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March 10, 2009

Basic Madoff plea details emerging

As now reported by all the major media outlets, the specifics of the charges and expected plea in the financial frauds committed by Bernie Madoff are coming into focus.  This Bloomberg story has many of the latest particulars:

Bernard Madoff, the New York money manager accused of leading the largest Ponzi scheme in U.S. history, will plead guilty later this week to 11 criminal charges, his lawyer told a federal judge.

Madoff, 70, will admit he directed a fraud that prosecutors alleged began in the 1980s. By last November, Madoff told 4,800 investors their accounts held $64.8 billion, according to court papers filed in Manhattan federal court. Prosecutors will seek forfeiture from Madoff of as much as $170 billion. Madoff, free on $10 million bail, faces 150 years in prison.

“There is no plea agreement,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Marc Litt said at hearing today before U.S. District Judge Denny Chin.... “The filing of these charges does not end the matter,” said Acting Manhattan U.S. Attorney Lev Dassin. “Our investigation is continuing.”...

“The charges reflect an extraordinary array of crimes committed by Bernard Madoff for over 20 years,” Dassin said in a statement. “The size and scope of Mr. Madoff’s fraud are unprecedented.”

Over at TalkLeft, Jeralyn in this post has an effective assessment of all the latest news.  Here is her summary take-away: 

My prediction: Madoff will go to jail Thursday, never to be released again.  And, no matter how much money the government forfeits, not every victim will be made whole.

March 10, 2009 at 08:50 PM | Permalink


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I am a practicing tax attorney. While I accept that the 8th amendment would never sanction execution in the case of robbery or financial fraud if there ever was a case to be made it is Bernie Madoff. At a minimum, the only way to treat Madoff is for the judge to sentence him for all of the charges consecutively, and specify that he be remanded to ADX Florence with a "no human contact order" for the rest of his natural life". They have used a similar order for Jeff Fort.

The key component here is absolutely no human contact so perhaps he can spend the rest of his natural life reflecting upon the misery he inflicted...for some people they would probably prefer to have been killed then left destitute after a lifetime of work.

Posted by: Moishe_of_Chelm | Mar 11, 2009 11:30:27 AM

I am surprised Madoff isn't on a suicide watch. If ever there was a guy with nothing left to live for, he is it.

Posted by: Marc Shepherd | Mar 11, 2009 1:07:37 PM

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