Feds to sell Madoff properties

Federal authorities are selling New York and Florida properties belonging to convicted Ponzi scheme operator Bernard Madoff to compensate his fraud victims.

Real estate appraisers said Madoff’s properties were surprisingly modest considering the size of his investment fraud.

Madoff pleaded guilty in March to running a Ponzi scheme that some estimate defrauded investors of $65 billion.

While Madoff is in jail serving a 150-year sentence, officials are preparing to sell his beachfront property in Montauk, Long Island, his New York City penthouse and his home in Palm Beach, Fla., CNNMoney.com reported Wednesday.

From what I’ve seen, I’d call it a fairly modest place, New York appraiser Jonathan Miller said of Madoff’s two-story New York penthouse.

Barry Golden of the U.S. Marshals South District Florida office said there was nothing over the top about it, referring to Madoff’s home in Palm Beach.

It’s just another $8 million or $9 million property in the town of Palm Beach, said Palm Beach County Director of Residential Appraisal John Thomas.

Each home was expected to bring in between $7 million and $10 million. In addition, federal authorities were drumming up interest in Madoff’s boats.

We hope to keep the prices up so we can return the maximum amount of money to the victims, Golden said.

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