No, Peter Madoff Will Not Be Writing A Check For $143 Billion

Bernie Madoff’s brother Peter will plead guilty to charges of fraud.  According to a letter to Judge Laura Taylor Swain from U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, Peter Madoff has agreed “not to seek a sentence other than 10 years’ imprisonment.”

However, all of the news outlets including Bloomberg, Wall Street Journal, and Reuters also reported that Madoff would be forfeiting $143 billion worth of property.

We were taken aback by that amount.  It’s twice the size of the net worth of the world’s richest person. (Carlos Slim is worth $69.1 billion.)

But it’s true. It’s right there on page 2 of the letter (see below) to Judge Swain:

Further, Madoff agrees to the criminal forfeiture of approximately $143.1 billion, including all of his real and personal property.

That amount seems pretty ridiculously high and it’s unlikely that he’ll pay that off.

We think it’s kind of like how some criminals get incredibly lengthy prison sentences.  For example, Peter’s brother Bernie got 150-years.

peter madoff 143 billion

Photo: Dept. of Justice

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