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December 19, 2011 | By Tracy Wilkinson and Ken Ellingwood, Los Angeles Times
It's fast becoming the money-laundering method of choice for Mexican drug traffickers, U.S. and Mexican officials say, and it involves truckloads not of cash, but of fruit and fabric. Faced with new restrictions on the use of U.S. cash in Mexico, drug cartels are using an ingenious scheme to move their ill-gotten dollars south under the guise of legitimate cross-border commerce. U.S. and Mexican authorities say trade-based money-laundering may be the most clever — and hardest to detect — way in which traffickers are washing and distributing their billion-dollar profits.
November 30, 2011 | By Gary Klein
USC quarterback Matt Barkley said Wednesday that he has submitted paperwork to the NFL. Remain calm, USC fans. Barkley, at Coach Lane Kiffin's direction, simply made the standard evaluation request that most draft-eligible players file after their junior seasons. Nevertheless, it was the first step in what will be a weeks-long process as Barkley decides whether to turn pro or return for a final college season. "There's not really a timetable," he said in an interview on campus.
November 22, 2011 | By Walter Hamilton, Los Angeles Times
Oaktree Capital Management took another step forward in its planned initial public offering, but analysts believe volatile economic conditions could stall its market debut until next year. The Los Angeles investment giant filed more paperwork Monday with the Securities and Exchange Commission as it moves toward an IPO that could total more than $100 million. It is one of the world's largest money managers, with $73 billion of assets under management. The regulatory filings did not specify when Oaktree might pursue a public listing.
October 19, 2011 | By Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
A proposal to allow some creditworthy homeowners to refinance underwater mortgages has become part of settlement talks between government officials and major banks over botched foreclosure paperwork. California would be a major beneficiary of such a plan because it leads the nation with 2.1 million mortgages in which the homeowner owes more than the value of the home, according to Santa Ana industry research firm CoreLogic Inc. The proposal has been floated in hopes of luring state Atty.
July 31, 2011 | By Rick Rojas, Los Angeles Times
It's the first rule of thumb for any aspiring UFO investigator: Keep an open mind. "We all want to believe, we all want to believe bad," said David MacDonald, a certified investigator with the Mutual UFO Network. "But you've got to look at the evidence. You've got to come at this like a scientific researcher. " On Friday, MacDonald and dozens of like-minded individuals filled an Irvine hotel conference room to discuss the finer points of investigating the inexplicable — or at least that which cannot be explained in terrestrial terms.
July 13, 2011 | Jack Dolan
The highest-paid state employee in California last year, a prison surgeon who took home $777,423, has a history of mental illness, was fired once for alleged incompetence and has not been allowed to treat an inmate for six years because medical supervisors don't trust his clinical skills. Since July 2005, Dr. Jeffrey Rohlfing has mostly been locked out of his job -- on paid leave or fired or fighting his termination -- at High Desert State Prison in Susanville, state records show.
June 27, 2011 | Cathryn Delude
The days of the old-fashioned family doctor who knows us intimately and treats our kids -- and our grandkids -- are fading fast. Instead, we're more likely to find ourselves searching for a doctor who will take our insurance, then waiting weeks for an appointment and hours in the waiting and exam rooms. Our doctor will rush in and rush through a series of pokes and prods and a checklist of questions, check off some codes on our record, then rush out again. None of this makes us very happy -- or, for that matter, the doctor either.
June 25, 2011 | By Helene Elliott
The Kings hit a snag while trying to grant Ryan Smyth's wish to return home to Western Canada when a tentative trade with the Oilers was derailed by concerns related to the post-concussion status of Edmonton forward Gilbert Brule. The Kings, surprised when Smyth asked out for family reasons, agreed to take a late draft pick and Brule's $1.85-million salary-cap hit to offset the Oilers' accepting Smyth's $6.25-million cap hit. The Kings planned to quickly trade, waive or buy out Brule to regain cap space to acquire a replacement for Smyth, who scored 23 goals last season.
June 23, 2011 | By Mike Bresnahan and Lance Pugmire
Just when you thought you had seen it all regarding Ron Artest ... The Lakers forward filed paperwork Thursday in Los Angeles County Superior Court to legally change his name to Metta World Peace. "Metta" is a Buddhist term. One definition for the word is "a strong wish for the welfare and happiness of others. " NBA players need to file papers with the league to change their jersey number, but no such action is necessary for name changes, according to a league official.
April 29, 2011 | By Michael A. Memoli, Washington Bureau
Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R) said Friday that he would participate in the first scheduled presidential candidates debate next week, giving the South Carolina forum a needed boost. In announcing his participation Pawlenty targeted President Obama, saying his poliices "have seriously jeopardized our nation's future and it's time for Republicans to show leadership and engage in the battle of ideas. "We have to stand up for America every chance we get, and I for one look forward to doing that on Thursday in South Carolina," he said.
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