JPMorgan Bernie Madoff Settlement Breaks Record

Deal defers criminal charges against the bank for not reporting suspicious activity related to the Ponzi scheme.
3:00 | 01/07/14

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Transcript for JPMorgan Bernie Madoff Settlement Breaks Record
This is a special group. I'm -- Cutler New York with this ABC news digital special report a record fine one point seven billion dollars the biggest bank. JPMorgan Chase has to pay that fine for true turning a blind item Bernie Madoff and his Ponzi scheme. It is the biggest penalty ever enforced for violating -- 1970 bank secrecy act and in laying out -- charges today. US attorney -- Ferrara had some -- strong words against JPMorgan Chase and Bernie Madoff let's listen. The largest financial institution in the country stands charged with two criminal offenses. Institutions. Not just individuals. Have an obligation to follow the law and to police themselves. They must exercise due care not only -- their own money. But with other people's money also. In this case as I said JPMorgan connected the dots when it mattered to its own profit. But was not so diligent other -- Fortunately with today's resolution. The bank has accepted responsibility for its conduct. And agreed to continue reforming its anti money laundering practices. Most importantly. The victims of Bernie Madoff epic fraud are one point seven billion dollars closer to being made whole. So from one store whenever -- ABC's Eric -- in New -- has been following the latest on this. -- we heard of the federal prosecutor this. Very strong words against JPMorgan and Bernie Madoff obviously the resentment over this Ponzi scheme still very strong. Well it was seventeen billion dollars says investors thought they lost even more than that maybe 65 billion dollars the largest Ponzi scheme ever. And it hurt ordinary investors people who were tied to charities and in doing other good works. And and so there's still lingering bitterness more than five years after his arrest and the idea. That -- bank would have known and did nothing about it the US attorney says in light of their own profit making abilities. It is is egregious and in the US attorney. Is bringing them in for criminal charges but allowing them to pay. Two billion dollars to defer those criminal charges for the next few years so in many ways. This is something of a victory for JPMorgan Chase had -- been found guilty of criminal charges stand. It would have lost its charter and so of this is another way to JPMorgan Chase has been able to use its vast bank account. -- to skirt and media any criminal. Responsibility here although it did admit. To some of -- egregious conduct alleged you have that charter been revoked almost immeasurable amount of losses or even existence of JPMorgan as we know it today. So this nearly two billion dollar fine. I'm how -- -- an impact is that really -- while overall it it's it's just a fraction of JPMorgan Chase's. A complete profits so over the course of of the year. But in the last twelve months they paid some twenty. Billion dollars to settle different criminal and civil charges that had been related from the financial crisis and that certainly -- hurt. But it probably helps the bank to move forward and to get all of these entities off of its back. -- JPMorgan Chase was not the only ones some say the bank has been unfairly singled out here but what it is agreed to do. Is to admit its conduct and to try and get past and especially when it involves the biggest Ponzi -- ever. And so are we expecting any other banks aside from JPMorgan to be on the line for this and that may be but that the fact is with JPMorgan Chase Bernie Madoff used. JPM accounts more than any other to carry out his scheme and so it really was. The the -- federal prosecutors said was on JPMorgan Chase. To say something and and and court records. One JPMorgan Chase banker even wrote that Bernie Madoff was suspected. -- profits -- a Ponzi scheme there were clearly people aware that Bernie Madoff may have been up to no good and yet. That the federal prosecutors say they either ignored it looked the other way because the bank -- was making big profits from it -- business and otherwise. They were obligated under federal law to do. One point seven million dollars on a -- from JPMorgan. And of course Bernie Madoff himself sitting in prison for that 150 year prison sentence that. Trotta captivated so much attention from. So much money being taken ABC's characteristic Aaron thank you so much appreciate it. Thanks to of course quickly recap right here on ABC news dot conference on Dan Cutler in New York with this ABC news digital special report.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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