Judge freezes assets of money manager, wife

INDIANAPOLIS - A judge sided with Indiana regulators Thursday and froze the financial assets of an indicted money manager and his estranged wife, placing the money into receivership, where his clients might recover some of their losses that authorities say could be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Marcus Schrenker, 38, has been jailed in Florida since his arrest Jan. 13 at a Tallahassee-area campground, two days after authorities say he parachuted out of his airplane and left it pilotless over Alabama in a bid to fake his death to escape mounting business and personal problems. He has pleaded not guilty to charges of deliberately crashing the aircraft, which ended up in Florida, and making a false distress call.

Panetta sides with CIA waterboarders

WASHINGTON - CIA Director nominee Leon Panetta said the CIA interrogators who used waterboarding or other harsh techniques against prisoners on the authority of the White House should not be prosecuted.

Panetta told a Senate panel on Thursday that those individuals should not be prosecuted or investigated if they acted pursuant to the law as presented by the attorney general.

However, Panetta said that if interrogators went beyond the methods that they were told were legal, they should be investigated and prosecuted.

Octuplets' mom out of hospital

LOS ANGELES - The Southern California woman who gave birth to octuplets last week left the hospital before dawn Thursday and gave her first interview to NBC's 'Today' show.

Nadya Suleman, 33, left Kaiser Permanente Bellflower Medical Center in the early morning hours, avoiding reporters and photographers, said hospital spokeswoman Nancy Tovar-Huxen. She declined to provide any further information, saying Suleman, who has six other children under the age of 8, has asked for privacy.

Man pleads no contest to hiding rotting corpse

MAUSTON, Wis. - A religious leader pleaded no contest Thursday to charges that he stashed a rotting corpse for two months in a follower's bathroom.

Alan Bushey was charged last year with hiding a corpse, causing mental harm to a child and theft. Investigators said the body of a 90-year-old member of his religious group was concealed at another group member's home in a scheme to collect the dead woman's Social Security checks.

Tire examined in Ark. car bombing

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Federal agents investigating a car bombing that critically injured a state medical board official focused Thursday on a tire the victim reportedly was trying to move from his driveway just before the blast.

Dr. Trent P. Pierce, 54, remained in critical condition at a hospital Thursday, a day after the bomb blew up as he prepared to leave for work. The chairman of the Arkansas State Medical Board lost his left eye in the blast, suffered burns and was pelted with shrapnel.

Child welfare looks into boy's hanging

CHICAGO - Child welfare officials say they're investigating neglect allegations against a suburban Chicago school where a 10-year-old boy was apparently found hanged in a bathroom.

Illinois Department of Children and Family Services spokesman Kendall Marlowe said Thursday that someone phoned in a complaint concerning Aquan Lewis's death at Oakton Elementary in Evanston.

Service area falls less than expected

WASHINGTON - The nation's service sector shrank for the fourth straight month in January, a trade group said Wednesday, but at a slower pace than the previous month.

The Institute for Supply Management, a trade association of purchasing executives, said its service sector index rose to 42.9 last month, from December's downwardly revised reading of 40.1.

Actors, athletes on Madoff client list

NEW YORK - Hall of Fame pitcher Sandy Koufax. Broadcaster Larry King. World Trade Center developer Larry Silverstein.

All three have at least one thing in common: Their names appear on a list of several thousand clients of disgraced financial wizard Bernard Madoff. The list has been made public in a court filing in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan.

The list emerged late Wednesday, testament to the sweeping nature of Madoff's alleged fraud.