CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 2, 2012 |
A Mexican toy businessman on Wednesday pleaded guilty to playing a role in a cross-border scheme that laundered millions of dollars in drug proceeds from Mexican narcotics trafficking organizations. According to federal prosecutors, Luis Ernesto Flores Rivera, a 54-year-old man who ran a toy store in Guadalajara, was a cog in the elaborate operation to funnel and conceal drug proceeds by way of pastel-colored plush toys. Rivera was one of eight defendants indicted in April for the scheme that authorities said was centered around city of Industry wholesaler Woody Toys.
August 1, 2012 |
Two online poker websites accused of fraud and money laundering have reached a settlement under which customers will be reimbursed for the money they deposited with the sites. In a complicated deal, PokerStars, based on Britain's Isle of Man, agreed to acquire Full Tilt Poker and pay back Full Tilt Poker's customers. U.S. customers will be reimbursed from a $547-million government pool to be paid by PokerStars, while non-U.S. customers will be paid $184 million directly by PokerStars.
July 3, 2012 |
The founder of the defunct gambling site Full Tilt Poker, which allegedly owes $350 million to Internet poker players, was arrested in New York as he came back into the country. Raymond Bitar, who was an equities trader in Los Angeles before establishing the offshore website, was taken into custody Monday at John F. Kennedy International Airport. In addition to previous charges of bank fraud, money laundering and gambling, an indictment unsealed before his arrest charged him with defrauding customers.
May 23, 2012 |
ABC's"Revenge"has generated critical and fan support thanks to a healthy mix of soap opera camp and cold, calculated treachery. But there's another ingredient that bowls us over: the serious partying these people do. Party coverage is a staple here at the Ministry, and we're impressed with the social calendar this Hamptons-set potboiler maintains. Need some proof? Since its January return, the show has zeroed in on Emily VanCamp's lead character Emily Thorne and her taking down of the powerful Grayson family -- led by icy matriarch Victoria (Madeleine Stowe)
May 7, 2012 |
The trustee representing victims of Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme is now seeking $255.3 million from the investment advisor's family. Irving H. Picard is expanding an existing lawsuit to also include three of Madoff's sons' spouses. The suit claims that the women should have been aware of and reported Madoff's fraud, which bilked investors of $20 billion. The suit, which in November sought $226.4 million from relatives working at Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities, was amended on Friday in U.S. bankruptcy court in Manhattan.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 14, 2012 |
Los Angeles County prosecutors say they are probing possible campaign money laundering that may be connected to a local water board member who is part of a powerful political family in the City of Commerce. The inquiry into the financial dealings of Art Chacon, a board member at the Central Basin Municipal Water District, comes in response to a Times story that reported on his fundraising for a political action committee in 2008. The committee was advised by Chacon's brother, Hector, who is a school board member in Montebello and veteran campaign consultant in southeast L.A. County.
March 19, 2012 |
Perhaps it was the multiple bags of $500 in coins used to buy lottery tickets that tipped authorities off to the theft. Two former Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority employees pleaded guilty Monday to stealing at least $445,000 from subway fare machines in Virginia, Maryland and Washington. John Vincent Haile, 52, a former transit officer from Virginia, and Horace Dexter McDade, 58, a Maryland resident who worked as a revenue collection technician for the transit agency, pleaded guilty in federal court in Alexandria, Va., to theft concerning programs receiving federal funds and conspiring to commit money laundering, according to the U.S. attorney's office. The men face a maximum penalty of 10 years on the theft charges and 20 years on the conspiracy charges when they are sentenced June 15. They were arrested in January after authorities observed them hiding and later retrieving bags of change from beneath an overpass.
November 27, 2011 |
The U.S. government has blacklisted more Mexican individuals and companies this year than any other single country or group — and that includes North Korea, Iran, Syria and Al Qaeda. Three hundred Mexicans and 180 Mexican companies are on the so-called kingpin designation list, the Treasury Department's roster of people and entities suspected of laundering money for drug traffickers or working for them in other capacities. U.S. banks, companies and people are barred from doing business with them.
November 24, 2011 |
The last time he was in Panama, former dictator Manuel Noriega was being bombarded around the clock with deafening pop and heavy metal music as American troops tried to flush him out of the Vatican diplomatic mission where he had taken refuge. Now, after more than two decades in prison in the United States and in France, the ex-general who ran the strategic Central American state with an iron fist between 1983 and 1989 is likely to be back home for Christmas after a Paris court on Wednesday approved his extradition.
November 22, 2011 |
The Obama administration slapped Iran with a new round of sanctions for its alleged nuclear and terrorist activities, but stopped short of the tough economic punishments favored by many in Congress. In an announcement coordinated with Britain and Canada, U.S. officials said they were imposing new punishments aimed at Iran's petrochemical sector and organizations involved in the country's nuclear program or terrorism, such as the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps and its elite Quds Force.