NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – The deadline for Bernard Madoff’s victims to sign up for a relief fund has been extended.
The previous deadline for petitions to the Madoff Victim Fund was Feb. 28. It is now April 30.
As WCBS 880’s Irene Cornell reported, the U.S. Attorney’s Office went all out to recoup the billions of dollars lost by victims of Madoff’s massive Ponzi scheme.
Federal marshals seized his boats, his cars, his homes in Montauk, his Manhattan apartment.
All of Madoff’s possessions were auctioned off, including clothing, furniture, watches and jewels. Even the Madoffs’ socks and high school sweatshirts were auctioned off to help pay back the victims for their losses.
LINK: Madoff Victim Fund
The fund will distribute assets forfeited in the Madoff case. It’s separate from a bankruptcy court proceeding that has recovered money to redistribute to burned Madoff clients.
So far, the victim fund has received more than 9,000 claims. Special Master Richard C. Breeden says the majority of them come from investors who are ineligible for the money being assembled in the bankruptcy court proceeding.
So far, 75 percent of those who’ve filed a claim have recovered nothing or less than 10 percent of their losses, Cornell reported.
He also says many people who may be eligible only recently learned that the fund exists.
Bernie Madoff is serving a 150-year prison sentence for bilking thousands of people of nearly $20 billion.
Meantime, a new lawsuit against JPMorgan Chase & Co. relies on a jailhouse interview with Madoff to bolster claims that top bank executives for many years questioned Madoff about concerns but always backed off.
The lawsuit was filed Thursday in Manhattan federal court. In the lawsuit, lawyers for two pension funds quoted Madoff from an in-person interview conducted last fall in Butner, N.C., where Madoff is serving his sentence.
The lawsuit said top JPMorgan executives confronted Madoff in the 1990s and through the next decade, too. But the lawsuit said they usually raised their concerns “as an after-thought” at the end of meetings.
A Chase spokeswoman declined to comment. JPMorgan agreed to pay $1.7 billion to settle criminal charges stemming from Madoff’s fraud.
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