Bernie Madoff, whose $ 65 billion Ponzi scheme made him one of the most hated criminals in the world and even destroyed his own family, died at the safe federal hospital in Butner, North Carolina, where he did one Served 150 years’ imprisonment. according to a report Wednesday.
The Associated Press reported that the 82-year-old scammer, who suffered from end-stage kidney disease and other chronic diseases, died of natural causes.
His epic stock scam, which in When the global financial crisis came to light in the late 2000s and remains the largest in Wall Street history, it left more than 37,000 victims in 136 countries.
Burned investors ranged from retirees who entrusted him with the savings of their lives , to celebrities like Hollywood power couple Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick, former Disney studio boss Jeffrey Katzenberg, and legendary baseball hall of famer Sandy Koufax.
A number of schools and nonprofits were also devastated, including Yeshiva University, where Madoff served on the board and which lost more than $ 100 million, about 8 percent of its foundations.
The New Yo rk University, the Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity and the International Olympic Committee were ripped off, as were several municipal and union pension funds.
Mets owners Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz were among the investors who paid out their false profits, but later had to repay illegitimate profits – which forced them to sell a minority stake in the team and slash the payroll with predictably disastrous results.
Madoff’s massive rip-off was linked to at least four suicides, including that of his older son Mark, who hanged himself on the second anniversary of the fraudster’s arrest in 2008 and left bitter news.
« Bernie, now you know how you destroyed the lives of your sons through your life of deception. F – k dich « , wrote Mark, 48.
The younger son Andrew also blamed Madoff for the recurrence of the rare cancer, mantle cell lymphoma, which also killed him in 2014 at the age of 48.
» One way to imagine that is the scandal, and everything that happened killed my brother very quickly. And it’s slowly killing me, « Andrew told People magazine about a year and a half before his death.
Andrew continued to swear, » Even on my deathbed, I’ll never forgive him for what he did. «
Madoff’s wife, Ruth, never divorced him, but said « 60 Minutes » in 2011 that she hadn’t spoken to him since Mark’s suicide.
In 2017, the Post tracked her down in Old Greenwich, Connecticut , where she lived in virtual exile in a 1,000-square-foot rental apartment.
Public outrage against Madoff sparked angry protests in federal court in Manhattan, where he was prosecuted, and in the Upper East Side apartment building in who lived in a duplex penthouse.
Prior to a trip to court wearing a bulletproof vest under his jacket, Madoff was confronted with a mob held back by metal barricades – as well as an angry financial trader whoheld up a signature that said, « Bernie, it’s not too late to do the right thing: JUMP! »
The dramatic arc of the scandal resulted in countless messages, dozens of books, and an ABC miniseries starring Richard Dreyfuss and an Emmy-nominated HBO film with Robert De Niro in the title role.
The Queens native Madoff founded his eponymous finance company Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities in 1960 and began as a market maker, buying and selling brokerage houses Instead of taking a commission, Madoff pocketed the 12-1 / 2-cent spread between the bid and offer prices and made massive profits by paying brokers pennies per trade for him huge volume of orders.
His success led him to be named three times chairman of NASDAQ and to set up a hedge fund to run his Ponzi program with.
Madoff claimed a « Split-St ike conversion ”investment strategy that achieved constant profits of 12 to 15 percent per year regardless of market conditions.
He maintained a touch of exclusivity by strictly controlling access to the fund and at the same time one of the oldest tricks of the Buches used affinity fraud by targeting the wealthy Jewish communities in New York and Florida of which he was a member.
The Securities Exchange Commission was repeatedly warned about Madoff in 1992 – including in a 21 – page analysis by independent accounts expert Harry Markopolos from 2005 entitled « The world’s largest hedge fund is a scam » – but Madoff successfully defrauded investigators on five investigations.
In a 2009 report by the Inspector General later stated that « a thorough and competent investigation or investigation has never been carried out », leading to the discipline of eight SEC employees.
The inspector general, however, found no misconduct regarding the « romantic relationship » between former SEC Assistant Director Eric Swanson and Madoff’s niece, Shana Madoff, who was his firm’s compliance attorney . The couple started dating in 2006 and married in 2007; She now works as a yoga teacher in Westport, Connecticut.
Madoff ran his scam from the 17th floor of the iconic lipstick building on East 53rd Street and Third Avenue, where his legitimate market shop is located on the 18th and 19th floors upstairs There he insisted on decorating practically everything in black or gray and was so obsessed with cleanliness and order that you could see him dusting the two-foot sculpture of a screw behind his desk that rugs in the lobby and insisted that the blinds were hung at the same height and all computer monitors were level and angled identically.
Madoff even repeatedly dropped his pants – in full view of male and female employees – to make sure that his shirt buttons were fastened correctly aligned.
