Madoff accountant to plead guilty

Friehling reaches deal in fraud case, prosecutors say; expected to plead guilty Nov. 3.

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By Aaron Smith, CNNMoney.com staff writer

friehling_court_sketch.03.jpg
David Friehling, right, is expected to plead guilty for charges related to Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme.

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- David Friehling, the long-time accountant for Ponzi schemer Bernard Madoff, is expected to plead guilty to fraud charges next week, in a deal with federal prosecutors.

In a letter to Judge Alvin Hellerstein of U.S. District Court in Manhattan, prosecutors said they expect Friehling to plead guilty on Nov. 3 "in pursuant to a cooperation agreement with the government."

Frieling, who operated out of an office in New City, N.Y., about 20 miles north of New York City, is accused of "rubber stamping" Madoff's books. Prosecutors have said that Friehling's "deception helped foster the illusion that Mr. Madoff legitimately invested his client's money."

Friehling has been charged with seven counts, including securities fraud and false filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which each carry a maximum sentence of 20 years and fines of up to $5 million. Friehling, 49, could face up to 105 years in total.

Friehling's lawyer Andrew Lankler declined to comment to CNNMoney.

Madoff, 71, pleaded guilty in March to 11 federal counts related to his long-running Ponzi scheme and is serving a 150-year sentence at Federal Correctional Institution Butner in North Carolina.

Madoff's scheme resulted in losses of more than $19 billion to thousands of investors, according to the court-appointed trustee Irving Picard. To top of page

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