NEW YORK –Bernard Madoff  pleaded guilty on Thursday to pulling off perhaps the biggest scam in the history of Wall Street. He was immediately taken off to jail in handcuffs to the delight of his seething victims. U.S. District Judge Denny Chin said that Madoff had the means to flee and an incentive to do so.
Bernard Madoff pleaded guilty to 11 charges against him with no deal with prosecutors, it means that he is under no obligation to disclose names and tell authorities where the money went. He is not believed to be cooperating with prosecutors.
“I am actually grateful for this opportunity to publicly comment about my crimes, for which I am deeply sorry and ashamed,” said Madoff
He said he accepted investors’ money but didn’t put it into the market. Instead, he sent them phony account statements showing that they were making money. It was a Ponzi scheme, or a pyramid, in which early investors are paid off with money taken in from later investors.
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said: “The president is glad that swift justice will happen. Obama administration will do everything possible to ensure strict enforcement of securities regulations “and hope that through those actions that kind of greed and irresponsibility and that kind of criminal activity never happens again.”
Authorities said Madoff confessed to his family that he had carried out a $50 billion fraud. In court documents, prosecutors put the amount at $64.8 billion. However, experts said that the actual loss was probably much less and that the higher numbers reflect the false profits Madoff told investors they were making.
So far, authorities have located only about $1 billion for cheated investors.