Many Madoff victims expected to get all their money back


NEW YORK (JTA) — Victims of Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme who invested $1.16 million or less with his firm will get all their money back, while others will have at least 61 percent of their money returned.

The news was revealed in court papers filed Tuesday by the Securities Investment Protection Corp. and cited by numerous media sources. The SIPC is the entity charged with returning money to the thousands of investors cheated in the Madoff scam, which collapsed in 2008. Many of the victims, like Madoff, were Jewish.

Nearly $11 billion of the stolen $17 billion has been returned to defrauded investors, “much more than anyone could have expected at the start of the case in 2008,” Stephen Harbeck, president and CEO of the SIPC, told ABC News on Tuesday.

According to ABC News, the largest source of money for repayment — some $7.2 billion — came from the widow of Jeffrey Picower, Madoff’s largest beneficiary and an alleged co-conspirator. Picower’s family foundation gave millions of dollars to Jewish and Israeli causes before the Madoff fraud forced it to close.

Irving Picard, the court-appointed trustee charged with recovering stolen funds and returning them to investors, announced on Tuesday that $1.2 billion more has been made available to repay investors, according to The Wall Street Journal. Picard is under the oversight of the SIPC.

Madoff, 77, is serving a 150-year prison sentence.

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