Klobuchar joins bipartisan group requesting Justice Department investigate MF Global collapse

U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar and 16 other senators have mailed a letter to the U.S. attorney general urging an investigation into and possibly the criminal prosecution of MF Global executives, who may have made illegal transactions using customer funds. Many of Minnesota's farmers and agricultural businesses have been missing money since the commodities trader collapsed.

A press release from the office of U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar:

Washington, D.C. – Today U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar and 16 other senators sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder requesting that the Department of Justice use all available tools to investigate MF Global executives who may have made illegal transactions using customer funds. The letter, also signed by Senators Max Baucus (D-MT), Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, and John Thune (R-SD), Chairman of the Senate Republican Policy Committee, urges the Department to pursue criminal prosecution if the investigation uncovers illegal action.

The Senators wrote, “If the Department’s ongoing investigation uncovers illegal actions, criminal prosecution should be pursued without hesitation. In order to get to the bottom of this, we urge federal agents to use every legal resource available.”

Up to $1.2 billion in customer funds have disappeared since MF Global declared bankruptcy on October 31, 2011.

Klobuchar serves on the Senate Agriculture Committee, where she has pushed for answers on what happened to Minnesota farmers’ and ranchers’ funds. She invited Dean Tofteland, a Minnesota farmer affected by the MF Global failure, to testify at a hearing last week.

Earlier this month, Klobuchar successfully pressed finance watchdogs to pass a key rule reform to close loopholes in the financial system to help prevent Wall Street from gambling with customers’ money. During a recent Senate Agriculture Committee hearing, Klobuchar pressed Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Commissioner Jill Sommers, who is leading the Commission’s MF Global investigation, for answers on how funds that were supposed to be kept safe in segregated accounts could now be in jeopardy and what the CFTC can do to help farmers and ranchers gain access to their funds as quickly as possible.

It is estimated that more than one hundred Minnesota farmers and businesses who have critical accounts with MF Global have been unable to access their funds since the firm filed for bankruptcy in October. Klobuchar’s office has been working directly with Minnesotans who lost money due to MF Global’s failure and pushing to recover the funds.

The full letter text is included below.

December 23, 2011

The Honorable Eric Holder
Attorney General
Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Ste. 5111
Washington, DC 20530-0009

Dear Attorney General Holder:

We are writing to emphasize the importance of a comprehensive and exhaustive investigation into the actions of MF Global executives regarding the potentially illegal misappropriation of funds from the segregated accounts of its commodity customers. If the Department’s ongoing investigation uncovers illegal actions, criminal prosecution should be pursued without hesitation. In order to get to the bottom of this, we urge federal agents to use every legal resource available.

In the wake of the MF Global bankruptcy proceedings and the disclosure that hundreds of millions of client funds were completely unaccounted for, tens of thousands of farmers, grain elevators and others across the country have faced the real possibility that they would not be made whole on their accounts. This happened despite federal regulations that require collateral equal in value to the customer investments to remain in the customer segregated account at all times. If credible evidence of illegalities is found by the investigation, significant resources should be utilized to prosecute those responsible.

We understand that criminal cases involving complex financial transactions are sometimes difficult to prove beyond a reasonable doubt. However, tens of thousands of American farmers have seen their customer accounts raided by MF Global to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. The need for extraordinary effort should not discourage the Department of Justice from pursuing this case to the full extent of the law.

We believe that justice must be brought to this issue to send a message to Wall Street that the trust individual investors place in these firms must always be returned with lawful, conscientious, and honest management of client funds. Thank you for your consideration.


Max Baucus (D-Mont.)
John Thune (R-S.D.)
Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.)
John Barrasso (R-Wyo.)
Kent Conrad (D-N.D.)
Scott Brown (R-Mass.)
Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio)
Roy Blunt (R-Mo.)
Ben Nelson (D-Neb.)
Mark Kirk (R-Ill.)
Jon Tester (D-Mont.)
Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa)
Tim Johnson (D-S.D.)
Mike Johanns (R-Neb.)
Dan Coats (R-Ind.)
Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.)
John Hoeven (R-N.D.)

