The lead plaintiff in the Montana suit, Martin Klinker, told ABC News that two of his accounts totaling nearly $600,000 are unaccounted for, leaving him with an uncertain future for his grain and cattle farm. "I have a tremendous amount of uncertainty. It's consumed my life," he said. Klinker runs his farm in Fairfield, Montana, with the help of his wife and four children.
Plaintiffs' attorney Mark Molumphy of the law firm Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy told ABC News that if the farmers lose their money and crops are affected, consumers will feel it at the grocery store. "There could be less product and higher prices in the long term," said Molumphy.
Plaintiffs cannot sue MF Global while it is under bankruptcy protection, but can sue the company's former executives, including Corzine. The Montana suit names Corzine and other former top MF Global executives, as well as the accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers and JPMorgan Chase, the bank that held MF Global's funds. Other lawsuits filed on behalf of MF Global investors have also named Corzine and other members of MF Global's former management team.
Corzine, a Democrat, served as U.S. senator from New Jersey from 2001 to 2006. He was elected governor of New Jersey in November 2005. He became CEO of MF Global in March 2010 after losing his reelection bid to Chris Christie. Before entering politics he had amassed a fortune as CEO of Goldman Sachs. His personal wealth was estimated at $100 million in 2010.
A spokesperson for Jon Corzine declined to comment. PricewaterhouseCoopers and JPMorgan Chase also declined comment.