Federal judge overseeing Madoff liquidation dies
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[January 14, 2014]
By Bernard Vaughan
(Reuters) — The federal bankruptcy judge presiding over the
liquidation of assets related to Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme has
died, a clerk to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York said on
U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Burton Lifland, 84, died on Sunday, according
to the clerk, Vito Genna. Genna said he did not know the cause of
Lifland was the longest-serving judge for the U.S. Bankruptcy Court
for the Southern District of New York, for which he was previously
chief judge, Genna said.
He was appointed to the bench in 1980, according to biographical
information on the court's website.
Among his major cases, Lifland oversaw the asbestos-related
bankruptcy of Johns Manville in 1982, power producer Calpine <CPN.N>
in 2005 and the 2010 bankruptcy of video rental company Blockbuster.
It was not immediately clear which judge would take over the Madoff
liquidation and Lifland's other cases.
"We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Judge Lifland,
one of the leading experts on bankruptcy law," said Amanda Remus, a
spokeswoman for Irving Picard, the trustee liquidating Bernard L.
Madoff Investment Securities LLC.
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In a ruling on Monday, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld
a 2011 injunction issued by Lifland that blocked two former Madoff
clients from pursuing claims against the estate of a Florida
businessman who was one of Madoff's biggest clients.
(Reporting by Bernard Vaughan in New
York; editing by Eddie Evans and Dan Grebler)
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