More than a decade after news about him molesting minors first broke, billionaire New York financierJeffrey E. Epstein, was finally arrested again and charged with sex trafficking by federal prosecutors, and expected to appear before a federal magistrate this week.
Under this new indictment, he could potentially spend 45 years in prison for one count of sex trafficking of minors and one count of conspiracy to engage in sex trafficking of minors. The Daily Beast reports that it will “allege that Epstein sexually exploited dozens of underage girls in a now-familiar scheme: paying them cash for ‘massages’ and then molesting or sexually abusing them in his Upper East Side mansion or his palatial residence in Palm Beach.” The allegations also reportedly “say that several of the billionaire’s employees and associates allegedly recruited the girls for Epstein’s abuse, and some victims eventually became recruiters themselves.” Moreover, the victims included girls as young as 14, and Epstein was allegedly aware of this.
This is a similar scheme he was accused of during his controversial case in 2007 and 2008, where federal prosecutors agreed to a non-prosecution deal with him. “He pleaded guilty to lesser state charges of soliciting prostitution, served 13 months in a county lockup and registered as a sex offender,” The New York Times noted. “His jail arrangement allowed him to get out of the Palm Beach County Stockade six days a week to work out of his office.” The deal received public scrutiny due to its leniency and perceived mishandling of the case by the prosecutors. “The plea deal that protected Mr. Epstein from federal charges was signed by the top federal prosecutor in Miami at the time, Alexander Acosta, who is now President Trump’s labor secretary,” NY Times reported.
Last November, The Miami Herald published an in-depth story about the case which renewed public scrutiny. According to the publication, they “identified about 80 women who say they were molested or otherwise sexually abused by Epstein from 2001 to 2006. About 60 of them were located—now scattered around the country and abroad.” Eight of them reportedly agreed to be interviewed, while four of them were willing to speak on video.
“Epstein is a politically-connected hedge fund manager, who’s been closely associated with former President Bill Clinton and Prince Andrew, the son of Queen Elizabeth II,” Deadline notes. “The financier also has ties to President Trump, who was his neighbor in Palm Beach, Florida, and also reportedly flew on Epstein’s jet.”
We believe the victims and hope that this new criminal case will bring them real justice.
Photo courtesy of @bastardspod’s Instagram account
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