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Madoff Litigation - Filings Against the SEC
2013

We represent a number of victims of Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme. In January of 2009, we filed notices of claim with the Securities & Exchange Commission alleging negligence under the Federal Tort Claims Act. The SEC rejected our claims six months later, and on Wednesday, October 14, 2009, we filed the historic and first known lawsuit against the SEC seeking monetary damages under the FTCA, Molchatsky and Schneider v. United States.  We were lead counsel on the Molchatsky case and filed two additional cases against the United States on behalf of other Madoff victims. While the Second Circuit ultimately dismissed the action, essentially saying that the SEC had absolute immunity, the case sent a message that Herrick will leave no stone unturned on behalf of its clients. The firm continues to defend Madoff victims in clawback actions initiated against them by the Madoff bankruptcy trustee.
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SEC Invokes Immunity in Negligence Suit by Madoff Victims
December 16, 2009 -- The AmLaw Litigation Daily
The government's motion to dismiss our suit against the SEC on behalf of two Madoff investors claims the SEC acted with proper discretion and therefore has immunity, this item notes.
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SEC Seeks Dismissal of Madoff Victims Negligence Suit
December 15, 2009 -- Bloomberg News
Howard Elisofon, our lead attorney in our suit against the SEC on behalf of two Madoff investors, says the government's motion to dismiss -- and the grounds on which the government relies -- come as no surprise. The government claims immunity and that it had discretion to act as it did in handling the Madoff scheme.
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Start Date Is Critical in Ponzi Plan
November 24, 2009 -- The New York Times
Our motion on behalf of a Madoff investor -- which the Times and a disinterested attorney both called "novel" -- is highlighted in this story, which notes that the start date of the Madoff scheme may have a significant impact on the fortunes of entities that began investing with Madoff many years ago. Therese Doherty and John Oleske are both named in this story, which covers our attempts to recover money and protect the investor from a clawback action.
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Investors who lost $2.4m in Madoff scheme sue SEC
October 15, 2009 -- Financial Times
This story announces our suit on against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims and notes that we were the first firm in America to file such an action.
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Two Investors Sue SEC Over Madoff Probe
October 15, 2009 -- The Wall Street Journal
This story announces our suit on against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims and notes that we were the first firm in America to file such an action.
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Madoff Victims' Lawyer Elisofon Interview
October 14, 2009 -- Bloomberg Television
Howard Elisofon, appearing live, discusses our lawsuit against the SEC on behalf of two Madoff investors, and tells why we should prevail.
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Suit Claims S.E.C. Failed to Detect Madoff Scheme
October 14, 2009 -- New York Times
This story announces our suit on against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims and notes that we were the first firm in America to file such an action.
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SEC Sued by Madoff Investors for Missing Ponzi Scheme
October 14, 2009 -- Bloomberg News
This story announces our suit on against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims and notes that we were the first firm in America to file such an action.
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S.E.C. Sued Over Madoff Fraud
October 14, 2009 -- New York Times DealBook
This story announces our suit on against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims and notes that we were the first firm in America to file such an action.
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Two Madoff victims file lawsuit against the SEC
October 14, 2009 -- Reuters
This story announces our suit on against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims and notes that we were the first firm in America to file such an action.
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Madoff Victims File Suit Against SEC
October 14, 2009 -- The AmLaw Litigation Daily
This story announces our suit on against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims and notes that we were the first firm in America to file such an action.
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Madoff victims sue SEC for 'negligence'
October 14, 2009 -- CNNMoney.com
This story announces our suit on against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims and notes that we were the first firm in America to file such an action.
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Swindled Madoff Investors Sue U.S. Gov't for Ignoring 'Smoking Guns' in Ponzi Scheme
October 14, 2009 -- ABC News.com
This story announces our suit on against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims and notes that we were the first firm in America to file such an action.
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Madoff Victims Sue SEC
October 14, 2009 -- CNBC's Power Lunch
As we held a press conference to announce our lawsuit against the SEC on behalf of Madoff investors -- the first of its kind in the nation -- John Oleske simultaneously appears live on network television to describe the suit, what relief we seek for our clients, and why we believe we will prevail.
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Madoff Victims Sue SEC
October 14, 2009 -- The Business Insider
This story announces our suit on against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims and notes that we were the first firm in America to file such an action.
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Madoff Victim Speaks Out
October 14, 2009 -- Fox Business Channel
As we hold a press conference to announce our lawsuit against the SEC on behalf of Madoff investors -- the first such action in the nation -- Therese Doherty and our client Phyllis Molchatsky appear live on network television to announce the suit, describe the relief we seek, and discuss why we believe we will prevail.
