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Jan 12, 2009 8:33 pm


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An irreverent Wall Street Blog
by Bill Singer Subscribe to RSS Feed: Blog Home | Past Entries Read the Madoff Bail Opinion and Order Written: January 12, 2009

By Bill Singer

Read the Opinion and Order on Bernard Madoff's Bail:


QUICK ANALYSIS: The government attempted to depict Madoff's attempt to convey certain assets as constituting a violation of the terms of his bail. The prosecutors attempted to argue that the conveyance constituted a potential economic harm to society and, as such, satisfied at least one of the traditional two prongs in these types of cases: 1. flight risk; 2. risk to public.  The Magistrate dismissed the government's application as essentially being a tad too creative -- too much of a stretch.  The Magistrate focused on the fact that Madoff was wearing an electronic ankle bracelet, had otherwise satisfied the bond terms, and was unlikely to flee.  Nonetheless, in a telltale footnote 4, we see just how close a decision this may have been because in this commentary, the Magistrate is dismissive of Madoff's claim that he sincerely thought that he was merely forwarding items of personal, sentimental value and didn't realize that such a transfer would violate the prohibitions imposed upon him and his wife.  The Magistrate has stiffened the terms of the ongoing bail by incorporating the Securities and Exchange Commission's civil lawsuit terms (asset freeze), by underscoring that Ruth Madoff (Bernard Madoff's wife) is also subject to the restrictions, and by requiring the preparation and regular confirmation of a list of personal assets.