It is easy to categorize crimes like murder and rape as violent crimes. With the first documented death related to Madoff yesterday, we have proof of the violence inherent in a Ponzi scheme. While a burglar/robber is likely to take some of what you own, the con man can and will take everything you own. According to news reports, many of his victims have been relatively well-off retirees in places like Long Island and Florida. Now, many of them are not just broke, they are too old to have any hope of earning enough money to restore their lifestyle.
Although I believe in bail until someone is convicted, Madoff's confessions make me feel he should be in jail right now. With a sentence likely to exceed his remaining lifespan, it is time for him to start paying his debt to society.