The Wall Street Journal article "Madoff Used U.K. Office in Cash Ploy, Filing Says", states that Bernard Madoff is expected to plead guilty today to 11 felony counts arising out of his alleged Ponzi scheme.  That article also mentions that Mr. Madoff is accused of concealing assets by money laundering in the U.K.  Other recent reports about Bernard Madoff have been about whether he or his wife tried to hide / dissipate assets by transferring them.  Mr. Madoff for instance, may have tried to conceal some assets by mailing $1 million dollars in jewelry from New York to Florida, as mentioned by "Hiding Assets Through Portable Valuable Commodities". 

Meanwhile, Mr. Madoff’s wife Ruth, might have also tried to conceal Mr. Madoff’s assets by transferring some of them to herself.  According to a New York Times piece, Mrs. Madoff withdrew $15.5 million from a company partly owned by Mr. Madoff.  The withdrawal was actually in the form of two wire transfers to Mrs. Madoff, on November 25 & December 10, 2008.  The December 10 wire transfer had even occurred just one day before Mr. Madoff was arrested for his alleged Ponzi scheme.  These same wire transfers are specifically memorialized by the two documents below:

  Click here to enlarge image

Click here to enlarge image

The N.Y. Times piece also mentions Mr. Madoff”s claim, that a N.Y.C. penthouse and another $62 million supposedly belong to Mrs. Madoff and are arguably not subject to governmental seizure.  "In Madoff asset search, wife’s worth adds intrigue", similarly raises the question of whether Mr. Madoff is actually the true beneficial owner of these same assets allegedly belonging to Mrs. Madoff.  A beneficial owner anticipating seizure / forced collection proceedings may of course, make a fraudulent transfer to a spouse or ex-spouse, as described by Concealing Assets By Conveying Them and "Using Divorce To Dissipate Assets & Delay Creditors".

Depending on the circumstances, the Court could end up analyzing whether Mrs. Madoff was a wrongful transferee / involved in fraudulent transfers with Mr. Madoff.  In doing so, the Court might consider whether the November and December wire transfers to Mrs. Madoff were marked by "the badges of fraud".  As more fully set forth in "Badges Of Fraud In Debt Collection, Divorce & Bankruptcy", the badges include: knowledge of a creditor’s claim; whether there was inadequate consideration; etc.  

Copyright 2009 Fred L. Abrams