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U.S.: Will Wall Street Ever Face Justice?
by Phil AngelidesNew York Times
March 1st, 2012
Four years after the disintegration of the financial system, 24 million people jobless or underemployed. Yet claims of financial fraud against companies like Citigroup and Bank of America have been settled for pennies on the dollar, with no admission of wrongdoing. Executives who ran companies that made, packaged and sold trillions of dollars in toxic mortgages and mortgage-backed securities remain largely unscathed.

NIGERIA: Nigeria's agony dwarfs the Gulf oil spill. The US and Europe ignore it
by John VidalThe Guardian (UK)
May 30th, 2010
With 606 oilfields, the Niger delta supplies 40% of all the crude the United States imports and is the world capital of oil pollution. More oil is spilled from the delta's network of terminals, pipes, pumping stations and oil platforms every year than has been lost in the current BP/Transocean oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

US: Oil Hits Home, Spreading Arc of Frustration
by Campbell Robertson, Clifford Krauss and John M. BroderNew York Times
May 24th, 2010
More than a month has passed since the Deepwater Horizon rig blew up, spewing oil into the Gulf of Mexico and frustrating all efforts to contain it. The disaster underscores the enduring laxity of federal regulation of offshore operations and has shown the government to be almost wholly at the mercy of BP and of Transocean, the company leasing the rig.

WORLD: Disaster Plans Lacking at Deep Rigs
by Ben Casselman and Guy ChazenWall Street Journal
May 17th, 2010
Dealing with a deep-sea spill is a a problem that spans the industry, whose major players include Chevron Corp, Royal Dutch Shell and Petróleo Brasileiro SA. Without adequately planning for trouble, the oil business has focused on developing experimental equipment and techniques to drill in ever deeper waters, according to a Wall Street Journal examination.

US: U.S. Said to Allow Drilling Without Needed Permits
by Ian UrbinaNew York Times
May 13th, 2010
The federal Minerals Management Service gave permission to BP and dozens of other oil companies to drill in the Gulf of Mexico without first getting required permits from another agency that assesses threats to endangered species — and despite strong warnings from that agency about the impact the drilling was likely to have on the gulf.

UK/CANADA: Tar sands crude is reaching British petrol stations, Greenpeace says
by Terry MacalisterThe Guardian (UK)
May 9th, 2010
While City investors have begun to question the role of companies such as BP and Shell in the tar sands business, a new report by Greenpeace claims British motorists are unwitting users of diesel and petrol derived from the tar sands of Alberta, Canada. The carbon-heavy production methods involved make tar sands extraction particularly damaging to the environment.

US: FBI Probes Explosion in West Virginia Mine
by Kris Maher and Siobhan HughesWall Street Journal
April 30th, 2010
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is conducting a criminal probe of the deadly explosion at a Massey Energy Co. mine in West Virginia in early April that killed 29 miners, according to people familiar with the matter. In a statement on Friday Massey Energy said, "Massey has no knowledge of criminal wrongdoing."

US: BP Is Criticized Over Oil Spill, but U.S. Missed Chances to Act
by Campbell Robertson and Eric LiptonNew York Times
April 30th, 2010
The Obama administration began Friday to publicly chastise BP America for its handling of the spreading oil gusher in the Gulf of Mexico. Officials initially seemed to underestimate the threat of a leak, just as BP did last year when it told the government such an event was highly unlikely.

US: Oil Spill’s Blow to BP’s Image May Eclipse Costs
by Clifford Krauss New York Times
April 29th, 2010
BP says that the offshore drilling accident that is spewing thousands of barrels of oil a day into the Gulf of Mexico could cost the company several hundred million dollars. Nobody really knows whether the oil giant is being too conservative about the cost for the April 20 accident, which some experts say could end up as the biggest oil spill in history.

CANADA: Munk takes on mine protesters, defends capitalism
by John SpearsThe Star
April 28th, 2010
Mark Ekepa journeyed from Papua New Guinea to tell the shareholders of Barrick Gold Corp. how police had burned down his house near the Barrick’s Porgera mine. Idolia Bornones travelled from Chile to say that Barrick operations are damaging local glaciers and rivers. But Barrick chairman Peter Munk was unrepentant as he faced the company’s annual meeting.

US: Financial Debate Renews Scrutiny on Banks’ Size
by Sewall ChanNew York Times
April 20th, 2010
One question has vexed the Obama administration and Congress since the start of the financial crisis: how to prevent big bank bailouts. In the last year and a half, the largest financial institutions have only grown bigger, mainly as a result of government-brokered mergers. They now enjoy borrowing at significantly lower rates than their smaller competitors, a result of the bond markets’ implicit assumption that the giant banks are “too big to fail.”

US: SEC charges Goldman Sachs with civil fraud in subprime deal
by Greg GordonMcClatchy Newspapers
April 16th, 2010
The Securities and Exchange Commission Friday charged Goldman Sachs & Co. and one of its executives with fraud in a risky offshore deal backed by subprime mortgages that cost investors more than $1 billion.

US: Fed Reviews Find Errors in Oversight of Citigroup
by Sewall Chan and Eric DashNew York Times
April 7th, 2010
Citigroup ran into trouble under the noses of federal regulators. But even after taxpayers rescued the financial giant, regulators failed to monitor the company adequately, according to reviews by the Federal Reserve.

US: Deaths at West Virginia Mine Raise Issues About Safety
by Ian Urbina and Michael CooperNew York Times
April 6th, 2010
Rescue workers began the precarious task Tuesday of removing explosive methane gas from the coal mine where at least 25 miners died the day before. The mine owner’s -- Massey Energy Company -- dismal safety record, along with several recent evacuations of the mine, left federal officials and miners suggesting that Monday’s explosion might have been preventable.

AFGHANISTAN/US: Outsourcing intelligence
by David IgnatiusWashington Post
March 17th, 2010
The headline read like something you might see in the conspiracy-minded Pakistani press: "Contractors Tied to Effort to Track and Kill Militants." But the story appeared in Monday's New York Times, and it highlighted some big problems that have developed in the murky area between military and intelligence activities.

AFGHANISTAN/US: Contractors Tied to Effort to Track and Kill Militants
by DEXTER FILKINS and MARK MAZZETTINew York Times
March 15th, 2010
Under the cover of a benign government information-gathering program, a Defense Department official set up a network of private contractors in Afghanistan and Pakistan to help track and kill suspected militants, according to military officials and businessmen in Afghanistan and the United States. The official, Michael D. Furlong, hired contractors from private security companies that employed former C.I.A. and Special Forces operatives.

CANADA/CHINA: Canada looks to China to exploit oil sands rejected by US
by Suzanne GoldenbergThe Guardian (UK)
February 14th, 2010
Canada, faced with growing political pressure over the extraction of oil from its highly polluting tar sands, has begun courting China and other Asian countries to exploit the resource. The move comes as US firms are turning away from tar sands because of its heavy carbon footprint and damage to the landscape.

US: Idea of company-as-person originated in late 19th century
by Martha C. WhiteWashington Post
January 31st, 2010
The Supreme Court's 5 to 4 decision in Citizens United v FEC rolled back long-standing restrictions on corporate campaign finance donations. At the crux of the decision was a determination that corporations have a right to free speech. The court ruled that limiting the amount that companies can spend promoting their favored candidates is tantamount to denying First Amendment rights.

US: Banks Set for Record Pay
by STEPHEN GROCERWall Street Journal
January 14th, 2010
Major U.S. banks and securities firms are on pace to pay their people about $145 billion for 2009, a record sum that indicates how compensation is climbing despite fury over Wall Street's pay culture.

EUROPE: Europe’s Vast Farm Subsidies Face Challenges
by STEPHEN CASTLE and DOREEN CARVAJALNew York Times
December 29th, 2009
The last time the European Union decided the future of its 50 billion euro agricultural aid program, in 2005, the deal was cut behind closed doors in a luxury suite at the five-star Conrad Brussels hotel. Now, 2013 is closer at hand and a new round of maneuvering has begun to reshape the richest system of agricultural handouts in the world.

US: Monsanto's dominance draws antitrust inquiry
by Peter WhoriskeyWashington Post
November 29th, 2009
For plants designed in a lab a little more than a decade ago, they've come a long way: Today, the vast majority of the nation's two primary crops grow from seeds genetically altered according to Monsanto company patents. Now Monsanto -- like IBM and Google -- has drawn scrutiny from U.S. antitrust investigators.

US: Ex-UBS Banker Seeks Billions for Blowing Whistle
by Lynnley BrowningNew York Times
November 26th, 2009
Bradley C. Birkenfeld was sentenced to 40 months in prison for helping rich Americans dodge their taxes, his sentence reduced in turn for informing on Swiss banking giant UBS. Now, with the help of the National Whistleblower Center, he and his lawyers hope to use a new federal whistle-blower law to claim a multibillion-dollar reward from the American government.

UK: Friends of the Earth attacks carbon trading
by Ashley SeagerThe Guardian (UK)
November 5th, 2009
The world's carbon trading markets growing complexity threatens another "sub-prime" style financial crisis that could again destabilise the global economy, campaigners warn. In a new report, Friends of the Earth says that to date "cap and trade" carbon markets have done little to reduce emissions but have been plagued by inefficiency and corruption.

IVORY COAST: Trafigura offers deal to 31,000 Africans over dumped waste
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/africa/article6837795.ece
October 17th, 2009
British oil trader Trafigura has offered to settle a court case brought by 31,000 Africans who say that they were injured in the largest personal injuries class action mounted in an English court. The action resulted from the dumping of 400 tonnes of waste in the Ivory Coast by an oil tanker, the Probo Koala, in 2006 — one of the worst pollution disasters in recent history.

IVORY COAST: Trafigura offers deal to 31,000 Africans over dumped waste
by Frances GibbThe Times (London)
October 17th, 2009
British oil trader Trafigura has offered to settle a court case brought by 31,000 Africans who say that they were injured in the largest personal injuries class action mounted in an English court. The action resulted from the dumping of 400 tonnes of waste in the Ivory Coast by an oil tanker, the Probo Koala, in 2006 — one of the worst pollution disasters in recent history.

FRANCE: French nuclear plant reveals plutonium level discrepancies
by AFP/ReutersDeutsche Welle
October 15th, 2009
The French government has demanded answers from a nuclear research facility after nearly triple the registered amount of plutonium was discovered there during its dismantling this summer.

US: E. Coli Path Shows Flaws in Beef Inspection
by Michael MossNew York Times
October 3rd, 2009
Tracing the chain of production of an E. Coli-contaminated hamburger made by Cargill, through interviews and government and corporate records obtained by The New York Times, shows why eating ground beef is still a gamble. Neither the system meant to make the meat safe, nor the meat itself, is what consumers have been led to believe.

US: The Rights of Corporations (Op-Ed)
New York Times
September 22nd, 2009
The question at the heart of one of the biggest Supreme Court cases this year is simple: What constitutional rights should corporations have? The legal doctrine underlying this debate is known as “corporate personhood.”

US: Clean Water Laws Are Neglected, at a Cost in Suffering
by Charles DuhiggNew York Times
September 12th, 2009
Violations of the Clean Water Act have risen steadily across the nation, an extensive review of water pollution records by The New York Times found. Polluters include small companies, like gas stations, dry cleaners, and shopping malls. They also include large operations, like chemical factories, power plants, sewage treatment centers and one of the biggest zinc smelters, the Horsehead Corporation of Pennsylvania.

