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Picower pays back $7.2 Billion profits withdrawn from Madoff Ponzi

Merry Christmas and Mazeltov to Madoff investors, who today got the best news of the past two years: the investor who withdrew the most money from the scam over a period of decades is giving it back. ALL $7.2 billion of it, according to a press release from the authorities. That brings to about half the amount of missing Madoff money that’s been found–and hopefully will be returned to investors who lost out.

Jeffry Picower, a close friend and business associate of Bernard Madoff, had been sued by the trustee Irving Picard in 2009 to get back the entire amount that Picower, his wife, his assistant and his businesses had squeezed out in phony “profits” from Madoff’s fund. Picower had endowed his own foundation, MIT up in Boston, and various other charities.

But who comes up with $7.2 Billion in liquid assets so fast? Did Picower–who died suddenly in his swimming pool in Palm Beach–pay taxes on those profits? If he did, will the estate get that money back? Likely only his infamous attorney William Zabel knows. We’ll keep you updated.

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