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Madoff owes NY nearly $1M in taxes

The fraudster is one of the state's top 250 debtors. California's list includes Dionne Warwick and Burt Reynolds.

By Money Staff Mar 24, 2010 9:45AM

By Elizabeth Strott, MSN Money


Bernard Madoff © Daniel Acker/Bloomberg News/Landov
Disgraced financier Bernie Madoff's reputation just got worse, if that is even possible.


The convicted Ponzi schemer is No. 68 on New York's list of the top 250 tax deadbeats, owing the Empire State $984,280 in back taxes. The state has to get in line with the hundreds of others who were defrauded by Madoff and wait until bankruptcy proceedings are wrapped up.


The individual topping the list is the former owner of Scores strip clubs, Irving Bilzinsky. His tax bill is a whopping $15.3 million, going back to July 2007. Bilzinsky filed for bankruptcy in 1998. 


The list, which is compiled by the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance, publishes the original debt at the time tax liens were filed and doesn't include interest or partial payments by the debtors.


New York's online list follows the steps of California, which enacted a law in October 2007 requiring the state's Franchise Tax Board to post an annual list of the 250 biggest debtors who owe more than $100,000.


Singer Dionne Warwick ranked at No. 3 on California's Top 250 list, with a debt of $2.2 million, dating back to 1999. The No. 1 spot went to an individual named Winson T. Lee, who owes $9.9 million.


Burt Reynolds came in at No. 247, and he owes the California government about $225,000 going back to 1996.


No wonder New York and California's finances are a mess.


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