Trial date set in lawsuit over looted insurers

The Wall Street Journal

Associated Press

NEW YORK — More than a decade after it was filed, a federal judge in Mississippi has set a tentative trial date in a lawsuit stemming from scams run by a notorious financier who looted $200 million from insurance companies and created a charity that claimed to have Vatican connections to further his scheme and cover his tracks.

Former Mississippi Insurance Commissioner George Dale sued numerous people and entities in 2001 over Martin Frankel’s pyramid scheme that bilked insurers in five states during the 1990s. Insurance regulators in Tennessee, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Kansas joined the lawsuit. In 2002, the Vatican was added as a defendant, but claims against the church were dropped earlier this month

The lawsuit is tentatively scheduled for trial in April 2013 in Jackson for the remaining defendants, including several Frankel associates. Frankel is not a defendant in the lawsuit. His assets, including hundreds of diamonds, 21 cars and SUVs, an airplane and two mansions were auctioned off years ago to provide restitution.

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