Usana Covers for Denis Waitley

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After Barry Minkow and Fraud Discovery Institute revealed earlier this week that Denis Waitley (board of directors for Usana) didn’t have the credentials he claimed, Usana is covering for him. They announced late today that he will be retiring, with this statement:

Dr. Denis Waitley has decided not to stand for reelection to the USANA board of directors. Dr. Waitley recently informed USANA that an error appeared in his biography listed in the Company’s proxy statement and that he did not in fact earn a masters degree in Organizational Development from the Naval Post Graduate School in Monterey, California. Dr. Waitley did confirm that he earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, and a Ph.D. in Human Behavior from La Jolla University. Dr. Waitley’s board term will end on April 17, 2007, at which time he will retire as a director of the Company. Continue reading

Thou Shall Not Steal – Except in Accounting Class

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Marquette students learn to detect fraud by thinking like crooks

The Business Journal of Milwaukee
By Jennifer Batog

In a nondescript room on the third floor of Marquette University’s Straz Hall, a dozen students are learning how to steal.

They’re learning how embezzlers skim money from cash registers, how corporate thieves use fake purchase orders or inventory sheets to pocket money and how such criminals are caught.

They’re students in Maureen Mascha’s “Fraud Examination” class in Marquette’s College of Business Administration, which offers a different spin on the typical accounting class. Rather than relying on textbooks, the class focuses on real-life examples of how people managed to steal from their employers and how they eventually slipped up and were caught. The class hears from guest speakers with practical experience, such as a former FBI agent who now works as an investigator for a large accounting firm. Continue reading

Fraud Found at Dell?

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An “internal audit committee” at Dell Inc has found evidence of accounting errors and misconduct. The committee has been investigating accounting and financial reporting issues, which included examining historical earnings statements.

A press release issued by Dell said the committee “…identified a number of accounting errors, evidence of misconduct, and deficiencies in the financial control environment.”

Dell also announced that it would not file its annual 10-K with the Securities and Exchange Commission on time.

Another Class Action Suit Against Usana

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The Law Firm of Goldman Scarlato & Karon, P.C. Announces Class Action Lawsuit Against USANA Health Sciences, Inc.

CONSHOHOCKEN, Pa.– Goldman Scarlato & Karon, P.C., a law firm with offices in Pennsylvania and Ohio, announces that a lawsuit has been filed in the United States District Court for the District of Utah, on behalf of persons who purchased or otherwise acquired publicly traded securities of USANA Health Sciences, Inc. (“USANA” or the “Company”) (NASDAQ:USNA – News) between July 18, 2006 and March 14, 2007, inclusive, (the “Class Period”). The lawsuit was filed against USANA and certain officers and directors (“Defendants”). Continue reading

Usana Director and Official Spokesman Has a “Secret”

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Note: This is important because the alleged credentials of Denis Waitley have been included in Usana’s SEC filings.

SAN DIEGO, March 28, 2007 — An independent inquiry ordered by the Fraud Discovery Institute, Inc. (FDI) to look into the background of Denis E. Waitley, longtime director and spokesman of Usana Health Sciences Inc. (Nasdaq: USNA – News), could not confirm statements made on multiple, official S.E.C. filings about Mr. Waitley’s educational credentials, it was announced by Barry Minkow and FDI today. Usana has made headlines in the last two weeks after coming under S.E.C. scrutiny following a 500-page report from FDI that was made public and a subsequent investigative cover story in the Money & Investing section of the Wall Street Journal (March 15). Continue reading

Hooray for Trademark Properties and Richard Davis!!!

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Let the fun begin! A couple days ago I saw a commercial for a program called “A Home Run for Trademark” on TLC. It looked like this will be the warmup for the new show featuring Richard Davis, Ginger, and Trademark Properties. Richard and crew are out of the clutches of A&E and the “Flip This House” fiasco. They are starting over on TLC with a new reality show called “The Real Deal.”

And sure enough, I got an email last night from Trademark about the show:

In the one-hour special, Davis and his team first purchase the former home of baseball great Shoeless Joe Jackson in Greenville, SC and then work to transform it into a Shoeless Joe museum. Although Shoeless Joe was banned from baseball in 1921 due to his alleged involvement in the “Black Sox” scandal, his fans have worked tirelessly to restore his reputation ever since. For his part, Davis puts together a crew, transplants and repositions the house all in just one week, giving Shoeless Joe a place of honor in the hearts of baseball fans everywhere.

Assisting Davis in the project is construction foreman Josh Hamilton. A former professional baseball player himself with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Hamilton was sidelined in 2002 when a drug addiction crippled his ability to play. He was subsequently suspended from baseball. Now, Hamilton has a second chance: out of rehab and into Davis’ construction crew, Hamilton hopes this will be a stepping stone to getting his career back on track.

