Trial begins for man accused in death of business partner in San Juan Capistrano

It seemed like every lifelong surfer’s dream: cashing out for more than $1 million from a business you grew from the bottom-up and spending the rest of your days riding waves and seeking out other adventures around the globe.

But for 33-year-old Chris Smith’s suspicious family members, the cinematic tales of backpacking in South America and paragliding near Johannesburg eventually took a darker turn, with mentions of acquiring conflict diamonds and improbable sailing expeditions through...

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