Disgraceful… Madoff’s office flunkies skate with short prison sentences.
I wholeheartedly agree with the Madoff prosecutors … What message do the judge’s sentences send to future Wall Street and other financial criminals?
Crime pays, even if you include the jail time.
NEW YORK (AP) — A prosecutor lashed out Wednesday at a judge sentencing former employees of imprisoned financial swindler Bernard Madoff this week, saying her leniency would be cited by defendants in future cases as good reason to limit their own exposure to prison.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Schwartz commented just before U.S. District Judge Laura Taylor Swain in Manhattan announced a 2½-year prison sentence for George Perez, one of Madoff’s computer programmers. He was the fourth of five defendants to be sentenced through Monday. Despite federal sentencing guidelines calling for life in prison, no defendant has gotten more than 10 years in prison.
“In the government’s view, a sentence of two or three years would not be reasonable, and would not be just,” Schwartz said. “The next fraud defendants, the next Ponzi scheme defendants, they’re going to point to the sentences in this case.”
Saying Swain had “shown extraordinary mercy here,” the prosecutor urged longer prison terms. “We ask for justice.”
He said future defendants will cite the 10 years given Monday to ex-Madoff director of operations Daniel Bonventre, 67, the 6 years given Tuesday to his longtime secretary, Annette Bongiorno, 66, and the 2 ½ years given to computer programmer Jerome O’Hara, 51.