Judge defends Madoff decision at Dreier bail hearing

23 January 2009

The judge who kept Bernard Madoff out of prison on bail was forced to defend the decision yesterday (January 22nd) after ordering that a lawyer accused of a $400 million investment scam find four "responsible people" to guarantee his bail with $10 million in cash or assets.

According to Newsday, lawyers for Marc Dreier argued that Mr Madoff - who is accused of conducting a $50 billion Ponzi fraud - got a better deal than their client.

Mr Dreier is accused of running an elaborate scheme involving forged documents and a cast of accomplices impersonating legitimate advisors to sell forged promissory notes to hedge funds.

Magistrate judge Douglas Eaton said he had made the decision because while Mr Madoff had waited to be taken into custody following his alleged confession in December, Mr Dreier had engaged in "reckless, clever and improvising" behavior that "frankly ... suggest a mental disorder" and he therefore poses a greater flight risk.

Defence lawyer Gerald Shargel said Mr Dreier will appeal the decision.

The news site said he cannot find anyone wealthy enough to guarantee the bail "willing to risk the embarrassment of being associated with the case".

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