Lots to come, and I hope one of them will be mine (I’m concentrating more on the Walter/ Greenwich side of the story because it’s more fun) but the Journal excerpts “Madoff With the Money” today. I particularly like this part where Peter Madoff, having known about the scam for at least 24 hours and spent that time discussing things with his lawyers and the FBI, announces that, to his shock and amazement, Bernie’s been arrested. It’s such a nice scene I may lift it and use it for when I have Walter admitting to his Round Hill Club investors that their money is gone.
Around 10 o’clock that morning, the boss’s younger brother, Peter, the number two in charge of the family-run firm— Bernie’s sidekick for some four decades— entered the trading room on the 18th floor and called for everyone’s attention.
His hands were trembling, and he needed to lean against a desk to steady himself. His voice was tremulous.
“I have some bad news,” he told the gathered workers. “Bernie’s been arrested.”
“He looked scared, teary-eyed, and everyone was suddenly in a state of shock,” vividly recalls one of those standing there, listening in utter disbelief. “Someone asked Peter what happened, and he said he did not know why Bernie was arrested, or for what reason—or whether it was personal, or whether it was business. He said he didn’t know whether it was for good, and he didn’t know whether it was for evil. (This was a claim that would later turn out to be untrue.) And he said, ‘Don’t discuss this with anyone.’
“When we found out later that day what Bernie had done, I remembered how sincere Peter had sounded that morning, and I thought, ‘In his next career he could win an Oscar.’”