Bribery, Fraud & Tax Evasion
The federal government has sent nearly 600 auditors and investigators to the Gulf Coast region to monitor $8.3 billion in contracts awarded to help victims of last year's hurricanes, according to year-end figures released by the Department of Homeland Security.
The topic was the largest defense procurement scandal in recent decades, and the two investigators for the Pentagon's inspector general in Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld's office on April 1, 2005, asked the secretary to raise his hand and swear to tell the truth.
This week, a Moscow court will issue a verdict in the tax fraud trial of billionaire Mikhail Khodorkovsky. While some critics argue that the charges are politically motivated, others question his innocence in the eyes of the West.
Big corporations bankrolled candidates for the 2012 elections in both the Democratic and Republican parties and bought their votes lock, stock and barrel, contributing over $2 billion out of the $6 billion spent this year. The biggest impact was on a California battle to require labeling of genetically altered products.
Prudential Financial, the life insurance company, agreed yesterday to pay $600 million to settle charges with federal and state regulators that one of its units engaged in inappropriate mutual fund trading.
One of the country's largest tobacco companies has cheated the state of Florida out of $17 million, according to Attorney General Charlie Crist, and on Wednesday the state filed a lawsuit seeking to get what it's owed.
Gifts, trips and cash were used to pave the way for air time for certain songs and artists at radio stations owned by one of the nation's largest chains, according to lawsuit filed by state Attorney General Eliot Spitzer.
A few months after the White House got a list of recommended candidates from former Enron Chairman Kenneth Lay, a friend and backer of President Bush, two of them were appointed to a federal energy commission.
Rimbunan Hijau, a billion-dollar business owned by Malaysian tycoon Tiong Hiew King, has been engaging in illegal logging in South East Asia, while local governments turn a blind eye.