Bankruptcy Court filing lists thousands of customers
NEW YORK – Hall of Fame pitcher Sandy Koufax. Broadcaster Larry King. World Trade Center developer Larry Silverstein.
All three have at least one thing in common: Their names appear on a list of several thousand clients of disgraced financial wizard Bernard Madoff. The list has been made public in a court filing in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan.
The list emerged late Wednesday, testament to the sweeping nature of Madoff’s alleged fraud. The 162-page list includes Madoff’s relatives, prominent business people, celebrities and charitable institutions. Each page carries 84 single-spaced lines. Some customers are listed multiple times, presumably because they had multiple accounts.
The list does not say how much money the customers may have lost, nor does it spell out their specific connection to Madoff.
The list, compiled for a court-appointed trustee in the Madoff case, includes thousands of people and entities listed in the money manager’s records as account holders during the 12-month period leading up to his arrest in December. While many of those listed likely lost money with Madoff, it is not clear that all of those on the list were victims, or that all of the victims have been identified.
Many of the people who lost money with Madoff did so through investment “feeder” funds, which turned that money over to the New York money manager. Their names would not have been listed individually in Madoff’s books, and would only be included in the court’s list if they have stepped forward to make claims.
Prosecutors say Madoff admits he lost more than $50 billion belonging to investors. Defense lawyers say he has cooperated with authorities to help identify assets.
The customers include prominent people and institutions that already had been publicly revealed, such as the Wilpon family, owner of the New York Mets. New Jersey Sen. Frank Lautenberg is also on the list. Another is Ira Sorkin, the attorney who’s defending Madoff against charges he perpetrated the biggest financial fraud in history.
But Sorkin said he did not lose money in the scandal and it’s not exactly clear how he ended up on the list.
Other big names who previously disclosed losing money to Madoff were not on the list, including actor Kevin Bacon.
Madoff hasn’t been indicted. He’s being held under house arrest at his multimillion-dollar penthouse.