Ep­stein’s a ‘serial’ sex pest

Pros­e­cu­tors op­pose bail for un­der-fire fi­nancier

Sunday Territorian - - WORLD -

NEW YORK: Fed­eral pros­e­cu­tors have urged a judge to keep fi­nancier Jef­frey Ep­stein be­hind bars un­til his trial on sex-traf­fick­ing charges in­volv­ing un­der­age girls, calling him a “serial sex­ual preda­tor” and ex­press­ing con­cern he might try to in­flu­ence wit­nesses.

Pros­e­cu­tors sub­mit­ted writ­ten ar­gu­ments in ad­vance of a bail hearing to­mor­row, say­ing he faces “the very real pos­si­bil­ity” of spending the rest of his life in prison amid a “shock­ing lack of un­der­stand­ing” of the grav­ity of his crimes.

They said he had a his­tory of ob­struc­tion and ma­nip­u­la­tion of wit­nesses, and vic­tims had told pros­e­cu­tors they might be ha­rassed or abused if he were freed.

“The de­fen­dant is a serial sex­ual preda­tor who is charged with abus­ing un­der­age girls for years,” pros­e­cu­tors wrote.

“And any doubt that the de­fen­dant is un­re­pen­tant and un­re­formed was elim­i­nated when law en­force­ment agents dis­cov­ered hun­dreds or thou­sands of nude and semi-nude pho­to­graphs of young fe­males in his Man­hat­tan man­sion on the night of his ar­rest, more than a decade af­ter he was first con­victed of a sex crime in­volv­ing a ju­ve­nile.”

Pros­e­cu­tors said ev­i­dence against Ep­stein had grown since his ar­rest af­ter sev­eral ad­di­tional women iden­ti­fied them­selves as vic­tims and dozens of in­di­vid­u­als called pros­e­cu­tors to con­vey in­for­ma­tion about Ep­stein.

They said vic­tims sup­ported his de­ten­tion and they knew of no vic­tim sup­port­ive of bail.

They said he posed a “tremen­dous risk of flight and a dan­ger to the com­mu­nity”.

The fil­ing came a day af­ter de­fence lawyers ar­gued that Ep­stein should be given bail and con­fined to his $77 mil­lion Man­hat­tan man­sion with elec­tronic mon­i­tor­ing.

Ep­stein pleaded not guilty on Mon­day to charges al­leg­ing he re­cruited and abused dozens of un­der­age girls at his man­sions in New York and Palm Beach, Florida, in the early 2000s.

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