New York Mets Reportedly Repaid Personal Loans
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UPDATED: Mar 20, 2012
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An anonymous source familiar with the New York Mets’ finances told The Associated Press that the team has repaid their personal loans of $25 million to the Major League Baseball (MLB) and $40 million to Bank of America (BofA).
The source asked to remain anonymous since an official statement from the Mets has yet to be made or authorized.
The personal loans were taken out by the team as a result of losses from a heavy lawsuit filed against the Mets’ owners, a decreased attendance to the team’s games and a losing record.
The Mets borrowed the money from the MLB in November of 2010, and was supposed to pay that personal loan back in November 2011, but got their term extended. Then they financed more another personal loan from BofA last year to weather their financial crisis.
This anonymous unofficial announcement came on the same day that the Mets’ owners settled an extensive lawsuit pertaining to fraud and Bernie Madoff.
The lawsuit was filed by trustees owning stock in the team who accused the team’s co-owners, CEO Fred Wilpon and team President Saul Katz, of simultaneously losing the trustee’s money and reaping a profit from Madoff’s elaborate scheme.
The trustee’s originally sought $1 billion from the Met’s owners on the basis that the two men met frequently with Madoff in private meetings and often spoke to him on a daily basis over the phone. Madoff is currently serving a 150-year sentence for conning thousands out of $20 billion in the most elaborate Ponzi scheme ever committed.
As a result of this relationship between the team owners and the convicted con artist, the trustees claimed to have lost nearly $180 million. The settlement, however, only requires the repayment of $162 million—but that amount is not required to begin being repaid for another four years.
“Now I guess I can smile, maybe I can take a day off,” Wilpon said outside the courthouse to the AP, “but I can’t wait to get back to our business, which I love.”
Wilpon told reporters that he plans to rejoin the Mets this week at their spring training in Florida.