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The Madoff Exiles
September 27, 2009 -- New York Magazine
Howard Elisofon and our client Phyllis Molchatsky discuss how the firm -- on behalf of Phyllis -- came to file an action against the SEC over its actions and inactions in the Madoff fraud.
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ANALYSIS - Madoff's Victims Face Uphill Fight Against SEC
September 10, 2009 -- Reuters
Howard Elisofon is quoted in the article “Madoff's Victims Face Uphill Fight Against SEC,” regarding the effect of the SEC Inspector General’s report on our litigation against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims.
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Madoff Fraud, SEC Report Continue to Raise Questions
September 4, 2009 -- AmLaw Daily
The article “Madoff Fraud, SEC Report Continue to Raise Questions” notes that Howard Elisofon has filed a number of complaints against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims, and explores whether the SEC Inspector General’s report may bolster those actions.
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Why Didn't the SEC Stop Madoff 17 Years Ago?
September 3, 2009 -- The Today Show
David Rosenfield appears live in a Today Show segment entitled “Why Didn't the SEC Stop Madoff 17 Years Ago?” to discuss the SEC Inspector General’s report on the SEC's failure to adequately investigate the Madoff fraud.
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After Its Madoff Report, Can Victims Sue the SEC?
September 3, 2009 -- Time.com
Howard Elisofon is quoted in “After Its Madoff Report, Can Victims Sue the SEC?” regarding the SEC internal-investigation report released on Wednesday stating that the SEC missed opportunities to discover Madoff’s criminal activities.
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Madoff Probe
September 2, 2009 -- WPIX Channel 11
John Oleske appears live in “Madoff Probe” to discuss the SEC’s investigation into Madoff.
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SEC & the Madoff Investigation
September 2, 2009 -- CNBC
David Rosenfield appears live to discuss the SEC Inspector General’s report on the SEC's failure to adequately investigate the Madoff fraud.
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Bernard Madoff to hear sentence
June 29, 2009 -- Los Angeles Times
Steven Feldman analyzes what factors might sway the judge in determining the sentence for Bernard Madoff.
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Madoff Gets 150 Years
June 29, 2009 -- CNBC Reports
David Rosenfield analyzes what factors a judge considers when pronouncing sentence in a white collar criminal matter, in this live segment about Madoff's sentence.
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Victims Await Sentencing For Bernard Madoff
June 24, 2009 -- WCBS-TV
At a press conference where he announced that our firm filed seven new actions against the SEC, Howard Elisofon says the government should compensate Madoff victims because the SEC was negligent in how it investigated the fraud.
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Madoff Victims Seethe at SEC
June 24, 2009 -- MyFox Channel 5
At a press conference announcing that we had filed seven new actions against the SEC on behalf of Madoff victims, Howard Elisofon says that the government should be held accountable and compensate the victims as a result of the SEC's negligence.
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SEC rejects Madoff claim; investor may sue
June 24, 2009 -- Daily Finance
Our client, the Madoff victim Phyllis Molchatsky, has the right to sue the SEC now that the government has rejected her administrative claim, Howard Elisofon says.
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SEC Won't Cover Investor's $1.7M In Madoff Losses
June 24, 2009 -- Law360
The SEC's rejection of our administrative claim on behalf of our client, the Madoff victim Phyllis Molchatsky, gives her legal standing to file a federal lawsuit against the SEC, alleging negligence in how it investigated the fraud, Howard Elisofon says.
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Madoff Victims Express Anger at SEC
June 24, 2009 -- WNBC-TV
At a press conference announcing that the SEC had rejected our initial administrative claim on behalf of a Madoff victims and that our firm had filed seven new claims, Howard Elisofon describes why the government should be held liable for the SEC's actions.
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SEC rejects Madoff investor claim for damages
June 23, 2009 -- Reuters
The SEC rejected our administrative claim against the SEC on behalf of our client Phyllis Molchatsky, clearing the way for us to sue on her behalf in federal court. She is seeking money damages as recompense for what she lost with Bernard Madoff. The story also notes that we envision filing similar actions on behalf of other Madoff vicitims shortly.
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Demystifying Madoff: L.I. Fraud Victims Find Strength In Numbers
June 18, 2009 -- Long Island Press
The SEC's negligence caused much of the loss suffered by many Madoff victims, John Oleske tells a group of Long Island-based Madoff victims.
