Madoff's wife says couple attempted suicide -CBS
Updated: 2011-10-27 17:06
NEW YORK - The wife of financial swindler Bernard Madoff said in an interview to be aired on Sunday that the couple attempted suicide by taking pills on Christmas Eve 2008 after his estimated $65 billion Ponzi scheme was exposed.
Madoff, 73, is serving a 150-year prison sentence after confessing to running a decades-long Ponzi scheme that bilked investors out of billions of dollars, considered the biggest financial fraud in history. He was arrested on December 11, 2008.
"I don't know whose idea it was, but we decided to kill ourselves because it was so horrendous what was happening," Ruth Madoff told the CBS program "60 Minutes" in her first interview.
The couple's elder son Mark, 46, hanged himself in his New York apartment last December 11, the second anniversary of his father's arrest. Mark and Andrew Madoff turned in their father to authorities a day after he confessed to them.
Ruth Madoff said she and her husband took Ambien sleeping pills and possibly some Klonopin anti-anxiety pills in their suicide attempt.
"We had terrible phone calls. Hate mail, just beyond anything and I said ... 'I just can't go on anymore,'" she said. "(Christmas) added to the whole depression."
"We took pills and woke up the next day. ... It was very impulsive and I am glad we woke up," Ruth Madoff said.
Excerpts of the interview were released on Wednesday.