Bernie Madoff, mastermind of largest Ponzi scheme in history, dies at 82

WION Web Team
NEW DELHI Published: Apr 15, 2021, 03:43 PM(IST)

Bernard Madoff Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

The 82-year-old was sentenced to 150 years in prison in 2009 for running the pyramid-style scheme, which was estimated to be worth between $25 billion and $63 billion, depending on whether interest is included in the calculation

Bernard Lawrence Madoff aka 'Bernie Madoff', the mastermind behind the worst financial scam in history,  died on Wednesday. He was 82.

His death at the Federal Medical Center in Butner, North Carolina, was confirmed by the federal Bureau of Prisons. His death was believed to be from natural causes. Madoff had suffered from terminal kidney disease and several other medical ailments.

The 82-year-old was sentenced to 150 years in prison in 2009 for running the pyramid-style scheme, which was estimated to be worth between $25 billion and $63 billion, depending on whether interest is included in the calculation.

New Yorker Madoff never invested a single cent of the money the scheme's clients trusted him with, instead using money from new investors to pay older ones. 

He was serving his sentence in a federal medical prison in North Carolina. 

Madoff for decades presented himself as a successful and trusted Wall Street kingpin while secretly engaging in investment fraud, prompting his sentencing judge to condemn his crimes as “extraordinarily evil.”

His clients included Holocaust survivor and Nobel laureate Elie Wiesel, filmmaker Steven Spielberg, actors Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick, U.S. Senator Frank R. Lautenberg, and scores of retirees and other private individuals.

His Ponzi scheme made him a poster child for Wall Street greed, shining a harsh light on both his accomplices and on regulators who seemed on the cusp of exposing him but failed.

(With inputs from agencies)

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