment Securities, are accused of dipping into two customer trust accounts over more than two years through illicit transactions masquerading as loans, according to the complaint filed Tuesday.
May 21, 2013 | By Richard Fausset, Los Angeles Times
MEXICO CITY - The Guatemalan high court's decision to annul the genocide conviction of former military dictator Efrain Rios Montt on Tuesday revived questions about his responsibility for the slaughter of some 1,700 ethnic Maya people. The ruling late Monday, which voided Rios Montt's May 10 conviction, also raises questions about the kind of retrial he might have and about a judicial system that has long been considered weak, corrupt, prone to impunity and susceptible to pressure from powerful outside forces.
May 15, 2013 | By Jeffrey Fleishman, Los Angeles Times
CAIRO - His phone doesn't ring and his charts are gloomy. But every day Mostafa Ismail, a financial broker with a hangman's demeanor, steps into the Egyptian stock exchange hoping for positive blips. They are rare in a nation where revolution has brought two years of political instability and turned "investor confidence" into a quaint phrase from a more prosperous era. "The market has declined as far as it can go," said Ismail, his tie loosened, a string of numbers before him. "There's no one to trade or buy or sell with.
May 10, 2013 | By Kenneth R. Harney
WASHINGTON - How hot is hot when it comes to housing markets across the country right now? Crazy hot: Some houses sell within days, sometimes within hours, of listing. Then there are the growing numbers that sell even before they formally hit the market - sold through a controversial technique known as "pocket listing. " What's a pocket listing? Essentially it's a private, "off-market" listing, often of short duration. Instead of putting the house on the local Multiple Listing Service, which exposes it to a vast number of shoppers and agents via real estate websites, agents restrict access to information about the house to their own buyer clients or colleagues in the same brokerage, hoping for a quick, full-price sale.
April 25, 2013 | Chris Dufresne
College football commissioners were going to end their three-day unity conference in Pasadena with a round of "Kumbaya" at the hotel's valet carport. That was before the consulting firm that dreamed up "College Football Playoff" suggested something more generic from "The White Album. " Ob - la - di, Ob - la - da. Kidding aside, it was a good week, mostly, to be the kings. The leaders from the power five conferences, led by the Southeastern Conference's Mike Slive and the Big Ten's Jim Delany, were masterfully able to convey the illusion of symbiotic overhaul.
April 15, 2013 | Elaine Woo, Los Angeles Times
Frank Bank, who as Clarence "Lumpy" Rutherford served as the dim-witted foil to "Beaver" Cleaver and brother Wally on the classic TV comedy "Leave It to Beaver," died Saturday. He was 71. A spokesman for Hillside Memorial Park in Los Angeles confirmed Bank's death but did not disclose where he died or the cause. Bank had a number of illnesses and was hospitalized recently in Rancho Mirage, said Jerry Mathers who played Beaver Cleaver in the popular series that ran from 1957 to 1963.
March 22, 2013 | By Edmund Sanders and Christi Parsons
JERUSALEM - Spurred by President Obama as he concluded his three-day visit to Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu formally apologized to Turkey over the 2010 killing by Israeli soldiers of nine Turkish activists aboard a Gaza Strip-bound protest ship, U.S. and Israeli officials said Friday. The apology, made during a 30-minute telephone call to Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan as Obama looked on, clears the way for a diplomatic reconciliation between the two former allies, whose ties were largely frozen after the high-seas incident.
March 21, 2013 | By David Lauter, Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON - President Obama's involvement in the tortuous Middle East peace process can be divided into three chapters, two of which opened with high-profile speeches to audiences of young people. The first began four years ago in Cairo, where Obama called for a "new beginning" in U.S. relations with the world's Muslims. The push for new peace negotiations that ensued ended in failure, followed by a second chapter in which Obama distanced himself from the Israeli-Palestinian arena.
March 3, 2013 | By Dan Loumena
Unfortunately your browser does not support IFrames. Dennis Rodman, former NBA star and seemingly a lifelong bad boy, can add a new moniker to his name: ambassador. Rodman has just returned from a trip to North Korea with the Harlem Globetrotters and he has a message for President Obama: Give North Korean leader Kim Jong Un a call. The former high-energy forward with the champion Detroit Pistons and Chicago Bulls and later the Lakers, met for several hours over the course of two days with 28-year-old Kim Jong Un, who took control in December 2011 of a country that for decades had been dominated by the dictatorships of his father and grandfather.
January 26, 2013 | Bloomberg News
The U.S. share of insurance losses from worldwide catastrophes more than doubled in 2012 as Superstorm Sandy lashed the Northeast and the nation suffered its worst drought since the 1930s. The U.S. accounted for about 90%, or $65 billion, of $72 billion in global losses, according to the Impact Forecasting unit of Aon, the London insurance broker. That compares with 40% in 2011, when Japan had higher-than-usual costs because of an earthquake and tsunami. The location and climate of the U.S. make the country more vulnerable than most developed nations to hurricanes, tornadoes, wildfires and drought.
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