An Update on the Famous White Collar Crimes of Bernie Madoff

If you’ve been following along with our blog for any amount of time, you’ve probably noticed a handful of blogs about Bernie Madoff. Madoff’s use of the Ponzi scheme is generally considered to be one of the largest in history. As you might know, the Ponzi scheme is so named for Charles Ponzi who, according to his biography would exchange international reply coupons for stamps that were worth more than he paid for them. He would then sell the stamps for a profit.

So what was the deal with Bernie Madoff? A new podcast from Reveal notes that “for decades he ran a Ponzi scheme from a secret office in New York, duping thousands of investors out of billions of dollars.”

A Deeper Look Into the Biggest White Collar Crime of All Time

The aforementioned podcast takes a closer look at what now seems like old news. In this day and age, social media makes it nearly impossible to keep track of everything that’s going on. There’s a constant barrage of information that seems like a big challenge to keep up with.

The Reveal podcast is a breath of fresh air as it seeks to take a deeper look at the white collar crimes of Bernie Madoff and see how he pulled off his schemes and how that has changed the climate surrounding this type of crime in the time since.

In the podcast, they interview a number of people, noting that “through interviews with financial experts, federal agents, Madoff’s cellmates and Madoff himself, [they] explain how the $60 billion con worked, and why Madoff was able to elude regulators for decades.” It’s a fascinating look at a rather interesting subject. For whatever reason, people are interested in crimes, and this one is no exception.

How The Conversation Started

“We are now living in an era that very markedly proclaims itself to be not only pro-business, but anti-regulation…And in my mind, that’s exactly what led to somebody like Madoff,” says Steve Fishman, a reporter who collaborated with Reveal on this podcast, as well as created his own podcast called “Ponzi Supernova” that takes an in-depth look into Madoff’s crimes.

You may know that Bernie Madoff was sentenced to 150 years in prison for his crimes, but one of the things Fishman found out when Madoff eventually decided to talk to him after two years of requests is that Madoff was actually quite a bit like Fishman himself. “I’m immediately comfortable,” Fishman says of their first phone conversation, “and I think Bernie’s comfortable too.”

What’s Going on Today

One of the best quotes from the podcast is when Fishman recalls that Bernie mentioned to him that “if you think I woke up one day and decided to steal everybody’s money, you’re wrong–I didn’t need it.”

If you’re intrigued, we would strongly recommend that you check the podcast out for yourself. Reveal is a co-production between The Center for Investigative Reporting and PRX, which means that there is a lot of journalistic integrity in their reporting. Many of their reports are engaging and go into great depth to explore a number of different topics. As a law office that is interested in stories surrounding white collar crime, we found this particular piece incredibly intriguing and we hope you will as well.

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