AFGHANISTAN: Wackenhut aids inquiry into its Afghanistan contractor
http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/asiapcf/09/03/afghanistan.contractors/
September 3rd, 2009
This week the Project on Government Oversight released damning allegations of deviant hazing at a camp for security guards in Afghanistan. Sparking questions from the State Department, POGO warned the problems are "posing a significant threat to the security of the embassy and its personnel."

AFGHANISTAN: Wackenhut aids inquiry into its Afghanistan contractor
http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/asiapcf/09/03/afghanistan.contractors/
September 3rd, 2009
This week the Project on Government Oversight released damning allegations of deviant hazing at a camp for security guards in Afghanistan. Sparking questions from the State Department, POGO warned the problems are "posing a significant threat to the security of the embassy and its personnel."

AFGHANISTAN: Wackenhut aids inquiry into its Afghanistan contractor
CNN.com
September 3rd, 2009
This week the Project on Government Oversight released damning allegations of deviant hazing at a camp for security guards in Afghanistan. Sparking questions from the State Department, POGO warned the problems are "posing a significant threat to the security of the embassy and its personnel."

US: So You Squandered Billions --- Take Another Whack At It
by Steven PerlsteinWashington Post
September 2nd, 2009
During the heyday of the credit bubble, they were the financiers who earned huge bonuses for creating, trading and investing other people's money in those complex securities that resulted in trillions of dollars in losses and brought global financial markets to their knees. Now they're out there again hustling for investors and hoping to make another score buying and trading the same securities.

US: DynCorp Billed U.S. $50 Million Beyond Costs in Defense Contract
by V. Dion HaynesWashington Post
August 12th, 2009
A Defense Department auditor, appearing before the Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan, testified Tuesday that DynCorp International billed the government $50 million more than the amount specified in a contract to provide dining facilities and living quarters for military personnel in Kuwait.

US: House votes to rein in ‘excessive pay’ for company execs
by Gail Russell ChaddockChristian Science Monitor
July 31st, 2009
On Friday the U.S. House of Representativs passed a high-visibility bill to give shareholders and federal regulators a stronger hand in curbing excessive or risky executive compensation. Industry groups such as the National Association of Manufacturers opposed the bill as an overreach into private business decisions.

US: Big Banks Paid Billions in Bonuses Amid Wall St. Crisis
by Louise Story and Eric DashNew York Times
July 30th, 2009
Nine of the financial firms that were recipients of federal bailout money paid about 5,000 of their traders and bankers bonuses of more than $1 million apiece for 2008, according to a report released Thursday by the New York attorney general. The report is certain to intensify the growing debate over how, and how much, Wall Street bankers should be paid.

US: Cuomo Says Schwab Faces Fraud Suit
by Liz RappaportWall Street Journal
July 20th, 2009
New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo has warned Charles Schwab & Co. that his office plans to sue the firm for civil fraud over its marketing and sales of auction-rate securities to clients. Emails and testimony cited in the letter show Schwab's brokers had little idea of what they were selling and later failed to tell clients that the market was collapsing.

US: Industry Takes Aim at Plan to Create Financial Protection Agency
by Brady DennisWashington Post
July 7th, 2009
Business and trade-group lobbyists are beating a path for the first major battle over the Obama administration's efforts to overhaul the financial regulatory system. Recent discussions have involved the American Bankers Association, National Auto Dealers Association, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Mortgage Bankers Association and other lobbyists.

US: DOJ Opens Review of Telecom Industry
by Amol SharmaWall Street Journal
July 6th, 2009
The Department of Justice has begun an initial review to determine whether large U.S. telecom companies such as AT&T Inc. and Verizon Communications Inc. have abused the market power they've amassed in recent years. The DOJ's antitrust chief has said she wants to reassert the government's role in policing monopolistic and anti-competitive practices by powerful companies.

US: Madoff Is Sentenced to 150 Years for Ponzi Scheme
by Diana B. HenriquesNew York Times
June 29th, 2009
A criminal saga that began in December with a string of superlatives — the largest, longest and most widespread Ponzi scheme in history — ended the same way on Monday as Bernard L. Madoff was sentenced to 150 years in prison, the maximum for his crimes.

US: IRS Steps Up Scrutiny of Offshore Funds
by Jenny Strasburg and Jesse DruckerWall Street Journal
June 26th, 2009
The Internal Revenue Service is demanding that hedge-fund and private-equity investors disclose hundreds of billions of dollars they have invested offshore, boosting scrutiny of accounts popular for tax advantages.

AFRICA: Blood diamond scheme 'is failing'
BBC News
June 24th, 2009
Officials are meeting to review the Kimberley Process, amid criticism that the scheme, set up to certify the origin of diamonds to assure consumers that by purchasing diamonds they are not financing war and human rights abuses, is failing. The Kimberley Process emerged from global outrage over conflicts in countries like Liberia and Sierra Leone, largely funded by the plundering of diamond resources.

US: Madoff Suits Add Details About Fraud
by Diana B. HenriquesNew York Times
June 22nd, 2009
Three lawsuits filed on Monday provided new details about what regulators say went on inside Bernard L. Madoff’s long-running Ponzi scheme, including information about who might have helped perpetuate the fraud for so long.

US: Hedge Funds Boost Profile in Lobbying
by Susan Pulliam and Tom McGintyWall Street Journal
June 22nd, 2009
Many hedge funds were relieved when the Obama administration's financial-overhaul plan included no big surprises to the lucrative, secretive industry. In 2008, major hedge funds and their trade groups spent $6.1 million lobbying Washington, up from $4.2 million in 2007 and nearly seven times the $897,000 average from 2003 to 2006.

US: NRC Cites Utility Shortfalls
by Rebecca SmithWall Street Journal
June 20th, 2009
The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission told six utility companies they have until year-end to explain plans to remedy shortfalls in nuclear decommissioning funds. The license holders receiving notice -- Exelon Corp., Entergy Corp., Constellation Energy Group Inc., FPL Group, First Energy and Tennessee Valley Authority -- include some of the industry's biggest names.

US/ANTIGUA: Texas Financier and Antiguan Official Charged With Fraud
by Clifford Krauss New York Times
June 19th, 2009
A U.S. Justice Department indictment unsealed Friday accused R. Allen Stanford of Stanford International Bank, based in the Caribbean money haven of Antigua, of operating a multibillion-dollar Ponzi scheme with the help of Antigua’s top banking regulator, Leroy King.

AFRICA: Battle to Halt Graft Scourge in Africa Ebbs
by Celia W. DuggerNew York Times
June 9th, 2009
The fight against corruption in Africa is faltering as public agencies investigating wrongdoing by powerful politicians have been undermined and officials leading the charge have been dismissed, subjected to death threats and driven into exile. The search is on for more effective ways to tackle corruption, including intensified legal efforts to prosecute multinational corporations that pay the bribes and reclaim loot that African political elites have stashed abroad.

US: 'Roadless' Forest Areas Now Under Vilsack
by David A. FahrentholdWashington Post
May 29th, 2009
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack issued a temporary order yesterday governing development in "roadless" areas of national forests, requiring all new projects to be approved by him personally. A USDA official said it is unclear whether projects with a strictly commercial aim, such as logging or mining, will be allowed.

US: U.S. Cracks Down on Corporate Bribes
by DIONNE SEARCEYWall Street Journal
May 26th, 2009
The Justice Department is increasing its prosecutions of alleged acts of foreign bribery by U.S. corporations, forcing them to take costly steps to defend against scrutiny. The crackdown under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, or FCPA -- a post-Watergate law largely dormant for decades -- now extends across five continents and penetrates entire industries.

US: Activist Financier 'Terrorizes' Bankers in Foreclosure Fight
by James R. HagertyWall Street Journal
May 20th, 2009
A nonprofit organization, Neighborhood Assistance Corp. of America, or NACA, has emerged as one of the loudest scourges of the banking industry in the post-bubble economy. Though some bankers privately deplore his tactics, NACA's Bruce Marks is a growing influence in the lending industry and the effort to curb foreclosures.

ECUADOR: In Ecuador, Resentment of an Oil Company Oozes
by SIMON ROMERO and CLIFFORD KRAUSSNew York Times
May 14th, 2009
Texaco, the American oil company that Chevron acquired in 2001, once poured oil waste into pits used decades ago for drilling wells in Ecuador's northeastern jungle. Texaco’s roughnecks are long gone, but black gunk from the pits seeps to the topsoil here and in dozens of other spots. These days the only Chevron employees who visit the former oil fields do so escorted by bodyguards toting guns. They represent one side in a bitter fight that is developing into the world’s largest environmental lawsuit, with $27 billion in potential damages.

US: Trustee Sues Madoff Hedge Fund Investor
by Diana B. HenriquesNew York Times
May 7th, 2009
The trustee gathering assets for the victims of Bernard L. Madoff’s fraud has sued a prominent New York City hedge fund investor, J. Ezra Merkin, to recover almost $500 million withdrawn from Madoff accounts in the last six years.

US: Debt Settlers Offer Promises but Little Help
by David StreitfeldNew York Times
April 19th, 2009
With the economy on the ropes, hundreds of thousands of consumers are turning to “debt settlement” companies like Credit Solutions to escape a crushing pile of bills. State attorneys general are being flooded with complaints about settlement companies and other forms of debt relief.

US: Credit Card Processor Asked for Offshore Data
by Lynnley BrowningNew York Times
April 15th, 2009
The U.S. government is widening its investigation of offshore tax evasion to include services sold by the First Data Corporation, a large processor of credit card transactions. The I.R.S. alleged that First Data actively marketed and sold offshore services to American merchants, who in turn used the service to help their clients hide taxable income.

US: N.Y. Pension Deals Seen as Focus of Wide Inquiry
by Danny HakimNew York Times
April 13th, 2009
New York State prosecutors and the Securities and Exchange Commission are investigating whether the Carlyle Group, one of the nation’s largest and most politically connected private equity firms, made millions of dollars in improper payments to intermediaries in exchange for investments from New York’s state pension fund.

IRAQ: Ex-Blackwater Workers May Return to Iraq Jobs
by Rod NordlandNew York Times
April 3rd, 2009
Late last month Blackwater Worldwide lost its billion-dollar contract to protect American diplomats in Iraq, but by next month many of its private security guards will be back on the job here. The same individuals will just be wearing new uniforms, working for Triple Canopy, the firm that won the State Department’s new contract.

CHINA: Banks Face Big Losses From Bets on Chinese Realty
by David Barboza New York Times
April 3rd, 2009
Evergrande Real Estate Group, now mired in debt, has become a symbol of China’s go-go era of investing, when international bankers, private equity deal makers and hedge fund managers from Merrill Lynch, Deutsche Bank and others rushed here hoping to cash in on the world’s biggest building boom.

UK: Shareholders vote against RBS pay
BBC Online
April 3rd, 2009
More than 90% of Royal Bank of Scotland shareholders voted against the bank's pay and pensions policy at its annual general meeting in Edinburgh. RBS does not have to make any changes as a result, saying it was a "substantive" protest at Sir Fred Goodwin's Ł703,000 a year pension. Sir Philip blamed RBS's difficulties on its acquisition of the Dutch bank ABN Amro in 2007.

