U.S. regulators filed a lawsuit against Berkshire Hathaway Inc's General Re alleging the reinsurer used sham transactions to help manipulate American International Group Inc and Prudential Financial Inc's financial statements, according to documents filed in a New York federal court on Wednesday.

The Securities and Exchange Commission alleged General Re knowingly provided substantial assistance to both AIG and Prudential in connection with their own securities violations.

According to the complaint, General Re entered into a series of sham reinsurance contracts with Prudential's
property and casualty division from 1997 to 2002 that allowed Prudential to improperly recognize over $200 million in revenue from 2000 through 2002.

In 2000, after analysts criticized AIG for declining loss reserves and its stock dropped, General Re entered into two sham reinsurance transactions that allowed AIG to falsely report increases in both loss reserves and premiums written, the SEC alleged.

(Reporting by Rachelle Younglai; editing by Andre Grenon)