The crime was (broken down) purposefully defrauding people, companies, retirement funds and charities out of an estimated $171 billion dollars, lying about it and continuing to hide funds after being caught with your accounts supposedly frozen... hmmm, sounds like he is getting exactly what he deserves. If you want to catch a really great breakdown of the entire mess, including an excellent explanation of how/why Ponzi schemes work, check out CNBC's Scam of the Century.
Word on the street (Wall Street, that is) is that he is really super-remorseful and had hoped from leniency from the judge. Well, this is good Old Testament consequence: You reap what you sow.
To pile on, Mrs. Madoff (who in my opinion needs to face a charge or two herself) threw Bernie straight under the bus saying she felt "betrayed" as well. Seriously, Ruth? Weren't you hotfooting around town cashing certified checks and hiding jewelry or was that just everyday behavior?
Many questions still remain, who are the co-conspirators? Where is the money? When Ruth files divorce papers, who is overseeing that settlement?
One thing is for sure, Bernie Madoff will die in prison, he has fallen far from his $7 million Manhattan "apartment" and has no one but himself to blame.
Did Bernie get what he deserved? If you were the judge, what would your sentence have been?