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Battling Giants–An Attorney Takes On The SEC
June 9, 2009 -- www.madoff-help.com
In a section of the Madoff victims' website called "Meet The Pros," Howard Elisofon does a question-and-answer on our firm's work in clawback counsel and defense and on our action against the SEC on behalf of individual investors who lost money in the Madoff scam.
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Target Madoff
May 23, 2009 -- Fox News Channel
Therese Doherty discusses clawbacks, and our client Phyllis Molchatsky discusses her action against the SEC, in this one-hour documentary on the Bernard Madoff scandal.
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Lawyers: Madoff Investors Could Face Legal Action
April 23, 2009 -- Newsday.com
Howard Elisofon is quoted in this article about how some Madoff investors who received false profits could face legal action aimed at taking back money they withdrew before the Ponzi scheme was uncovered.
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Madoff Strikes Again
April 23, 2009 -- CNBC
Howard Elisofon appears live to discuss the clawback letters that the SIPC trustee began sending to Madoff victims last Friday.
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Trustee Seeking Return Of Withdrawn Funds
April 22, 2009 -- The Wall Street Journal
Howard Elisofon is quoted in this article about the request for Madoff investors to return money they withdrew in the six years before Madoff’s firm collapsed. Howard notes that this is an insensitive request since many lost more money from the fraud than they took out.
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Investors continue with plan to force Madoff into bankruptcy
April 14, 2009 -- USA Today
Creditors' attempts to force Bernard Madoff into bankruptcy against the wishes of the Department of Justice and court-appointed trustee would give indirect investors -- those who invested through feeder funds -- "a central legal forum" they lack otherwise, Stephen Selbst says. He cautions, however, that the on-going criminal investigation may delay a new bankruptcy trustee while prosecutors decide whether to turn over records.
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Should the Gov't Bailout Madoff Victims?
March 17, 2009 -- CNBC's The Call
Therese Doherty advocates for government compensation for Madoff victims, in the form of tax relief, direct payments, or establishment of a victims' compensation fund, in this live debate.
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'Sorry' is not enough, Madoff's victims say
March 13, 2009 -- Los Angeles Times
Steven Feldman questions whether Bernard Madoff hid significant assets outside the country. Had he done so, Steven reasons, he would have retired to a foreign jurisdiction that has no extradition treaty with the United States, rather than to Florida.
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Madoff Hearing Underway
March 12, 2009 -- CNBC's Squawk On The Street
David Rosenfield gives a live overview of the criminal case against Madoff as his plea hearing begins.
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Too Late for Madoff to be Sorry
March 12, 2009 -- CNBC's Squawk On The Street
David Rosenfield opines that Madoff's mea culpa before the federal judge handling his criminal case will not lessen his eventual sentence.
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Madoff Admits to Ponzi Scheme
March 12, 2009 -- CNBC's Squawk Box
David Rosenfield weighs in on Madoff's likely lifetime incarceration and other aspects of the criminal case against him in a live segment from CNBC's set at the New York Stock Exchange.
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Madoff Guilty Plea
March 12, 2009 -- CNBC's Squawk On The Street
As Madoff pleads guilty at the nearby federal courthouse, David Rosenfield gives live analysis of a number of facets of the criminal case against him.
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Madoff's Massive Fraud
March 12, 2009 -- CNBC's Power Lunch
Steven Feldman discusses bail issues, possible further targets of investigations, the tactics and strategies of prosecutors and defense counsel, and tracing the sources of relatives' assets as Bernard Madoff pleads guilty to criminal charges.
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Madoff's Guilty Plea to All Eleven Counts
March 12, 2009 -- CNBC's Power Lunch
On the day Bernard Madoff pleads guilty to a variety of criminal offenses, Steven Feldman discusses Madoff's likely sentence and his possible quality of life in jail and prison.
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Madoff's Guilty Plea and Jail Time
March 12, 2009 -- CNBC's Power Lunch
Steven Feldman analyzes the SEC's role and missteps in the Madoff fraud.
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Madoff Pleads Guilty
March 12, 2009 -- Fox News Channel's Fox & Friends
Howard Elisofon and our client, Phyllis Molchatsky, a Madoff victim, discuss her action against the SEC and her feelings about Madoff and how he victimized so many people.
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Madoff to plead guilty, his lawyer says
March 11, 2009 -- Los Angeles Times
As Bernard Madoff contemplates pleading guilty, Steven Feldman analyzes the likelihood that the judge will continue Madoff's bail pending sentencing.
