NEW YORK -- The court-appointed New York-based trustee trying to recover losses for victims of Bernard Madoff has accused HSBC of fueling the disgraced financier's massive fraud.

Trustee Irving Picard announced a lawsuit against the British-based bank on Sunday that seeks $9 billion in illicit earnings and damages.

The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

Picard alleges HSBC helped funnel more than $8.9 billion to Madoff through a dozen so-called feeder funds based in Europe, the Caribbean and Central America. He also says it ignored warnings from its own accountants that his phenomenal investment record was suspect.

There was no immediate response to messages left Sunday with HSBC.

Madoff is serving a 150-year term in federal prison.