The U.S. Treasury Department's Office of the Inspector General was
examining whether JPMorgan interfered with the Office of the
Comptroller of the Currency's attempts to probe the bank's
relationship with Madoff, Rich Delmar, counsel to the inspector
general, said in an email to Reuters.
Madoff had also separately told U.S. authorities that JPMorgan — the
bank he had used during his decades-long investment scam — had tried
to stop the OCC from getting information about their relationship,
"The OIG sought to obtain information from the bank on this issue,
in order to test Madoff's assertions," Delmar said.
He added that his office tried to subpoena the bank for information,
but JPMorgan contested the subpoena and the U.S. Justice Department
decided not to enforce the subpoena. The OIG dropped the inquiry.
A source briefed on the situation said JPMorgan invoked
attorney-client privileges to refuse to turn over the documents the
OIG sought. The Justice Department agreed with the bank, the person
Bryan Hubbard, a spokesman for the OCC, declined to comment. Jerika
Ricahrdson, a spokeswoman for U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, where the
investigation into JPMorgan's dealings with Madoff is taking place,
also declined to comment.
[to top of second column]
JPMorgan is nearing a settlement of the Madoff case that would
include $2 billion in penalties with regulators in Washington and
Bharara's office in New York, several sources told Reuters last
The settlement would fault the bank for turning a blind eye to
warning signs about Madoff's firm, which was revealed in December
2008 to be the operator of a massive Ponzi scheme.
(Reporting by Emily Flitter; editing by
Bernard Orr and Andrew Hay)
[© 2013 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2013 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.