Breaking Legal News - POSTED: 2009/06/29 15:36
Convicted Ponzi-scheme operator Bernard Madoff will learn Monday morning whether he'll spend the rest of his life behind bars for running a decades-long swindle that bilked thousands of investors out of billions of dollars.
Madoff, who admitted in March to orchestrating one of the largest and longest-running white-collar frauds in recent memory, is set to be sentenced at a hearing before U.S. District Judge Denny Chin in Manhattan at 10 a.m. EDT Monday.
Prosecutors from the U.S. Attorney's office in Manhattan have asked for the statutory maximum of 150 years or a sentence that will effectively guarantee the 71-year-old Madoff spends the rest of his life in prison.
"He engaged in wholesale fraud for more than a generation; his so-called 'investment advisory' business was a fraud; his frauds affected thousands of investors in the United States and worldwide; and he repeatedly lied under oath and filed false documents to conceal his fraud," Assistant U.S. Attorneys Mark Litt and Lisa Baroni said in a court documents last week. "The scope, duration and nature of Madoff's crimes render him exceptionally deserving of the maximum punishment allowed by law."
Ira Sorkin, Madoff's lawyer, has asked for a sentence of as little as 12 years in prison, citing Madoff's potential life expectancy of 13 years. In the alternative, he's asked for a sentence of 15 years to 20 years in prison.
On March 12, Madoff was ordered directly to jail after pleading guilty to 11 criminal charges, including money laundering and multiple counts of fraud, in a Ponzi scheme that prosecutors claim stretched back to the 1980s. Madoff himself has said the fraud began in 1990s during a recession.