Police: New City man, son of Madoff auditor, commits suicide

Bernard Madoff's accountant David Friehling leaves Federal court

Bernard Madoff's accountant David Friehling leaves Federal court in New York City. (March 18, 2009) Photo Credit: Getty Images

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An Ohio State University graduate student from New City, who is also the son of Ponzi schemer Bernard Madoff's auditor, has died of an apparent suicide, police said Friday.

Jeremy Friehling, 23, shot himself at his off-campus apartment Thursday at 1751 Kenny Rd. in Columbus, Ohio, Sgt. Rich Weiner of the Columbus Police Department told Newsday.

Friehling, a medical student at Ohio State, left "multiple notes," Weiner said, but he did not have details on their contents. His body was found late Thursday afternoon by three people, including a maintenance man at the apartment building, Weiner said. He was pronounced dead at 5:46 p.m. Thursday.

Columbus police notified Clarkstown officials, who in turn contacted the parents, David and Robin Friehling, Thursday night, Clarkstown police Sgt. JoAnne Fratianni said.

Police did not release any further details on the shooting.

"Jeremy was a friend to many and a brilliant student who gave selflessly of his time to tutor other students," said Charles Lockwood, dean of the Ohio State University College of Medicine. "He had great promise as a future physician. We are all deeply saddened by this tragic loss. Our profound sympathy goes out to his family."

Jeremy Friehling was a 2007 Clarkstown North High school graduate who played varsity soccer at the school, according to the CBS Sports website Maxpreps.com.

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This is the second suicide by a son of one of the men involved in the Bernard Madoff swindle. Madoff's son, Mark Madoff, killed himself by hanging on Dec. 11, 2010, the second anniversary of his father's arrest.

David Friehling, 52, is awaiting sentencing on nine charges related to his part in Madoff's $65 billion scheme, the largest financial fraud in U.S. history.

He admitted in November 2009 to helping fool federal regulators into believing that Madoff's investment funds were legitimate by signing off on them as a certified public accountant who had conducted annual audits.

He faces a sentence of more than 100 years in prison.

David Friehling's sentencing has been delayed several times due to his ongoing cooperation with federal authorities investigating the case.


Meanwhile, Madoff is serving a 150-year federal prison sentence after pleading guilty in March 2009 to 11 charges stemming from the fraud.


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