NEW YORK: The Madoff Client List of Divorces: Did the Ponzi King wreck these marriages?

Did Bernie’s ponzi scheme put these marriages in divorce’s way?

Poor Bernie Madoff. He’s getting blamed for everything, including people’s bankrupted marriages. No fair! The man may have tried some creative accounting and investing acrobatics which have now plunged him into a septic tank of trouble, but is it really his fault that your marriage is about to implode? I mean, I can see if Ruth Madoff, his wife, wants a divorce. Sort of. I mean, I am of the school of thought that you don’t kick a man when he is down; not when you hung on for dear life when the good times were rolling. But Mr. Madoff is definitely public enemy number one and it must be awfully stressful for his wife Ruth and if she bailed, if she ran, I almost would forgive her. Cause, I mean, what can realistically be salvaged with this marriage? You know?

As for Andrew Madoff and his wife Deborah, they can’t pin this in Bernie. They were separated long before Bernie broke out with the Ponzi. Although, maybe things have been simmering longer than the public realizes and, that, perhaps, is why Debbie called a time out and demanded a separation. She probably had a premonition that, you know what? This thing is gonna blow and I’m not gonna be standing next to this septic when the $#%^ hits the fan.
Ok. Who else wants to blame Madoff for their marital troubles? Well, there is Monica and Walter Noel. I read somewhere that their marriage is strained as a result of all the lost billions. They apparently got cremed by the Madoff scheme. They are hardly the only ones though. I mean, look at the general Madoff List. It’s the Who’s Who of the Who’s Who. Even assuming the rumors about marriage trouble are true, I don’t think the Noels can blame Madoff.
Steven Simkin and Laura Blank. These New York attorneys were Madoff investors and they got divorced in 2006. But now, Steven wants a re-do of the agreement because he feels that Laura got a windfall and he got the short end of the stick. He paid her cash and kept the investments in the Madoff stock, poor guy. The irony is that these two had an amicable divorce. Now, they are heading back to court and there will probably be a bloodbath on the streets when they are done with each other. But is this Madoff’s fault? Or was Steven, who is a real estate attorney, short sighted for not investing a portion of that money he had in Madoff stock in commercial real estate?
Honorable Justice James Peck and his wife damned nearly got divorced after hizoner, who was the chief judge hearing the Madoff case at one point, back-slapped his 64 year old wife Judith, because, apparently, she was late getting home from the Hamptons. Well, no. Actually he says she hit him first. So it was really self-defense when he banged her in the face and bruised her jaw, and got arrested for his troubles. Madoff stress? Madoff’s fault?
Michelle and Marcus Schrenker. Okay. This is just blatant piggybacking. What does Bernard Madoff  have to do with the Schrenkers? I mean, I can see if someone says that Marcus was a puny Madoff wannabe. But that divorce came about because Marcus took off on New Years Eve with a broad named Kelly and that same night the feds were rummaging through the house with Michelle and the kids totally terrified and that is why Michelle filed for divorce. Nobody in their right mind can blame Bernie Madoff for that.
Shana Madoff and Eric Swanson. They are still newly weds having married just a year and a half ago. They met when Shana was the compliance officer for Mr. Madoff’s company Bernard Madoff Investments, and Eric was a high flying lawyer with the SEC – he apparently oversaw the review of Madoff’s fund for “compliance” with SEC regulations. According to, Shana, a “securities lawyer” is a major shopaholic and lover of couture  and anything Narcisco Rodriguez, is used to having entire inventory of clothes delivered to the office – when she had an office. (This by the way was confirmed by a piece in New York Magazine on Ms. Madoff.) Check it out here: Well guess what? She can’t do that no mo. If Bernie’s assets are frozen, she is out of a job. And this is bound to be stressing her out. Actually, with all and everything going on, I wouldn’t be surprised if the marriage is on the rocks. But who’s fault is that? Bernie’s?
Harry Markopolos. Harry is utterly petrified that the Russian Mafia and the South American drug cartel are gonna come do him and his family harm. That is because he whistle blew on Madoff. As a result, to protect his family, Markopolos, who, by the way is no coward, (the man was trained in advanced courses at the U.S. Army JFK School of Special Warfare and spent years in Africa on secret military missions) may have to go into a witness protection program, and that conceivably could include getting legally divorced from his wife. That may be the only way to protect her and his four kids! Madoff’s fault?
Originally published February 5, 2009