In 2008 Wall Street mogul Bernie Madoff pleaded guilty to operating a Ponzi Scheme that ripped off investors to the tune of US$20 million. For masterminding the largest scam in US history Madoff was sentenced to 150 years in prison.

Madoff’s investment scheme attracted investors by offering outstanding returns. However, these returns were dependent upon attracting new investors, whose deposits were used to pay interest to existing clients.

Regardless of the financial climate Madoff’s business posted jaw-dropping returns.

It was his sons, Mark and Andrew, who first became suspicious of how these returns were being generated. Their suspicions led to investigations that eventually led to their father being charged with securities fraud.

Mark and Andrew Madoff were both directors in their father’s empire. From the time of their father’s trial and incarceration they lived under a cloud of suspicion and hostility.

In 2010 Mark Madoff (aged 46) took his own life. His suicide coincided with the second anniversary of his father’s arrest.

In September of 2014 Andrew Madoff (aged 48) died after a drawn out battle with cancer.

From his prison cell Bernie Madoff has spoken for the first time. He has written about the pain of losing his sons and reiterated their innocence in his crimes.

“As difficult as it is for me to live with the pain I have inflicted on so many,” wrote Bernie Madoff to NBC News, “there is nothing to compare with the degree of pain I endure with the loss of my son’s Mark and Andy. I live with the knowledge that they never forgave me for betraying their love and trust.

“As much as I tried to reach out to them in an attempt to explain the circumstances that caused my betrayal they could not find it possible to forgive me. I do understand their unwillingness.

“The fact that I was trying to protect our family by sheltering them from any knowledge or involvement in my wrong doing still fails to allow me to forgive myself.

“What is still my most important goal is to do everything in my power to protect their legacy. Although neither of my sons’ were ever charged with anything, they were subjected to the completely false and slanderous claims and remarks of the Trustee and the media.

“It is because of this that I ask you to understand why I will never cease working to correct this situation by discrediting the baseless and vindictive comments of the above parties.”

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