Trustee Irving Picard sues JPMorgan Chase for Madoff fraud

Friday, January 25th, 2013 By

Outdoor photo of one of JPMorgan Chase & Co's offices, taken in the late afternoon/early evening.

JPMorgan Chase may be on the hook for billions of dollars for allegedly aiding and abetting Bernie Madoff. (Photo Credit: CC BY-ND/Market Mix Up)

The latest chapter in the Bernie Madoff financial scandal involves one of the United State’s largest banking and investment companies, reports PR Newswire. It has been announced via press release that Irving Picard, the trustee for liquidation of Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC (BLMIS), is filing a complaint in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York against several arms of JP Morgan Chase , including banks and securities companies. Picard seeks to recover $1 billion in fees and profits, plus $5.4 billion in damages for Madoff clients, from JPMorgan Chase, previously BLMIS’ primary banker. The allegation is that JPMorgan Chase aided and abetted Bernie Madoff and company in the largest known Ponzi scheme in U.S. history.

Case says JPMorgan Chase was center of Ponzi scheme

David Sheehan, court-appointed counsel for Irving Picard, said that “JP Morgan was willfully blind to the fraud, even after learning about numerous red flags surrounding Madoff.” While JPMorgan Chase was not the only financial organization involved in Bernie Madoff’s intricate investing scheme, Sheehan places the banking and investment corporation at the center of the misdeeds and says it was thoroughly complicit, despite knowing of various warning signs regarding Madoff’s activities over the span of 20 years. Despite what the prosecution calls overwhelming evidence, JPMorgan Chase says it “simply continued to collect fees and derive profit.” Without JPMorgan Chase’s participation, says Sheehan, the Madoff Ponzi scheme would not have been possible.

Currently, nearly all financial data involved in the complaint is filed under seal with the Bankruptcy Court. This is because JPMorgan Chase has designated all of the information confidential. Picard is fighting for the seal to be removed as soon as possible.

Madoff’s main account was held by JPMorgan Chase

If JPMorgan Chase had taken the initiative to review internal account records of the massive amounts of cash being moved, it could have easily seen that something was illegitimate, claims Sheehan. As suspicious activity was quickly discovered once the FTC began to investigate, supporters of Irving Picard believe that JPMorgan Chase was negligent in its duty to expose the fraud.

Sources

PR Newswire

Recent interview with Irving Picard re. SIPC Insurance

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