The trustee attempting to recover money for the victims of the $20 billion Bernard Madoff fraud scheme has targeted two accountants in a multi-million dollar lawsuit.
Accountants Michael Bienes and Frank Avellino are being sued by trustee Irving Picard for a whopping $900 million, as he accuses them of assisting Madoff in his fraudulent Ponzi scheme. Interestingly, the wives of the accountants have also been named as defendants in the suit, along with other family members.
According to Picard, both Bienes and Avellino were participants in the fraud. He alleged that they helped Madoff to funnel money into his investment funds. In a statement, Picard said:
“Frank Avellino and Michael Bienes are among the earliest enablers of Bernard Madoff’s,”
Despite the fact that the financier insisted he acted alone in the $20 billion Ponzi scheme fraud, the number of Madoff’s suspected accomplices seems to be growing every day.
Picard has filed negligence lawsuits against banks, financiers and numerous other financial institutions in the US and the UK, all of which will need to have sound professional indemnity insurance policies in place to protect their assets and reputations.