Lawsuit Accuses Marshals of Dirty Madoff Loot Sale

Victims of white-collar criminals deprived of millions
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 27, 2010 9:09 AM CST
Lawsuit Accuses Marshals of Dirty Madoff Loot Sale
A New Jersey woman admires a large framed antique print during a public viewing of items to be auctioned from the home of former Madoff finance chief Frank DiPascali.   (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

(Newser) – The head of a US Marshals Service unit sold off millions in assets forfeited from white-collar criminals—including some seized from Bernie Madoff’s family—at a deep discount to his “business contacts,” swindling crime victims out of a pile of money, according to a whistle-blower lawsuit from a former federal agent and public accountant. According to the lawsuit, which was spotted by the New York Times, Leonard Briskman sold items without public notice, didn't seek multiple buyers, assessed the value of certain items himself, and maintained a secret bank account.

In one instance, Briskman reportedly sold off a Ruth Madoff stake in the Delta Fund at a price that was “sharply below fair market value.” After the whistle-blowing agent, Brian Aryai, was transferred to work under Briskman, he soon learned that Briskman listed himself not as a Marshals Service employee on LinkedIn, but as a CEO of Asset Valuation Advisers, a company that specialized in disposing of distressed assets—“with examples that shockingly appeared to be USMS forfeiture matters.” When he reported this, he says he was met with harassment, and ultimately dismissal. (Read more Bernard Madoff stories.)

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