Bloomberg’s Pastorini Profile Appears

Back at the beginning of July, I wondered

where the long-awaited Bloomberg profile of Lawrence Niren (a/k/a Edward Pastorini,

a/k/a Theodore Roxford) might have got to. It was promised

in April – and, finally, it arrived on the last day of August, with a

reasonably bland headline: "Gold

Fields Bidder Takes Twisted Path From Shelter to Argentina".

The best thing about the story is the photo

accompanying it, which comes from a 1995 San Francisco Chronicle piece. Niren

looks utterly bonkers, a cross between Frank Zappa and Bob

Druskin. (Yes, I promised

you another entry in the "facial hair" category: this is it.)

The Bloomberg story is a strange combination of mockery and seriousness: "Niren

says he’s preparing his defense in Argentina, where he has a home, a fiancee

and cats… For at least a decade, Niren, who often wears his hair in a ponytail,

has floated takeover offers that lifted stock prices and then went nowhere."

The story also falls a long way short of constituting any kind of formal correction

to the original

Bloomberg story, which claimed that "U.S. financier Edward Pastorini

may lead a bid for Gold Fields" and which sent Gold Field shares soaring.

Rather than sending reporters to obscure Argentine provinces to interview the

staff of a hotel where Niren once stayed, it might have been easier, quicker,

and a whole lot cheaper to just run a story saying "Edward Pastorini is

a fraud, and we were duped". Which is the subtext of the whole article,

even if nothing quite along those lines ever appears.

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