Hundreds of prominent South Florida names and institutions — from Miami car dealer Norman Braman to St. Thomas Aquinas High School — are on the list of customers who invested money with accused swindler Bernard Madoff.
The list, released for the first time on Wednesday in bankruptcy court in New York, includes 562 clients from Broward and Miami-Dade counties who did business with the disgraced investor's brokerage.
''It had a tremendous impact on this area,'' said Broward securities lawyer Mark Tepper. "To a lot of the people here, it's been life changing.''
Madoff, 70, the once prominent Nasdaq chairman who recruited clients from his home and private club in Palm Beach, is charged with securities fraud in the nation's largest Ponzi scheme, estimated at $50 billion.
Of the 11,374 customers, nearly one in five -- or 2,070 -- are from Florida, the hardest hit state outside New York, according to a Miami Herald analysis of the 162-page list.
One of the local residents on the list: Adele Fox, 85, of Tamarac, a career high school administrator. Not only was her money in the brokerage, but her cousin, Jerome Horowitz, is one of the original accountants for the Madoff funds. He recommended it.
She was an investor for ''a very long time,'' but now she's "wiped out. . . . All my life savings gone. It's just awful.''
Braman, 76, the car dealer, has two foundations and one personal account on the list.
From the foundations, he said Thursday, ''All obligations that we have made by our foundations have been honored and paid, by myself personally.'' He wrote checks to honor those commitments, he said, but declined to say how much he was invested in Madoff's brokerage.
Beyond Florida, the list reveals a Who's Who of celebrities in sports, business and entertainment: Hall of Fame pitcher Sandy Koufax, actor Kevin Bacon and World Trade Center developer Larry Silverstein.
The list emerged late Wednesday, shortly after a whistleblower in the case, Harry Markopolos, told House lawmakers at a hearing that he had discovered that additional funds had relayed investments to Madoff in Europe -- and that the managers of these ''feeder'' funds may have ignored signs of the massive fraud scheme.
He plans to present his findings to the Securities and Exchange Commission's inspector general Thursday. If proven, they would substantiate the assertions of many analysts that the alleged fraud was far too large for Madoff to have conducted alone.
House lawmakers on Wednesday also sparred with SEC officials, accusing them of impeding their probe into how the agency failed to uncover the alleged fraud.
Prosecutors say Madoff admits he lost more than $50 billion belonging to investors. Defense lawyers say he has cooperated with authorities to help identify assets.
The list of client names, including those of Madoff's relatives, numerous celebrities, dead people and charitable institutions, are listed on the 162-page document. Each page carries 84 single-spaced lines. Some customers are listed multiple times, presumably because they had multiple accounts.
The customers include prominent people and institutions that already had been publicly revealed, such as the Wilpon family, owner of the New York Mets.
Also listed were more than two dozen accounts involving the Mets and companies affiliated with their owners, many with addresses at Shea Stadium.
The amount each person or institution invested with Madoff isn't listed.
One client is Ira Sorkin, the attorney who's defending Madoff against charges he perpetrated the biggest financial fraud in history. Others include Madoff's wife, sons, brother and other relatives.
The list was compiled by AlixPartners LLP, a Dallas company hired as claims agent by the trustee overseeing the liquidation of Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities.
Madoff hasn't been indicted. He's being held under house arrest at his multimillion-dollar penthouse