International

Two jail guards expected to be charged over Jeffrey Epstein death

Jeffrey Epstein

Jeffrey Epstein  

The Federal Bureau of Prisons employees may appear in the federal court in Manhattan for their alleged failure to check on the prisoner in the Metropolitan Correctional Center

Two federal workers, who were on duty on the night financier Jeffrey Epstein killed himself in a New York jail cell, are expected to be charged on Tuesday in connection with their alleged failure to check on him, The New York Times said, citing people with knowledge of the matter.

The two Federal Bureau of Prisons employees are expected to appear in the federal court in Manhattan, the newspaper said. A spokesman for U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman in Manhattan had no immediate comment. Epstein, 66, a well-connected money manager, was found unresponsive in his cell in August at the Metropolitan Correctional Center (MCC).

His suicide came a little over a month after he was arrested and charged with trafficking dozens of underage girls as young as 14 from at least 2002 to 2005. He had pleaded not guilty. Prosecutors said Epstein and his associates systematically recruited young girls for him to sexually abuse in his mansions in Manhattan and Palm Beach, Florida.

An autopsy concluded that Epstein had hanged himself. Both Epstein’s brother and the lawyers who represented him in his criminal case have expressed doubts about the medical examiner's conclusion. According to the prison bureau, which runs the MCC, the last inmate suicide at the facility was in 2006.

The New York Times earlier reported that the two workers had been arrested, citing a person briefed on the case, but said others involved in the case later said the arrests had yet to occur and that the workers would be charged later on Tuesday. Law enforcement sources told Reuters after Epstein’s death that guards had failed to check on him every 30 minutes as required by protocol, and that two cameras outside the jail cell malfunctioned.

Epstein had been taken off suicide watch shortly before his death. The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Justice’s Office of Inspector General launched probes into the circumstances of Epstein’s death. Epstein’s estate, which according to his will is worth $577 million, is now the target of civil lawsuits by more than a dozen of his alleged victims. Its executors have proposed creating a victim compensation fund to resolve the claims.

Epstein’s high-profile friends once included now-U.S. President Donald Trump, former President Bill Clinton and Britain’s Prince Andrew. One of Epstein’s alleged victims said in a lawsuit that she was forced to have sex with Prince Andrew. The prince has denied the claim.

In a court filing on July 25, the government said it was pursuing an ongoing investigation of uncharged individuals in connection with the case.

Why you should pay for quality journalism - Click to know more

Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Apr 6, 2020 6:07:33 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/two-jail-guards-expected-to-be-charged-over-jeffrey-epstein-death/article30019297.ece

Next Story