He was one of the most famous crooks of the 21st century.
Bernard Madoff, the financier guilty of orchestrating the largest Ponzi scheme in history, has died in federal prison, the Associated Press news agency said on Wednesday.
Last year his lawyers tried unsuccessfully to secure the 82-year-old's release, claiming he suffered from chronic ailments and had only 18 months to live.
Self-taught entrepreneur and president of one of the main companies on Wall Street, he had in the 2000s instigated a gigantic fraudulent financial package - known as the Ponzi scheme - involving several billion dollars.
Bernard Madoff, born into a modest family in New York, had never placed a single penny of the sums entrusted by his clients, drawing funds from new investors to remunerate or reimburse the oldest.
Long star of Wall Street, his house of cards collapsed in December 2008 when a growing number of investors, distraught by the financial crisis, had asked to recover their due.
Bernie Madoff was sentenced in 2009 to 150 years in prison, after pleading guilty to 11 charges, including fraud and money laundering.