The Lehman Brothers bankruptcy, which was filed in September of 2008, is the largest bankruptcy in U.S. history. It has also been an unadulterated feeding frenzy for Lehman’s lawyers, consultants and others. Indeed, Reuters reported in an article on October 18, 2010 that “Lehman’s record-breaking bankruptcy has produced a staggering $1 billion dollars in fees – doled out the legions of lawyers, advisers, and bankers over the past two years.” You heard it right - $ 1 billion in fees. If that number sounds familiar, it is because it is roughly the amount of money that UBS raised for Lehman through the sale of principal protected notes (PPNs) as Lehman was circling the drain. So that leaves an interesting question – what happens to the UBS clients who purchased the billion dollars worth of PPNs?
Banyon Investors Unlikely to Recover Significant Money from Scott Rothstein Restitution Fund or from the Receivership
A federal judge recently ordered convicted Ponzi scheme architect Scott Rothstein to repay $363 million of restitution payments to his victims. Unfortunately, Federal prosecutors have cast doubt on the investors recovering much more than pennies on the dollar of the money Rothstein stole in a scheme involving the sale of rights to bogus legal settlements – the largest Ponzi scheme ever perpetrated in South Florida.
Recent news stories indicate that prosecutors believe there may be an estimated $25 million available to resolve claims made by Rothstein’s victims. This figure pales in comparison to the total amounts invested with Rothstein directly, or through the Banyon affiliated entities.
While the Receiver is expected to recover some additional money, given the complexity of the matter, the expected operating expenses of the receiver and additional professional fees will further deplete the estate and leave little at the end for Rothstein’s victims.