Madoff jailed after pleading guilty to $50 billion fraud scheme

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Thursday, March 12, 2009

US financier Bernard Madoff, the former chairman of the Nasdaq stock index, has been jailed after pleading guilty to all 11 charges of fraud, money laundering, and perjury surrounding a US$50 billion Ponzi scheme.

"I'm deeply sorry and ashamed," the financier stated during a speech in the New York court. "I believed it would end quickly and I would extricate myself and my clients. This proved difficult and, in the end, impossible."

Some of Madoff's victims applauded when the former was handcuffed by officers and taken out of the courtroom to a holding cell where he will await sentencing. Madoff is facing 150 years behind bars, with no chance of parole. Sentencing is set for June 16.

Among the charges that Madoff plead guilty to were four counts of fraud, three counts of money laundering, perjury, and making false statements, among others.

Was Madoff's punishment fair?

Judge Denny Chin of Federal District Court ordered that Madoff be remanded as he was awaiting a sentence, rather than letting him out on bail and allowing him to return to his apartment in Manhattan. "He has incentive to flee, he has the means to flee, and thus he presents the risk of flight," the judge said. "Bail is revoked."


Wikipedia Learn more about the Madoff Investment Scandal on Wikipedia.