A hedge fund manager at New York investment firm Paulson & Co fell to his death from a Manhattan hotel on Monday in an apparent suicide.

Charles Murphy was pronounced dead at the scene when authorities arrived at the Sofitel building shortly after 5pm, and a police spokesman said an investigation had been opened.

John Paulson, founder of Paulson & Co, paid tribute to Mr Murphy in a statement on Monday night.

“We are extremely saddened by this news. Charles was an extremely gifted and brilliant man, a great partner and a true friend,” he said. “Our deepest prayers are with his family.”

Mr Murphy had been hired by Mr Paulson after the collapse of his previous employer, Fairfield Greenwich, a hedge fund that acted as a feeder fund for Bernie Madoff. Fairfield collapsed after Mr Madoff admitted in 2008 that he was running a Ponzi scheme.

At Paulson & Co, Mr Murphy’s most recent work included leading the fund’s activist investment in AIG.

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