US: Banks Get New Leeway in Valuing Their Assets
by Floyd NorrisNew York Times
April 2nd, 2009
A once-obscure accounting rule was changed Thursday to give banks more discretion in reporting the value of mortgage securities. Apparently under political pressure, the five-member Financial Accounting Standards Board approved a controversial change that makes it possible for banks to keep some declines in asset values off their income statements.

US/CANADA: Alaskan lake’s fate could echo across continent
by Todd WilkinsonChristian Science Monitor
March 24th, 2009
A landmark legal case now before the US Supreme Court holds huge implications for lakes across the continent. Nearly four decades the Clean Water Act was passed to protect waterways from industrial pollution, a proposal by Coeur d’Alene Mines Corp. to dispose of tons of effluent in Alaska's Lower Slate Lake has sparked an international debate.

US: Bonus Money at Troubled A.I.G. Draws Heavy Criticism
by EDMUND L. ANDREWS and PETER BAKERNew York Times
March 15th, 2009
American International Group, which has received more than $170 billion in taxpayer bailout money, is to pay executives in the business unit that brought the company to the brink of collapse last year $165 million in bonuses. The bonuses will go forward because lawyers say the firm is contractually obligated to pay them.

US: They Tried to Outsmart Wall Street
by Dennis OverbyeNew York Times
March 9th, 2009
Physicists and other scientists have flooded Wall Street in recent years, known as “quants” because they do quantitative finance. They arrived on Wall Street in the midst of a financial revolution. Galloping inflation had made finances more complicated and risky, and it required sophisticated mathematical expertise to parse even simple investments like bonds.

US: Undisclosed Losses at Merrill Lynch Lead to a Trading Inquiry
by Louise Story and Eric DashNew York Times
March 6th, 2009
Bank of America chief executive, Kenneth D. Lewis, is trying to bridle Merrill Lynch traders, whose rush into risky investments nearly brought down the brokerage firm. But questions over the Merrill losses — in particular, who knew about them, and when — keep swirling.

US: Food Problems Elude Private Inspectors
by Michael Moss and Andrew MartinNew York Times
March 5th, 2009
When food industry giants like Kellogg want to ensure that American consumers are being protected from contaminated products, they rely on private inspectors. With government inspectors overwhelmed by the task of guarding the nation’s food supply, the job of monitoring food plants has in large part fallen to an army of private auditors, and problems are rife.

INDIA: Pricewaterhouse Revamps Indian Unit
by Heather TimmonsNew York Times
March 5th, 2009
The auditor PricewaterhouseCoopers is overhauling its operations in India two months after starting an investigation into fraud at Satyam Computer Services, a software and outsourcing firm whose chairman said in January that he had falsely claimed assets of $1 billion in cash and overstated operating margins.

IRELAND: U2 rattled by claims of tax dodging
by Michael SeaverChristian Science Monitor
March 3rd, 2009
The band that loves to rail against global corporate malfeasance is being criticized at home over allegations of tax dodging. The controversy stems from 2006, when the band moved its publishing company to the Netherlands to avoid a potential multi-million-euro tax bill after the Irish government capped artists' tax-free earnings at €250,000 ($315,000).

ECUADOR/CANADA: Canadian Mining Firm Financed Violence in Ecuador: Lawsuit
by Jennifer MooreTyee Online
March 3rd, 2009
Three villagers from the valley of Intag in northwestern Ecuador are suing Copper Mesa Mining Corporation and the Toronto Stock Exchange. They allege not enough has been done to reduce the risk of harm being faced by farmers and community leaders who have faced violent threats and attacks for opposition to a large open-pit copper mine in their pristine cloud forests.

US: Ex-Leaders at Countrywide Start Firm to Buy Bad Loans
by Eric LiptonNew York Times
March 3rd, 2009
Countrywide Financial made risky loans to tens of thousands of Americans, helping set off a chain of events that has the economy staggering. So it may come as a surprise that a dozen former top Countrywide executives now stand to make millions from the home mortgage mess, buying up delinquent home mortgages that the government took over, sometimes for pennies on the dollar, at newly-formed PennyMac.

EUROPE: Europe to Allow Two Bans on Genetically Altered Crops
by James KanterNew York Times
March 2nd, 2009
European Union governments delivered a blow Monday to the biotechnology industry, allowing Austria and Hungary to maintain national bans on growing genetically modified crops from Monsanto. The market for genetically engineered crops is worth several billion dollars worldwide.

CHINA: Morgan Stanley’s Chinese Land Scandal
by David Barboza New York Times
March 1st, 2009
In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing, Morgan Stanley said it had fired an executive in its China real estate division after uncovering evidence that he might have violated the United States Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which bars American business people from bribing foreign officials.

SWITZERLAND: UBS Names Grübel as New CEO
by Carrick MollenkampWall Street Journal
February 26th, 2009
UBS AG, the Swiss bank battered by massive write-downs and its role in a U.S. tax-evasion scheme, announced the surprise departure of chief executive Marcel Rohner. Mr. Rohner's sudden departure comes after UBS agreed earlier this month to a $780 million settlement with the U.S. Justice Department of a criminal inquiry into the bank's role in the tax evasion.

MEXICO: U.S. Is Arms Bazaar for Mexican Cartels
by James C. McKinley, Jr.New York Times
February 25th, 2009
Phoenix-based gun dealer George Iknadosian of X-Calibur Guns will go on trial on charges he sold hundreds of weapons, mostly AK-47 rifles, to smugglers, knowing they would go to a drug cartel in the western state of Sinaloa. The guns helped fuel the gang warfare in which more than 6,000 Mexicans died last year.

UK: Politicians pile pressure on bailed-out RBS to abandon plans for a Ł1bn bonus for staff
by Allegra StrattonThe Guardian (UK)
February 9th, 2009
Politicians from all sides rounded on the state-supported Royal Bank of Scotland yesterday as the row intensified over the failed bank's apparent determination to share Ł1bn of bonuses among staff.

US/WORLD: Smokeless Tobacco to Get Push by Venture Overseas
by Kevin HellikerWall Street Journal
February 4th, 2009
Swedish Match AB and Philip Morris International Inc. announced a joint venture Tuesday to market smokeless tobacco world-wide. The venture combines a world-wide giant in smokeless, Swedish Match, with the world's second-largest purveyor of cigarettes, PMI, an Altria Inc. spinoff.

US: Tobacco Trial Opens in Florida, First of Many Suits
by Associated PressWall Street Journal
February 3rd, 2009
The first of about 8,000 lawsuits blaming the health problems and deaths of Florida smokers on tobacco companies went to trial Tuesday. The key to the case is proving whether now-deceased Stuart Hess was addicted to cigarettes made by Richmond, Va.-based Philip Morris, a unit of Altria Group.

US: Bank of America Board Under Gun From Critics
by Louise Story and Julie CreswellNew York Times
January 27th, 2009
As Bank of America's board meets next week, shareholders have turned up the pressure on CEO Kenneth D. Lewis. Their scrutiny has also turned an unusual spotlight on the oversight role played by the bank's board members.

US: Troubled Times Bring Mini-Madoffs to Light
by Leslie WayneNew York Times
January 27th, 2009
In the wake of the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme scandal, the SEC has brought cases involving losses of over $200 million since the beginning of October last year, including one against the disgraced Democratic donor Norman Hsu and North Carolina-based Biltmore Financial.

US: New Rules on Doctors and Medical Firms Amid Ethics Concerns
by Barry MeierNew York Times
January 24th, 2009
The Physician Payments Sunshine Act, reintroduced in the U.S. Senate on Thursday, would require device and drug makers to report all financial links with doctors on a federal Web site. The medical field has been troubled by federal investigations over the issue of frequently undisclosed financial ties between companies and physicians.

US: Rubin Leaving Citigroup; Smith Barney for Sale
by Eric Dash and Louise StoryNew York Times
January 9th, 2009
Robert Rubin will resign from the beleaguered Citigroup. As Treasury secretary during the Clinton administration, Mr. Rubin helped loosen Depression-era banking regulations that made Citigroup's creation possible. He also helped beat back tighter oversight of exotic financial products during that time.

US: Madoff Case Faces Crucial Disclosure Deadline
by Diana B. HenriquesNew York Times
December 30th, 2008
Judge Louis L. Stanton of United States District Court has established Wednesday as the deadline for Bernard L. Madoff, who is accused of operating a $50 billion Ponzi scheme, to provide federal securities regulators with a full accounting of his and his New York firm’s assets — from real estate to art works to bank accounts.

US: Early-voting problems in Putnam: Touch-screen votes switched, then corrected
by Paul J. NydenThe Charleston Gazette
October 21st, 2008
Two more Putnam County voters - Martha Louise Harrington and Michael K. Koon - have come forward about problems they experienced on early-voting electronic machines at the Winfield courthouse.

US: Bank of New York Mellon Will Oversee Bailout Fund
by Eric DashNew York Times
October 15th, 2008
The Bank of New York Mellon was named the master custodian firm overseeing the Treasury Department’s $700 billion bailout fund. It will hold and track the distressed assets that the government will buy as well as run and report on the auctions used to buy the assets. Government officials called it the “prime contractor of the purchase program.”

US: U.S. May Take Ownership Stake in Banks
by Edmund L. Andrews and Mark LandlerNew York Times
October 8th, 2008
In fresh efforts to stem persisting turmoil in the credit markets, the US Treasury Department is considering partial nationalization of numerous U.S. banks. Insurance giant A.I.G. will also receive a further injection of $37.8 billion.

US: Mosaic threatens $618 million lawsuit
by Frank GluckHerald Tribune
September 30th, 2008
Florida mining giant Mosaic Fertilizer said Monday it will file a $618 million lawsuit against Manatee County unless commissioners reverse a Sept. 16 vote that denied permission for Mosaic to mine phosphate on a property in Duette.

US: EPA sues Bradley Mining Co. for cleanup costs
Associated Press
September 30th, 2008
The federal government has filed a $7 million lawsuit against Bradley Mining Company, in an attempt to recover costs it says the Forest Service and Environmental Protection Agency incurred cleaning up arsenic-laden mining waste.

IVORY COAST: Pollution trial opens in Ivory Coast
Agence France Press (AFP)
September 29th, 2008
The trial opened in Ivory Coast on Monday of 12 people charged with involvement in a 2006 toxic waste scandal which killed 17 Ivorians and poisoned thousands.

IVORY COAST: Ivory Coast workers can't sue firms in U.S.
by Bob EgelkoSan Francisco Chronicle
September 25th, 2008
Ivory Coast plantation workers who claim they were sterilized by a U.S.-made pesticide can't sue the manufacturers and distributors of the chemical in the United States because they can't show the companies intended to harm them, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday.

US: SEC Presses Hedge Funds
by Kara ScarnellWall Street Journal
September 25th, 2008
American International Group Inc., Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., Morgan Stanley, Washington Mutual Inc. and Merrill Lynch & Co. are part of a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission investigation into potential abuse in relation to the current financial markets meltdown.

