The stock statement from any firm that somehow wound up in Bernie Madoff’s orbit: We are shocked to learn of this epic fraud and are pursuing various options.
We can now confirm that Sosnik Bell, that NJ-based accounting firm to which several Madoff victims were referred, sent such a letter to its clients in the wake of Madoff’s arrest. It reads:
As you may know from the recent media coverage, Bernard L. Madoff,
founder of Bernard L Madoff Investment Securities LLC has been arrested for
his apparent involvement in a large financial fraud. Along with most members
of the financial service community, we were shocked to learn of this development.
We are seeking to learn the relevant facts and are working with counsel
to learn the most appropriate course of action.
Throughout this calendar year, we have worked on the tax summary
statements for your accounts held at BLMIS. As in years prior, we
received monthly statements for your account and have kept current
with all account activity. We have currently completed nine months of
work through September 30, 2008 and are waiting to see if further work
needs to be completed with respect to your account.
We, and other professionals, are considering various approaches to the
tax treatment of any losses. As we continue to develop these
appraoches, please contact us to learn more. We are maintaining our
records should they be of assistance to you in pursuing any recovery.
Larry Bell, CPA.
Scott M. Sosnik, CPA.
A tipster relayed the letter to us, and we confirmed its existence with Burt Ross, the former mayor of Ft. Lee, New Jersey, a Madoff victim who was profiled today in the Wall Street Journal. Ross says he was referred to Sosnik Bell by Madoff fundraiser and victim Bob Jaffe, with the explanation that they had the sophistication to handle complex trading records. That’s the same explanation offered to us by a commentator on Clusterstock that also claimed to be a victim.
Our question then: How and why did Sosnik Bell become known to Bob Jaffe as an accounting firm that knew how to handle Madoff’s records, and how were the various other victims, from Texas to Minnesota referred to them?
Ross stressed to us that despite how he as portrayed by the paper, he doesn’t feel like a victim: “I feel blessed that I have love, friendship and support.” All that, he said, is worth a lot more than money and boats. (A rarity in this whole story: someone who seems to recognise that there’s more to life than money)
We’ll note, again, that we’ve reached out to Sosnik Bell for comment but have received no response.
If you have more on this or any other angle, please email: [email protected], leave a voicemail: 866-994-TIPS, or FAX us at 212-929-4607.