NEW YORK (WPIX) -- According to reports, recently jailed Bernard Madoff is ready to return to his penthouse.  The lawyer representing the Wall Street scammer is trying to get his client out of jail.

Ira Sorkin is trying to have Madoff returned to house arrest at his Upper East Side penthouse. Sorkin is appealing Manhattan Federal Court Judge Denny Chin's decision to imprison Madoff, who's 70 years old. On Thursday, the disgraced financier pleaded guilty to orchestrating a $65 billion Ponzi scheme.

The appeals court is expected to render its decision sometime Friday.  Thursday night was the first night Madoff spent at the Metropolitan Correctional Center.  Unless his appeal is successful, that's where Madoff will call home until June 16th, when he'll be sentenced to serve time at a federal prison. He could get the maximum sentence of 150 years behind bars.


This, as investigators have turned their attention to Madoff's wife, Ruth, and the couple's assets. The New York Daily News reports that the feds want to get their hands on the couple's penthouse and three other luxury homes around the world.  The News says federal investigators have told a Manhattan federal judge they'll move to seize the Madoffs' apartment on East 64th Street in the weeks ahead.  They're also going after properties the Madoffs own in Montauk, Long Island, Palm Beach, Florida, and France. The proceeds will go to pay off a small fraction of the billions owed to thousands of Madoff's victims.

Prosecutors say Ruth Madoff filed court papers last week, saying $62 million held in two bank accounts has nothing to do with her husband's scam. Mrs. Madoff also claims the $7 million apartment is hers, not her husband's.
Madoff's victims scoff at the claim.  Dozens of them started laughing in court Thursday when Sorkin told Chin that Madoff's 24-hour security detail was "at his wife's own expense."