Bernie Madoff Would Have Been Hopeless Without His Secretaries


Think Bernie Madoff and his deputy Frank DiPascali were able to keep a $65 billion Ponzi scheme running for so many years because they were some kind of evil geniuses? Pfft. Think again. Like many businessmen of a certain age, they just tossed off orders. It was their administrative assistants, JoAnn Crupi and Annette Bongiorno, both charged with fraud by the SEC today, who did all of the real work: dealing with clients, making sure client redemptions didn’t drain the Ponzi pool, and really just orchestrating the whole show.

Here’s a day in the life of JoAnn Crupi, according to the SEC complaint:

And she was organized!

All that, and they probably made dinner reservations too. At least it seems like they probably got good presents when Secretary’s Day came around: Bongiorno was arrested at her second home in Boca Raton.

SEC Charges Two Longtime Madoff Employees with Fraud [SEC]