Clawback litigation arising out of Ponzi schemes is cutting-edge stuff. And it’s unclear just how far courts will let receivers go in pursuing investors. But the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals gave some clues about its thoughts on Monday when it heard oral arguments in the clawback case initiated by the receiver of Stanford International Bank.

The Stanford receiver, Ralph Janvey, is seeking the principal certain investors withdrew from Stanford shortly before the alleged fraud was discovered and assets at the firm were frozen. According to Reuters, the district court allowed Janvey to seek the interest investors made, but not the principal. At the oral argument before the 5th Circuit, the more fundamental question of standing was also addressed. Senior Judge Will Garwood asked Kevin Sadler of Baker Botts, who represents Janvey, why the Securities and Exchange Commission wasn’t bringing the case.

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