Baroni spoke for the prosecution in countering Sorkin by telling the court about a fraud of "unprecedented proportion" that took place "for over a generation."
She detailed how Madoff used his victims' money to fuel his "opulent lifestyles," with houses at home and abroad, private jets and "tens of millions" in payments to family members.
"This was not a crime born of any financial distress or pressures," Baroni said. "It was a calculated, well-orchestrated, long-term fraud."
She reminded the judge that Madoff produced "hundreds of thousands of fake documents every year" to report to his clients investments and sales he never made.
Baroni anticipated the judge's view on Sorkin's argument that recovering money from clawbacks would help compensate victims in the case.
"That has nothing to do with the loss amount in this case," she said.
And Baroni told the judge that, "in asking for 12 years, the defendant is asking you" to give a sentence for "a garden-variety fraud in this district."
Chin said he considered other large, white-collar crimes in the Southern District, alluding to the 25-year sentence given Bernard Ebbers in the WorldCom case and other prison terms handed down over the last few years.
"Frankly, none of these other crimes is comparable to this case in terms of the scope, duration and enormity of the fraud," he said.
Chin said it was telling that he had not received one letter of support for Madoff. He was also convinced that Madoff, who had $173 million in checks ready to be sent to friends and family sitting in his desk when the FBI searched his office, continued to commit his illegal behavior right up to the eve of his surrender.
The judge also viewed with skepticism Madoff's claims he was cooperating with the authorities.
"I simply do not get the sense Madoff has done all that he could or told all that he knows," the judge said.
Sorkin requested that Chin ask the Bureau of Prisons to designate the sentence be served at Otisville, a medium-security prison in New York. Chin would only request that Madoff serve his term in "the Northeast."
STATEMENT FROM RUTH
Ruth Madoff issued a statement Monday through her lawyer, Peter A. Chavkin of Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo.
Ms. Madoff said she was "stunned" by her husband's confession and that she was "embarrassed and ashamed," and "like everyone else, I feel betrayed and confused."
"I am breaking my silence now, because my reluctance to speak has been interpreted as indifference or lack of sympathy for the victims of my husband Bernie's crimes, which is exactly the opposite of the truth," she said.
Ms. Madoff was mentioned more than once by victims who came to speak to Chin and confront Madoff.
But there were other targets as well, including the Securities and Exchange Commission, which was criticized for the lax oversight that allowed Madoff to flourish.
"Our government has failed me and thousands and thousands like me," said Maureen Ebel. "Its [the SEC's] total incompetence and criminal negligence has allowed a psychopath to steal from me."
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