Former Madoff Employees to Be Tried Next Year, Judge Says

Five longtime employees of Bernard Madoff’s investment firm will go to trial Oct. 7, 2013 for their alleged roles in history’s biggest Ponzi scheme, a judge said.

U.S. District Judge Laura Taylor Swain set the date today after the former Madoff employees, Daniel Bonventre, Annette Bongiorno, Joann Crupi, Jerome O’Hara and George Perez, pleaded not guilty to new charges.

Prosecutors in the office of U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara in Manhattan yesterday filed a new indictment alleging the five joined a conspiracy to defraud investors that got its start in the early 1970s. The charges add to the 17 criminal counts filed against the former employees in November 2010, for a total of 33 counts.

Bonventre, 65, and Bongiorno, 64, worked for Madoff for 40 years, with Bongiorno rising to the level of supervisor and account manager. Crupi, 51, an employee since 1983, tracked daily bank account activity, prosecutors said. Perez, 46 and O’Hara, 49, started at the firm in the early 1990s.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Lisa Baroni told Swain today that the prosecution case against the five will take about two months. Swain said she will set aside 3 1/2 months for the entire trial.

Madoff, 74, pleaded guilty to fraud in 2009 for cheating investors out of $20 billion in principal. He’s serving a 150- year term in federal prison in North Carolina.

The case is U.S. v. O’Hara, 10-cr-00228, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

To contact the reporters on this story: Bob Van Voris in Manhattan federal court at rvanvoris@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net.

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