Bernie Madoff dies in prison, the great Wall Street fraudster

Javier Ansorena

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Bernie Madoff, the New York financier who starred in one of the biggest scams in history, died this Wednesday in a North Carolina federal prison. He was 82 years old. Madoff sand pleaded guilty in 2009 to organizing a Ponzi pyramid scheme, with which he defrauded billions of dollars to his clients.

Madoff was sentenced to 150 years in jail. In February of last year, he requested his release due to his state of health, he had been diagnosed with terminal illnesses. He had tried something similar at the end of 2019, but the prison authorities did not grant it because it “would minimize the seriousness of his offense.”

Madoff was transferred to a hospice within the federal prison system, and died of natural causes, according to what sources from the center assured the AP agency.

The Madoff scandal shook Wall Street in 2008. He was one of the successful financiers, with investment funds that gave extraordinary returns for decades. With no economic training, Madoff became a Wall Street legend, trusting him with their money from retirement groups to celebrities like the director. Steven Spielberg or the actor Kevin Bacon.

From one day to the next, reality was discovered. Madoff’s returns were not due to his magic wand with finances, but to a conventional pyramid fraud: paid the benefits to its clients with the entry of new investors. And, along the way, he pocketed billions of dollars for a life of luxury with his family.

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Since the 1980s, Madoff, along with his brother and two children, ran a legitimate brokerage office from a skyscraper in the city. Midtown de Manhattan. In it was hidden a secret office in which Madoff and his CFO, Frank DiPascali, organized a parallel accounting in which purchases and sales of assets were falsified.

The pyramid collapsed like a house of cards in the fall of 2008, when the financial crisis of that year began to attack investors already Madoff it ran out of incoming money to support the benefits it promised to its customers.

Finally, he reunited his children and confessed that his business was “a big lie.” He tried to get the issue splashed only by himself and assured investigators that only he was handling the scam. But DiPascali also ended up in prison, as well as his brother, who defended that he did not know anything about the pyramid scam.

Madoff burned 17.5 billion customers around the world. The executor chosen by the court to try to recover what was lost has found 13,000 million.

The misfortune for Madoff went beyond life imprisonment. One of his sons took his own life. The other died within a few years of cancer. And it ruined the savings of the rich, but also of many humble investors.

Madoff was arrested in December 2008 for the FBI in the offices of his investment company after confessing to his children that for 30 years he had operated a scheme of Ponzi, a pyramid scam, which allowed him to scam billions of dollars from his clients.

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He was subsequently sentenced in June 2009 to 150 years for designing a pyramid scam with which it is estimated that he fraudulently earned about 65,000 million dollars. Among those scammed were charities, pension funds and thousands of small investors.

Among those scammed were also actors such as Kevin Bacon, Kyra Sedgwick Y John Malkovichas well as a director’s charity Steven Spielberg.

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