Page last updated at 22:11 GMT, Thursday, 9 July 2009 23:11 UK

Madoff accepts 150-year sentence

Bernie Madoff's lawyer tells the BBC that his client is "deeply sorry"

Imprisoned fraudster Bernard Madoff has decided not to appeal against his 150-year sentence, his lawyer has said.

"We are not going to be appealing," Madoff's lawyer Ira Lee Sorkin said. "That's our decision and we have no further comment."

The 71-year-old was sentenced on 29 June, having pleaded guilty in March to 11 counts relating to running a multi-billion dollar investment fraud.

Madoff defrauded thousands of investors using a Ponzi scheme.

In addition to his prison sentence, he was also ordered to forfeit $171bn (£105bn) in assets, while his wife Ruth had to forfeit more than $80m in net worth she claimed was hers.

Retrieving money

Also on Thursday, there was an update from Irving Picard, the trustee given the job of identifying any Madoff assets that can be divided between the victims.

He said that 15,400 claims for compensation had been received by the 2 July deadline, up from the 8,800 that had been filed by early June.

Mr Picard's firm has filed eight lawsuits aimed at recovering $13.7bn (£8.4bn) from investors who withdrew money from the fund shortly before it collapsed.

The trustee also reported that he had managed to retrieve $144,000 of contributions made to political groups including the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

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