Madoff trustee sued over $10m
Investor says Picard has no claim to money
Just six days before he was charged with running a $50 billion Ponzi scheme, Bernard Madoff allegedly agreed to invest $10 million for a family that had turned an ice delivery business into one of the largest independent heating oil distributors in New York City.
Rosenman Family LLC, managed by Martin Rosenman, president of Bronx-based Stuyvesant Fuel Service Corp., sued Irving Picard, the trustee appointed to supervise the unwinding of Madoff's business. He is seeking a ruling that Picard has no claim to the $10 million. Rosenman, who hadn't previously invested with Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC, said he spoke by phone with Madoff Dec. 3 about investing the money, according to a complaint filed Thursday in bankruptcy court in Manhattan.
"Madoff stated that the fund was closed until Jan. 1, 2009, but that Mr. Rosenman could wire money" before that date into a Madoff account, "where it would be held until the fund opened after the new year," according to the complaint. Rosenman's lawyers said Madoff was reputed to be "safe and reliable."
Madoff's firm collapsed last month after he told his sons it was a fraud, according to a criminal complaint by the FBI. The firm is liquidating under the Securities Investor Protection Corp.
Also this week, Tremont Group Holdings Inc., a hedge fund firm owned by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co., was sued again for investing with Madoff.
Group Defined Pension Plan & Trust, a Jersey City, N.J.-based investor, sued Tremont and its auditor, Ernst & Young LLP, over claims they missed warnings about the alleged scheme.