Recently there has been a great deal of infighting among the various groups seeking to recover monies lost to Nikolai Battoo and his company, PIWM. The chief protagonists are the receiver appointed by a U.S. District Court and Bahamian liquidators. Although both sides are fighting to recover monies for PIWM fraud victims, their constituencies are different. That means depending on who recovers (and holds) the money, some victims may get more while others get nothing.
This week the Bahamian media outlet Tribune 242 says it has obtained documents outlining the latest skirmishes.
According to those documents, the Tribune claims that liquidators in the British Virgin Islands have approached the U.S. receiver, Brick Kane, to find common ground and a solution. Unfortunately, they say, “The receiver [Brick Kane] has never evinced any interest in such a discussion, and therefore, these efforts have gone nowhere.”
They also say that counteraccusations by Mr. Kane claiming that the liquidators would only recognize claims from direct investors are “misleading.” (They don’t deny them, however.)
Late January, Mr. Kane asked the court to reject the BVI liquidators request to intervene. According to court documents, Kane believes the offshore liquidators are seeking preferential treatment. Kane says that all claimants should be treated equally.
What does all this mean for investors?
The court is expected to soon decide whether the offshore liquidators can intervene and if so, whether or not they have a superior claim to the funds held by the receiver. As of last month, the US receiver has collected $24 million, all but $300,000 of which has been claimed by the liquidators.
Last month, Mr. Kane claimed if the BVI liquidator were to be successful in taking control of the recovered assets, most investors would not see a penny of the recovered funds. “Victims throughout the world will be left without a distribution, while only those investors who invested directly into the existing EFG accounts – a privileged few – will receive payment.”
We agree and believe that the court will deny the liquidator’s request to take control of the funds seized by the U.S. liquidator. That’s good news for all investors. Unfortunately the amount recovered thus far is less than 10 cents on the dollar and that is before the receiver gets paid.
As a first step, if you lost money with Nikolai Battoo, Tracy Sunderlage or any of their funds, make sure to file claims with the receivers.
Next, consider going after the people who sold you the investment. Although some folks purchased directly from Tracy Sunderlage, many others purchased through insurance agents and stockbrokers. Unfortunately, time is quickly running out to file claims against brokers and other financial professionals.
If you purchased your investment from a third party (like a stockbroker), give us a call. Financial advisers and agents are responsible for conducting meaningful due diligence on the products they recommend. Unfortunately, many of these “professionals” were more motivated by the high commissions these investments paid and did not act in the best interests of their clients.
We have teamed up with Chapman Law to pursue these claims against brokers, insurance agents and others who marketed investments in PIWM, Maven, Anchor Hedge Fund, First Fidelity and BC Capital.
Post by Brian Mahany, Esq.
Tagged: PIWM fraud, Maven fraud, Battoo fraud, Nikolai Battoo, Tracy Sunderlage