Holiday presents may be coming early for victims of Bernard Madoff’s infamous and massive Ponzi scheme.
The distribution of the $1.2 billion payout began on Friday (Dec. 4) and is the largest amount of recovered funds the victims have received so far. As Bloomberg pointed out, the announcement of the latest payout comes nearly one week prior to the anniversary of Madoff’s Dec. 11, 2008 arrest.
Madoff’s decades-long scheme ultimately resulted in thousands of retirees, investment funds, charities and other clients losing $17.5 billion in principal. The distribution is expected to boost the recoveries of the victims to $9.16 billion, about 57 percent of the money that was stolen from them, trustee Irving Picard said in statement.
This is the sixth installment of distribution funds, and Picard confirmed that the checks will range from $1,298 to $202 million, with about 1,300 victims having their investments completely recovered after the payment is complete. Back in 2012, Picard allocated payments to the victims totaling nearly $5 billion.
In a press release, Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) President and CEO Stephen P. Harbeck said, “This is another major milestone in this massive recovery effort. I commend Mr. Picard, his chief counsel David J. Sheehan, and their global team for their tireless efforts. We look forward to the Trustee’s next announcement of additional distributions at the earliest possible time.”
Picard said victims can expect to receive an additional $320 million more after the resolution of pending litigation.