WORLD: Oil Companies' "Self-Policing" a Dismal Failure
by Alison RaphaelInter Press News Service (IPS)
September 24th, 2008
The intersection of human rights, the environment and corporate responsibility was highlighted today at a Capitol Hill hearing featuring activists from Burma and Nigeria who underlined the failure to date of "voluntary" controls over major oil companies operating in their countries.

US: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac Takeovers Cost U.S. Banks Billions
by John HechingerWall Street Journal
September 23rd, 2008
About a quarter of the nation's banks lost a combined $10 to $15 billion in the wake of the federal government's takeover of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The losses are galling to small bankers because they took pains to avoid the exotic loans and loose underwriting standards that have hobbled Wall Street titans and some huge banks.

US: Federal Oil Officials Accused In Sex and Drugs Scandal
by STEPHEN POWERWall Street Journal
September 11th, 2008
Employees of the federal agency that last year collected more than $11 billion in royalties from oil and gas companies broke government rules and created a "culture of ethical failure" by allegedly accepting gifts from and having sex with industry representatives, the Interior Department's top watchdog said Wednesday.

US: Judge to Unseal Documents on the Eli Lilly Drug Zyprexa
by MARY WILLIAMS WALSHThe New York Times
September 5th, 2008
A federal judge in Brooklyn decided on Friday to unseal confidential materials about Eli Lilly’s top-selling antipsychotic drug Zyprexa, citing “the health of hundreds of thousands of people” and “fundamental questions” about the way drugs are approved for new uses.

US: For Widely Used Drug, Question of Usefulness Is Still Lingering
by ALEX BERENSONThe New York Times
September 1st, 2008
About the only point on which both sides agree is that no one can judge ezetimibe’s safety and benefits for certain without more data, ideally from a clinical trial covering more than 10,000 patients and lasting several years, long enough to show that the drug actually helps patients live longer or avoid heart attacks.

US: Files Show Governor Intervened With Court
by Ian UrbinaNew York Times
August 13th, 2008
West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin III filed a friend-of-the-court brief in June, arguing the State Supreme Court should review a $382 million judgment against DuPont. The case involves thousands of residents in the area of a DuPont-operated zinc-smelting plant, and the largest civil penalty ever levied against the company, for the dumping of toxic arsenic, cadmium and lead at the plant.

UK-Zimbabwe: BAE linked to Zimbabwean arms dealer
by Christopher Thompson and Michael Peel Financial Times/UK
July 31st, 2008
According to documents seen by the Financial Times, BAE Systems has been linked to Zimbabwean arms trader John Bredenkamp. BAE reportedly paid at least Ł20m to Bredenkamp via offshore entities in the British Virgin Islands between 2003 and 2005. The payments raise fresh questions about bribery in BAE's dealings.

UK: Law lords: fraud office right to end bribery investigation in BAE case
by David LeighThe Guardian
July 31st, 2008
England's House of Lords ruled that the Serious Fraud Office was lawful in its actions to halt investigations into allegations that BAE Systems ran a Ł60m "slush fund" and offered sweeteners to officials from Saudi Arabia in return for lucrative contracts.

US: FCC to Rule Comcast Can't Block Web Videos
by AMY SCHATZWall Street Journal
July 28th, 2008
The Federal Communications Commission will rule that the cable giant violated federal policy by deliberately preventing some customers from sharing videos online via file-sharing services like BitTorrent, agency officials said. The company has acknowledged it slowed some traffic, but said it was necessary to prevent a few heavy users from overburdening its network.

US: Pentagon Auditors Pressured To Favor Contractors, GAO Says
by Dana HedgpethThe Washington Post
July 24th, 2008
Auditors at a Pentagon oversight agency were pressured by supervisors to skew their reports on major defense contractors to make them look more favorable instead of exposing wrongdoing and charges of overbilling, according to an 80-page report released yesterday by the Government Accountability Office.

US: Psychiatric Group Faces Scrutiny Over Drug Industry Ties
by BENEDICT CAREY and GARDINER HARRISThe New York Times
July 12th, 2008
Senator Charles E. Grassley, right, Republican of Iowa, is demanding that the American Psychiatric Association give an accounting of its financing from the pharmaceutical industry.

INDIA: Decades Later, Toxic Sludge Torments Bhopal
by Somini SenguptaNew York Times
July 7th, 2008
Residents of Bhopal, India continue to suffer from Union Carbide's toxic legacy, this time in the form of toxic waste that still languishes inside a shoddy warehouse on the old factory grounds. Ailments such as cleft palates and mental retardation are appearing in numbers of Bhopali children, raising questions about contaminated soil and groundwater, clean-up, and liability.

SWITZERLAND: Tax scandal leaves Swiss giant reeling
by Nick MathiasonThe Guardian (UK)
June 29th, 2008
Sending shockwaves through the Swiss financial industry, banking giant UBS is facing accusations from a former senior banker in US courts of massive fraud and corruption. UBS is alleged to have engaged in routine activities aimed at helping its high net worth clients evade hundreds of millions of dollars in taxes, among other matters.

US: Court slashes damages award in Exxon oil spill
by PETE YOSTAssociated Press
June 25th, 2008
The Supreme Court on Wednesday slashed the $2.5 billion punitive damages award in the Exxon Valdez disaster to $500 million, a decision that could have broader implications for limiting how much courts can order businesses to pay.

US: Arms Dealer Had Troubled History
by ERIC SCHMITTThe New York Times
June 25th, 2008
When the Army last year awarded a contract worth up to nearly $300 million to a tiny Miami Beach munitions dealer to supply ammunition to Afghanistan’s army and police forces, it was in spite of a very checkered past.

US: House Passes Bill on Wiretap Powers
by ERIC LICHTBLAU and DAVID STOUTThe New York Times
June 21st, 2008
The House on Friday overwhelmingly approved a bill overhauling the rules on the government’s wiretapping powers and conferring what amounts to legal immunity to the telephone companies that took part in President Bush’s program of eavesdropping without warrants after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

TOBACCO: FTC Counters Altria In 'Light' Cigarettes Case
by LAUREN POLLOCKThe Wall Street Journal
June 20th, 2008
The Federal Trade Commission is asking the Supreme Court to reject Altria Group Inc.'s argument that only that agency can regulate cigarette advertising, saying such an interpretation mischaracterizes the FTC's "scope and effect" on the issue.

US: Army Overseer Tells of Ouster Over KBR Stir
by James RisenNew York Times
June 17th, 2008
Charles M. Smith, the senior civilian overseeing the multibillion-dollar contract with KBR during the first two years of the war, says he was ousted for refusing to approve payment for more than $1 billion in questionable charges to KBR. The Pentagon has recently awarded KBR part of a 10-year, $150 billion contract in Iraq.

EUROPE: Chemical Law Has Global Impact
by Lyndsey LaytonWashington Post
June 12th, 2008
Europe this month rolled out new restrictions on makers of chemicals linked to cancer and other health problems. The changes follow eight years of vigorous opposition from the U.S. chemical industry giants like DuPont, and the Bush administration.

TOBACCO: Profits in Hand, Wealthy Family Cuts Tobacco Tie
by STEPHANIE SAULThe New York Times
June 11th, 2008
Now, the next generation of Tisches has removed tobacco from the portfolio of the conglomerate they lead, the Loews Corporation, spinning off its tobacco unit, Lorillard, as a stand-alone business, with the Newport brand representing more than 90 percent of the new company’s revenue. The new stock began trading Tuesday, and analysts have said the new company might be a takeover target.

EU: E.U. Snubs Microsoft on Office Systems
by JAMES KANTERThe New York Times
June 11th, 2008
Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes of the European Union delivered an unusually blunt snub to Microsoft on Tuesday by recommending that businesses and governments use software based on open standards.

US: From a Whistle-Blower to a Target
by TIM ARANGOThe New York Times
June 9th, 2008
Mr. Ripp's journey from whistle-blower to defendant is another example of the long shadow cast by the AOL-Time Warner merger, now widely regarded as one of the most disastrous corporate marriages in history. It is also a cautionary tale for corporate executives who may illuminate fraudulent conduct to one government agency but then find themselves a target of another.

US: Researchers Fail to Reveal Full Drug Pay
by GARDINER HARRIS and BENEDICT CAREYThe New York Times
June 8th, 2008
A world-renowned Harvard child psychiatrist whose work has helped fuel an explosion in the use of powerful antipsychotic medicines in children earned at least $1.6 million in consulting fees from drug makers from 2000 to 2007 but for years did not report much of this income to university officials, according to information given Congressional investigators.

UK: Call to prosecute BT for ad trial
BBC News Online
June 5th, 2008
BT should face prosecution for its "illegal" trials of a controversial ad-serving technology, a leading computer security researcher has said.

US: Opposition to Menthol Cigarettes Grows
by STEPHANIE SAULThe New York Times
June 5th, 2008
The seven, from Democratic and Republican administrations, faxed a letter to members of the Senate and House of Representatives demanding that menthol-flavored cigarettes be banned just like various other cigarette flavorings the legislation would outlaw.

US: Tyson Pulls Antibiotic-Free Label
by  LAUREN ETTERWall Street Journal
June 3rd, 2008
Under pressure from regulators and competitors, Tyson Foods Inc. withdrew its antibiotic-free chicken label awarded by the Agriculture Department barely a year ago.

US: Express Scripts to Pay $9.5 Million To Settle Drug-Swapping Allegations
by ANDREW EDWARDSThe Wall Street Journal
May 27th, 2008
Pharmacy-benefits manager Express Scripts Inc. agreed Tuesday to pay $9.5 million to settle allegations that the company asked doctors to switch drugs primarily to get bigger rebates from pharmaceutical companies.

US: 30 Former Officials Became Corporate Monitors
by ERIC LICHTBLAU and KITTY BENNETTThe New York Times
May 23rd, 2008
The Justice Department has appointed at least 30 former prosecutors and other government officials as well-paid corporate monitors in arrangements that allow companies to avoid criminal prosecution, according to government data released Thursday by Congress.

US: Slaughter Ban Is Implemented On Cows Too Sick, Weak to Stand
by Associated PressWall Street Journal
May 20th, 2008
Agriculture Secretary Ed Schafer announced Tuesday a total ban on meat plant slaughter of cows too sick or weak to stand.

US: Contractors, insurance firms gouging taxpayers, panel says
by RICHARD LARDNERAssociated Press
May 15th, 2008
A poorly run Pentagon program for providing workman's compensation for civilian employees in Iraq and Afghanistan has allowed defense contractors and insurance companies to gouge American taxpayers, a House committee said Thursday.

US: Cigarette Bill Treats Menthol With Leniency
by STEPHANIE SAULThe New York Times
May 13th, 2008
Some public health experts are questioning why menthol, the most widely used cigarette flavoring and the most popular cigarette choice of African-American smokers, is receiving special protection as Congress tries to regulate tobacco for the first time.

EUROPE: Stealth Lobbyists Creep In
by David CroninIPS
May 9th, 2008
The often cosy relationship between corporate lobbyists and the Brussels bureaucracy was illustrated in the past few weeks as several members of the European Parliament (MEPs) prepared to visit Peru.

CHINA: In China City, Protesters See Pollution Risk of New Plant
by Edward WongNew York Times
May 6th, 2008
Residents took to the streets of Chengdu to protest a $5.5 billion ethylene plant under construction by PetroChina, reflecting a surge in environmental awareness by urban, middle-class Chinese determined to protect their health and the value of their property.

