Ponzi-scheme king Bernie Madoff got the cuffs slapped on him today and a one-way ticket to the no-frills Manhattan Correctional Facility, after pleading guilty to 11 felony counts involving his $64 billion empire of fraud, which has bilked thousands of investors. The courtroom cheered as the judge sent him on his way, rejecting Madoff's bid to return to his swank $7 million penthouse.
Among those applauding were Valley-ites Dominic and Ronnie Ambrosino, who'll be featured on an episode of Inside Edition, which airs today at 4 p.m. on Channel 3. The couple says they lost all of their more than $1 million nest egg to Madoff's scheme, and are now living out of their RV in a lot in Arizona. They traveled to NYC to hear Madoff's plea, and IE followed them to get their reaction.
The Ambrosinos, who've been written about elsewhere, reportedly had retired and planned to travel the country in the RV. But now it's their home as they live off of Dominic Ambrosino's pension from his job in the New York Department of Corrections. His wife Ronnie Ambrosino spends much of her time online at the support group Web site, bernardmadoffvictims.org.
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So if you're near a TV at 4 p.m., and are feeling sorry for yourself, check out the Ambrosino's story. Everything's relative, but there's almost always someone doing worse than you are in this economy. I feel lucky because I never had any money to begin with, and so had none to lose. Even Steven, for better or worse.