U.S. attorneys prosecuting fraudster Bernard Madoff submitted letters from victims of his Ponzi scheme to the presiding judge on March 9 in the form of e-mail messages, but they appear to have mistakenly included evidence of a scam of a different sort in the filing.
"My name is (redacted), but my origin is from Republic of Congo. I have an inherited fund I want to invest in business in your country with a help of a local. ...If you can assist, I am willing to give you 10 percent of the funds that is US$3.5 million," reads the apparent scam letter contained on page 36 of the 96-page filing. A copy of the filing was posted online by MSNBC.
Attorneys submitted the letters from Madoff's victims to the judge as part of their case. On March 12, Madoff pleaded guilty to 11 criminal charges that stem from a Ponzi scheme that defrauded investors of up to $50 billion. At that time of Madoff's guilty plea, the judge ordered him to be jailed.
The inclusion of the apparent scam amidst the letters from victims was first noted by the blog Talking Points Memo on Monday.
"When you read through the emails, though, you do sort of wonder what level of vetting was applied to these emails or who some of those people even are. And when you get to the email on page 36 you get the sense that the quality control on which emails they threw on the pile maybe wasn't all that high," wrote Josh Marshall, the editor and publisher of Talking Points Memo.
The U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York couldn't immediately be reached for comment.