Investigators in the U.S. are trying to figure out how an accused sex offender died in custody. Multi-millionaire Jeffrey Epstein was found dead in his Manhattan jail cell Saturday, apparently of suicide.
The financier, associated with royalty and global political leaders, was accused of trafficking girls as young as 14.
CGTN’s Toby Muse has more.
Victims of accused sex-trafficker Jeffrey Epstein have expressed shock that the wealthy financier would apparently kill himself while being held in federal jail.
He was found dead in his cell Saturday morning at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan of an apparent suicide. Authorities are investigating why he was taken off suicide watch. The 66-year-old had been denied bail and faced the prospect of never leaving prison alive.
“I can tell you that on behalf of the victims I’ve represented there’s a certain amount of shock and disbelief that the federal authorities could allow something like this to occur under their watch,” said Spencer Kuvin, who represents some of Epstein’s accusers.
The story has become international news given Epstein’s friends and acquaintances in high places: the UK’s Prince Andrew, former U.S. President Bill Clinton, President Donald Trump and Leslie Wexner, founder of the company that owns Victoria’s Secret.
The attorney for several accusers vowed to continue pressing for a full investigation into Epstein and those they say committed crimes with him. Epstein’s fortune is estimated to be hundreds of millions of dollars.
“There are a number of co-conspirators that allowed these things to occur, active co-conspirators as well as passive that watched what he was doing and said nothing over the years,” said Kuvin.
Trump’s former labor secretary resigned in July over his handling of Epstein’s first prosecution a decade ago for abusing dozens of girls. A secret plea deal allowed Epstein to avoid federal charges at the time which was seen as unusually lenient.