Because it was based on the draconian sentence of 150 years in prison. It was also reminiscent of Stanley Kubrick’s 1957 movie, “Paths of Glory.” The movie takes place somewhere in France during WW I. France and Germany are at a stalemate, each side huddled in trenches conducting suicide attacks against each other. With public opinion in France demanding an end to the slaughter, a French General orders an attack on an impregnable target, “The Anthill.” After thousands of men a needlessly killed, to save face, the General claims that the men were cowards. He orders three men, who are randomly chosen, face a mock Court Marshall and sentenced to death by firing squad. The film, directed by the Kubrick, depicts the symbolism of using a scapegoat to divert attention from the real villains that began and profited from the war. Just as in the case of Madoff, his show trial diverted attention from the tens of trillions of dollars of investor funds lost in the stock market crash of 2008’. A crash that was caused for the most part by Wall Streets desire to bundle worthless mortgages and sell them as AAA rated stocks. Moreover, when not a single Wall Street executive was prosecuted for their crimes, the market needed a scapegoat and Madoff conveniently fit the bill.
With that in mind, the book introduces two protagonists, Max Rosen and Joe Mancuso. Both men are given impossible assignments…no, they don’t have to storm the Ant Hill but they do have to put their lives in danger to succeed. Max’s task is to assemble a team and break Madoff out of a modern, state-of-the-art federal penitentiary in Butner, North Carolina and Joe, an investigator working for a large international organization, is ordered to find Madoff’s hidden treasure. The book has more twists and turns than a ballerina and introduces to the mix a cast of characters reminiscent of a Damon Runyon novel.
By the way, the plan to break Madoff out of jail, is in reality conceivable.