SOUTH KOREA: Indicted Samsung Chairman Resigns
by Blaine HardenWashington Post Foreign Service
April 22nd, 2008
The Lee family, for all its public-relations woes and legal entanglements, remains the dominant shareholder in Samsung, the jewel in South Korea's conglomerate crown.

US: Fannie Mae Ex-Officials Settle
by JAMES R. HAGERTYWall Street Journal
April 19th, 2008
The settlement, announced Friday, brings the government far less than it had originally sought over alleged violations of accounting rules. Fannie's regulator, the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight, in 2006 sought to require the three former executives to pay back more than $115 million of bonuses and pay fines that it said at the time could total more than $100 million.

US: Wall Streeter Converts to a Fan of Regulation
by Landon Thomas Jr.New York Times
April 15th, 2008
In the last two years, Robert K. Steel has been co-chairman of one commission that claimed heavy-handed regulation was stanching financial innovation and another that argued that hedge funds could police themselves.

US: Drug Companies to Reveal Grant Practices
by THE ASSOCIATED PRESSThe New York Times
April 11th, 2008
Watchdog groups say the companies are trying to derail legislation that would require public disclosure of their giving.

US: In Justice Shift, Corporate Deals Replace Trials
by ERIC LICHTBLAUThe New York Times
April 9th, 2008
In a major shift of policy, the Justice Department, once known for taking down giant corporations, including the accounting firm Arthur Andersen, has put off prosecuting more than 50 companies suspected of wrongdoing over the last three years.

US: Drug Makers Near Old Goal: A Legal Shield
by GARDINER HARRIS and ALEX BERENSONThe New York Times
April 6th, 2008
The Bush administration has argued strongly in favor of the doctrine, which holds that the F.D.A. is the only agency with enough expertise to regulate drug makers and that its decisions should not be second-guessed by courts. The Supreme Court is to rule on a case next term that could make pre-emption a legal standard for drug cases. The court already ruled in February that many suits against the makers of medical devices like pacemakers are pre-empted.

US: Reynolds Ads Oppose Move to Regulate Tobacco
by STEPHANIE SAULThe New York Times
April 1st, 2008
As legislation moves through Congress that would empower the F.D.A. to regulate the tobacco industry, Reynolds, whose brands include Camel cigarettes, is attacking what it views as the bill’s vulnerability: a weak, overextended F.D.A.

US: Study says diesel emissions raise cancer risk
by Elizabeth Fernandez, Chronicle Staff WriterThe San Francisco Chronicle
March 20th, 2008
The analysis by the California Air Resources Board, released Wednesday night, shows that the greatest health dangers related to toxic air emissions stems from diesel trucks traversing the freeways and other roadways around West Oakland and the Port of Oakland.

US: Fighting on a Battlefield the Size of a Milk Label
by ANDREW MARTINThe New York Times
March 9th, 2008
A new advocacy group closely tied to Monsanto has started a counteroffensive to stop the proliferation of milk that comes from cows that aren’t treated with synthetic bovine growth hormone.

CHINA: Solar Energy Firms Leave Waste Behind in China
by Ariana Eunjung ChaWashington Post
March 9th, 2008
The Luoyang Zhonggui High-Technology Co. of Henan, China, is a green energy company, producing polysilicon for solar energy panels. But the byproduct -- silicon tetrachloride -- is a highly toxic substance that poses environmental hazards.

US: F.C.C. Weighing Limits on Slowing Web Traffic
by STEPHEN LABATONThe New York Times
February 26th, 2008
The head of the Federal Communications Commission and other senior officials said on Monday that they were considering taking steps to discourage cable and telephone companies from delaying the downloads and uploads of heavy Internet users.

KAZAKHSTAN: Kazakhs warn Mittal over safety
by Isabel Gorst in Moscow and Peter Marsh in LondonThe Financial Times Limited 2008
February 19th, 2008
Kazakhstan has warned ArcelorMittal, the world’s biggest steel company, that it could be forced to close one of its coal mines if it does not improve safety following an explosion last month that killed 30 people.

GLOBAL: 2 Reports At Odds On Biotech Crops
by Rick WeissThe Washington Post
February 14th, 2008
Dueling reports released yesterday -- one by a consortium largely funded by the biotech industry and the other by a pair of environmental and consumer groups -- came to those diametrically different conclusions.

CHINA: China Plant Played Role In Drug Tied to 4 Deaths
by ANNA WILDE MATHEWS and THOMAS M. BURTONThe Wall Street Journal
February 14th, 2008
A Chinese facility that hasn't been inspected by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration made the active ingredient in much of the widely used Baxter International Inc. blood-thinner that is under investigation after reports of hundreds of allergic reactions and four deaths among the drug's users, the agency said yesterday.

US: UnitedHealth Faces Suit Over Payment System
by VANESSA FUHRMANS and THEO FRANCISThe Wall Street Journal
February 13th, 2008
The New York attorney general said his office plans to sue UnitedHealth Group Inc. as part of a broader investigation into the way the health insurance industry sets payment rates for hospitals and doctors outside of their networks.

US: Comcast Defends Role As Internet Traffic Cop
by Cecilia KangThe Washington Post
February 13th, 2008
Comcast said yesterday that it purposely slows down some traffic on its network, including some music and movie downloads, an admission that sparked more controversy in the debate over how much control network operators should have over the Internet.

US: Committee Investigates Ad Tactics for Lipitor
by Stephanie SaulNew York Times
February 8th, 2008
A Congressional investigation revealed that Pfizer agreed to pay Dr. Jarvik $1,350,000 as a celebrity pitchman for the heart drug Lipitor, and wants to know how much stunt doubles in the ads may have also been paid.

US: Altria to spin off foreign cigarette unit March 28
by Vinnee TongAssociated Press
January 31st, 2008
Altria Group Inc. said Wednesday it would spin off its international tobacco business on March 28, freeing it to pursue cigarette sales more aggressively without ties to its U.S. counterpart - and U.S. regulatory oversight.

EU: European Antitrust Regulators Raid Large Drug Makers
by STEPHEN CASTLE and JAMES KANTERNew York Times
January 17th, 2008
Antitrust regulators on Wednesday raided big European drug makers as part of an investigation into whether patents and lawsuit settlements are being manipulated to keep generic products off the market.

US: Corporate Fraud Lawsuits Restricted
by Robert Barnes and Carrie JohnsonWashington Post
January 16th, 2008
The Supreme Court yesterday strictly limited the ability of investors who lost money through corporate fraud to sue other businesses that may have helped facilitate the crime, a decision that could doom stockholder efforts to recover billions of dollars lost in Enron and other high-profile cases.

US: Cloned Livestock Poised
by Jane Zhang, John W. Miller and Lauren EtterWall Street Journal
January 4th, 2008
After more than six years of wrestling with the question of whether meat and milk from cloned animals and their offspring are safe to eat, the Food and Drug Administration is expected to declare as early as next week that they are. The food industry appears to be divided over the issue.

US: Former miners oppose bond release
by Nathan BlackfordWarrick Publishing Online
January 2nd, 2008
Former miners do not want the Indiana Department of Natural Resources to release the final portion of a $4 million bond on a large section of the North Field at the Squaw Creek Mine.

JAMAICA: Regulators Mull Viability of Ferti-irrigation
by Patricia WilliamsIPS News
December 26th, 2007
Appleton Estates seemed to have solved the centuries old problem of what to do with distillery waste when they started a new project eight years ago. However, they are yet to convince regulators and locals that it is a viable option.

IRAQ: Sexual Violence: An Occupational Hazard -- In Iraq and at Home
by Marie TessierWomen's Media Center
December 26th, 2007
Jamie Leigh Jones was just 20 in 2005 when she took a leap of faith to work in Iraq for her employer, military contractor Kellogg, Brown & Root, then a subsidiary of Halliburton. She went on a mission she believed in. Shortly after her arrival in Iraq, however, Jones' ambitions were dashed in an alleged gang rape by co-workers.

EUROPE: Europe Proposes Binding Limits on Auto Emissions
by James KanterNew York Times
December 20th, 2007
European Union officials told leading automakers to make deep cuts in tailpipe emissions of the cars they produce or face fines that could reach billions of euros. Companies including Volkswagen and Renault immediately promised a fight to weaken the proposed legislation.

US: Former Chief Will Forfeit $418 Million
by Eric DashNew York Times
December 7th, 2007
The former chief executive of UnitedHealth Group agrees to settle claims related to back-dated stock options.

US: Shoshone Use Film, Courts to Fight Barrick Gold Mine on Sacred Land
by Lisa J. WolfEnviroment News Service
December 6th, 2007
"Our Land, Our Life," a 74 minute documentary directed by George and Beth Gage, details Carrie and Mary Dann's 30 year struggle to protect their traditional ways and ancestral lands from mining degradation in a battle that went to the U.S. Supreme Court and beyond to the United Nations with no relief as yet from the U.S. government.

IVORY COAST: The Bitter Taste of Cocoa in Côte d'Ivoire
by Michael DeibertIPS News
December 3rd, 2007
In addition to funding conflict, cocoa revenues are believed to have been defrauded for enrichment of persons in both the government and rebel camps. Article also mentions the following corporations: Lev-Ci and Cargill.

EU: EU Fines 4 Glassmakers for Price-Fixing
by Constant BrandAP
November 28th, 2007
A U.S. company that makes glass is accused of price fixing by European regulators.

UK: Severn Trent hit with criminal charges
by Graeme WeardenThe Guardian (UK)
November 22nd, 2007
Severn Trent Water has been charged with three criminal offences of supplying water regulator Ofwat with inaccurate data on water leakages over several years.

ECUADOR: No Dial Tone, No Contract
by Kintto LucasInter Press News Service (IPS)
November 21st, 2007
The possible cancellation of the mobile telephone operating licence granted by Ecuador to Porta Celular, a company indirectly owned by Mexican multi-millionaire Carlos Slim, could set a precedent in Latin America.

US: Law firm seeks nearly $700 mil for Enron pacts
by Martha GraybowReuters
November 21st, 2007
The law firm that helped win $7.2 billion in settlements for Enron investors is seeking nearly $700 million in legal fees for itself and other attorneys who handled the case, according to court documents.

EUROPE: Microsoft Ruling May Bode Ill for Other Companies
by Kevin J. O'Brien and Steve LohrNew York Times
September 18th, 2007
Europe’s second-highest court delivered a stinging rebuke to Microsoft Monday, but the impact of the decision upholding an earlier antitrust ruling may extend well beyond the world’s largest software maker to other high-technology companies.

US: In Turnaround, Industries Seek Regulations
by Eric Lipton and Gardiner HarrisNew York Times
September 16th, 2007
After years of favoring the hands-off doctrine of the Bush administration, some of the nation's biggest industries are pushing for something they have long resisted: new federal regulations.

US: US accountants charged in probe
BBC News Online
September 14th, 2007
US financial regulators have charged 69 firms for breaking new corporate laws brought in after a wave of scandals.