Davis and his team have just one shot to give both of these baseball greats a second chance. Will they pull it off?

Go Trademark!!!

Class Action Suit Filed Against Usana

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Dreier LLP Files Class Action Lawsuit Against USANA Health Sciences, Inc. (USNA)
Monday March 26, 7:40 pm ET

NEW YORK, March 26 /PRNewswire/ — Dreier LLP today announced that a class action lawsuit was commenced in the United States District Court for the District of Utah, on behalf of purchasers of the common stock of USANA Health Sciences, Inc. (“USANA” or the “Company”) (Nasdaq: USNA – News) during the period July 18, 2006 through March 14, 2007, inclusive (the “Class Period”). The complaint alleges violations of the federal [tag]securities laws[/tag], including Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.

If you purchased USANA common stock during the Class Period, you may be a member of the proposed Class. You must move the Court on or before May 25, 2007 if you wish to serve as a lead plaintiff. Lead plaintiffs must meet certain legal requirements. To learn more about this lawsuit or if you are interested in serving as a lead plaintiff, please contact plaintiff’s counsel, Lee A. Weiss ([email protected]) of Dreier LLP at 800-952-8897. Class members may retain counsel of their choice and move the Court to serve as a lead plaintiff, or may choose to do nothing and remain absent class members.

USANA is a health sciences company engaged in the manufacture and sale of nutritional and personal care products headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah. The Complaint alleges that, throughout the Class Period, defendants issued materially false and misleading statements regarding the Company’s business and financial results and failed to disclose, among other things, that: (1) the Company’s multi-level marketing system was operating as a [tag]pyramid scheme[/tag]; (2) the majority of the Company’s Associates did not sell to consumers, but sold to other Associates; (3) the Company was experiencing an exceedingly high Associate attrition rate, resulting in an unsustainable sales force; (4) 74% of the Company’s new Associates were failing within the first year; and (5) 87% of the Company’s Associates were losing money.

The Complaint further alleges that, as a result of these [tag]false statements[/tag] and omissions, USANA common stock traded at artificially inflated or distorted prices. On March 15, 2007, the Fraud Discovery Institute issued a press release and The Wall Street Journal published an article concerning a three-year investigation by the Fraud Discovery Institute that had revealed that USANA’s multi-level marketing system was an unsustainable pyramid scheme. In reaction to this news, the price of the Company’s stock declined $8.92 per share, or 15%, to close on March 15, 2007 at $49.85 per share, on unusually heavy trading volume. Plaintiff seeks to recover damages on behalf of all members of the proposed Class.

The plaintiff is represented by Dreier LLP. Dreier LLP’s Class Action Litigation Group has vast experience representing domestic and foreign institutional and individual investors in securities and other class actions throughout the country. The partners who head Dreier LLP’s Class Action Litigation Group have successfully prosecuted securities fraud class actions in a wide variety of industries and have played a significant role in cases that have resulted in some of the largest securities class action settlements.

Ernst & Young censured for lack of independence in audits

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The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) censured Ernst & Young LLP for doing work that compromised its indepence with regard to American International Group (AIG) and PNC Financial Services Group. The work included helping AIG develop and market a financial product that was sold to PNC, who was an audit client of E&Y.

PNC improperly accounted for certain transactions, which led to a restatement of income by $155 million. The SEC claims that E&Y didn’t detect these accounting errors because the firm didn’t scrutinize transactions, relying instead on information from E&Y partners who worked on the AIG project./

E&Y will also pay $1.5 million dollars to settle these charges, but did not admit or deny the charges. This is the second time E&Y has been censured for lack of independence in audits. The first charge was in 2003, when E&Y was receiving money for recommending PeopleSoft software to clients, even though PeopleSoft was an auditing client of E&Y.

Iraq Reconstruction Fraud: Where Are Your Tax Dollars Going?

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Whether you agree with the Iraq War or not, one thing is certain: There is fraud going on and your tax dollars are being spent. Of the approximately $350 billion (give or take) spent so far by the United States on the war and rebuilding effort, there have been plenty of cases of fraud, waste and abuse found.

Congress is currently investigating the work done by contractors in Iraq, and it looks like the project may widen in scope in the near future. As recently as last fall, the Government Accountability Office reported to Congress that Pentagon auditors had identified approximately $3.5 billion in contractor charges as questioned or unsupported costs.

However, Defense Contract Audit Agency chief William Reed recently stated that unsupported and questionable costs from Iraq reconstruction contractors exceed $10 billion. The payments were for things like delayed work, inflated expenses, substandard work, and work never done.

The $10 billion figure is the result of an audit of $57 billion in Iraq contracts, making almost one out of every six dollars questionable. This new figure is almost three times the previous estimate of contractor waste and abuse. Naturally, the Pentagon has been criticized for its lack of oversight in the process of awarding and overseeing contracts. Continue reading