The trustee charged with liquidating the investment advisory firm of Bernard L. Madoff asked a bankruptcy judge on Friday to approve more than $15 million in interim counsel fees.

In the nearly seven months since Irving H. Picard was appointed trustee by the Securities Investor Protection Corp., he and his counsel have made significant progress in investigating Madoff’s massive Ponzi scheme, according to Baker & Hostetler’s initial application for attorney fees and expenses incurred from Dec. 15, 2008, through April 30, 2009.

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