Who got hurt the worst in the Madoff Ponzi scheme? No doubt many institutions stand to lose a lot, but his clientele included a coterie of wealthy pals, many of whom were connected to his favourite Florida country clubs:
WSJ: Mr. Madoff, who split time between New York City and Florida, was a regular on the Palm Beach social scene, attending the Red Cross Ball and many political fund-raisers, said Charles Gradante, a co-founder of Hennessee Group LLC, an adviser to investors in hedge funds.
Membership rosters at a number of Florida country clubs could be particularly hard hit by Mr. Madoff’s alleged scheme, including Boca Rio Golf Club in Boca Raton and the Palm Beach Country Club in Palm Beach. Members of these clubs helped promote Mr. Madoff’s services to the clubs’ membership, though the clubs themselves weren’t involved, club members said. Having money with Mr. Madoff was a symbol of prestige within these clubs, several member say.
Boca Rio officials couldn’t be reached to comment.
Of course there’s a Boca Raton angle to this story. The city is the known capital of this kind of thing: mortgage fraud, boiler rooms, computer spam, confidence schemes and diploma-mill universities. Here’s just another one for the books.