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Vision Financial to take control of former Peregrine accounts

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Futures brokerage Vision Financial Markets will take control of all accounts held by former clients of its defunct rival Peregrine Financial Group, Vision's President Howard Rothman said on Friday.

The bankruptcy trustee, Ira Bodenstein, requested a transfer of about $123 million of customer funds and a total of nearly 15,000 accounts held by former Peregrine clients to Vision Financial, according to a motion filed with bankruptcy court.

Vision Financial, one of the nation's smaller independent brokers, will pay $325,000 to purchase for the transfer of accounts, Rothman said.

Rothman told Reuters he expects the motion will be approved by a judge "momentarily."

A team of Vision staff who had handled the transfer of accounts from bankrupt brokerage MF Global will help facilitate a smooth transfer from Peregrine to Vision, Rothman said.

Vision, with offices in New York, Chicago and Stamford, Connecticut, has seen good growth over the past year, with assets rising by nearly a fifth percent to a record in August, according to regulatory data.

Peregrine Financial filed for bankruptcy in July after its former chief executive Russell Wasendorf Sr. pled plead guilty to mail fraud, making false statements to regulators and embezzling customer funds. He was accused of stealing more than $200 million from his futures brokerage's customers and lying to regulators to cover his tracks.

(Reporting By Frank Tang; editing by Gunna Dickson)

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