Doesn't seem so long ago that Dallas-based Earth Biofuels was a company on the rise: Julia Roberts, Willie Nelson and Morgan Freeman were shareholders and on the board of directors, and exactly one year ago, Roberts signed on to act as spokeswoman for the alternative-fuels company HQ'd on Knox Street. But it's had myriad financial problems since then -- including an internal audit that help up its filing financial reports due to the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Well, today comes word that Earth Biofuels is running out of gas, perhaps for good: The Associated Press is reporting this morning that "a group of Earth Biofuels Inc. noteholders has filed an involuntary Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition against the struggling biodiesel-fuel producer." Why come? Because "the Dallas company hasn't been paying its debts as they become due, according to the bare-bones petition filed Wednesday in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Del." Between its debt and its losses, in the multiple millions, the auditors recently said Earth Biofuels was operating on fumes; turns out, investors agree and then some. --Robert Wilonsky