Ponzi Loot Puts Madoff Client Among Richest Americans

Picower made $7.2B, lands on Forbes list
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 2, 2009 11:31 AM CDT
In this March 10, 2009 file photo, Bernard Madoff exits Manhattan federal court in New York.   (AP Photo/Louis Lanzano, file)
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(Newser) – Jeffry Picower is a secretive guy, which must have made his turn in the spotlight this week all the more uncomfortable. The former lawyer, who was already being sued for $5.1 billion in alleged profits from Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, cracked Forbes’ list of the 400 wealthiest Americans on the same day a federal investigator sued him for another $2.1 billion, ProPublica reports.

Forbes listed Picower’s net worth at $1 billion, good for No. 371 on the list, but noted  he was “likely worth billions more.” The source given for his wealth is "Investments, Self-Made." If you tack the $7.2 billion in alleged Ponzi profits onto his total, he’d be the 32nd-richest person in America. Picower says he’s a Madoff victim, with $500,000 still invested when Madoff got caught. Trustee Irving Picard says Picower knew, or should have known, his profits were fraudulent.