‘Panama Papers’ expose crime and corruption hidden by offshore accounts

More than 100 news organizations collaborated to report on the “Panama Papers,” a cache of 11.5 million documents that illustrate the hidden financial dealings of current and former world leaders, politicians and public officials. Among their findings: Associates of Russian President Vladimir Putin secretly shuffled as much as $2 billion through banks and shadow companies. Offshore…

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Luxury businesses default on SBA loans

When Small Business Administration lenders determine they will not be able to collect repayment on a loan, the loan is said to be charged off. According to an SBA database obtained by Watchdog.org, SBA lenders have charged off loans backed partly by taxpayer dollars since 2009. These have included millions of dollars in loans to…

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U.S. helps shaky colleges cope with bad student loans

The Education Department can cut off a college’s access to federal student loans if too many students default. But the department almost never shuts off that cash, an investigation by The Wall Street Journal found. Colleges can manipulate their default rates. The government not only knows this – it sometimes helps colleges that are about…

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$15 million in state funds held in non-profit bank account

KARK 4 News spent two months going through years of board minutes, financial documents and audits after receiving a tip that millions of state dollars were sitting in an out-of-state account, even as rice farmers continued to pay millions in check-offs each year. The station found that members of the state board voted to send…

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Twin Cities Archdiocese transfer of assets may protect it from bankruptcy creditors

For decades, the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis has been shifting money into separate nonprofits that may be beyond the reach of its creditors in bankruptcy court. The nonprofits were created for various reasons, but they carry the potential benefit of protecting the church’s assets from liability linked to clergy abuse suits. The moves…

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Extra Extra Roundup: Stolen weapons, wage enforcement and prison inmates

Business tangles with wage enforcement system for decades | Rocky Mountain PBS I-NEWS More than 30 years of public records and internal documents dealing with Bradley Petroleum, one of Colorado’s oldest employers, show the company has repeatedly been investigated for violating federal and state labor law, Rocky Mountain PBS I-News has found. In particular, for…

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Extra Extra Monday: Jailers without jails, deadly debris, and state medical examiners

Share your work with Extra Extra: Email your story suggestions to extraextra@ire.org. Please include a working URL for the story. You may also include an optional synopsis of 100 words or less. Only in Kentucky: Jailers Without Jails | Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting Jeanette Miller Hughes is the personification of a wasteful, nepotism-laced but…

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Extra Extra Monday: Prenatal screening tests, prison labor programs and nonprofit donations

Oversold and misunderstood: Prenatal screening tests prompt abortions | The New England Center for Investigative Reporting Sparked by the sequencing of the human genome a decade ago, a new generation of prenatal screening tests, including MaterniT21, has exploded onto the market in the past three years. The unregulated screens claim to detect with near-perfect accuracy…

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Records show troubled stockbrokers often cluster near the affluent and elderly

Stockbrokers who’ve been in trouble with regulators tend to cluster in certain places in the country where the affluent and elderly are easily accessible and where regulatory punishment is lax, a Wall Street Journal data analysis shows. The Journal found these hotspots in south Florida and Long Island, long known as havens for troubled brokers,…

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Extra Extra Monday: Child abuse deaths unheeded, strawberry pesticides, habitual drunk driving

Nursing homes unmasked: Who owns California’s nursing homes? | Sacramento BeeAs private investment groups scoop up an ever-larger share of the nation’s skilled-nursing care market, it has become increasingly difficult to decipher who owns the nation’s largest chains. Elder-care advocates will tell you this is no accident: A convoluted ownership structure, they say, is a…

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