Are "Orange County" and "Ethics Reform" Mutually Exclusive? Kick It Around Wednesday

Christopher Victorio/OC Weekly
Would you buy an ethics commission from this board chairman?
Orange County Board of Supervisors Chairman Todd Spitzer hosts a roundtable discussion in Irvine Wednesday afternoon that is either part of genuine, much needed ethics reform or a continuation of a charade pulled on county voters last year.

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Pair Padded Chests in $50 mil Insurance Scam, Agent Padded Wallet in $900k Sales Schemes

Photo by flickr user Thijs van Exel
Don't hate me because I am beautiful.
Two women have been convicted in federal court for defrauding union and private health insurance firms out of $50 million for medically unnecessary procedures performed on insurance beneficiaries who received free or discounted liposuction, tummy tucks and boob jobs.

Meanwhile, an ex-insurance agent in Brea was convicted and sentenced to seven years in state prison recently for receiving more than $900,000 from fraudulent insurance policies that he spent on luxury high-rise apartments, travel, wine clubs and fine dining.

Which proves my theory the rich really are different than you and me.

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First House Detox of Newport Beach Hit with $10.25 mil Judgment in Bulimic Man's Death

Categories: Cha-Ching!, Court

Courtesy of Anna Menedjian/Sizemore Law Firm
Detox centers were accused of "buying and selling" young clients such as Brandon Jacques "like they were pieces of meat."
An Orange County Superior Court jury recently awarded more than $10.25 million to the parents of a young man who died while in the care of a Newport Beach drug and alcohol detox center, plaintiff attorneys announced.

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Chapman University Settles Donation Dispute with 98-year-old Philanthropist and His Wife

Chapman University
Chapman President James Doti and Catherine and James Emmi are all smiles again.
UPDATE NO. 2, FEB. 26, 9:03 A.M.: Chapman University and a Corona del Mar philanthropist and his wife have settled their dispute over a $12 million donation to the private institution in Orange, and they have issued the joint statement that follows that will be their only comment on the matter.

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Steven Bren, Irvine Co. Chairman's Son, Leads Firm on State's Delinquent Corporate Tax List

Photo by flickr user John Watson
In April 2010, we reported that Steven Bren, son of billionaire Irvine Co. chairman Donald Bren, occupied the No. 18 spot on California's list of most delinquent tax delinquents, as he and his wife Cynthia owed $2,209,561.23 in personal income tax at the time. We're happy to report the Brens of Emerald Bay are not on the state's 2015 list of the top 500 personal tax delinquents. However, Steven Bren's company is on the California Franchise Tax Board's 2015 list of top corporate tax delinquents.

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Orange Most Economically Diverse, Garden Grove Most Ethno-Linguistically Diverse in OC

Photo by flickr user erin m
Finally something all sides can agree on.
Those number crunchers at the online consumer site are really into diversity lately, ranking cities by the most and least economic, ethno-racial and linguistic diversity. Orange County cities make both lists.

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Disneyland Adult Ticket Price Glass Half Full Argument: They Aren't $100 Yet

Photo by Mary Bell/OC Weekly
Ah, well, at least gay couples will still be able to afford it.
When I first started taking money from motorists entering Disneyland, parking cost 50 cents. It's $17 now. I don't recall what an adult pass to get into the Anaheim theme park was back in those days, but it certainly was not $99, the new admission price as of last weekend.

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Bich Quyen Nguyen Gets 12-plus Years and $24.5 mil Payback Order for Investment Scam

Photo by flickr user Jeremy Brooks
Madame Nguyen's Ponzi scheme screwed 200 people out of $24 million.
"Madame" Bich Quyen Nguyen, CEO of Sun Investments Savings and Loan, told would-be investors that her Swedish company had embarked on a new program to seek business from less-wealthy customers than usual by accepting individual investments of at least $1 million. In exchange for purchasing her high-yield certificates of deposit, Madame Nguyen guaranteed annual returns of 36-200 percent.

But as it turns out, there was a huge problem with the wealth-building strategy: Sun Investments Savings and Loan did not exist.

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Come to Chapman for the Bell Scandal, Stay for Shots at/of "Jabba the Corrupt" Robert Rizzo

Huntington Beach Police Department
All hail Jabba the Corrupt.
Chapman University's announcement that it will be presenting a day-long conference in February examining the City of Bell scandal is not the exciting part, although I'm sure a good time will be had by all.

No, the bestest of the bestest about this is we get to once again break out our police mugshot of Robert Rizzo, the former Bell city administrator who was living in Huntington Beach when he became the national poster child for greedy public servants run amok.

Then-Los Angeles County District Attorney Steven L. Cooley called the Bell scandal "corruption on steroids," which must mean steroids are fattening considering Jabba the Corrupt's lovely image.

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Wendy Wall Cops to Decade-Long Thieving That Caused Credit Union for Pepsi Workers to Fizzle

Categories: Cha-Ching!, Court

Photo by flickr user Thomas Hawk
Better redeem those bottles.
A Lakewood woman pleaded guilty in federal court in Santa Ana Tuesday to essentially driving a Buena Park credit union for Pepsi Cola employees into the ground--not through her decade of management but through her decade of embezzlement.

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