The penalties Madoff would face in other countries:
"For stealing in Saudi Arabia they cut your hands off," said Rachel Ehrenfeld, director of the American Center for Democracy. "Whether the Shariah court would decide that he stole so much money that he gets a stoning is up to them, but the general penalty for stealing is cutting his hands off."
Looking east, Madoff's fortunes wouldn't be much brighter. In China, "anything is possible," said Gordon Chang, author of "The Coming Collapse of China" and a veteran watcher of the country's legal and political system.
"In China the death penalty is used for all sorts of crimes that we would consider to be minor. In the U.S. you get the death penalty only for murder; in China you can get the death penalty for stealing money ... or doing anything considered a threat to the state."