MOUSEKETEER FACES TRIAL ON FRAUD CHARGES.Byline: Dennis Anderson
Dennis Anderson (born October 10, 1960) is a professional monster truck driver. Associated Press Associated Press: see news agency.
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Say it isn't so. Mickey Mouse Mickey Mouse
Famous character of Walt Disney's animated cartoons. He was introduced in Steamboat Willie (1928), the first animated cartoon with sound. Mickey was created by Disney, who also provided his high-pitched voice, and was usually drawn by the studio's head animator, Club mainstay Darlene Gillespie Darlene Faye Gillespie was born April 8, 1941, in Montreal, Canada. She is best known for having been a singer and dancer on the original Mickey Mouse Club television show from 1955 to 1958. Her Irish father and French-Canadian mother were a former vaudeville dance team. , an after-school darling to millions of boomers in 1950s America, faces trial for stock fraud.
The freckle-faced Mouseketeer, whom Walt Disney Noun 1. Walt Disney - United States film maker who pioneered animated cartoons and created such characters as Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck; founded Disneyland (1901-1966)
Disney, Walter Elias Disney publicized as having ``more bounce to the ounce than a bottle of a soda pop,'' could be bouncing into prison if convicted.
Gillespie, 56, and her fiance, Jerry Fraschilla, 61, were charged in a complex stock fraud scheme that involved the purchase of stock without paying for it, sometimes called free riding, and obstruction of justice A criminal offense that involves interference, through words or actions, with the proper operations of a court or officers of the court.
The integrity of the judicial system depends on the participants' acting honestly and without fear of reprisals. .
Fraschilla pleaded guilty to 21 federal charges for running a securities fraud scheme, and last month he was sentenced to 18 months in prison plus probation after he is released. Gillespie faces 14 counts of conspiracy, securities fraud and obstruction of justice. Jury selection will begin today.
``The defense is simple. She was one of the victims, rather than one of the perpetrators. We're playing it straight Playing It Straight is a 2004 American reality show in which one woman spent time on a ranch with a group of men in an attempt to discern which of them were homosexual and which of them were heterosexual. All of the men pretended to be heterosexual. ,'' Charles Rondeau rondeau
One of several formes fixes (fixed forms) in French lyric poetry and song of the 14th–15th century, later popular with many English poets. The rondeau has only two rhymes (allowing no repetition of rhyme words) and consists of 13 or 15 lines of 8 or 10 , Gillespie's attorney, said last week.
Before and after preliminary court appearances, Gillespie declined to discuss the case or her childhood career.
``I'd rather not talk about that right now,'' said Gillespie, her polite smile recalling the girl who once shone in mouse ears and a sweater with her first name emblazoned across the front.
Now a sprightly spright·ly
adj. spright·li·er, spright·li·est
Full of spirit and vitality; lively; brisk.
In a lively, animated manner.
spright woman with copper-colored hair, Gillespie long ago gave up on show business and became a registered nurse.
The case against her stems from a Securities and Exchange Commission investigation begun in March 1993, when Gillespie and Fraschilla were suspected of operating a scheme to make money in stock transactions without paying for the securities.
A grand jury accused the pair of writing bad checks for hundreds of thousands of dollars while making stock purchases through brokerage firms. The two also were accused of creating a fictional person as an agent to make stock transactions and of lying about the nonexistent non·ex·is·tence
1. The condition of not existing.
2. Something that does not exist.
non person during investigations by the SEC and federal prosecutors.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Jack Weiss Jack Weiss, is a member of the Los Angeles City Council representing the 5th district. Weiss was elected in 2001 and reelected in 2005. The 5th district includes parts of the Westside and the San Fernando Valley. , who is prosecuting the case, says the two tried to play the market for free, make profits but avoid losses.
Gillespie was one of the nine original Mouseketeers who appeared in the Mickey Mouse Club's first season and for the duration of the show's 1955-1959 run.
The weekday program was a cavalcade cav·al·cade
1. A procession of riders or horse-drawn carriages.
2. A ceremonial procession or display.
3. A succession or series: starred in a cavalcade of Broadway hits. of the Mouseketeers' singing and dancing, Disney cartoons and serials like ``Spin and Marty'' and ``Annette.''
In the first season, Gillespie was featured in her own serial, ``Corky cork·y
adj. cork·i·er, cork·i·est
1. Of or resembling cork.
2. Informal Lively; buoyant.
cork and White Shadow,'' about the Wild West adventures of a girl and her heroic dog.
In a book by George Woolery, ``Children's Television: The First 35 Years,'' Gillespie was quoted as calling the ``Corky'' serial horrendous. In Disney executive Lorraine Santoli's book, ``The Official Mickey Mouse Club Book,'' the author discussed Gillespie's ambivalence about her Mouseketeer history.
``When the show was syndicated on television, I never told my children that the pigtailed pig·tail
1. A plait of braided hair.
2. A twisted roll of tobacco.
3. See flamingo flower.
pig girl named Darlene was their mom,'' Santoli quoted Gillespie as saying. ``I thought perhaps it would embarrass them or that they would think the show silly.''
But the former Mouseketeer also recounted that her children liked the show and were very proud of her when they found out she had been the girl named Darlene, ``and that made it all worthwhile.''
Former Mouseketeer Bobby Burgess Bobby Burgess (born May 19, 1941 in Long Beach, California) is an American dancer and singer.
