NY Mets Owners Settle 401(k) Lawsuit

November 3, 2011 (PLANSPONSOR.com) – A firm run by owners of the New York Mets baseball team agreed in principle to settle a lawsuit by employees who said they lost millions of dollars in retirement money that was invested with Bernard Madoff, reports Reuters.  

The suit, which was filed on behalf of hundreds of current and former Sterling Equities employees in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York in July 2010 (see Mets Management Beaned by 401(k) Suit), accused Sterling, Mets principal owner Fred Wilpon, and two other 401(k) plan trustees of breaching their fiduciary duties by mishandling investments with Madoff and his firm Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC.

According to the complaint, Sterling invested $16.2 million, or 92%, of the plan’s $17.6 million of assets with Madoff. There were 267 plan participants at the start of 2008, the complaint said.

Lawyers for Sterling and the plaintiffs said the agreement in principle identifies “the primary terms” of a settlement. Both sides hope to file a settlement “as promptly as practicable,” perhaps as soon as this month.

According to Reuters, terms of the settlement were not disclosed.

The case is Goldweber v. Sterling Equities Associates et al, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, No. 10-05786.