Ruth Madoff told Campbell that she didn't know anything about her husband's Ponzi scheme.

POLITICS: Reporter dishes on his unique access to Ponzi schemer Bernie Madoff

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Madoff’s scam on demand

Investigative reporter Jim Campbell did Eliot Spitzer’s first post-governor interview, did libraries on Russian oligarchs and wrote the 400-page book “Madoff Talks” — now a Netflix documentary.

Campbell: “Madoff’s wife, Ruth, lived near me. We spent time together, had meals, texted and she introduced me to our planet’s then-imprisoned most vilified. Nobody else had such access.

“The guy was worth $3 billion. Wall Street’s biggest criminal enterprise. Imagine what that brain’s like.

“Bernie’s bank was JP Morgan. Its CEO Jamie Dimon called me after watching the documentary. He asked about sordid rumors of a European bank whose feeder fund sent money to Bernie. It delegated custodianship to one Cayman Islands operation, which under the table worked right back to Madoff. People thought that’s where the money was. I was told if I called them I might get killed.”

Listen, when I was married, I knew what my husband was doing and who he was doing it to. You telling me his wife never knew borscht?

“She told me, ‘I came from Queens from nothing and I’m going to just go on.’ She supposedly knew nothing. She said she did not know what a Ponzi scheme was. But, listen, she had some inkling. When he told her to withdraw $10 million once she became catatonic.

“His original legitimate business was based on 20 investors. Then when he lost money and couldn’t deal with it he stopped trading and faked it. His ego could not accept losses and he had to be the go-to guy who delivered.

Ruth Madoff told Campbell that she didn’t know anything about her husband’s Ponzi scheme.
Photo by Yvonne Hemsey/Getty Images

“He said he was stunned he wasn’t found out earlier. At that same time he told me ‘I’m expecting to be arrested over the weekend.’ ”


Fork dives in

Southforker magazine. New voice in the Hamptons. Times Review Media Group launched it. Sister mag Northforker’s been around for years. Its first story planned is a 30-year retrospective of Wölffer Estate winemaker. Plus they’ll go heavy on Hamptons’ real estate scene because summer’s just around the freezing corner.


If they can make it there . . .

Coming at us is new B’way musical “New York, New York.” Music and lyrics by Tony, Emmy, Grammy awardees John Kander & Fred Ebb. Their first opening since 2015’s five Tony-nominated “The Visit,” plus their “Chicago,” B’way’s second longest-running ever. Additional lyrics by Tony, Emmy, Grammy, Pulitzer winner Lin-Manuel Miranda. Direction, five-time Tony winner Susan Stroman. Inspired by MGM film “New York, New York,” which probably won something somewhere. 

Opens April 26. St. James Theatre.


Ain’t that rich

Despite my having expended body fluid on my centuries ago Rolls-Royce, comes now today’s Rolls on a roll. Despite price around half a mil, RR had a better 2022 than many of its country’s other royals. Chief exec Torsten Müller-Ötvös: “It’s the first year we delivered over 6,000 cars in a 12-month period.”

Yeah. Right. Go, Chevy. 


In line with my previous item, plus today’s pilfering lifestyle comes this English woman in a London court. Charged with shoplifting. Asked if anything to say in her own behalf. Answer: “Yes, Your Honor, I only take British goods.”

Not only in New York, kids, not only in New York.



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