On December 17, Irving Picard (LL.M .'67), the court-appointed trustee for the victims of Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, and Preet Bharara, the United States attorney in Manhattan, announced that they had recovered $7.2 billion to help compensate victims for their losses. The amount, the largest forfeiture in U.S. judicial history, will come from the estate of Jeffry Picower, a longtime Madoff investor and possibly the biggest beneficiary of Madoff’s fraud. Bharara told the New York Times that the recovery is “a game changer” for Madoff’s victims. Total cash losses in the scheme are estimated to be $20 billion, and Picard has now recovered about half that amount. A bankruptcy specialist, Picard has filed numerous other suits against individuals and institutions who he alleges profited improperly from their dealings with Madoff. He is a partner at Baker & Hostetler in New York.

Published December 22, 2010