But his carefully constructed house of cards collapsed on December 11, 2008 when he was tried by the FBI for securities fraud The arrest came on the basis of a tip from his sons, who both worked for his market-making business, and to whom he had confessed the night before – before his company’s Christmas party – that his hedge fund “was all a big one Lie was « and » basically a huge Ponzi program that was about to be tapped.
When FBI agents showed up at his penthouse, one of them told him they were there « to find out there is an innocent declaration « .
He was released on bail and pleaded guilty in March 2009 on 11 cases of fraud, money laundering, misrepresentation, perjury, false filing with the SEC and theft of an employee benefit plan was charged.
During a 10-minute recitation of his crimes, Madoff said he started cheating in the early 1990s and admitted that « I knew what I was doing was wrong, indeed a criminal. » p> « Al « When I started the Ponzi program, I believed it was going to end shortly and I could get myself and my clients free, » he claimed.
Judge Denny Chin immediately revoked Madoff’s bail and later tried him on a trial in which nine victims spoke, as a maximum punishment for his « extraordinarily evil » crimes. Some burst into tears as they described how he ruined their lives.
« I used to think that it doesn’t matter if he turns 150 – what would that do for the victims? » Sharon Lissauer said.
« But now … I think he should spend his whole life in prison because what he did is just despicable. »
For his part, Madoff apologized monotonously and said : « I now live in an agonized state and I know all the pain and suffering I’ve caused. »
After Madoff’s conviction, authorities sold his penthouse on East 64th Street and a beach house in Montauk, Long Island. a sprawling waterfront home in Palm Beach, Florida; and a Mediterranean-style village in Cap d’Antibes on the French Riviera.
The government also organized several auctions of the treasure trove of luxury goods he and his wife had amassed, including high-quality jewelry, clocks, fine wines, antique furniture, several bull sculptures and a fur coat that tried in vain to take it away when deputy US marshals drove them out of the penthouse.
A blue Mets team jacket a us Satin with Madoff’s surname in orange on the back was $ 14,500 and 14 pairs of his boxer shorts were $ 200.
Bernard Lawrence Madoff was born in Laurelton, Queens, on April 29, 1938, the son of Ralph Madoff and Sylvia “Susie” born Munter Madoff.
In 1963, Gibraltar Securities, a company incorporated on Susie’s behalf, was among 48 SEC-listed companies that had not filed and voluntarily closed to avoid criminal prosecution .
Madoff, the middle of three children, graduated from Far Rockaway High School and attended the University of Alabama for a year before moving to Hofstra University.
After Madoff in 1959 Ruth, his high school mistress , married, he graduated in 1960. His college ring sold for $ 6,000 at auction in 2010.
Madoff briefly attended Brooklyn Law School before using $ 5,000 in savings from part-time jobs as a lifeguard and sprinkler plumber to help his finance business that started out from father-in-law Saul Alpern’s accounting office near Manhattan’s Bryant Park.
The firm helped Madoff attract investors and eventually steered hundreds of millions of dollars toward him, even after Alpern retired
But Madoff took his marriage vows as seriously as his balance sheets and had a two-year affair with Sheryl Weinstein, the then CFO of the Hadassah Jewish Relief Society, who described her hotel room trysts as « surprisingly exciting » in the mid-1990s. in a treatise entitled « Madoff’s Other Secret ».
Weinstein also trusted Madoff to both Hadassah’s and their own money, with the charity later forced to return crooked profits of $ 45 million and Weinstein ending up among the victims who spoke at his conviction, calling him a « beast » and a « like » – Opportunity destroyer. «
Federal prosecutors alleged in court records that Madoff was also » locked in a love triangle « with one of his employees, but the dirty details never emerged.
Five workers, including the unidentified lover, were judged by a jury convicted of conspiracy with Madoff, while nine other employees and associates pleaded guilty to various charges related to his fraud.
This included Madoff’s younger brother Peter, who had been the company’s CFO and was sentenced to 10 years in prison He was due to be released in August 2020.
Madoff’s older sister, Sondra Wiener, also suffered great success when his fraud collapsed and lost an estimated $ 3 million nest egg that forced her and her husband Marvin to move out of their house for sale at the chic BallenIsles Country Club in Palm Beach Gardens.
One of her sons, Charles Wiener, was a 30-year-old Madoff employee pus, who told The Post in January 2009 that the fraud wiped him out and was « emotionally devastating to our entire family. » Charles, his wife, and parents were later sued by Madoff’s bankruptcy trustee for allegedly killing more than 1 , Bagged $ 7 million in crooked profits.
For the last few months of his life, Madoff desperately tried to get out of prison by filing an unanswered pardon from President Trump and requesting a compassionate release from the prison office. < When the BOP denied him, Madoff filed another motion with the judge who sentenced him. His offer, however, was denied by prosecutors, who said his death in prison was "fully justified" and found that only 20 out of about 520 victims would have weighed in on the issue favoring the release of him.
Madoff Will survived by his wife Ruth; six grandchildren; Sister Sondra Wiener and brother Peter Madoff.
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