Growing up in Southern California, Bobby first started performing at age five which included dancing, singing and playing the accordion. said Gillespie was a delight as a person and a performer.
``Darlene was so talented, so nice,'' said Burgess, 56, who made a smooth transition from Mouseketeer to dance star on ``The Lawrence Welk Lawrence Welk (March 11, 1903 – May 17, 1992) was a musician, accordion player, bandleader, and television impresario, hosting "The Lawrence Welk Show" from 1951 to 1982. Show.''
Went to Nashville
Burgess, who still makes appearances for Disney and still performs with the Welk troupe in Branson, Mo., said Gillespie made various attempts to sustain an entertainment career in addition to nursing.
``In Nashville, she tried to get into country-western as Darlene Valentine,'' Burgess said. ``She had the talent. Maybe she didn't have the right agent.''
Paul Petersen, 52, who had the briefest of tenures as a Mouseketeer, has made a midlife mid·life
See middle age.
Of, relating to, or characteristic of middle age. career of calling attention to the travails of young performers.
``Part of the deal that's never explained to child performers and stage parents is that 40 years down the road, you are going to be defined by something you did when you were 14 years old,'' said Petersen, who went on to play the role of Jeff Stone Jeff Stone is a common name that can refer to different people:
Reed was born Donna Belle Mullenger on a farm near Denison, Iowa to William Richard Mullenger and Hazel Jane Shives. Show.''
As original Mouseketeer Lonnie Burr observed, ``Mouse Club'' status is the most significant biographical information for child performers who made the afterschool af·ter·school
adj. often after-school
1. Taking place immediately following school classes: afterschool activities.
2. show an emblem of 1950s America.
``Whether I scale the Matterhorn or win a Pulitzer, I shall always be known as a Mouseketeer,'' Burr once wrote in a newspaper column.
An accomplished actor, dancer and writer, Burr once shunned his Mouseketeer heritage but made peace with it in midlife.
``Being a child star is problematic, and the media tends to go for the negative instead of the positive,'' he said in a telephone interview. ``I finally disassociated myself from being put in a category.''
On hearing about the fraud case, Burgess said, ``It made me want to reach out and give her a big hug. . . . Maybe she fell in with the wrong company.''
WHERE ARE THEY NOW?
Most of the original nine of the 39 Mouseketeers from the 1955-59 run of The Mickey Mouse Club extended their show business careers after they retired their ears. A brief rundown:
Sharon Baird: Starred in the feature film ``Ratboy,'' directed by Sondra Locke. Continued to work in children's entertainment, performing on stage and television. Maintains a close friendship with Annette Funicello.
Lonnie Burr: Appeared in numerous Broadway, television and film shows, including ``Hook,'' ``Mr. Saturday Night'' and a musical episode of ``Chicago Hope,'' and achieved success as an author of ``Two for the Show: Great Comedy Teams (1898-1978).''
Bobby Burgess: Went on to be a star dancer on ``The Lawrence Welk Show.'' Still performs with the Welk troupe in Branson, Mo. Of his Mouseketeer experience, Burgess said, ``Lawrence Welk told me, `Walt raised you right.' ''
Tommy Cole: After a television and music career, he became one of Hollywood's most sought-after makeup professionals, performing his artistry for celebrities such as Cher and Barbara Walters and winning an Emmy.
Annette Funicello: The only Mouseketeer kept on Disney contract after the show ended. Went on to star in beach party movies with Frankie Avalon. In recent years, she has battled multiple sclerosis and created the Annette Funicello Research Fund for Neurological Disorders.
Darlene Gillespie: Made several Mouseketeer reunion performances, became a surgical nurse.
Cubby O'Brien: A drummer by profession, O'Brien toured with the Carpenters for 10 years. Also worked with Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme and toured with Shirley MacLaine.
Karen Pendleton: Didn't stay in show business. Paralyzed par·a·lyze
tr.v. par·a·lyzed, par·a·lyz·ing, par·a·lyz·es
1. To affect with paralysis; cause to be paralytic.
2. To make unable to move or act: paralyzed by fear. from a spinal injury suffered in a 1983 automobile crash. Returned to her studies, earning a degree in psychology. She went on to serve as a counselor at a battered women's shelter and as a board member in the California Association of the Physically Handicapped.
Doreen Tracy: Made numerous appearances entertaining troops in Vietnam and served as one of the advisers in Francis Ford Coppola's ``Apocalypse Now.'' Has worked as a manager in Hollywood production companies.
Two other Mouseketeers, though they were not in the original group of nine, are known for their vigorous musical careers. Both gained greater television fame after ``The Mickey Mouse Club'' ended production in 1959. Johnny Crawford went on to star with Chuck Connors in television's ``The Rifleman.'' In top hat and tails, he leads a Los Angeles swing orchestra that performs music predating World War II. Don Grady went on to star in television's ``My Three Sons'' and is an award-winning musical composer who created the score for the 1996 Democratic Convention.
SOURCE: ``The Official Mickey Mouse Club Book'' by Lorraine Santoli.
2 photos, box
PHOTO (1) Darlene Gillespie appears on TV in 1958.
(2 -- color) Mouseketeer Darlene Gillespie leaves court after a hearing in her stock fraud case.
Mark Terrill/Associated Press
Box: Where are they now? (see text)