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Madoff Securities Fraud Lawsuit Affects Investors Across US

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San Diego, CACalifornia might seem far removed from the Bernard Madoff securities fraud that was centered in New York, but investors across the country were affected by the securities investment fraud. Now, even the owners of the New York Mets may have to pay, following the investigation into Bernard Madoff's fraud and subsequent securities fraud litigation.

According to Bloomberg (3/6/12), the owners of the New York Mets may have to pay $30 million following a ruling against them related to Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme. Although the lawsuit, filed by the trustee who represents victims across the country—including securities fraud CA victims—sought $386 million from the defendants, the Mets may only have to pay $30 million.

In total, defendants included in the lawsuit may pay up to $83 million without a trial, with the Mets liable for $30 million of that. The lawsuit filed against the Mets and other defendants alleged they acted in bad faith when dealing with Bernard Madoff. The actual trial, which will determine if the defendants are liable for the additional $303 million, is set to start on March 19. At issue is whether the defendants acted in good faith or if they were willfully blind to Madoff's actions.

The initial lawsuit sought $1 billion but Judge Jed Rakoff threw out more than half of the lawsuit in September 2011, according to Reuters (3/6/12).

In 2009, Bernard Madoff pleaded guilty to masterminding a $60 billion Ponzi scheme, the largest in US history. His victims included investors from across the US, including states such as California, Oregon and Washington. Madoff is serving a 150-year sentence for his actions.

Meanwhile, BP Plc reached a settlement with individuals and businesses affected by the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill. The cost of the settlement is reportedly $7.8 billion, not counting any government fines. According to Forbes (3/6/12), BP set aside $20 billion to cover the costs related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, but so far, only $8.1 billion has been administered by the trust set aside for individuals and businesses affected by the disaster.

The settlement should reportedly resolve private claims for financial and economic losses, and property damage, as well as health problems related to the oil spill.


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