Next Up

Pexels - beer outside patio brewery

Brewery, taproom moving into former Twin Cities newspaper space

Loons Landing officially signed the lease this week.

Vic Richfield auto theft PD - rectangle crop

Police: Car with dog inside stolen from outside Twin Cities liquor store

They're asking people to be on the lookout for the vehicle.

John Hofer - Chisago County Sheriff's Office

Murder charge filed over inmate's death at Chisago Co. Jail

The man suddenly became unresponsive and died while in a holding cell.

reproductive rights caucus

Minnesota DFL lawmakers form Reproductive Freedom Caucus

The move comes as some Republicans explore proposals to limit abortion access.

Flickr - child wearing mask close up - Nenad Stojkovic

Counties without K-12 mask mandate see sharper rise in child COVID cases

That's according to a new study released Friday by the CDC.

Police lights

Bloomington woman dies in crash on southwest Twin Cities highway

The collision happened just south of the Minnesota Renaissance Festival grounds.

Wikimedia Commons - COVID vaccine, pfizer, shot - Martin G

Pfizer booster shots immediately available for select Minnesotans

118 fully vaccinated Minnesotans have died from COVID-19.

Gisela Medina Sherburne County Jail - 2021.09.23 - crop 2

19-year-old charged alongside Anton Lazzaro pleads not guilty

She's accused of helping the GOP operative traffic underage girls.

Dalvin Cook

Dalvin Cook misses Vikings practice on Friday

Cook suffered an ankle injury during the Cardinals game.

GetMedia (1)

Gallery: Historic church renovated into home is yours for $248,000

The church-turned-home offers an open floor plan in the heart of Howard Lake.

Rep. Glenn Gruenhagen  - YouTube screengrab

MN GOP Rep. spreads voted fraud disinformation, draws rebuke from SoS

The lawmaker cited a video claiming there are more than 1.2 million "missing" votes.


Klobuchar votes to subpoena former MF Global CEO

Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar has voted to give the Senate Agriculture Committee the authority to subpoena the former top executive to testify. Minnesota farmers and agriculture businesses saw critical financial accounts frozen and now worry they may be out serious cash following the collapse of the commodities trading firm. Klobuchar says those responsible should be held accountable.

Report: MF Global customers getting offers for their claims

The New York Times reports investment firms are jockeying to buy claims off thousands of MF Global customers, which includes many Minnesota farmers. Most of those offers are for 90 percent of face value. It could spell a big change in fortune for Minnesota's farmers and agricultural business owners, many of whom had large accounts on the books with the commodities firm when it collapsed.

Minnesota farmer feels 'betrayed' by MF Global

Dean Tofteland blasted the now-defunct commodities firm MF Global in front of a Senate Ag committee Tuesday morning. The Star Tribune reports that the Luverne farmer didn't mince words when it came to how he felt about having more than $250,000 of his money frozen. More than $1 billion of MF Global's assets are unaccounted for.

MF Global collapse felt by Minnesota farmers

MF Global is being investigated over what federal regulators say is an estimated $1.2 billion that may be missing from customer accounts.

Bachmann calls for independent investigation of MF Global

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann is among Republicans calling on the Obama administration to name a special prosecutor to handle the investigation of MF Global. Top executives with the now-defunct commodities company were Democratic fundraisers. Officials are looking into the disappearance of $1.6 billion in MF Global funds.

MF Global owes farmers at least $100 million

Reuters reports the Chicago Mercantile Exchange has set up a $100 million fund to help farmers and ranchers who lost money after the collapse of commodities trading firm MF Global. Many farmers and agricultural businesses in Minnesota saw their accounts frozen after the firm suddenly went belly-up.

Former MF Global CEO to Congress: 'I simply do not know where the money is'

A former chief exec of a now-defunct commodities trading firm is testifying before U.S. leaders, who want to know how more than a billion dollars has gone missing. Many of Minnesota's farmers, ranchers and agricultural businesses had financial accounts with the trading firm. Now they've found those accounts frozen and are worried about their money.