June 26, 2013 in Business

In brief: Investment adviser pleads guilty to fraud

From Wire Reports
 

NEW YORK – A Florida investment adviser pleaded guilty Tuesday in a $13 million securities fraud scheme that prosecutors say capitalized on enthusiasm for shares of Facebook and other Internet companies about to go public.

Craig L. Berkman, 71, of Odessa, Fla., entered the plea to securities fraud and wire fraud in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, agreeing to serve between eight and 10 years in prison, according to the terms of a written agreement between Berkman and prosecutors. Otherwise, he would have faced up to 40 years in prison.

Berkman, a one-time Oregon GOP gubernatorial candidate, admitted that he falsely claimed to investors in December 2010 that he owned shares of Menlo Park, Calif.-based Facebook Inc., Chicago-based Groupon Inc. and Mountain View, Calif.-based LinkedIn Inc., among other companies.

Prosecutors say he pocketed much of the $13.2 million he received from more than 120 investors during the scheme, which stretched from 2010 until his March 2013 arrest.

Carnival turns profit in 2Q, names new CEO

NEW YORK – Passengers remain hesitant to book cruises, despite deep discounts. But that didn’t stop Carnival Corp. from eking out a $41 million second-quarter profit thanks to lower fuel costs and the timing of some administrative expenses.

The Miami-based company also announced Tuesday that Micky Arison, who has been CEO since 1979 and is the son of Carnival co-founder Ted Arison, is being replaced by Arnold W. Donald, who has served on the company’s board for the past 12 years. Arison will continue to serve as chairman of the board.

The profit was nearly triple the $14 million the world’s largest cruise company earned during same period last year, a quarter in which it suffered from steep losses on fuel prices bets known as derivatives.

Earnings totaled of 5 cents per share this quarter, up from 2 cents a share last year at this time. Revenue fell 1.7 percent to $3.48 billion.

Court upholds hefty fine against song file-sharer

BOSTON – A $675,000 verdict against a former Boston University student who illegally downloaded and shared songs on the Internet has been upheld.

A jury ordered Providence, R.I., resident Joel Tenenbaum to pay $22,500 for each of 30 songs after the Recording Industry Association of America sued him on behalf of four record labels.

Tenenbaum argued the $675,000 award violates his due process rights because it’s not tied to the injury he caused. He estimates that to be no more than $450, or the cost of 30 albums.

A federal appeals court Tuesday found Tenenbaum’s conduct was “egregious” because he illegally shared songs for years despite numerous warnings.

The U.S. Supreme Court last year declined to hear Tenenbaum’s appeal.


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