Few other American shoemakers ever achieved the brand-name recognition that Steve Madden enjoyed, but even fewer took such a dramatic tumble from the top. His company, Steve Madden Ltd., was one of the fashion industry's most surprising success stories of the 1990s, with his au courant boots, heels, and clogs dominating the women's mid-price market. In 2002, however, Madden was convicted on charges of securities fraud and money laundering, and entered federal prison. He was released in 2005 and was back on the job at his company's Long Island City headquarters soon afterward. His story, he hoped, would serve as a cautionary tale for his 500-plus employees, one that could help them mature "professionally and develop more long-term thinking and less instant gratification," he told Footwear News reporter Katie Abel. (Source: Encyclopedia of World Biography)
Steve Madden, who built a $240 million empire designing chunky shoes for teenagers, was sentenced May 3, 2002, to 41 months in prison for stock fraud and money laundering.
Under a plea deal, the sentence, imposed by Judge John Gleeson of United States District Court in Brooklyn, will run concurrently with a 41-month term Mr. Madden received last month in a related stock fraud case brought by federal prosecutors in Manhattan.
Mr. Madden, 45, pleaded guilty in 2001 to two counts of securities fraud and money laundering in the Manhattan and Brooklyn cases.
He was arrested in 2000 as a result of an investigation of a scheme to manipulate 23 initial public stock offerings underwritten by the companies Stratton Oakmont and Monroe Parker Securities, both now defunct. It included the initial public stock offering of his own company in 1993.