Bernard Madoff To NY Magazine: ‘I Destroyed Our Family’

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — In a new bombshell interview from prison, Bernard Madoff opened up about his crimes – and the fallout for his family.

WCBS 880’s Paul Murnane with the story from Manhattan

The exclusive confessions appear in New York Magazine, hitting newsstands Monday. CBS 2’s Dave Carlin has some of the just-released excerpts.

Disgraced Ponzi schemer Bernard Madoff told New York Magazine that banks and hedge funds should have done a better job of watching him as his $65 billion fraud played out.

“Look these banks and these funds had to know there were problems,” Madoff said. “There was complicity, in my view.”

In the New York Magazine feature, called The Madoff Tapes, he maintains that his family did not know about his massive fraud.

Madoff’s wife, Ruth, moved to Florida. Friends say she dyed her hair and lives a humble life, and has not spoken to her husband since the suicide of their son, 46-year-old Mark, in November.

“Let me tell you, I cried for well over two weeks,” Madoff said of his son’s death. “I cried and cried.”

Madoff also said that he understood his wife’s reasons for not wanting to speak with him.

“She’s angry at me. She tries not to be, but it’s hard not to be,” he said. “I mean, you know, I destroyed our family.”

Madoff knows that if banks are found to be complicit, lawsuits against them could result in their paying out the money he still owes his victims.

One of those victims is George Neirenberg, who lost his life savings in Madoff’s scheme.

“If they had some sort of awareness and had reported it, a lot of people would have been spared undue hardship in their lives,” Neirenberg said.

Madoff said all of his investors knew there were risks involved.

“These people probably would’ve lost all that money in the market,” he said. “I’m not trying to justify what I did for one minute – I’m not.”

“He wants other people around him to share the guilt and culpability,” Columbia Law School professor John Coffee said. “He’s a man who has to rationalize the suicide of his child.”

As for his life behind bars, the 72-year-old said he is in therapy as he serves his 150-year sentence.

In the tapes, he recalls tearfully asking his prison therapist if she considers him a sociopath, and she said no – because he shows some remorse.

More from Dave Carlin
  • Bushelfoote

    I think he has a point…to a point…..When it all crashed and left everybody high and dry…..THEN it could be seen and more readily understood just what he was up to…..the banks,meanwhile, were too busy with what THEY were up to what with the mortgage/housing crash-and paying themselves with insurance for their “losses” thing…And the SEC were fiddling while Wall Street burned so to speak…if the rest of the economy hadn’t crashed it might still be going on…probly IS….in an alternate universe….LOL…..

  • KG

    You Play You Pay!! Madoff you enjoyed it while you Could But Good things don’t last forever..

  • Oyvey Zmir

    Oh how easy to forget that he paid out billions upon billions to investors also, he did NOT steal the money for himself all he did was pay for years and years a high return on the investment so lets stop saying he stole 50 billion or 60 billion or what ever other amount is being mentioned

  • honestly

    He could do it partly because of the system….not to forget the BANKING system….finally, the banks were greedy as well….

  • tehilla

    lets be compassionate. he made some mistakes. for jews, there are strickt laws on making money and its obvious they did not follow it. the man who cheats and the man who got cheated are equally to be blamed. they entered it wanting a fast doller. without earning it. i am not being judgemental but so should you all be.there are many frauds in this world, and we should be careful. he is serving for his crime. do you need to add to it. what he wrote is true. its not a one man show, so why should one man alone pay for it.

    • Todd

      How is it that he wants us to believe the people who did business with him were goniffs but that his family (business partners) were completely clueless? He is serving time for his crime. He is shielding others. He is denying culpability. He is a MOMZER!

    • Bill

      What strict laws on making money?

  • liana

    Guilty as sin.

  • Dan Te

    That’s like the H.S. school dropout blaming the school for his/her failures.

  • John

    What is the big deal here he ran the Hedge fund like the Government is run .

  • Rich Tobiassen

    yeah, it’s always the other guys…

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