The controversy over the Mets owners’ involvement with the con man Bernie Madoff came to a swift and sudden end on Monday as a settlement was reached just before trial.
The owners, Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz, agreed to pay $162 million to the Madoff trustee Irving Picard, according to a story from MLB.com posted on the Mets’ website.
According to the story, Wilpon and Katz will not pay anything for three years.
Jury selection was scheduled to begin Monday for a trial that was to determine whether Wilpon and Katz could prove they were not “willfully blind” to Madoff’s scheme, for which Madoff is serving a 150-year sentence at a North Carolina federal prison.
Judge Jed Rakoff ruled earlier this month that Wilpon and Katz would have to forfeit as much as $83 million in allegedly ill-gotten gains and go to trial over another $303 million.