Lawyers at Milberg and Seeger Weiss filed a motion Wednesday afternoon seeking court permission to push Bernard Madoff into involuntary personal bankruptcy in an attempt to stake out a claim to the assets of the admitted Ponzi scheme mastermind.
The motion filed in Manhattan federal district court, would be a first step in pushing Madoff into Chapter 7. Under an order signed in December in an SEC case against Madoff, creditors were required to obtain court permission to file an involuntary bankruptcy proceeding against Madoff.
“We believe it’s absolutely essential that his assets be brought under the jurisdiction of the bankruptcy court,” says Jonathan Landers, a Milberg bankruptcy partner.
Madoff’s lawyer, Ira Sorkin at Dickstein Shapiro, declined comment.
The firms’ goal is to get a bankruptcy court to appoint a bankruptcy trustee who could go after Madoff’s personal assets. Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC is already under the supervision of court-appointed receiver Irving Picard of Baker & Hostetler. But Landers says a separate trustee for Madoff’s personal assets could more easily go after funds that might have been transferred to other people.
“That’s very important because we believe, at least on the basis of published reports, that it’s at least possible that