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October 27, 2021

Accused Madoff conspirator found at bottom of swimming pool

The intriguing trials of Bernie Madoff have taken yet another turn.

At a time when the Ponzi schemer’s every move had already become tabloid fodder, an associate of the disgraced financier was found recently at the bottom of his oceanside swimming pool.

Jeffry Picower, who is accused of netting more than $7 billion from the Madoff scam, died a short time later at a nearby hospital.

The 67-year-old’s death has already become a lightning rod for conspiracy theorists, and perhaps with good reason.

Many victims of Madoff’s con said Picower was the fraud’s “biggest beneficiary,” according to the Associated Press, and had demanded publicly that he return the “allegedly bogus profits.”
The tax-shelter expert always maintained his innocence in the ordeal, but his critics told the Boston Herald they find it “extremely odd that Madoff was for some reason apparently willing to pay (him) more than $7 billion” from the scam, reportedly more than Madoff himself cashed out.

So it was with a raised eyebrow that the weekend death of Picower, just named no. 371 on the Forbes 400 list of the wealthiest Americans, was met with Monday.

Amid rampant speculation, however, the smoke doesn’t appear to lead to fire.

Suggestions in the media that Picower – found at his sprawling $33 million Palm Beach estate – was murdered or perhaps killed himself may be unfounded.

Autopsy results are pending, but Florida authorities have initially ruled out foul play.

“Obviously, we won’t have results (of toxicology tests) for a couple weeks,” said Dr. Michael Bell, Palm Beach County’s chief medical examiner, “but we don’t anticipate them showing anything.”

By Jason Buckland, MSN Money



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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with...