THE SITUATION: A GIGANTIC CRIME LEAVES A GIGANTIC PUZZLE TO SOLVE
SIPC and his team of court-appointed counsel initially retained AlixPartners as claims agent and financial advisor. In these roles, we managed (and continue to manage) the preservation and analysis of all BLMIS data to support the bankruptcy claims process and the criminal and civil investigations and litigation that followed. Determining the extent of the theft required a full understanding of all cash movements in each customer account, which in turn entailed reconstructing over three decades (four terabytes) of books and records from electronic, microfilm and paper records.
THE APPROACH: ATTACKING A FINANCIAL TANGLE WITH TECHNOLOGY
Once the data had been collected and standardized, AlixPartners drew on our deep investigative, technology and data management skills to institute a robust claims management process that included setting up a fully secured online repository and establishing controls that allow for a seamless claims review and resolution process. The repository enabled the trustee to review all details submitted by the claimant and link them to financial details extracted from BLMIS books and records. Numerous parties, including hundreds of the trustee’s lawyers and representatives from SIPC, had 24x7 access to this repository. The state-of-the-art technology allowed minute-by-minute reporting that incorporated all details from resolution of each claim.
In addition, we have assisted the trustee in recovering various assets and maintain the books and other records for the liquidation. As accountants and consultants, we continue to help the trustee manage the complex day-to-day operational challenges of the recovery process, including the determination of claims, resolution of litigation, management of recoveries, distribution of recoveries to eligible claimants, and the liquidation of BLMIS’ assets.
THE SOLUTION: MAKING ORDER FROM CHAOS TO RECOVER STOLEN ASSETS
The AlixPartners team has helped the Trustee generate positive outcomes for claimants, facilitating the review and resolution of more than 16,500 claims. As of February 2022, the trustee had recovered more than $14.5 billion of the estimated $17.5 billion principal lost and distributed approximately $14.3 billion to eligible claimants. AlixPartners has also supported the trustee’s numerous lawsuits, including clawbacks, and has assisted the federal government in its investigations and prosecutions. Meanwhile, the Trustee has successfully sold BLMIS’s market making business and recovered sizable assets.