Lawyer Arrested At Fortress-Pension Meeting

Dec 8 2008 | 2:29am ET

If there’s one alternative investments firm that doesn’t need its name dragged through the mud right now, it’s Fortress Investment Group. But the New York firm, already facing huge redemption requests and a collapsing stock price, finds itself at the middle of the bizarre tale of the New York lawyer arrested in Toronto for allegedly impersonating another lawyer.

Marc Dreier was arrested last week, accused of pretending to be Michael Padfield, a lawyer for the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan. The alleged thespian turn by Dreier took place during a meeting between the OTPP and Fortress at the pension’s Toronto headquarters.

What the meeting dealt with, and why Dreier was there in the first place, remain unclear.

Dreier, the head and sole equity partner of the prominent Park Avenue law firm Dreier LLP, was released on bail on Thursday, after spending two days in jail. In the wake of his arrest, several members of the firm’s bankruptcy department resigned and founded their own firm.

A lawyer for Dreier told The Wall Street Journal that his client would plead not guilty.

“The event is relatively minor,” Edward Greenspan said. “No money passed. Nothing actually occurred except an allegation of impersonation.”


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