Developer for proposed Trump-branded Dallas hotel has history of unfinished projects, legal woes

An investigation by the Dallas Morning News found that Mukemmel “Mike” Sarimsakci, the developer who was planning to help launch the Trump Organization’s new Scion brand with a hotel in downtown Dallas, has a history of unpaid debts and legal trouble. Sarimsakci, who refers to himself as the “Turkish Trump” and is an admirer of the President,…

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Trump condos worth $250 million pose potential conflict

A four-month investigation by USA TODAY cataloged every property President Trump’s companies own across the country. It found those companies own more than 400 condo units and home lots worth at least $250 million in the U.S. alone. In contrast to developments where Trump licenses his name to a separate developer for a flat fee, these…

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Broward jail officials failed to protect some inmates endangered by mental illnesses

A Sun Sentinel investigation, “Death on their Watch,” found that Armor Correctional Health Services of Miami, the private company paid to handle health care in Broward County, Florida jails, has failed to protect some inmates endangered by their mental illnesses ­– with deadly consequences. Some inmates withered away in cells, hanged themselves or died after…

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Assessment program gave millions to private companies, cost millions for taxpayers

The new property appraisal system in Monmouth County was touted as “true tax reform” and a way to save homeowners millions of dollars, according to the Asbury Park Press. However, the program has caused homeowners to see their tax payments jump, sometimes as much as 35 percent. The taxpayers are also now paying millions to…

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High-profile San Diego lawyer investigated for questionable real estate transactions

Cory Briggs, a San Diego-based lawyer, may have been involved in fraudulent land deals, according to an inewsource investigation. The most notable transactions include two $1.5 million dollar deeds of trust – liens against a property – that were nearly three times more than the actual value of the homes, according to the investigation. When…

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Asset seizures fuel police spending

Police agencies have used hundreds of millions of dollars taken from Americans under federal civil forfeiture law in recent years to buy guns, armored cars and electronic surveillance gear. They have also spent money on luxury vehicles, travel and a clown named Sparkles. The details are contained in thousands of annual reports submitted by local…

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Resort turned $17.5 million of equity into loans without telling investors

When a group of wealthy immigrants learned Vermont ski resort Jay Peak had converted their $17.5 million worth of equity investments into loans — a transaction they were not told about until five months after the fact — investors were incensed. But resort officials defend the transaction, saying it was in the investors’ best interest.…

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Berkshire Hathaway subsidiaries deny, delay asbestos, hazard claims, suits, insiders allege

“Scripps interviewed more than 20 sources — some confidential — reviewed dozens of lawsuits and spoke with former insiders, who all allege the Berkshire-owned companies that handle its asbestos and pollution policies — National Indemnity Co. and Resolute Management Inc. — wrongfully delay or deny compensation to cancer victims and others to boost Berkshire’s profits.…

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Forged documents surprise homeowners, cost thousands of dollars to fix

In February, 41 Action News found housing documents somehow signed by dead people and homeowners who had no idea the deeds to their properties had been forged. Continuing its investigation, 41 Action News reports “a growing trail of ‘dirty deeds,’ and evidence of a crime that’s so shockingly easy, there is very little to stop it from happening.”

Extra Extra Monday: Overdoses, background checks, housing markets, midwifery and fraudulent accounting

Use only as directed | ProPublica and This American Life “About 150 Americans a year die by accidentally taking too much acetaminophen, the active ingredient in Tylenol. The toll does not have to be so high.” Read the stories from ProPublica. Company Behind Snowden Vetting Did Check on D.C. Shooter | Bloomberg “The U.S. government…

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