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Where is Bernie Madoff now? The 'financial serial killer' spent 150 years in prison to 'avoid a mob attack'

He pleaded guilty to running the biggest Ponzi scheme in history, so if you’re interested in watching Netflix’s new true crime series The Wallstreet Monsteryou might be wondering where is Bernie Madoff now after he defrauded investors of tens of billions of dollars.

Born in 1938 and raised in a modest home in Queens, NY, Madoff worked his way into Manhattan’s elite circles to become a figure who was once considered a titan of Wall Street. He was the former chairman of the NASDAQ stock exchange and also chairman of his own company, Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities, which became the sixth largest market maker in S&P 500 stocks after its creation in 1960.

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He is also largely responsible for computerized commerce – an industry that Google, Microsoft and Apple are a part of today. Considered a “great innovator”, according to Wallstreet Monster director Joe Berlinger by The Guardian, as well as an “evil genius,” Madoff was sentenced to 150 years behind bars after pleading guilty to 11 federal crimes. But was he really sorry or was he once again choosing himself in a final act of selfishness?

Where is Bernie Madoff now?

Where is Bernie Madoff now? The disgraced financier died behind bars in Butner, North Carolina at the age of 82 on April 14, 2021. According to the death certificate obtained by TMZ at the time, it was revealed that the cause of his death was hypertension, cardiovascular disease atherosclerosis and chronic disease. kidney disease. His manner of death was listed as natural due to his advanced age. His body was cremated.

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Courtesy of Netflix

Courtesy of Netflix

What did Bernie Madoff do?

What did Bernie Madoff do? For 17 years, if not longer, the head of Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities lived the luxurious lifestyle while keeping clients satisfied with consistent returns on their investment portfolios. Simultaneously, he, his wife Ruth, and their children lived the high life, owning luxury apartments in Manhattan, an $11 million estate in Palm Beach, a $4 million home on the tip of Long Island, an estate in the South from France, as well as enjoying private jets and yachts. These investor returns turned out to be a total scam; some investors’ money was used to pay profits to other people.

On December 11, 2008, Bernie Madoff was arrested by the FBI after federal investigators were tipped off by his sons Mark and Andrew. According to documents filed by the FBI at the time of Madoff’s arrest, Madoff told his children that all of the family’s wealth and success was based on a lie – a massive Ponzi scheme that was crumbling under the pressure of the 2008 financial crisis. and Andrew immediately consulted a lawyer and were told that they must report their father’s confession to the authorities. The next day, Madoff was arrested at his Manhattan penthouse and charged with securities fraud, wire fraud, mail fraud, perjury and money laundering.

Image: DON EMERT/AFP via Getty Images

Image: DON EMERT/AFP via Getty Images

“Of course greed was an element, but I don’t think he was blinded by greed. He’s a poor kid from Queens who looked longingly across the river towards Manhattan, wanted to be a big player and just loved being the guy, being successful.” The Guardian. “One of the reasons Ponzi continued and increased steroids is that his legitimate business was starting to fail and so he used Ponzi money to support his legitimate business because he wanted to be Mr. Wall Street. Ego and a sense of belonging to the big club of rich guys who run the world. It was less about greed and more about status and position.”

Madoff pleaded guilty to 11 criminal charges on March 12, 2009. A few months later, he was sentenced to 150 years behind bars. According to Berlinger, the reason Madoff pleaded guilty to stealing $19 billion from more than 40,000 investors was not because he was remorseful, but because he was also managing a “significant portion” of money for organized crime and was desperate to protect yourself.

During his sentencing hearing, Madoff apologized to his victims, saying, “I have left a legacy of shame, as some of my victims have pointed out, to my family and my grandchildren. That was something I’m going to live with for the rest of my life. I’m very sorry. I know it doesn’t help you.

But Berlinger doesn’t believe that. “People think that one of the reasons he was so willing to immediately acknowledge his guilt, saying it was all his and going to jail was not a brave act,” Berlinger said. The New York Post. “Instead of trying to obfuscate or find a legal way out or delay [a verdict]I think part of it was self-protection to avoid a mob attack.

Indeed, in never-before-seen testimony featured in Berlinger’s documentary, Madoff said that there were potential federal government deals on the table at the time of his trial, as he had been rumored to have had ties to Russian crime syndicates for years. . “The prosecutor wanted me to negotiate with them to make some kind of deal, providing information about who else was involved with this fraud,” Madoff said during one of those depositions. “The belief was that I couldn’t do this alone, that there had to be other people involved.”

Photo courtesy of the Bureau of Prisons/Getty Images

Photo courtesy of the Bureau of Prisons/Getty Images

By the same brain that brought us other true crime series like Conversations with an Assassin, Crime scene and brother’s keeper, Madoff: Monster of Wallstreet features interviews with whistleblowers, former employees, victims and investigators in four-hour episodes.

One interviewee described Madoff as “a financial sociopath, a financial serial killer” and Berlinger agrees. “At the end of the day, he is a financial serial killer and the reason why I say that is that serial killers lack empathy,” he said in an interview with The Guardian. “There’s no way you can look a widow in the eye at the Palm Beach Country Club and guarantee your life savings will be fine, give me your funds, I’ll take care of you and then I’ll do that to people. He is someone who lacks empathy; therefore he cannot feel remorse.”

Among those betrayed by Madoff were celebrities like Kevin Bacon, who lost “most” of his money in the scheme. “We had most of our money on Madoff,” Bacon told Smartless podcast hosts Jason Bateman, Sean Hayes and Will Arnett in October 2022. “There are obvious life lessons there — if something is too good to be true, it is. too good to be true .”

Getty Images

Getty Images

Other famous names stolen by Madoff include New York Mets owner Fred Wilpon, former Philadelphia Eagles owner Norman Braman, Hungarian actress Zsa Zsa Gabor, Dreamworks Animation chief executive Jefferey Katzenberg, actor John Malkovich , Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel and broadcaster Larry King. . The Madoff Victim Fund returned more than $4 billion to more than 40,000 victims affected by the scheme, according to its website.

Sadly, Mark Madoff took his own life in 2010, on the second anniversary of his father’s arrest. He had been sued a week earlier by Irving H. Picard, who initially sued last year seeking to recover approximately $200 million the family had received in wages. Martin Flumenbaum, attorney for Mark Madoff, said in a statement. “This is a terrible and needless tragedy,” adding that his client was “an innocent victim of his father’s monstrous crime, who succumbed to two years of relentless pressure from false accusations and innuendo.”

In 2014, the disgraced financier’s other son, Andrew Madoff, died aged 48 after receiving treatment for mantle cell lymphoma, an aggressive form of cancer. In an interview with New York Timeshe once referred to his father’s scheme as “a father-son betrayal of biblical proportions”.

Madoff: Monster of Wallstreet is now available to stream on Netflix.

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