Bernie Madoff won $ 710 in jail after conviction for Ponzi scheme


Bernie Madoff leaves New York federal court on March 10, 2009.

Jin Lee | Bloomberg via Getty Images

Some people might argue that Bernie Madoff was grossly overpaid, even at just 24 cents an hour for working as a nurse in prison.

Madoff, the late king of the Ponzi scheme that scammed thousands for billions of dollars, earned just $ 710 after nearly 3,000 hours on the job while serving 12 years in a Carolina federal prison of the North before dying of kidney failure in April, according to recently published records.

And when he died at 82, Madoff didn’t leave much of his personal belongings: 8 AAA batteries, 4 pocket religious books, a Casio calculator, four packs of popcorn, a pack of ramen soup, a box of gefilte fish, and not much more.

The Bureau of Prison Records, first reported by online publication The City, also reveals that while Madoff received generally positive reviews for his performance as a nurse, at one point a supervisor noted that he “needed closer supervision than most” and was “not very reliable.”

This was certainly the case when Madoff ran Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities in New York City, where for decades he lived a luxurious lifestyle while keeping clients satisfied with consistent returns on their portfolios.

These returns turned out to be a sham.

In 2008, federal prosecutors accused Madoff of leading the largest Ponzi scheme in history, using some investors’ money to pay the alleged profits to others.

Madoff’s sons, Mark and Andrew, had informed authorities that he had confessed to them that his business was a total fraud.

Madoff pleaded guilty in 2009 in Manhattan Federal Court to 11 felonies and was sentenced to 150 years in prison.

Mark Madoff committed suicide at the age of 46 in 2010, two years to the day of the arrest of this father. Andrew Madoff died four years after developing lymphoma at age 48.

While in prison in Butner, North Carolina, Madoff worked as a first nurse in a section of the dungeon dedicated to educational programs. He then asked to be moved to work in the chapel area, the city noted in its report.

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Last year, Madoff’s attorney revealed in court records that the sociopathic con artist was terminally ill with kidney disease, as he asked a judge to grant Madoff early release on charges. of compassion.

Manhattan Federal Judge Denny Chin dismissed the request in June 2020, noting that Madoff committed “one of the most egregious financial times of all time” and that “many people are still suffering from it.”

About 500 victims wrote to Chin to oppose Madoff’s release.

One of Madoff’s victims wrote to Chin, “I believe with all my heart that my husband would be alive today if he hadn’t had to deal with the stress and emotional despair that the loss of almost. all of our money was on our family. “

In December, the Justice Department announced that the Madoff Victim Fund had distributed a total of $ 3.2 billion to nearly 37,000 people defrauded by Madoff. This dollar amount is equivalent to more than 80% of the total losses suffered by the victims.

The fund’s money comes from the recovery of assets linked to Madoff. The fund plans to eventually return a total of more than $ 4 billion in assets.