he death of Bernie Madoff should draw to an end one of the most tarnished episodes in the recent history of finance.
Except it won’t. Madoff’s passing in a US jail where he was serving 150 years after pleading guilty in 2009 to running a giant “Ponzi” scheme – paying investors with new money coming in from clients, rather than from actual profits – serves as a sharp reminder of the failings of a system intended apparently to prevent such frauds.
Some $170bn flowed through the books of Bernard L Madoff Investment Securities, much of it via the London office, which played a pivotal role in the scam. Almost 5,000 investors lost more than $21bn. When his operation was closed down, less than $1bn remained.
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