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Jewish Journal

The first Madoff settlements come in

by Brad A. Greenberg

February 19, 2009 | 4:22 pm

I guess litigation was going to be more expensive for Banco Santander than settling with 70 percent of it’s clients:

“About 70 percent have already executed exchange agreements,” a lawyer, Sam Danon, told Judge Paul Huck of Federal District Court. “I believe somewhere in the area of 7 or 9 percent have rejected it. There’s a percentage that are still considering the agreement.”

The two sides in the Miami lawsuit also told the court that they had agreed to send a notice to Santander clients that outlines details of the pending Miami class action.

The final version of the notice, which explains that the lawsuit demands clients be made whole for their losses and that the compensation agreement releases all parties from further liability, should be ready in a week, lawyers said.

The notice will go to the about 30 percent of clients who have not yet settled, the lawyers said.

Santander offered to compensate all individual clients through the issuance of 1.38 billion euros ($1.75 billion) in preferential shares with an annual coupon of 2 percent.

The offer would cost Santander, the euro zone’s biggest bank, less than the 2.33 billion euros ($2.96 billion) it has acknowledged its clients may have lost to Mr. Madoff, lawyers for the plaintiffs have argued.

The lawsuit asked the court to halt the compensation plan, saying the settlement was “coercive” and fell far short of the compensation sought by the class-action suit.

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