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Madoff is placed under round-the-clock house arrest

Investment banker Bernard Madoff, accused of masterminding a 50 billion dollar Wall Street fraud, has been ordered by a court to remain in his New York apartment 24 hours a day. His wife must cover the cost of private security guards.

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AFP - Disgraced Wall Street investment baron Bernard Madoff was placed Friday under 24-hour house arrest in a toughening of his bail conditions.

Federal court magistrate Gabriel Gorenstein ordered Madoff, 70, to be "subject to home detention at his Manhattan apartment, 24 hours per day, with electronic monitoring," a court document said.

In addition, Madoff, allegedly the mastermind of a 50 billion dollar Wall Street fraud, will be placed under the eye of a private security firm monitoring his apartment door.

Madoff's wife has been ordered to pay for the cost of the firm, which will be able to communicate directly with the FBI.

The measures appeared aimed not just at preventing Madoff fleeing, but for his protection. The court document referred to the need to "prevent harm or flight."

Under the previous bail conditions set on Wednesday, Madoff was under electronic monitoring but allowed out of his apartment during the day.

He has also posted a 10-million-dollar bond secured by his apartment and other properties. Both he and his wife Ruth Madoff have surrendered their passports.

Madoff was arrested December 11 and charged with massive fraud.
 

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