On the day that Bernard Madoff began serving his 150 year jail term for what seems to be the largest Ponzi scheme in history, his accountant, David Friehling has apparently reached a plea bargain. Friehling was arrested for securities fraud in March. He allegedly deceived investors by falsely certifying that he had audited the financial statements of Madoff’s firms. www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601103&sid=abvkjyD0jU8w
Perhaps finally his plea will open the flood gates to long-anticipated additional criminal charges against others. It has become a game of sorts in the financial world to try to guess the minimum number of people who had to know that something was amiss. Just to generate the monthly paperwork would have required a small army of people. Someone, somewhere must have asked “Where are these numbers coming from?” Actually, many “someones” must have asked that question every day of their lives.
The upcoming unraveling of this impressively massive scheme will be certain to entertain right up to football season. I admit to a fascination that borders on awe of the enormity of the fraud. I’ve got my popcorn on hand and I’m ready to watch. “Go, team go.”
By Sam DelPresto