Are your torches and pitchforks handy?
As you may have heard, Ruth Madoff, the wife Bernie Madoff, one of the most hated men in New York, is back living in the Tri-state area — and none of her neighbors can muster a kind word about her.
Ruth Madoff has moved to Greenwich, Connecticut, reportedly to be closer to her one remaining son and his children. She moved there in 2011 after living in Boca Raton, Florida, for the past several years.
Bernie Madoff, as you know, ripped off thousands of investors — to the tune of an estimated $65 billion — in a Ponzi scheme that’s widely regarded as the largest case of financial fraud in U.S. history. He’s currently serving a 150-year prison sentence after pleading guilty in March of 2009 to 11 federal felonies.
His wife, however, hasn’t even been charged with a crime — yet, she gets the Casey Anthony treatment every time she shows her face in public.
“Of course I feel the shame…I can barely walk down the street without worrying about people recognizing me,” Ruth Madoff said in an interview with 60 Minutes last year.
Regardless, Ruth undoubtedly benefited from her husband’s crimes — even if she was unaware that her family’s fabulous wealth was the result of her husband’s breaking the law, which some argue is unlikely.
Like it or not, Ruth Madoff is a victim, too — and she’s also suffered because of her husband’s wrongdoing. The loss of the majority of her family’s assets aside, the man Ruth’s been married to for more than half a century is behind bars for what will be the rest of his life — as well he should be. Additionally, one of her two sons committed suicide because he couldn’t handle the stigma attached to his last name.
Madoff’s new Greenwhich neighbors don’t appear too thrilled to have her in the neighborhood.
“I would just like to know where she the got money and how she’s going to afford to maintain the lifestyle,” Marie Schembri, of East Chester, told CBS New York.
Again, Ruth Madoff hasn’t been charged with any crimes, so villainizing her for something her husband did seems a bit unfair. However, she’s still been living in swanky places like Boca Raton, and Greenwhich — all while many of her husband’s victims struggle to crawl out of the poorhouse.
We want to know what you think, though: should Ruth Madoff still be villainized because of her husband’s crimes?
Cast your vote below.