Ira Lee Sorkin, the lawyer representing embattled financier Bernard L. Madoff, has received death threats for defending his client, according to a report.

It is a challenge. The email, voicemail, anti-Semitism, the death threats, it's an interesting time, Sorkin said on Wednesday, according to Reuters.'

The nasty emails have been coming in since I took on the case,” he said.

He vowed to continue representing his client despite the “challenges.” He says he has known Madoff since the 1980s.

Prosecutors have raised a possible conflict of interest for Sorkin in the case.

They have asked a judge to hear Madoff say how he knows that Sorkin represented two accountants in a 1992 case raised by the Securities and Exchange Commission, according to Reuters. Those accountants had invested with Madoff.

Sorkin is a partner at Dickstein Shapiro LLP. In the 1970s, he was a prosecutor in the same court district – the Southern District of New York – which may charge Madoff with a crime.

The Securities and Exchange Commission has filed civil fraud charges against Madoff.