Times Staff and Wire Reports

Music: House of Blues has raised $55 million from a group of investors that includes Walt Disney Co. and singer Carly Simon, sources close to the company said. Disney officials confirmed a Hollywood Reporter account that said Disney had acquired a 12% stake. House of Blues is expanding its group of clubs and is moving into such businesses as hotels, multimedia and records. Other investors include Chemical Ventures and such celebrities as Dan Aykroyd, John Goodman, Jim Belushi and Isaac Hayes.


* Studios: Giancarlo Parretti, the fugitive Italian financier who owned Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer briefly in 1990 before being kicked out when French bank Credit Lyonnais seized the company, flew to the United States Monday for the first time in four years to face an arrest warrant in Delaware on perjury charges. Los Angeles lawyer Jay Coggan, who represents Parretti, said, "He's absolutely convinced he'll be successful in Delaware. He did not commit perjury." Parretti fled the country after an arrest warrant was issued on perjury charges, but Coggan said he decided to return voluntarily from Rome to defend himself. Parretti was accused of perjury for allegedly fabricating a document related to his $1.3-billion purchase of MGM from financier Kirk Kerkorian, which Credit Lyonnais financed. The bank took control of the studio when Parretti defaulted on his loans, and under U.S. bank laws has until 1997 to divest it. Parretti's Delaware attorney, Eugene Maurer, said the Delaware attorney general's office would seek bail of $100,000. He faces up to five years in prison if convicted.

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