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July 16, 2006 | Chris Pasles
TOO good to be true? Apparently. There was considerable fanfare this month when a number of news organizations proclaimed the discovery of what they said was a print of the only authentic photograph of Constanze Mozart, the composer's widow, taken when she was 78. But scholars have now labeled the claim a hoax.
August 27, 1988 | United Press International
A United Press International story on Thursday chronicling a series of accidents reportedly suffered by a man as the result of his wife's efforts to kill a cockroach cannot be substantiated. "The story evidently is the result of a hoax," said Leon Daniel, UPI's managing editor for international news, in Washington. "We regret moving it on our wires." UPI picked up the story, which was published by The Times, from the Jerusalem Post.
June 15, 1999 | RICHARD MAROSI
A radio call of shots being fired near the Brea Civic Center turned out to be a hoax but forced police to close the area for about half an hour Monday. Sgt. Tom Flanagan said police restricted access to the area--which includes the police station and City Hall--until officials had determined that the call was false. About 3:30 p.m., a caller posing as an officer had reported over the police frequency that shots had been fired near the Civic Center.
January 20, 1999
A Calabasas accountant accused of calling in a bogus anthrax threat to avoid appearing in bankruptcy court pleaded not guilty Tuesday during his arraignment in Los Angeles federal court. Harvey Craig Spelkin, 53, is scheduled to go on trial March 2. He remains free on $50,000 bond. Spelkin allegedly stopped at a pay phone on his way to the federal bankruptcy court in Woodland Hills on Dec. 18 and telephoned the anthrax threat.
May 6, 2006 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
A Mexican national pleaded guilty Friday to playing a hoax on U.S. authorities by making 911 calls claiming he was preparing to smuggle a nuclear warhead, as well as Iraqi and Chinese citizens, into the country. Jose Ernesto Beltran-Quinonez, 34, faces a maximum five years in prison and a $250,000 fine when sentenced. He was arrested in Mexico in February. He claimed he was smuggling the warhead through a tunnel at Calexico, officials said. No tunnel was found.
February 20, 2004 | From Times Wire Reports
The latest reported shooting on an Ohio highway was a hoax, not the work of a sniper who has targeted two dozen vehicles and buildings in recent months, police said. Investigators said Richard Adams, 33, apparently fired at his own vehicle and then reported the incident as if he were a victim of the serial shooter.
July 14, 2004 | From Times Wire Reports
Just days after claiming she was the victim of an anti-Semitic attack that shocked France, a young mother confessed that she had fabricated the story, authorities said. The woman had claimed she was robbed on a suburban train by a gang that mistook her for a Jew and scrawled swastikas on her body. She said about 20 witnesses failed to help her. Police could find no clues or witnesses and questioned the woman. There was no immediate explanation of her motives for making up the story.
January 7, 2003 | From Times Wire Reports
The FBI has concluded that the information which led to a hunt for five men thought to have entered the United States illegally on Christmas Eve was fabricated by an informant, ABC News reported. Citing unnamed sources, ABC said the informant identified as Michael John Hamdani, who was arrested in Canada, made up the story about men who sought false passports in an attempt to clear himself on criminal charges he was facing in the U.S. An FBI spokesman declined comment.
For bankrupt Orange County, it was an offer that sounded too good to be true. And a proposal by a mysterious Taiwan firm to bail the county out of its $1.7-billion hole seems to be just that. Earlier this week, news surfaced that a Taiwanese outfit called Huang Neumg Industry had expressed interest in loaning Orange County $3 billion at a bargain-basement 4% interest rate. Toshio Kojima, the firm's "international director," made the pitch in a letter to an Orange County official.
May 18, 1993 | From Reuters
British newspapers may have been duped by pranksters into publishing a report that security services bugged a conversation between Prince Charles and Princess Diana, the respected Times of London newspaper said Monday. The top-selling Sun caused a sensation last week when it published what it said was a transcript of a conversation between the heir to the throne and his estranged wife in which they bickered and referred to a possible custody battle for their children.
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