On the eve of the 13th anniversary of Bernard L. Madoff’s December 11, 2008 arrest, the court-appointed SIPA Trustee, Irving Picard, filed his 13th motion to distribute recovered funds to victims of the fraud. The 13th interim distribution will result in the return of more than 70% of the allowed claim total for eligible account holders.
AlixPartners was engaged by the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) in December 2008 to serve as claims agent and financial advisor to the SIPA Trustee charged with overseeing the liquidation. Over the past 13 years, our team has played a vital role in the recovery effort, including the reconstruction of the debtor’s books and records, adjudication of claims, assistance with resolution of objections and litigations, and the administration of distributions to victims of the fraud. To date, the Trustee has recovered nearly $14.5 billion and has distributed more than $14.16 billion to victims. The recovery effort thus far has wildly exceeded even the most optimistic projections that were made early in the case, setting new records for the recovery and return of stolen funds, both in terms of percentage and dollar amounts.
Thirteen years is a long duration for any engagement. For a historical perspective, when the recovery effort commenced in December 2008:
- George W. Bush was President
- Tesla, still in its infancy, delivered its 100th first-generation Roadster
- The number one movie in the U.S. was “Marley & Me”
- Motorola’s RAZR was the most popular mobile phone in use within the U.S.
- Uber, WhatsApp, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, Venmo, and Square did not yet exist
In reflecting on the 13 years of our firm’s involvement with the Madoff case, we are reminded of the scores of talented and dedicated colleagues that have been a part of the Trustee’s team. The challenges related to unraveling the largest Ponzi scheme in history have been immense; however, the outcome of our collective efforts has been immensely rewarding.
The news headlines related to the Madoff fraud have highlighted the famous Hollywood celebrities who lost money through Madoff investments. However, most of the victims were not rich and famous. Many working-class people and retirees were financially devasted due to Mr. Madoff’s decades-long fraud. Each of the 12 distributions to date, along with the upcoming 13th distribution, have provided much-needed relief for these unwitting investors.
After 13 years, the recovery effort continues. Recent court rulings in high-profile cases have opened the door for the Trustee to potentially recover billions more in stolen funds. The AlixPartners team will continue to assist the Trustee to compensate the victims of the fraud to the fullest extent possible.
For the latest press release from the trustee, click here.
To learn how a new Madoff ruling could lead to $3.8 billion in future recoveries, click here.