6 thoughts on “Madoff Sentenced to 150 Years in Prison

  1. World’s biggest fraudster jailed

    US: A judge rejected Bernard Madoff’s plea for leniency on Monday, sentencing the swindler to spend the rest of his life in prison for an “extraordinarily evil” fraud.

    District judge Denny Chin cited the unprecedented nature of the multibillion-dollar fraud as he sentenced Mr Madoff (pictured) to the maximum of 150 years in prison, comparable only to those given in the past to terrorists, traitors and the most violent criminals.

    Mr Chin said: “The message must be sent that Mr Madoff’s crimes were extraordinarily evil and that this kind of manipulation of the system is not just a bloodless crime that takes place on paper, but one instead that takes a staggering toll.”

    http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/index.php/world/world_in_brief__64

  2. 150 Years
    By Robert Weissman

    June 30, 2009

    One hundred and fifty years jail time for Bernard Madoff is a good thing.

    To listen to the victims of his swindle, or read their words, is to
    appreciate the very far-reaching ways in which Madoff’s quiet crime has
    wreaked havoc on the lives of thousands of families.

    Federal District Judge Denny Chin was absolutely right in denouncing
    Madoff’s crimes as “extraordinarily evil,” and giving him the maximum
    sentence. Punishment is no substitute for prevention, but the sentence
    provides a modicum of justice to the victims and will exert some modest
    deterrent effect against future potential swindlers.

    The 150-year sentence is headline grabbing, but what should surprise us
    is not that Madoff got such a long sentence, but that other corporate
    criminals escape with light sentences or no criminal prosecution at all.

    In August 2006, U.S. Federal District Court Judge Judith Kessler
    adjudged the leading tobacco companies to have engaged in a 50-year long
    conspiracy to deceive the public about the health risks of smoking and
    to addict children to tobacco. Millions in the United States — and many
    more around the world — have died as a result of this conspiracy. But
    you won’t find any tobacco executives in jail for this “extraordinary evil.”

    Twenty-five years ago, poisonous gas escaped from a factory run by the
    chemical company Union Carbide in Bhopal, India. Many thousands died,
    many more were debilitated or badly injured, and the plant site remains
    polluted. Despite charges of culpable homicide, executives from Union
    Carbide (now merged into Dow Chemical) were never tried or sent to jail.

    In 1989, the Exxon Valdez hit a reef in Prince William Sound Alaska.
    Eleven million gallons of crude oil spilled onto 1,500 miles of Alaskan
    shoreline, killing birds and fish. The spill ruined the livelihoods of
    thousands of Native Americans, fishermen and others. The captain was
    convicted of a misdemeanor and sentenced to community service. Exxon
    pled guilty to misdemeanor violations of federal environmental laws. No
    executives went to jail.

    Victims of horrendous human rights abuses and environmental destruction
    caused and abetted by oil companies operating in Burma (Unocal/Chevron),
    Nigeria (Shell and Chevron), Ecuador (Texaco/Chevron) and Indonesia
    (Exxon), among other places, have — with lawyers and international
    solidarity campaigns — waged heroic and increasingly successful efforts
    to obtain monetary compensation for the wrongs they have suffered. But
    there’s no prospect of CEO and executive perpetrators of those wrongs
    being criminally prosecuted.

    For two decades, the multinational oil companies and the giant coal
    producers have engaged — and continue to engage — in a prolonged
    campaign to deny and discredit climate change science. In doing so, they
    have imperiled the planet and its people. Paul Krugman, properly, calls
    this treason against the planet. But while execution is the highest
    penalty for treason against country, treason against the planet won’t
    even get you the equivalent of a parking ticket.

    What to make of the disparity between the appropriate sentencing for
    Bernard Madoff and the get-out-of-jail free approach for other leading
    corporate criminals and malefactors? There are a few lessons and
    conclusions.

    First, the Madoff case differs from many of these other examples of
    corporate wrongdoing in that the individual perpetrator is so closely
    related to the victims. Although he was handling billions of dollars,
    Madoff had a skeleton staff, and he had personal connections with many
    of those he swindled. As a result, the victims and the public’s anger is
    visceral and very targeted — not directed at an amorphous giant
    corporation.

    Second, Madoff’s victims have power. They have the ability to hire
    lawyers, and to organize for redress and retribution. Corporate crime
    victims in poor communities, or in poor countries, generally do not have
    this kind of power. Nor do those who will fall victim in the future to
    consequences of actions carried out today.

    Third, and relatedly, the penalties for financial crimes are generally
    much stiffer than for other corporate crimes. The New York Times has an
    interesting feature comparing Madoff’s sentence to other white-collar,
    financial criminals, many of them convicted of Enron-era crimes;
    Madoff’s sentence is much longer, but the others received stiff
    penalties as well. By contrast, it is very rare to see a felony
    prosecution for corporate killings.

    Finally, and most important, one of the signal powers of corporations is
    their ability to influence the law and culture so that their most
    heinous acts are not considered criminal. Knowingly addict millions of
    children to a deadly habit? Not a crime. Collaborate with military
    regimes and destroy lives and livelihoods in poor countries? Not a
    crime. Endanger the planet with greenhouse gas pollution — and then
    mobilize politically to block emergency efforts to save the earth? Not a
    crime.

    The world is a little bit more just today, after the sentencing of
    Bernie Madoff. When other corporate culprits are sentenced comparably,
    the world will be a lot more just.

    Robert Weissman is editor of the Washington, D.C.-based Multinational
    Monitor, http://www.multinationalmonitor.org and director of Essential
    Action http://www.essentialaction.org

    (c) Robert Weissman

    This article is posted at:

    http://lists.essential.org/pipermail/corp-focus/2009/000321.html

  3. Madoff’s house seized by police

    United States: Federal marshals have seized disgraced Wall Street crook Bernard Madoff’s $7 million (£4.3m) Manhattan penthouse.

    They also forced his wife to move out yesterday and leave her possessions behind, including a fur coat she had asked to take with her.

    Proceeds from a sale of the property and its contents could be used to help reimburse those who lost billions of dollars investing with Mr Madoff before he confessed to running a Ponzi scheme.

    http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/index.php/world/world_in_brief__68

  4. Former Enron Exec Sentenced To 16 Months In Prison

    Source: NPR (9-28-09)

    The former chief executive of Enron Corp.’s failed Internet business was sentenced Monday to 16 months in prison for lying about the capabilities of the once mighty energy giant’s broadband network in order to help pump up the company’s stock price.

    The former broadband unit CEO also agreed to pay $8.7 million in restitution.

    Joseph Hirko apologized for his actions before being sentenced. He had previously pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud as part of a plea deal with federal prosecutors.

  5. Autopsy set for Madoff associate dead in Fla. pool

    Monday, October 26, 2009

    Jeffry Picower (PICK’-ow-er) was found by his wife Sunday at the
    bottom of a pool at the couple’s sprawling oceanside Palm Beach
    mansion. He died a short time later at a nearby hospital.
    The 67-year-old was No. 371 on the Forbes 400 list of the wealthiest
    Americans, with a net worth of $1 billion.

    Police are investigating the death as a drowning, but haven’t ruled
    anything out. Palm Beach County authorities planned an autopsy Monday.

    Some victims of Madoff’s vast Ponzi scheme say Picower was the fraud’s
    biggest beneficiary. In a lawsuit to recover assets, trustee Irving
    Picard demands he return the allegedly bogus profits.

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2009/10/25/financial/f130646D45.DTL&tsp=1

  6. Pingback: JPMorgan bank sued for fraud | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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