Fortress Investment Group Inc. affiliates have agreed to slash their $125.6 million worth of claims against the bankruptcy estate of disgraced attorney Marc Dreier’s defunct firm by more than half to settle claims brought by the estate’s trustee. The Fortress units, whose claims account for about 22 percent of all the claims asserted against the firm’s estate in the bankruptcy case, were net losers in Mr. Dreier’s scam based on fraudulent promissory notes. Under the settlement, they would reduce their claims by $70.6 million, or 56 percent.
In exchange, Sheila M. Gowan of Diamond McCarthy, the court-appointed trustee for the firm’s estate, will drop claims against Fortress affiliates seeking to recover $16 million in payments they received from the scheme. Ms. Gowan, who submitted the deal to Southern District Bankruptcy Judge Stuart M. Bernstein for approval in a motion on Thursday, said that, assuming a 10 percent recovery on allowed claims for unsecured creditors like Fortress, the settlement represented a $7 million value for the estate.
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