Scandal Maxwell's Plummet

Burdened by huge, previously unreported debts, the media mogul's empire breaks apart amid tales of skulduggery, real and imagined

Ever since Robert Maxwell slipped mysteriously into the Atlantic Ocean last month, his media empire has been rapidly crumbling. While Maxwell's sons Kevin and Ian scrambled to prevent the conglomerate's collapse, creditors in half a dozen countries have been busy sorting out the tangled web of 400 interlocking companies that were woven together by the late tycoon.

But efforts to rescue the family business suffered one setback after another in recent weeks, including stunning revelations of possible fraud and double- dealing. Unable to keep the conglomerate, parts of which are publically traded, from unraveling, Maxwell's sons called it quits last week...

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