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Judge Thomas Griesa dies at 87; oversaw Argentina debt case

Judge Thomas P. Griesa, pictured in 1989, presided

Judge Thomas P. Griesa, pictured in 1989, presided over a long-running case over Argentina's debts. Credit: AP / William F. Sauro

A New York federal judge who drew the ire of Argentine government officials in a long-running case over Argentina’s debts has died. Judge Thomas P. Griesa was 87.

Manhattan federal court official Edward Friedland says Griesa died Sunday. The cause of the judge’s death hasn’t been disclosed.

Griesa presided for 15 years over lawsuits brought by U.S. hedge funds that bought heavily discounted Argentine bonds after the country defaulted on debts in 2001.

The hedge funds demanded full repayment of billions of dollars in bonds. Argentina called the hedge funds “vultures.”

Griesa said the bonds must be paid in full.

In 2014, Argentina’s then-president Cristina Fernandez called Griesa “senile” and his finding “silliness.”

After Fernandez left office, the court case was settled. Bondholders were paid more than $8 billion.

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