CANADA: Four Former Nortel Executives Charged With Accounting Fraud
Associated Press
September 13th, 2007
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has charged four more former Nortel Networks Corp. executives with accounting fraud, alleging they manipulated reserves to change Nortel's earnings statements on the orders of more senior officers of the Canadian networking equipment maker.

US: Whistle-blowers remain in the line of fire
by Jeremy GrantFinancial Times
September 12th, 2007
When the Securities and Exchange Commission came under congressional fire this year for its handling of an insider trading probe into hedge fund Pequot Capital, Senator Charles Grassley said the episode showed that whistle-blowers were "as welcome as a skunk at a picnic".

US: Investigative Report: U.S. ships unsafe products
by Russell CarolloSacramento Bee
September 9th, 2007
This report finds that goods manufactured in the US and sent to other countries do not meet our own safety standards and often do not receive media attention.

US: SEC Asks Firms to Detail Top Executives' Pay
by Kara Scannell and Joann S. LubliThe Wall Street Journal
August 31st, 2007
Stepping up its campaign to shed light on the mysteries of executive pay, the Securities and Exchange Commission has sent letters to nearly 300 companies across America critiquing disclosures in this year's proxy statements and demanding more information.

US: FTC: Milk Ads Not Misleading
by Sam HananelGuardian (UK)
August 28th, 2007
Federal regulators have turned down a request from Monsanto Co. to take action against dairy companies that advertise milk as free of synthetic hormones.

EU: EU lobbyists face tougher regulation
by Andrew Bounds and Marine FormentiniFinancial Times
August 16th, 2007
Europe seems set for US-style controls on lobbying after the biggest public affairs companies in Brussels ruled out voluntary regulation because they would have to divulge their clients and fees.

UK: Raft of flaws found in popular carbon offsetting schemes
by Martin HickmanThe Independent (UK)
August 13th, 2007
A television documentary has uncovered flaws in a series of carbon offsetting schemes intended to make good the global warming gases emitted by flights and other polluting activities.

US: Hiking the Cost of Bribery
by Emma SchwartzUS News & World Report
August 13th, 2007
The Justice Department crackdown on corrupt practices overseas ensnares both U.S. and foreign companies

INDIA: Novartis Patents Case Far From Dead
by Praful BidwaiInter Press Service News Agency
August 9th, 2007
Cancer patients in India have reason to be relieved at a high court ruling this week which dismissed a petition by Swiss pharmaceuticals multinational corporation (MNC) Novartis challenging an Indian law which denies patents for minor or trivial improvements to known drugs.

INDIA: Setback for Novartis in India Over Drug Patent
by Amelia GentlemanThe New York Times
August 7th, 2007
Indian companies will be free to continue making less expensive generic drugs, much of which flow to the developing world, after a court rejected a challenge to the patent law on Monday.

US: Lawmaker Calls for Registry of Drug Firms Paying Doctors
by Gardiner HarrisNew York Times
August 4th, 2007
An influential Republican senator says he will propose legislation requiring drug makers to disclose the payments they make to doctors for services like consulting, lectures and attendance at seminars.

WORLD: We must count the true cost of cheap China
by Richard McGregorFinancial Times
August 2nd, 2007
In the wake of the multiple scandals over tainted Chinese food and drug exports in recent months, Chinese goods now have an indelible image of being not just cheap, but life-threatening as well. But the fact that wrongly labelled foods, liquor and pharmaceuticals have routinely sickened and even killed people en masse in China has been largely overlooked.

US: Mattel Recalls One Million Toys
by Louise Story New York Times
August 2nd, 2007
Mattel, the maker of Barbie dolls and Hot Wheels cars, is recalling nearly one million toys in the United States today because the products’ surfaces are covered in lead paint. According to Mattel, all the toys were made by a contract manufacturer in China.

CHINA: Beijing Games Officials Penalize Firms
by Mei FongThe Wall Street Journal
August 1st, 2007
The Beijing Olympic Organizing Committee said it was taking corrective measures after a monthlong investigation found that four factories making Olympic merchandise were guilty of labor violations.

US: Can Ford Clean Up After Itself?
by Ron StodghillThe New York Times
July 29th, 2007
Follow-up studies on a cleanup effort at the site of a former Ford car factory have shown that there is still a great deal of toxins left in the soil.

IRAQ: Cutting Costs, Bending Rules, And a Trail of Broken Lives
by Steve FainaruThe Washington Post
July 29th, 2007
An ambush in Iraq last November left four Americans missing and a string of questions about the firm they worked for.

IRAQ: Bechtel Meets Goals on Fewer Than Half of Its Iraq Rebuilding Projects, U.S. Study Finds
by James GlanzThe New York Times
July 26th, 2007
One of the largest American contractors working in Iraq, Bechtel National, met its original objectives on fewer than half of the projects it received as part of a $1.8 billion reconstruction contract, while most of the rest were canceled, reduced in scope or never completed as designed, federal investigators have found in a report released yesterday.

US: FDA Panel to Review Avandia
by Jennifer Corbett DoorenThe Wall Street Journal
July 26th, 2007
The Food and Drug Administration will ask a panel of outside medical experts Monday whether it thinks GlaxoSmithKline PLC's diabetes drug Avandia should remain on the U.S. market.

US: Savings and Issues in Candidates’ Use of Private Jets
by Michael Cooper and Leslie WayneThe New York Times
July 26th, 2007
Political fortunes and high costs have forced some presidential candidates to switch from using chartered private jets to those of corporations, including John McCain, who had previously sponsored a bill limiting use of corporate jets by candidates.

US: Tax Break Used by Drug Makers Failed to Add Jobs
by Alex BerensonThe New York Times
July 24th, 2007
Two years ago, when companies received a big tax break to bring home their offshore profits, the president and Congress justified it as a one-time tax amnesty that would create American jobs. Drug makers were the biggest beneficiaries of the amnesty program, repatriating about $100 billion in foreign profits and paying only minimal taxes. But the companies did not create many jobs in return. Instead, since 2005 the American drug industry has laid off tens of thousands of workers in thi

BRITAIN: Companies 'looting' a continent
by Fran AbramsBBC News
July 24th, 2007
Gordon Brown has signalled he wants to see poor countries develop through trade rather than aid.

EUROPE: Brussels accused of breaking lobbyist rules
by Andrew Bounds Financial Times
July 23rd, 2007
European commissioners, the continent’s regulators, have been criticised by their own watchdog for refusing to divulge details of meetings they and their staff have held with lobbyists.

US: SEC Suspends Online Listing Of Companies Tied to Terrorism
by Deborah Solomon and Neil King Wall Street Journal
July 20th, 2007
Amid a barrage of criticism, the Securities and Exchange Commission is temporarily suspending an online list intended to spotlight companies doing business in countries tied to terrorism.

UK: MPs want UK to pay living wage to overseas staff
by Karen McVeighThe Guardian (UK)
July 17th, 2007
MPs called for legislation yesterday to make British retailers pay their garment workers overseas a living wage.

WORLD: A Way for Resource-Rich Countries to Audit Their Way Out of Corruption
by Tyler CowenThe New York Times
July 12th, 2007
An Oxford economist has a new and potentially powerful idea: setting up an voluntary international charter to guide transparency efforts in resource-rich developing countries, in order to stave of corruption.

CHINA: Lead Toxins Take a Global Round Trip
by Gordon FaircloughThe Wall Street Journal
July 12th, 2007
High levels of toxic lead turning up in cheap jewelry from China are prompting recalls in the U.S. But some of the lead used by these Chinese manufacturers comes from an unconventional source: computers and other electronic goods discarded in Western countries and dumped in China.

UN: Global Compact with Business 'Lacks Teeth' - NGOs
by Gustavo CapdevilaInter Press News Service (IPS)
July 6th, 2007
The U.N.'s Global Compact with international big business "at the moment is so voluntary that it really is a happy-go-lucky club," says Ramesh Singh, chief executive of ActionAid, a non-governmental organisation. The controversy has come to a boiling point because of the Global Compact Leaders' Summit being held in Geneva on Thursday and Friday, at which over 1,000 representatives of multinational companies are taking part, in addition to well-known civil society figures like Irene Khan, the secretary general of AI; Mary Robinson, president of the Ethical Globalisation Initiative; Guy Ryder, general secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation; and Jeremy Hobbs, executive director of Oxfam International.

SAO TOME: No Oil Yet, but African Isle Finds Slippery Dealings
by Barry Meier and Jad MouawadThe New York Times
July 2nd, 2007
The experience of Săo Tomé, a poor country that supports itself by selling cocoa and commemorative stamps featuring celebrities like Elvis Presley and Brigitte Bardot, shows how just the hint of oil can set off a scramble for riches.

UK: Tesco investors attack executive bonus plan
by Karen AttwoodThe Independent
June 30th, 2007
Anger is mounting over a new bonus scheme at Tesco that will reward chief executive Sir Terry Leahy with a Ł11.5m windfall if the supermarket group's US venture Fresh & Easy succeeds.

US: Ex-Enron Executive Sentenced to Prison
by Bloomberg NewsThe New York Times
June 19th, 2007
The former chief of the Internet unit at Enron has been sentenced to 27 months in prison for helping mislead investors in the fraud that sent Enron, the world's largest energy trader, into bankruptcy.

US: Justices Back Underwriters On New Issues
by Linda GreenhouseThe New York Times
June 19th, 2007
The securities industry dodged a bullet on Monday when the Supreme Court threw out a private antitrust suit that accused 10 leading investment banks of conspiring to fix prices for the initial public offerings of hundreds of technology companies during the 1990s.

US: Politics Forcing Detroit to Back New Fuel Rules
by Micheline MaynardThe New York Times
June 19th, 2007
This week, with a vote possible in the Senate on an energy plan, car companies retreated from their longstanding argument that any legislation to increase fuel economy standards would rob them of profits, force them to lay off workers and deprive consumers of the vehicles they wanted to buy. They are now lobbying for a modest increase in mileage standards, a position already adopted by Toyota, in the hopes of silencing calls for even tougher targets.

US: Offshoring and Cheap Imports May Hurt Workers, OECD Says
by Marcus WalkerThe Wall Street Journal
June 19th, 2007
Offshoring and inexpensive imports may be hurting low-skilled workers in the U.S. and Europe to the extent that free trade and open markets could become increasingly difficult for politicians to sell to their constituents, according to one of the world's leading economics institutes.

BRUSSELS:Europe Moves to Make Big Polluters Pay for Emissions
by Stephen CastleThe New York Times
June 4th, 2007
Europe moves towards making significant changes to its emissions-trading system that could force large polluters to pay for most, if not all, permits to produce climate-changing gases.

US: Hurdles Loom in Deal for Reuters
by AARON O. PATRICKWall Street Journal
May 9th, 2007
Thomson Corp. and Reuters Group PLC's ambitious plan to create the world's largest supplier of financial data and news could face regulatory hurdles as it would narrow the market to two main competitors from three.

US: TXU, Exxon Mobil Among 10 'Climate Watch' Companies Targeted by Investors
Ceres
February 13th, 2007
US Companies Face Record Number of Global Warming Resolutions

SOUTH AFRICA: MCC stalls new Aids drugs
by Belinda BeresfordMail & Guardian Online
February 3rd, 2007
South Africans have been denied the “biggest advance” in antiretroviral therapy over the last few years because of a lack of urgency in the drug registration process in South Africa, according to the Treatment Action Campaign.