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Spotlight
March 9, 2009 -- CNN Headline News
Howard Elisofon and our client, Phyllis Molchatsky, appear live to discuss the Madoff case and Phyllis' complaint against the SEC in which she hopes to recover money she lost.
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Prosecutors indicate Bernard Madoff plea deal may be in works
March 7, 2009 -- Los Angeles Times
Amid speculation that Bernard Madoff was going to plead guilty to charges stemming from his fraud, Steven Feldman analyzes the process and the tactics employed by prosecutors and defense counsel.
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Madoff Plea Deal
March 6, 2009 -- CNBC Reports
David Rosenfield tells CNBC viewers why a plea deal in the Madoff case is likely and what a plea would mean to all parties.
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Madoff clients' lawsuits look to others for recompense
March 4, 2009 -- USA Today
Howard Elisofon and our client Phyllis Molchatsky discuss why we filed an action against the SEC in the Madoff matter.
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Madoff’s Victims are Mad, Mad, Mad But Do They Have a Right To Be?
February 6, 2009 -- Wall Street Journal Law Blog
Stephen Selbst weighs whether Irving Picard, the Madoff bankruptcy trustee, acted properly in releasing the names of Madoff's victims. Although he understands that victims will not be pleased to be named publicly, Stephen notes that the bankruptcy code encourages openness in such matters because it sometimes can help trustees find more money to enlarge the pot of money from which restitution will be made.
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NY Investment Exec Charged In $370M Ponzi Scheme
January 28, 2009 -- Securities Law 360
This story about the arrest of Nicholas Cosmo for allegedly running a Ponzi scheme on Long Island notes that Arthur Jakoby and Steven Feldman represent Cosmo and arranged for his voluntary surrender to authorities.
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New City woman targets SEC for Madoff loss
January 23, 2009 -- The Journal News
Howard Elisofon discusses the etiology and legal basis for our complaint against the SEC on behalf of a Madoff victim, who appears on video in the newspaper's on-line version.
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Victim: Madoff took 'all my money'
January 22, 2009 -- MSN Money
Howard Elisofon is quoted at length -- and appears in two video clips -- in this multi-media story about our client Phyllis Molchatsky, the first Madoff victim to commence an action against the SEC.
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Madoff Trustee Picard May Take Five Years to Pay Back Investors
January 21, 2009 -- Bloomberg News
Joshua Angel discusses the proclivities of Irving Picard -- the court-appointed trustee in the Madoff bankruptcy -- and how they may affect his work on behalf of victims.
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Feds put Madoff victims on hot seat
January 15, 2009 -- Crain's New York Daily Alert
Howard Elisofon warns that Madoff victims who redeemed principal and are considering applying for SIPC coverage may be giving the court-appointed trustee a road map to suing them to claw back the redemptions.
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Madoff Leaves NYC Apartment
January 14, 2009 -- CNBC's Power Lunch
In a lengthy live segment, Steven Feldman analyzes why federal law indicates that Bernard Madoff should remain free on bail, despite the severity of the crime with which he is charged.
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Court refuses to jail Madoff for alleged bail violation
January 13, 2009 -- Los Angeles Times
Steven Feldman argues that bail is not designed to punish defendants, but only to ensure their appearance in court and that they do not pose a threat to the community, in this article about the bail-or-jail debate in the Madoff case.
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Madoff Saga Continues
January 12, 2009 -- CNBC Reports
In a live broadcast, Steven Feldman debates a plaintiff-side securities lawyer -- and the anchor -- over whether Bernard Madoff's bail should be revoked. Feldman points out that bail is not meant to punish defendants, only to ensure that they appear in court and cannot harm the public.
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Lifting the Lid-Madoff clients fear getting shut out of refunds
January 8, 2009 -- Reuters
Howard Elisofon analyzes the hurdles that some Madoff victims may face as they seek redress from SIPC, and some strategies that might help them get relief.
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Lawyer says Madoff cooperating with U.S. probes
January 6, 2009 -- Reuters
Steven Feldman tells Reuters that the government's attempt to revoke Bernard Madoff's bail may be a sign that his cooperation in the investigation of his alleged fraud may be waning, but that bail should be continued unless the government can show that he's a flight risk or danger to the community.
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Prosecutor: Madoff gifts included diamond necklace
January 6, 2009 -- USA Today
David Rosenfield tells USA Today that bail in federal criminal cases is to prevent defendants from fleeing or causing harm to the community, and that, by those standards, Madoff seems to be a candidate for bail, notwithstanding the public outcry against it.
