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Madoff with the Money by Jerry Oppenheimer

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Chapter 10. A Madoff Speaks Out and an Empty Promise

In the months leading up to the formal sentencing of Bernie in late June 2009, the close-knit Madoff family remained tight-lipped, refusing to make any public statements, except through attorneys as many of them came under scrutiny for their intimate business connections to the patriarch-felon.

On her visits to see her jailbird hubby at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in lower Manhattan, Ruth Madoff, the once coiffed and beautified matriarch of the now embattled and infamous dynasty, looked drawn and pale and thinner than her usual sprightly 100-pound self, and was mum whenever journalists approached.

On one such visit, however, an aggressive ABC News field producer pursued Ruth on camera and asked whether she had anything to say to her husband's many victims. "I have no response to you," she said, and then it was reported that she had added, "Fuck you" under her breath as she got into a taxi. Her purple language was not out of character. Bernie's longtime secretary, Eleanor Squillari, asserted that Ruth could speak "very harshly to people. If Bernie said something to Ruth that annoyed her, she'd say, 'Go fuck yourself,' or 'I don't give a shit.' That's the way they talked to each other."

To make matters even worse than having been branded Bernie's trash-talking moll, Ruth had been banned from her chic Upper East Side Manhattan hair salon, Pierre Michel, where she'd been a VIP client for a decade, getting her conservative ...

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