US: US farming watchdog accuses Wal-Mart of mis-selling
by Stephen Foley in New YorkIndependent (UK)
January 21st, 2007
Wal-Mart, the controversial retailing giant, is under investigation in the US over allegations it is trying to pass off non-organic foods as organic.

INDONESIA: UPDATE 1-NYC comptroller wants review of miner Freeport
Reuters
December 5th, 2006
New York City Comptroller William Thompson, who oversees the city's pension funds, on Tuesday called for a review of Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc.'s environmental policies and practices in Indonesia.

US: Wal-Mart Charged with Selling Nonorganic Food as Organic
by Mark A. KastelThe Free Press
November 14th, 2006
The Cornucopia Institute, the nation's most aggressive organic farming watchdog, has filed a formal legal complaint with the USDA asking them to investigate allegations of illegal “organic” food distribution by Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Cornucopia has documented cases of nonorganic food products being sold as organic in Wal-Mart’s grocery departments.

WORLD: Controlling the Corporate Mercenaries
by Nick Dearden, War on WantZmag
November 7th, 2006
While Iraq represents bloodshed and death on a massive scale to most people, to Private Military and Security Companies (PMSCs) it has brought a boom time, boosting the revenues of British-based PMSCs alone from ÂŁ320 million in 2003 to more than ÂŁ1.8 billion in 2004. In the same year income for the industry worldwide reached $100 billion.

UK: Blair accused of trying to 'privatise' war in Iraq
by Kim SenguptaThe Independent (UK)
October 30th, 2006
The Government has been accused of reneging on pledges to control private security companies operating in Iraq because it wants to "privatise the war" as part of its exit strategy.

ETHIOPIA: US coffee chain Starbucks is denying Ethiopia earnings of up to USD 88 million a year
The Ethiopian Reporter
October 28th, 2006
According to reports, Oxfam said that Starbucks asked the National Coffee Association (NCA) to block Ethiopia's bid to trademark two types of coffee bean in the US. The move would have given farmers a greater share of profits, it claims.

EU: Chemicals: A tale of fear and lobbying
by Matthew SaltmarshInternational Herald Tribune
October 27th, 2006
Three years ago, Margot Wallstrom, who was then the European Union's environment commissioner, revealed to a startled Brussels press corps that a blood test had found the presence of 28 artificial chemicals in her body, including DDT, a pesticide banned from European farms since 1983, when it was found to harm wildlife and attack the nervous system.

EU: Lobbying, European style
by Matthew SaltmarshInternational Herald Tribune
October 27th, 2006
If the European Union's eight-year effort to tighten laws governing chemicals testing has spawned one of the biggest and most costly industry lobbying campaigns that Brussels has ever seen, it has also given new impetus to efforts to regulate how lobbying is done at the European Commission.

US: SKILLING GETS 24 YEARS IN PRISON FOR ENRON FRAUD
by Tom FowlerHouston Chronicle
October 23rd, 2006
Former Enron CEO Jeff Skilling was sentenced today to 24 years in prison for his role in the energy company's 2001 collapse in what has become one of the nation's biggest corporate scandals.

IRAQ: Pentagon Audit Clears Propaganda Effort
by Mark MazzettiNew York Times
October 20th, 2006
An American military propaganda campaign that planted favorable news articles in the Iraqi news media did not violate laws or Pentagon regulations, but it was not properly supervised by military officials in Baghdad, an audit by the Pentagon Inspector General has concluded.

US: Democrats On FCC Criticize Justice Dept.'s OK Of Merger
by David Hatch National Journal
October 12th, 2006
The FCC's two Democratic members harshly criticized the Justice Department for approving the $78 billion AT&T- BellSouth merger without conditions.

LIBERIA: Mittal accused of creating a state within a state in Liberia
by David PallisterThe Guardian (UK)
October 2nd, 2006
A damning report on Mittal Steel's acquisition of an impoverished African country's iron ore reserves is published today, accusing the world's largest steelmaker of offering an inequitable "raw deal" that has created an unaccountable "state within a state".

SWITZERLAND: Gun for hire: mercenaries operate in a legal no-man's land
by Ian HamelSwiss Info
September 15th, 2006
Geneva is set to host an international conference in November tackling the thorny issue of private security companies operating in a legal no-man's-land.

US: Chicago's Council Fails to Override Daley's Veto (Update3)
by Lauren Coleman-Lochner and Kevin OrlandBloomberg
September 13th, 2006
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and other large retailers claimed victory in Chicago after the City Council failed to override Mayor Richard Daley's veto of an ordinance requiring them to increase their minimum wage.

US: Panel of Executives and Academics to Consider Regulation and Competitiveness
by Floyd NorrisThe New York Times
September 13th, 2006
A committee filled with business leaders and academics was created yesterday to consider changes in the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and other laws and regulations governing securities markets and companies, with the intention of improving competitiveness for American markets.

WORLD: Firms admit paying bribes in World Bank program
Reuters
August 31st, 2006
A "healthy" number of companies have admitted paying bribes under a new World Bank disclosure program, which encourages firms that have worked on bank-funded projects to report corruption or fraud.

JAPAN: Five Executives Are Arrested in Japan
by Martin FacklerThe New York Times
August 25th, 2006
Five executives of the Mitutoyo Corporation, a precision instruments maker, were arrested today on suspicion of illegally exporting equipment to Malaysia that could be used in making nuclear weapons.

US: Industry starts to back rules on greenhouse gas
by Zachary CoileSan Francisco Chronicle
August 24th, 2006
For years, most industry groups have fought any effort to limit carbon dioxide and other gases linked to global warming, warning of dire consequences for the U.S. economy. But with growing public anxiety about climate change, major corporations are increasingly preparing for -- and, in some cases, lobbying for -- Congress to regulate emissions of heat-trapping gases.

PERU: Fresh Evidence of Construction Problems in Camisea Pipeline
by Ángel PáezInter Press Service (IPS)
August 24th, 2006
Techint, the Argentine company that built the Camisea pipeline which carries natural gas from Peru's Amazon jungle region to a port on the country's Pacific coast, used unqualified welders, in a clear violation of international norms, according to a new report by E-Tech, a California-based non-profit engineering and environmental consultancy firm.

WORLD: New alliance seeks fight water sector corruption
by Alister DoyleReuters
August 22nd, 2006
Water experts and businesses teamed up on Tuesday to fight corruption feared to be siphoning off billions of dollars from projects to supply drinking water to the Third World.

CANADA: Information Cleansing, Canadian Style
by Bill BerkowitzInter Press Service
August 16th, 2006
If you're a teacher, student, journalist or just a plain concerned citizen interested in finding well-researched documentation about climate change, you can no longer depend on the Canadian government to supply that information.

US: NY AG Sues Chip Makers Over Price Fixing
by Mark JohnsonThe Associated Press
July 14th, 2006
New York's attorney general sued leading makers of memory chips Thursday, claiming they made secret price-fixing arrangements that inflated the cost of personal computers and other electronic devices.

US: I.R.S. Wins Its Appeal Over Abusive Tax Shelter
by Lynnley BrowningThe New York Times
July 13th, 2006
A federal appeals court handed a victory to the Internal Revenue Service yesterday in its war on questionable tax shelters, ruling that a shelter bought in 1996 by a former subsidiary of the Goodrich Corporation was abusive.

EU: EU hits Microsoft with €280.5m antitrust fine
by Mark TranGuardian Unlimited
July 12th, 2006
The rift between the European commission and Microsoft today widened as the software giant was fined €280.5m (Ł193.7m) for defying an antitrust ruling.

US: Lay's Death Could Set Skilling Free
by Barrie McKennaThe Globe and Mail (Canada)
July 7th, 2006
Kenneth Lay's sudden death could prove to be an unexpected legal bequest to Jeffrey Skilling, his co-defendant in the landmark Enron Corp. fraud case.

US: Court Voids $145 Billion Judgment in Tobacco Case
by Jeremy W. PetersThe New York Times
July 6th, 2006
The Florida Supreme Court upheld today a decision that threw out a $145 billion judgment against the nation's largest tobacco companies.

US: 'Net Neutrality' Amendment Rejected
by Kim Hart and Sara Kehaulani GooThe Washington Post
June 29th, 2006
A proposal to prevent Internet service providers from charging Web firms more for faster service to consumers failed yesterday to clear a Senate committee.

US: BP Unit Accused of Manipulating Propane Prices
Reuters
June 28th, 2006
The U.S. futures industry regulator said Wednesday that a U.S. unit of BP Plc. tried to manipulate U.S. propane prices by cornering the market in February 2004.

US: SEC Lawyer Claims Firing Over Fund Inquiry
Associated Press
June 28th, 2006
A former government attorney told Congress on Wednesday that he was fired for investigating a hedge fund too aggressively and said law enforcement is failing in its duty to protect investors in the growing hedge fund industry.

US: SEC Lawyer Dismissed for a Donor?
by Ari BermanThe Nation
June 28th, 2006
Last year, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) began investigating one of the nation's largest hedge funds, Pequot Capitol Management, for possible insider trading. Up until last summer, the inquiry was headed by SEC lawyer Gary Aguirre. His investigation proceeded smoothly, Aguirre claims, until he asked for testimony from former Pequot chairman and Morgan Stanley CEO, John Mack, a top Bush donor.

EU: Brussels to raise fines for cartels tenfold
by David GowThe Guardian (UK)
June 28th, 2006
Companies found guilty of anti-competitive practices will face multibillion euro fines or more than 10 times the current tariffs for abusing their monopoly and taking part in cartels under draconian new competition guidelines adopted by the European Commission today.

US: OCA Boycott of Bogus Organic Milk Brands Putting Pressure on Nation's Largest Dairies & Retailers
by Steve Karnowski Associated Press
June 27th, 2006
Fears that big operations will muscle out family farms have produced a backlash, including a boycott by the Organic Consumers Association against the country's biggest organic milk brand, Horizon Organic.

US: Justices Reject Campaign Limits in Vermont Case
by Linda GreenhouseThe New York Times
June 27th, 2006
Vermont's limits on campaign contributions and on campaign spending by candidates are unconstitutional, the Supreme Court ruled on Monday in a splintered 6-to-3 decision suggesting that efforts to limit the role of money in politics might face considerable resistance in the Roberts court.

US: Supreme Court to Review Antitrust Case Against Phone Companies
by Stephan LabatonThe New York Times
June 27th, 2006
The Supreme Court announced Monday that it would consider a lawsuit that accuses the nation's largest telephone companies of violating federal antitrust law by conspiring to carve up local markets to preserve their monopolies.

US: Environmental Groups Sue EPA Over Refinery Emission Standards
by Janet WilsonThe Los Angeles Times
June 21st, 2006
A coalition of national and community environmental groups has sued the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to overturn a new rule that allegedly allows refineries and other industrial plants to emit higher levels of noxious chemicals when starting up, shutting down and experiencing equipment malfunctions, without informing area residents.

US: Tanker Inquiry Finds Rumsfeld's Attention Was Elsewhere
by R. Jeffrey SmithThe Washington Post
June 20th, 2006
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.

