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History, Research, Twitter and Trust
I have been trying to blog for the past two days... but I couldn't settle on a topic...my mind has wandered from… well… if you been watching the news… you understand.
North Korea used the 59th anniversary of the start of the Korean war to step up threats against the US.
Jon and Kate announced their separation and eminent divorce.
Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett and Jacko have left us.
The Manitoba Propety Register is warning folks to beware of lending scams… probably a good idea for everyone to note… don’t sign any kind of agreement without running it past a trusted lawyer…
Also in the news- Vancouver lawyer Martin Wirick was sentenced to seven years in prison for perpetrating the largest legal fraud in Canadian history.
In July 2002, Wirick confessed his part in the fraud and subsequently pleaded guilty to two counts of fraud and two counts of forgery in 107 real estate transactions connected a real estate developer, client, a Mr. Tarsem Singh Gill.
The total value of the fraud- about $30 million (reportedly the B.C. Law Society has fully compensated all of the victims). Now, apparently, Wirick was simply the facilitator and simply following the instructions of Mr. Gill.
Hmmmm. I know that Realtors are to follow all LAWFUL instructions of their principal clients. Surely it’s the same for lawyers?
Gill has also been charged, however, he has pleaded not guilty and he is not cooperating with authorities. In fact, he’s still developing properties. His preliminary hearing has been set for March of next year.
Brings back memories of Brian Slobogian and Frank Biller- manipulators of the scam-ridden Eron Mortgage Corp. Slobogian was the president of Enron and Biller the vice-president and chief mortgage broker.
Regulators began scrutinizing the Enron accounting practices in 1996 and pulled their license in October of 1997. Charges of theft and fraud charges followed. The pair were charged with bilking $175 million, affecting some 3,500 mostly unsophisticated investors. It was, at the time, the biggest fraud in B.C. history. The two were tried in 2005.
The B.C. Securities Commission fined both Slobogian and Biller $300,000 each. Slobogian received a lifetime trading ban and Biller a 10-year ban. Both declared bankruptcy.
In 2005, Slobogian plead guilty and made a deal. He was sentenced to four concurrent six-year terms for theft counts and a three-year sentence for fraud (to be served at the same time). A few months later, Biller was sentenced to three years in prison, after pleading guilty to one charge of theft and four counts of fraud.
Then, there’s Vancouverite, Bryan Tickell, who (earlier this month) was sentenced to six years for fraud related to his dirty dealings of 2007. After falsifying his credentials on an application, Tickell was hired as a caseworker at the offices of the B.C. Public Guardian and Trustee’s Office. There, he defrauded an elderly client, who had been deemed mentally incompetent, paying $1 plus love and affection for her property and flipping it for $1 million. Tickell defrauded another elderly client, naming himself a 20% beneficiary in the man’s $1.3 million estate.
Tickell had to donate a DNA sample, through which he will be easier to connect to any future crimes he may commit.
Seems to be a trend.
There are other strange trends, too.
Howard K Stern, and doctors Sandeep Kapoor and Khristine Eroshevich were charged back in the spring… for conspiracy to supply drugs to former Playboy playmate, Anna Nicole Smith, before she died of an overdose in 2007.
At that time, reports swirled about her estate- speculating that it may not be worth much — possibly as little as $100,000 and no more than $1 million. Horace Cooper, an assistant professor of law at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, said that Smith filed for bankruptcy in 2000 and had borrowed money. Apparently, she was banking on a settlement from the decade long battle she was having against the family of her late husband, J. Howard Marshall.
Dr Cyril Wecht, former president of the American Academy of Forensic Science, inteviewd by CNN today, said death from a prescription drug overdose was a major killer in America.
``This is something that is killing somebody every hour, if not every minute, in America, but we only come to learn about them when they involve Anna Nicole Smith or Heath Ledger
or Michael Jackson. But, everywhere in America somebody is taking two, three, four drugs.''
Yes, reports say that Michael Jackson's personal doctor is to be questioned (for a second time) by police. There are allegations that the singer was being fed a daily cocktail of painkillers that contributed to his death.
Actress-singer Liza Minnelli, told reporters yesterday "all hell would break loose" when the results of Jackson's autopsy are released.
& there’s a lot of talk about who left more debt, Ed McMahon or Jacko.
it's a sad sort of contest
Foreclosure problems started for Jackson, when in October of 2007, reports of possible foreclosure on Neverland Rand began to circulate. A spokesman for the singer claimed that it was simply a matter of some refinancing arrangements.
In Feb. of ’08, Jackson got word from trustee, Financial Title Company, that unless he paid off $24,525,906.61 by March 19, the property would go up for public auction. In May of ’08, the foreclosure action was circumvented when Colony Capital purchased the loan. At the time, Jackson was in default several months on the $24.5 million owed on Neverland. Finally, in November of ’08, Jackson transferred title to an investment company, saying he no longer felt at home in the ranch.
Jackson died, this week, in a rented Holmby Hills house... autopsy results await toxicology reports.
In June 2008, McMahon revealed he was fighting foreclosure after falling $644,000 behind on mortgage payments on $4.8 million in mortgage loans attached to his Beverly Hills home.
Also, in June 2008, the nypost.com reported that Farrah Fawcett was making millions off her battle with cancer, working out lucrative deals with Entertainment tonight and selling video footage.
Just a month prior, the Los Angeles Times had published an interview with Ms Fawcett in which she discussed the media frenzy over her health.
She told the Times she would have preferred to have kept details of her illness private. "It's much easier to go through something and deal with it without being under a microscope," she said.
I can’t even begin to imagine.
Diagnosed with anal cancer in 2006, in May of this past year, NBC aired Farrah Fawcett’s self-narrated video diary “Farrah’s Story”. Filmed with the assistance of her long time partner, Ryan O’Neill and her closest friend, Alana Stewart, Fawcett shared details of her poignant battle, raising global awareness of the disease, the need for alternative approaches to treatment and questioned patients’ privacy rights.
Ms Fawcett left us, quietly and with dignity. A private funeral, at the “Cathedral of Our Lady of The Angels” is scheduled for the 30th.
One can’t begin to imagine what kind of memorial extravaganza will be planned by or for the King of Pop.
Oh, & yes, I twitter.