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Madoff Investor Files Administrative Claim Against SEC Seeking $1.7 Million Damages
January 5, 2009 -- BNA Securities Regulation & Law Report
This story, reprised in two sister publications, notes that our client was the first victim of Bernard Madoff's fraud to commence an action against the SEC.
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The Madoff Agenda
December 31, 2008 -- CNBC's Power Lunch
David Rosenfield, in a live appearance during the trading day, analyzes which of Madoff's victims will have access to relief from SIPC, Madoff's likely disclosures to federal authorities about his remaining assets, whether he likely acted alone, and whether an insanity defense might fly.
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Madoff & His Hidden Money
December 30, 2008 -- CNBC Reports
David Rosenfield appears in a live, prime-time segment discussing Herrick, Feinstein's lawsuit against the SEC over its failure to adequately investigate the Madoff Ponzi scheme, what the litigation landscape may look like, and other Madoff-related topics.
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2 More Investor Class Actions Filed In Madoff Case
December 29, 2008 -- Securities Law 360
This story notes that we were the first law firm to commence an action against the SEC on behalf of a victim of the Bernard Madoff fraud.
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Madoff Litigation Mounts
December 24, 2008 -- Fox Business Channel
In a live segment, Howard Elisofon describes our action against the SEC on behalf of a client who lost her life savings in the Madoff affair. Howard discusses sovereign immunity, why we believe our claim against the SEC can trump that likely defense, tax issues that Madoff's victims face and the possibility of the court-appointed receiver's seeking claw-back disgorgements.
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Blame the Government? N.Y. woman suing SEC for losses in Madoff scheme
December 23, 2008 -- Fox News Channel
Howard Elisofon explains why our client is making a claim against the SEC and why, he believes, the claim can pierce the cloak of sovereign immunity.
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Madoff Victim Sues SEC
December 23, 2008 -- CNBC's Power Lunch
Howard Elisofon describes our action against the SEC on behalf of a client who lost money she had invested with Bernard Madoff's funds. He analyzes why -- despite sovereign immunity -- he believes the SEC is vulnerable here.
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New York investor sues SEC over losses in Madoff fund
December 23, 2008 -- Bloomberg News
Howard Elisofon explains why we commenced an action against the SEC on behalf of our client, an investor who was nearly wiped out in the Madoff affair. He discusses why the SEC is potentially liable for money damages despite its likely claim of sovereign immunity.
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Investor tries to hold SEC liable for Madoff losses
December 23, 2008 -- Reuters
In a story picked up nationally and internationally, Howard Elisofon explains why we commenced an action against the SEC on behalf of our client whose life savings were nearly wiped out in a fraud allegedly perpetrated by Bernard Madoff. Howard discusses the government's likely defense of sovereign immunity and explains why we view the SEC as potentially liable for money damages.
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Investor Who Lost Money in Alleged Scheme Seeks Relief From SEC
December 23, 2008 -- The Wall Street Journal
Howard Elisofon announces that we are the first law firm to commence an action against the SEC on behalf of a victim who lost money in the fraud allegedly perpetrated by Bernard Madoff. Howard discusses the government's likely claim of sovereign immunity and our belief that the SEC's actions leave it liable for money damages for failing to detect or contain the fraud.
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Suing the Hedge Funds
December 22, 2008 -- CNBC's Power Lunch
In a live segment, Therese Doherty argues that hedge funds, financial advisors and other intermediaries are not necessarily liable for investors' losses in the Madoff matter because they appear to have met the industry's standard of care.
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MassMutual Burned by Madoff
December 22, 2008 -- The Wall Street Journal
Irwin Latner is quoted regarding MassMutual's investments with Bernie Madoff through Tremont Group Holdings, Inc.
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Madoff: Bail or Jail?
December 18, 2008 -- CNBC's Power Lunch
Steven Feldman argues that despite public outcry, Bernard Madoff was properly granted bail because he is neither a flight risk nor a danger to the community. Feldman notes that laws regarding bail proscribe using it as punishment and require judges to use the least restrictive means possible to ensure defendants' appearance in court.
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Madoff Comes Out of Hiding
December 17, 2008 -- CNBC Reports
Steven Feldman argues that bail was appropriate for securities fraud defendant Bernard Madoff because he is neither a flight risk nor a danger to the community.
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Madoff's Many Victims?
December 16, 2008 -- CNBC Reports
Appearing live, Therese Doherty discusses the SEC's role in investigating alleged frauds such as the one that Bernard Madoff is accused of perpetrating.