5 Madoff ex-employees convicted of aiding in Ponzi scheme

Five former employees of ex-financier Bernard Madoff have been convicted of conspiring to help Madoff carry out his Ponzi scheme, the AP reported.

Madoff, 70, was sentenced to 150 years in prison in December 2008 for carrying out one of the largest financial schemes in Wall Street history that kept billions of dollars from investors while his firm flew under the radar.

In the first criminal trial since Madoff’s own conviction, the five defendants had been accused of lying about the scheme and taking a hefty amount of money that resulted from the fraud. They were all named in a 31-count indictment last October.

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Those convicted today include: Madoff’s former secretary Annette Bongiorno, Madoff’s former director of investment opreations Daniel Bonventre, former account manager JoAnn Crupi, and computer programmers Jerome O’Hara and George Perez.

The following people have been previously connected to the scheme:

- Peter Madoff, Bernie Madoff’s brother, was sentenced to 10 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to conspiracy and falsifying records while working with his brother.

- In 2009, Madoff’s personal accountant David G. Friehling pleaded guilty to securities fraud in connection with the Ponzi scheme. He told the court that Madoff and his wife chose the amount of tax they would pay each year and manufactured documents to support their tax filings, Bloomberg reported.