On the road with Sam Israel

June 20, 2008

The U.S. Marshals say this vehicle has been driven by fugitive hedge fund manager Samuel Israel, who is wanted for failing to surrender to serve a prison sentence. (REUTERS/U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE/HANDOUT)BOSTON – It’s no Maserati. The fuel-hungry, possibly damaged 2007 Coach Freelander Recreational Vehicle is the antithesis to the flashy, often glamorous stereotype of powerful hedge fund managers.

But it appears to be the getaway vehicle of choice for fugitive former hedge fund manager Samuel Israel III.

And unlike the larger than life returns Israel promised investors, the vehicle is big. Really big.

“Everything about the Coachmen Freelander Class C motorhome shouts out ‘big’, more storage, big tanks, large doors, tall ceilings, and big beds,” the company said in a press release.

The U.S. Marshals Service, which tracks fugitives, issued a release describing the nearly 30 ft, white Freelander. It has a blue 2005 Yamaha scooter attached to the back, possible damage to the rear passenger side, a New York license plate (EEN-5973) and sporty swoosh stripes — the kind that convey family fun.

And where would he go in such a vehicle?

RV Parks? Camp grounds? Highway rest stops, perhaps? Yes to all three places, say the Marshals.

Working in his favor is the time of year. It’s summer. And on U.S. highways that means one thing: it’s RV time.Missing hedge fund manager Samuel Israel is seen in this picture released by the U.S. Marshals office. Israel is wanted by the Southern District of New York for failure to surrender to serve sentence after being sentenced to a federal prison term of 240 months. REUTERS/U.S. Department of Justice/Handout (UNITED STATES). FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS.

Nearly 8 million U.S. households own at least one RV, according to the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association, and summer is the time when many are dusted off and hit the road — even as gas prices soar.

So RV campers beware. The balding 48-year-old man parked nearby could be the engineer of the $2 trillion hedge fund industry’s biggest and most brazen fraud.

Where do you think the co-founder of the Bayou Group is? We welcome your thoughts.

2 comments so far | RSS Comments RSS

He was probably already in Canada with a fake passport before the U.S. authorities were even looking for him.

Posted by Harry L | Report as abusive

It’s a shame that all of the money that Sam has socked away is going to be sucked up when he has to refill that thing’s gas tank! ;-)

Hi, Danny & Jim… Still stewing?

Posted by Not The SEC | Report as abusive

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