It is possible to be convicted of first degree murder in this country and get a 15 year sentence. But if you make rich people poor you can get 150 years.
The dead can never have their lives restored to them, but it's conceivable the newly poor could be rich again someday.
I'm not saying Bernie Madoff doesn't deserve his punishment, but there's quite a paradox there in the punishment-fitting-the-crime department even if we dismiss the possibility of anyone's riches being restored.
I'm going to guess that the people most horrified at their losses are the ones who didn't really earn their money from scratch. Inheritance or by an over-paid job landed from connections rather than merit. These people know they don't have the skills to get back on top again and that's why they are horrified.
They do have the advantage of still being here to press for the criminal's punishment; something a murder victim can never do.
On the other hand, a dead person doesn't know he's dead anymore, but the new poor have a long stretch of poor to look forward to.