|Madoff Sentenced To Maximum 150 Years In Jail
June 29, 2009
" Your Honor, I cannot offer you an excuse for my behavior. How do you excuse betraying thousands of investors who entrusted me with their life savings? How do you excuse deceiving 200 employees who have spent most of their working life working for me? How do you excuse lying to your brother and two sons who spent their whole adult life helping to build a successful and respectful business? How do you excuse lying and deceiving a wife who stood by you for 50 years, and still stands by you? And how do you excuse deceiving an industry that you spent a better part of your life trying to improve?
There is no excuse for that, and I don’t ask any forgiveness.
Although I may not have intended any harm, I did a great deal of harm. I believed when I started this problem, this crime, that it would be something I would be able to work my way out of, but that became impossible. As hard as I tried, the deeper I dug myself into a hole. I made a terrible mistake, but it wasn’t the kind of mistake that I had made time and time again, which is a trading mistake. In my business, when you make a trading error, you’re expected to make a trading error, it’s accepted. My error was much more serious. I made an error of judgment. I refused to accept the fact, could not accept the fact, that for once in my life I failed. I couldn’t admit that failure and that was a tragic mistake.
I am responsible for a great deal of suffering and pain. I understand that. I live in a tormented state now knowing of all the pain and suffering that I have created. I have left a legacy of shame, as some of my victims have pointed out, to my family and my grandchildren. That’s something I will live with for the rest of my life. People have accused me of being silent and not being sympathetic. That is not true. They have accused my wife of being silent and not being sympathetic. Nothing could be further from the truth. She cries herself to sleep every night knowing of all the pain and suffering I have caused, and I am tormented by that as well. She was advised not to speak publicly until after my sentencing by our attorneys, and she complied with that. Today she will make a statement about how she feels about my crimes. I ask you to listen to that. She is sincere and all I ask you is to listen to her.
Apologizing and saying I am sorry, that’s not enough. Nothing I can say will correct the things I have done. I feel terrible that an industry I spent my life trying to improve is being criticized terribly now, that regulators who I helped work with over the years are being criticized by what I have done. That is a horrible guilt to live with. There is nothing I can do that will make anyone feel better for the pain and suffering I caused them, but I will live with this pain, with this torment for the rest of my life. I apologize to my victims. I will turn and face you. I am sorry. I know that doesn’t help you. Your Honor, thank you for listening to me. ”
|Ruth Madoff Issues Statement Regarding Husband’s Fraud
June 29, 2009
I am breaking my silence now, because my reluctance to speak has been interpreted as indifference or lack of sympathy for the victims of my husband Bernie’s crime, which is exactly the opposite of the truth.
From the moment I learned from my husband that he had committed an enormous fraud, I have had two thoughts — first, that so many people who trusted him would be ruined financially and emotionally, and second, that my life with the man I have known for over 50 years was over. Many of my husband’s investors were my close friends and family. And in the days since December, I have read, with immense pain, the wrenching stories of people whose life savings have evaporated because of his crime.
My husband was the one we [and I include myself] respected and trusted with our lives and our livelihoods, often for many, many years, and who was respected in the securities industry as well. Then there is the other man who stunned us all with his confession and is responsible for this terrible situation in which so many now find themselves.
Lives have been upended and futures have been taken away. All those touched by this fraud feel betrayed; disbelieving the nightmare they woke to. I am embarrassed and ashamed. Like everyone else, I feel betrayed and confused. The man who committed this horrible fraud is not the man whom I have known for all these years.
In the end, to say that I feel devastated for the many whom my husband has destroyed is truly inadequate. Nothing I can say seems sufficient regarding the daily suffering that all those innocent people are enduring because of my husband. But if it matters to them at all, please know that not a day goes by when I don’t ache over the stories that I have heard and read.