David Glovin and Bob Van Voris
After several drinks at a Greek restaurant on Manhattan’s Third Avenue in the summer of 2006, two computer programmers at Bernard Madoff’s investment firm asked their supervisor whether the boss’s business was a scam.
Chief Financial Officer Frank DiPascali laughed off the question, telling George Perez and Jerome O’Hara that Madoff was honest. DiPascali would later tell the FBI he wondered why they took so long to ask.
His chronicle of the dinner, and the lengths to which Madoff went to convince employees that his massive fraud was a legitimate business, were revealed for the first time in FBI reports made public last week. Attached to court filings by ex- Madoff employees facing fraud charges, they contain interviews with DiPascali — Madoff’s chief aide — who in 2009 pleaded guilty to his role in the biggest Ponzi scheme in U.S. history.
Once, when Perez and O’Hara confronted Madoff and asked why there was no sign of stock trades, Madoff exploded, DiPascali told the FBI.
“You are not going to tell me how to run my business,” Madoff insisted during a meeting in the office of the firm’s operations chief, Daniel Bonventre, according to DiPascali. “Trades occur overseas.”
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