Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Oct 2, 2012

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More criminal fraud indictments have been issued for five former employees of Bernie Madoff as legal fallout from the multi-billion dollar Ponzi scheme continues.  The US Attorney Office in Manhattan released charges yesterday against former Madoff employees Daniel Bonventre, Annette Bongiorno, Joann Crupi, Jerome O’Hara and George Perez. The indictment adds to the 17 criminal counts filed against the former employees in November 2010, for a total of 33 counts.

The new wave of indictments comes on the heels of several former employees testifying about the actions of their colleagues as conditions of plea agreements in separate cases.  The prosecutors intend to put pressure on former Madoff employees and associates who have not yet pleaded guilty by using testimony of others convicted as evidence of wrongdoing. 

Although the figurehead of the con, Bernie Madoff, is already serving a 150 year prison sentence following his 2009 conviction, prosecutors are trying to punish all those responsible for the fraud which may date as far back as the 1970’s.  The new defendants Daniel Bonventre and Annette Bongiorno have been close business associates with Madoff for 40 years, while Joann Crupi started her career at Madoff’s firm in 1983.

The recent indictments include charges of conspiracy, securities fraud, and tax evasion stemming from illegal misappropriation of money to personal accounts.  These indictments indicate that the scheme has potentially been going on much longer than originally thought, and will probably not be the last ones issued.  Initially prosecutors thought the con started in 1992, but as more defendants plead guilty and testify against their former colleagues, more information comes to light

As the fallout from Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme continues to result in indictments of his former employees, look for more details of the fraud to emerge as defendants accept plea agreements in exchange for testimony.  Hopefully, the indictments will result in the conviction of Madoff employees who contributed to all levels of the con – sending a message to financial firms that any employee who knows about and contributes to fraud faces prosecution.  While the results of these indictments remains to be seen, the message that this prosecution is far from over has certainly been sent to all former Madoff associates who assisted with the largest financial fraud in history.