Bernard Madoff scandal engulfs New York Mets
Obscured somewhat by Irving Picard's suit against JPMorgan Chase was his suit against the owners of the New York Mets, Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz. Picard is seeking hundreds of millions from the two men, both of whom were close friends of Madoff, charging that they should be forced to give back ill-gained profits because they were confronted with ample indications that some sort of fraud was underway.
According to the suit, several hedge fund managers as well as Merrill Lynch and other asset managers made their suspicions about Madoff's operations known to Wilpon and Katz, whom the suit says simply turned a blind eye.
Lawyers for the Mets' owners say the two men are victims and lost huge sums in the fraud. In addition, the two owners were apparently invested in another Ponzi Scheme, this one run by Samuel Israel III. They certainly do not look like astute businessmen.
These issues will work its way through the system, but they are already having a big impact on professional baseball. The owners have made it known that they are seeking minority investors. MLB cannot be happy with this situation. It's unclear how operations of the Mets will be affected.
- here's an article from the Financial Times