USA: Attorney General pledges possible accomplices of financier Jeffrey Epstein found dead this weekend – and who was accused of “sex trafficking” minors – will be prosecuted
Bill Barr is “angry”. The US Justice Minister denounced Monday “serious irregularities” in the federal prison where was found dead Saturday the financier Jeffrey Epstein, and promised to search for possible accomplices of his sexual assault on minors , as part of an investigation which could extend to France .
The minister who announced Saturday the opening of two investigations after the announcement of the death of Epstein, apparently by suicide, said he was “dismayed” and “frankly angry” by learning the shortcomings “to adequately secure The Manhattan jail where Jeffrey Epstein was held since early July.
Several media reported Sunday that the financier, who had long been a jet setter before becoming one of the country’s most prominent detainees, had been left alone in his cell when they were supposed to be still two, and that the rounds scheduled every 30 minutes had not been respected.
Theories of the plot
Jeffrey Epstein, 66, who was found slightly injured July 23rd after what appeared to be a first suicide attempt, also had no more enhanced surveillance against suicide since July 29th. This decision fueled the outrage that greeted the announcement of his death.
“We will get to the bottom of things (…) there will be accounts,” said Bill Barr, while the weekend saw a flourishing of conspiracy theories , relayed by Donald Trump. Many of these theories imply that Jeffrey Epstein was murdered because of the men of power – from Prince Andrew to Bill Clinton, to former Northern Ireland special emissary George Mitchell or Victoria’s Secret boss Leslie Wexner – whom he had frequented, and who would have liked to prevent him from speaking. The causes of death have not yet been officially confirmed. The medical examiner in Manhattan said Sunday, after performing the autopsy, reserve his findings pending “more information.”
Search for accomplices
Epstein, 66, was found dead around 6:30 am on Saturday morning at the Metropolitan Correctional Center, a prison deemed particularly safe, where he was awaiting a trial scheduled to begin no earlier than June 2020. He was arrested on July 6 and charged in New York. for organizing, from 2002 to 2005 at least, a network of dozens of girls, some college girls, with whom he had sex in his many properties, including Manhattan and Florida.
The testimonies that emerged through court documents painted this brilliant and rich businessman, former professor of mathematics, the image of an insatiable predator of minors.
Minister Barr assured Monday, as Saturday’s federal prosecutor in Manhattan had done, that “the investigation will continue, targeting anyone (having been) an accomplice of Epstein”. Daughter of the late British media magnate Robert Maxwell, 57-year-old Ghislaine Maxwell, who was very close to Jeffrey Epstein, is now a suspect number one, although she denied any involvement. She is accused by some of the alleged victims of the financier of actively recruiting young teenage girls to satisfy Epstein’s appetite and even to participate in the abuses.
The French connection
Others are on the hot seat, including the French Jean-Luc B., head of a modelling agency. In court documents released Friday, an alleged victim of Jeffrey Epstein, Virginia Giuffre, claimed that Ghislaine Maxwell had forced him to have sex with him, which Jean-Luc B. has denied in the past. Epstein regularly travelled to France, where he had at least one property, and it was when he returned from France in a private jet that he was arrested at the beginning of July.
Two French ministers – state secretaries Marlène Schiappa (equality between women and men) and Adrien Taquet (child protection) – asked on Monday for the opening of an investigation in France, although the minister Justice Nicole Belloubet reminded that it was not up to the government to decide the prosecution begin.
The French association “Innocence in danger” however indicated having sent as of July 23 a report to the public prosecutor of Paris. Pending a response from the prosecutor, she argued that “France was concerned by this issue since investigations conducted by the FBI reveal several people of French nationality.”