By the end of 2012, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Manhattan recovered approximately $2.35 billion under asset forfeiture laws from Bernard Madoff’s mega-scheme. While much of that money came from a multimillion dollar forfeiture by the Jeffry Picower Estate, millions have come by auctioning off Madoff’s personal belongings — some typical, others not so much.
When wife Ruth Madoff’s 10.5 carat diamond engagement ring sold for $550,000 at a November 2010 auction, it significantly contributed to the $2 million raised from the sale of items taken out of the Madoffs’ Manhattan penthouse; but it was their more intimate belongings that earned more money than estimated.
One lot that included 11 pairs of Madoff’s boxer shorts and a pair of Prada pantyhose sold for $1,700, while another with his velveteen monogrammed slippers fetched $6,000 – that was 50 times more than the estimated $110 it was expected to fetch. But walking in Madoff’s shoes would prove difficult for the buyer of the fancy footwear who wore a size 13 shoe — Madoff’s slippers were a size 8.