US: 2 Utilities to Pay Enron $50 Million in Settlement
by David Cay JohnstonThe New York Times
June 14th, 2006
Two small utilities are set to pay more than $50 million to Enron for electricity that they agreed to buy but that Enron will never deliver, under terms of a settlement that raises larger issues.

CANADA: Province Should Share More Details About Polluters
The Vancouver Sun
June 13th, 2006
Looking for details about British Columbia's biggest polluters? You won't find them in the newly re-introduced compliance and enforcement summary produced by the B.C. Environment Ministry.

CHINA: Google must obey China law
by Verne KopytoffSan Francisco Chronicle
June 9th, 2006
China's government reiterated on Thursday that foreign Internet companies such as Google Inc. must abide by its laws, which require censoring online material that is considered to be politically sensitive.

US: Release ordered for 2 executives
by John C. RoperThe Houston Chronicle
June 9th, 2006
Two Merrill Lynch executives convicted for their roles in a Nigerian barge deal that inflated Enron's profits have been ordered released from prison pending their appeal.

JAPAN: Japan Arrests Corporate Raider on Securities Charges
by Martin FacklerThe New York Times
June 5th, 2006
A self-proclaimed corporate raider who struck fear into Japan's insider-run boardrooms by demanding American-style shareholder rights was arrested on Monday on suspicion of insider trading.

US: For Law Firm, Serial Plaintiff Had Golden Touch
by Julie Creswell and Jonathan D. GlaterThe New York Times
June 5th, 2006
Mr. Vogel now says, according to a plea agreement with federal prosecutors, that he and members of his family were actually linchpins in a long-running arrangement that helped Milberg Weiss snare the lucrative lead counsel position in the Oxford Health and many other securities lawsuits, reaping hundreds of millions of dollars in legal fees.

US: Split verdict in Enron broadband retrial
by Kristen HayesAssociated Press
June 1st, 2006
Of two former Enron Corp. broadband executives to be retried on fraud and conspiracy charges in the wake of a hung jury last year, one faces prison and the other is free.

US: Enron Prosecutor Questions Skilling's Story
by Vikas Bajaj and Alexei BarrionuevoThe New York Times
April 17th, 2006
A prosecutor tried to poke holes in the testimony of Jeffrey K. Skilling, the former Enron chief executive, today by boring in on stock sales he made in the months after he left the company and before the energy company declared bankruptcy.

US: The Enron Standard
by Lee Drutmantompaine.com
April 13th, 2006
In a Houston courtroom this week, former Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling took the witness stand to plead his innocence, telling jurors that “My life is on the line.”

US: Pentagon Orders Investigation Of Cunningham's MZM Earmark
by Walter Pincus Washington Post
March 24th, 2006
Undersecretary of Defense Stephen A. Cambone ordered an internal study of how funding earmarked in a bill by then-Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-Calif.) led to contracts for MZM Inc. to do work for the Pentagon's new agency: the Counterintelligence Field Activity.

US: Fastow grilled about 'smoking gun' document
by Greg FarrellUSA TODAY
March 9th, 2006
A defense lawyer in the trial of former Enron CEOs Ken Lay and Jeff Skilling spent Thursday morning trying to undermine the testimony of the government's star witness and questioning the authenticity of a "smoking gun" document.

US: Fastow: "I was being a hero for Enron."
by John C. RoperHouston Chronicle
March 7th, 2006
Andrew Fastow considered himself "a hero for Enron'' for hiding losses and bolstering earnings for the company through partnership deals he created.

US: Enron Secretary Defends Her Criticism of Executives
by Alexei BarrionuevoThe New York Times
February 23rd, 2006
For the first time in the four-week trial of two former Enron executives, the actions of the company's directors in a critical month in 2001 came under scrutiny during a cross-examination.

UK: British Court Backs Extradition of Three in Enron-Related Case
Associated Press
February 22nd, 2006
Three British bankers may be extradited to the United States to face Enron-related fraud charges, the High Court ruled on Tuesday in a ruling that was the first test case of laws introduced to speed the transfer of suspected terrorists.

US: Skilling's Lawyer Portrays an Accuser as Out of Touch
by Alexei BarrionuevoThe New York Times
February 16th, 2006
A lawyer for Jeffrey K. Skilling, a former Enron chief executive, tried Wednesday to portray the head of the company's broadband unit as an out-of-touch manager who was criticized for his free-spending ways and did not even know how many employees were working under him.

US: 10 Enron Players: Where They Landed After the Fall
by staffThe New York Times
January 29th, 2006
KENNETH L. LAY and his second in command, Jeffrey K. Skilling, were the public faces of Enron, painting a rosy picture of strong profits and healthy businesses. But as the facts began to tumble out, in the fall of 2001, the company swiftly collapsed, taking with it the fortunes and retirement savings of thousands of employees.

US: Big Test Looms for Prosecutors at Enron Trial
by Kurt EichenwaldThe New York Times
January 26th, 2006
"For the government, if they lose the Enron case, it will be seen as a symbolic failure of their rather significant campaign against white-collar crime," said John C. Coffee Jr., a professor at Columbia Law School. "It will be seen as some evidence that some cases are too complicated to be brought into the criminal justice process."

US: Hard Times Haunt Enron's Ex-Workers
by Simon RomeroThe New York Times
January 25th, 2006
For Angelique Chappell, a former administrative assistant at Enron, it all now seems like a mirage.

US: Taking Enron to Task
by Carrie JohnsonWashington Post
January 18th, 2006
Sean M. Berkowitz and a small group of government lawyers will be in the spotlight in the Jan. 30 trial of Enron's former leaders. The case is the capstone in the cleanup after an era of business misconduct that left investors billions of dollars poorer. The outcome could shape the public's -- and history's -- judgment of how effective it was.

US: Prosecutors Shift Focus on Enron
by Alexei BarrionuevoThe New York Times
January 11th, 2006
Government lawyers who will try the case against Enron's former chief executives, Kenneth L. Lay and Jeffrey K. Skilling, have signaled that they intend to spend less time befuddling jurors with talk of Enron's accounting.

US: Call It the Deal of a Lifetime
by Landon Thomas, Jr.The New York Times
January 8th, 2006
It has been a wrenching professional and personal reversal for Michael Kopper, who three years ago became the first Enron executive to plead guilty to criminal charges and cut a deal with the government. Mr. Kopper was also the first high-ranking Enron employee to publicly admit to lying and stealing - in his case, more than $16 million - from the company.

US: Four Years Later, Enron's Shadow Lingers as Change Comes Slowly
by Stephen LabatonThe New York Times
January 5th, 2006
Four years after the company's ignominious collapse, Enron's former top executives are about to head to a climactic criminal trial later this month, serving as a reminder that changes in the behavior of many American companies have been more muted than many once expected.

US: Enron Prosecutors, After Plea Bargain, Can Reduce Technical Jargon in Trial
by John R. EmshwillerThe Wall Street Journal
January 4th, 2006
The plea bargain last week by former Enron Chief Accounting Officer Richard Causey gives federal prosecutors the chance to present a shorter and less technical case against former company Chairman Kenneth Lay and former President Jeffrey Skilling. The pair's trial on conspiracy, fraud and other charges is scheduled to start in Houston on Jan. 30.

US: U.S. says Skilling mislead the SEC
CNN
January 4th, 2006
Prosecutors intend to argue that former Enron CEO Jeff Skilling attempted to deceive the Securities and Exchange Commission in a deposition he gave soon after the company's bankruptcy about his reason for selling 500,000 shares of Enron stock, according to a motion filed in a Houston federal court Tuesday.

US: Former Top Enron Accountant Pleads Guilty to Fraud
by Simon Romero and Vikas BajasThe New York Times
December 28th, 2005
The former chief accounting officer of Enron pleaded guilty today to a single felony charge of securities fraud and agreed to cooperate with federal prosecutors, giving a significant lift to the government's case against the two leading figures in the scandal over Enron's collapse.

US: J. P. Morgan Chase to Pay Investors $2.2 Billion
by Julie CreswellNew York Times
June 15th, 2005
J. P. Morgan Chase announced that it had agreed to pay $2.2 billion to Enron investors who accused the bank of participating in the accounting scandal that led to Enron's collapse.

US: Bicoastal Blues For G.M. and Ford
by Danny HakimThe New York Times
April 23rd, 2005
Setting aside its home base in the Upper Midwest, Detroit has a blue state problem -- and it is about to get worse. Washington and Oregon plan to become the 9th and 10th states to adopt California's tough car emissions rules, forming an increasingly potent market for more fuel-efficient vehicles on the West Coast and in the Northeast.

US: Firm Accused Of Asbestos Coverup Contamination Scars Montana Town
by Carrie Johnson and Dina ElBoghdadyWashington Post
February 8th, 2005
Federal prosecutors yesterday charged W.R. Grace & Co. with exposing mine workers and residents in a small mountain community in Montana to deadly asbestos and covering up the danger.

BRAZIL: Corporate Governance Takes Center Stage in Rio
by Sundeep TuckerFinancial Times
July 6th, 2004
International corporate governance will come of age this week as the world's leading activists congregate in Rio de Janeiro for the 10th annual conference of the International Corporate Governance Network, which heads to a developing country for the first time.

US: A Record Year for Shareholder Activism
by G. Jeffrey MacDonaldChristian Science Monitor
June 28th, 2004
Question: What single force can get Tyco International to strive for cleaner emissions, inspire PepsiCo to study the impact of AIDS in developing nations, and even get Merck & Co. to declare its intentions to not manufacture an abortion pill? Answer: shareholders.

US: Probe into Iraq trafficking claims
by Elise LabottCNN
May 5th, 2004
The United States is investigating reports Indian nationals were victims of human trafficking to Iraq and mistreated while working there as contractors in U.S. military camps, the State Department has said.

US: For Cruise Ships, A History of Pollution
by Edwin McDowellThe New York Times
June 16th, 2002
On April 19 the Carnival Corporation pleaded guilty in United States District Court in Miami to criminal charges related to falsifying records of the oil-contaminated bilge water that six of its ships dumped into the sea from 1996 through 2001.

US: Internal Memos Connect Enron to California Energy Crisis
by Mark MartinSan Francisco Chronicle
May 7th, 2002
Energy traders for Enron used elaborate schemes with nicknames like ''Death Star'' and''Get Shorty'' to manipulate California's electricity market and boost profits, according to internal company memos released by federal regulators Monday.

Mexico: Legislation Strikes Blow Against Privatization, Secrecy
by Dan JaffeeCommonDreams.org
April 28th, 2002
In less than 24 hours this past Wednesday, big advances for three major pieces of legislation indicated that Mexico -- for 20 years the ''model student'' of so-called free market policy reforms, and long noted for high levels of government secrecy and corruption -- may be charting a new, more independent course. At a moment when the Bush administration is chilling domestic dissent, restricting the free flow of information and promoting corporate deregulation, Mexico appears poised to do virtually the opposite.

ZAMBIA: Environmentalists Caution New Mine Investors
The Times of Zambia (Lusaka)
March 6th, 2000
A non-governmental organisation has cautioned the new mine investors not to willfully pollute the environment despite a bill which indemnifies them from litigation against environmental degradation. Citizens for a better environment, a Kitwe based NGO, warned that should the new mines violate the rights of the people to a clean environment, they would face the wrath of the public.