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Bernard Madoff: Big time swindler goes to jail

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Court sketch of Bernard Madoff (middle/gray tie)  by Shirley Shepard/Reuters photo by Carolyn Cole/ Los Angeles Times


Some justice today for victims of that reported $65 billion Ponzi scheme ran by disgraced financier, Bernard Madoff. In a New York federal court this morning, the 70-year-old Madoff pleaded guilty to all 11 counts against him while many of the investors he cheated looked on.

Madoff, reading from a prepared statement, apologized for what he admitted was a worldwide scheme, which started during the 1990s: “When I began the Ponzi scheme I believed it would end shortly and I would be able to extricate myself and my clients from the scheme. However, this proved difficult, and ultimately impossible, and as the years went by I realized that my arrest and this day would inevitably come. I am painfully aware that I have deeply hurt many, many people, including the members of my family, my closest friends, business associates and the thousands of clients who gave me their money. I cannot adequately express how sorry I am for what I have done.”

 Prosecutors say there could be close to five thousand Madoff victims, from middle class working folks to wealthy Hollywood celebrities. Officials say the investigation is not over. The search continues for co-conspirators and yes, the billions of dollars that Madoff bamboozled out of investors.

U. S. District Judge Denny Chin determined Madoff was a flight risk and therefore, revoked his $10 million bail. The judge ordered Madoff to jail. He was taken away in handcuffs as many of his victims cheered.

The Judge set sentencing for June 16, 2009. Madoff is facing penalties of more than 100 years behind bars.

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