Is Madoff the tip of a money laundering pyramid in Israel?
By Wayne Madsen Online Journal Contributing Writer (WMR) — The U.S. District court for the Southern District of New York seems intent on keeping ex-NASDAQ chairman and $50 billion Ponzi scheme swindler Bernard Madoff confined to his Upper East Side Manhattan luxury home and not in a federal lock-up. Two judges in the New York federal circuit, Theodore Katz and Ronald Ellis, have ruled that Madoff should stay in his town house and out of prison. Attorney General Michael Mukasey, whose son Marc Mukasey of the law firm Bracewell & Giuliani represents Frank DiPascali, one of the Madoff cronies, once served on the federal bench with Katz and Ellis in New York. Katz was appointed by George H. W. Bush while Ellis, an African American, was appointed by Clinton. WMR previously reported that Madoff is suspected of transferring much of his ill-gotten gain to Israeli banks, including one, Bank Leumi, that Madoff associate J. Ezra Merkin bought from the Israeli government when Ariel Sharon was prim