Son of Madoff's accountant kills himself in Ohio


Share
Posted Online: Nov. 18, 2012, 4:12 pm
Comment on this story | Print this story | Email this story
Associated Press

The son of Bernard Madoff's longtime accountant, who himself pleaded guilty to securities fraud in the scandal centered on the disgraced financier, has committed suicide in central Ohio, authorities said.

Jeremy Friehling, 23, was found dead at his apartment of a self-inflicted gunshot wound Thursday in Columbus, where he was a second-year student at Ohio State's medical school, police there said.

There was no indication that the Madoff investment scandal had anything to do with the suicide, Franklin County Coroner Jan Gorniak said. She said Friehling left a note that just said that he was sorry.

Police detective Jay Fulton confirmed Sunday that Friehling left a note but would not give details about its contents.

The Friehling family declined to comment and 'asks that their privacy be respected at this difficult time,' Andrew Lankler, an attorney for Friehling's father, said Sunday.

Bernard Madoff was arrested in 2008 and later admitted that his investment business was a multibillion-dollar Ponzi scheme. He was sentenced to 150 years in prison. Madoff's son, Mark Madoff, committed suicide in December 2010, hanging himself in his New York City apartment.

Friehling's father, David, of New City, N.Y., pleaded guilty in 2009 to securities fraud charges. Madoff's accountant for nearly two decades, he quickly came under scrutiny after the financier's spectacular scam came to light. Federal prosecutors said he turned a blind eye to Madoff's cooked books.

David Friehling said he failed to do his job to verify Madoff's financial records but insisted that he didn't know Madoff was ripping off investors. He noted that he had put his own family's savings, including college funds for his three children, into Madoff's investment business.

'In what was the biggest mistake of my life, I put my trust with Bernard Madoff,' Friehling told a judge.

Friehling has yet to be sentenced, as he is continuing to work with prosecutors. He pleaded guilty to charges that carry a potential prison term of up to 114 years in prison, though substantial cooperation can result in significant leniency. He also agreed to forfeit $3.1 million, which represents what he was paid by Madoff for his accounting and tax services, along with what his family withdrew from their Madoff accounts.

Jeremy Friehling was 'a friend to many and a brilliant student who gave selflessly of his time to tutor other students,' said a statement from the dean of the Ohio State medical school, Charles Lockwood. He also said Friehling had great promise as a future physician.














 




Local events heading








  Today is Monday, Sept. 1, the 244th day of 2014. There are 121 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: We are informed by J.H. Hull that the reason the street sprinkler was not at work yesterday settling the dust on the streets, was because one of his horses was injured.
1889 -- 125 years ago: Bonnie McGregor, a fleet-footed stallion owned by S.W. Wheelock of this community, covered himself with glory at Lexington, Ky, when he ran a mile in 2:13 1/2. The horse's value was estimated as at least $50,000.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Troops are pouring into Paris to prepare for defense of the city. The German army is reported to be only 60 miles from the capital of France.
1939 -- 75 years ago: The German army has invaded Poland in undeclared warfare. Poland has appealed to Great Britain and France for aid.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Publication of a plant newspaper, the Farmall Works News, has been launched at the Rock Island IHC factory and replaces a managerial newsletter.
1989 -- 25 years ago: Officials predict Monday's Rock Island Labor Parade will be the biggest and best ever. Last minute work continues on floats and costumes for the parade, which steps off a 9:30 a.m.




(More History)