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Madoff son 'suicide text' panic

A son of disgraced Wall Street financier Bernard Madoff called authorities in a panic after receiving a text message he thought was a suicide note from his father, months after his December 2008 fraud scheme arrest, a new book says.

The book Truth And Consequences, recounts how Andrew Madoff and his brother Mark got the message on their mobile phones in March 2009.

Former Nasdaq stock exchange chief Bernard Madoff told his sons he loved them and to look after their mother. The book says it was the first communication Andrew Madoff had from his father after his arrest.

Andrew Madoff called police, who checked on his father and found no cause for concern.

The book also has wife and mother Ruth Madoff recounting how she and Madoff tried to kill themselves weeks after his arrest.

Truth And Consequences, written by Laurie Sandell, will be published by Little, Brown and Co on October 31.

Madoff, 73, who stole billions of dollars in the largest Ponzi - pyramid - scheme in history and pleaded guilty to fraud charges, recently told an interviewer he had terrible remorse and horrible nightmares over his epic scheme but felt happier in prison than he had in 20 years.

Barbara Walters told ABC's Good Morning America that she interviewed Madoff for two hours at the prison in Butner, North Carolina, where he is serving a 150-year sentence. No cameras were allowed in the prison. She said Madoff told her he thought about suicide before being sent to prison but now no longer thought about it.

His comments come before his wife's appearance on Sunday's edition of CBS' 60 Minutes TV show, in which she talks about the Christmas Eve 2008 suicide attempt. "I don't know whose idea it was, but we decided to kill ourselves because it was so horrendous what was happening," she says in the interview, according to excerpts released by CBS.

She says the couple took "a bunch of pills" including the insomnia prescription medication Ambien, but they both woke up the next day. She says the decision was "very impulsive" and she's glad they did not die.

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