Bernard L. Madoff, the former financier accused of bilking thousands of would-be investors out of billions of dollars, is expected to enter a guilty plea in federal court in Manhattan later this week, and the deal could carry a sentence of life in prison, according to multiple news sources.
Revelation of Madoff's intent to plead guilty came from Madoff defense attorney Ira Sorkin, during proceedings before U.S. District Court Judge Denny Chin on Tuesday. According to Bloomberg.com, Madoff "will admit on March 12 that he directed a fraud that totaled as much as $64.8 billion, his lawyer and prosecutors said today in Manhattan federal court. The government will seek forfeiture from Madoff of as much as $170 billion. Madoff, free on $10 million bail, faces life imprisonment." Madoff's investment scam is being billed as the largest Ponzi scheme in U.S. history. Read Bernard Madoff's Criminal Charges Prior to the Plea Agreement
According to Reuters, Madoff "was charged in court papers with securities fraud, mail fraud, wire fraud, three counts of money laundering, false statements and perjury among other charges," and "could face up to 150 years in prison under federal sentencing guidelines."