Bernard Madoff's belongings are sold for almost $1m to help Ponzi victims

BERNARD Madoff&rsquo;s possessions raised almost $1m (&pound;599,000) when they went under the hammer to help victims of the disgraced fund manager&rsquo;s $65bn Ponzi scheme.<br /><br />Auctioneers raised twice the amount expected, as around 500&nbsp; bidders crammed into Manhattan&rsquo;s Sheraton Hotel to buy a piece of Wall Street history.<br /><br />Top sellers included Madoff&rsquo;s Mets baseball jacket, which went for $14,500, and his wife Ruth&rsquo;s Victorian diamond earrings, which fetched $70,000 &ndash; more than 20 times their estimated value.<br /><br />In total there were 200 items, including furs, fishing tackle, dog bowls, vases and Hermes handbags.<br /><br />A wooden duck decoy valued at $53 to $60 sold for $4,750. Seven plastic Swatch watches, estimated at $100 to $150, went for $850.<br /><br />The ring buoy from Mr Madoff&rsquo;s yacht, &ldquo;Bull&rdquo; (listed at $140 to $160) sold for $7,500, while three embroidered shirts from the boat (estimated at $150 to $210) sold for $1,300.<br /><br />But Madoff&rsquo;s vintage 18-carat gold Rolex Monoblocco watch, sold for $65,000, below its estimated price of $75,000 to $85,000.<br /><br />The sale brought in $942,650 &ndash; nearly twice the $500,000 estimate. Madoff is serving a 150-year sentence at a federal prison in North Carolina.