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Victim Speaks Out About Losing Her Retirement Savings To Swindler Bernie Madoff

Apr. 26 2017, Published 9:55 a.m. ET

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Bernie Madoff committed what is believed to be the largest financial fraud in United States history.

And now, the latest episode of Exposed with Deborah Norville on Reelz, called Madoff With All The Money, shows an attorney talking about how she lost her retirement savings to Madoff.

As Radar readers know, in March 2009, Madoff pleaded guilty to 11 federal felonies, admitting he'd turned his investment planning business into a Ponzi scheme. The thousands of victims he had ripped off included celebrities and royalty.

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In an exclusive clip, Norville asks lawyer Helen Chaitman how she first heard of Madoff.

"I come from a family of lawyers with one exception. I have a cousin who became a very successful businessman who took me out to lunch one day and he said, 'What are you doing with your retirement money?' and I told him and he said, 'You should put it all in Madoff,'" Chaitman recalls for the Reelz show.

"I said, 'Who's Madoff?' and he said it was the best investment he ever made and I looked at the statements and I read up on Madoff and I spoke to several people after my cousin had given me that advice," Chaitman says.

Norville notes that she was more informed than the average investor.

Chaitman responds ruefully, "That's true, but someone who wanted to do due diligence on Madoff would end up investing through him because he had the money of 64,000 people.

"It included royal families in Europe. It included most of the partners at Goldman Sachs, and other major Wall Street firms, charities and foundations."

Sadly, Chaitman said, "Widows would put in a million dollars to Madoff which was all the money they had in the world."

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It was too heartbreaking for Chaitman to tell Norville how much she had lost to the evil swindler.

"I don't talk about that, but it was significant. It was money I intended to retire on," she said.

Wall Street giant Madoff's scheme was uncovered in 2008. Investors had lost an estimated $64 billion to him. On June 29, 2009, Madoff was sentenced to 150 years in prison, the maximum allowed.

Madoff is now 78 and confined in to the Federal Correctional Complex prison in Butner, North Carolina.

Recent audio tapes released by Audible Inc. showed that to this day, Madoff appears to show no remorse or sympathy for those he had swindled, as Radar has reported.

Madoff has allegedly said the deaths of his two sons was worse than the pain his cheated victims suffered.

Madoff's son Mark committed suicide on the second anniversary of his father's arrest and his son Andrew died of cancer.

Madoff's wife Ruth, now 75, got into hot water when it was revealed in 2014 that she spent thousands on designer clothes and other luxuries.

For more, check out Exposed with Deborah Norville: Madoff With All The Money, Wednesday April 26, 9ET / 8PT.

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