We already knew that definitely pervy, probable billionaire Jeffrey Epstein got unusually lenient charges and sentencing for his sexual exploitation and abuse of young girls in Florida. But how do such things work?
The Daily Beast has unearthed documents showing more or less how the dirty deals were done, in part because the U.S. attorney who oversaw the case is feeling testy about the backlash.
That U.S. attorney, R. Alexander Acosta, was trying to get Epstein to register as a sex offender, serve in jail, and pay damages to the victims, according to the Beast. Epstein was eventually sentenced 18 months for soliciting a minor for prostitution. He spent 13 months in a wing of the county stockade, during which he "was let out on work release six days a week for up to 16 hours a day," according to the Palm Beach Post.
One challenge, according to the story, is the fact that some of the most damning allegations made in court documents — including charges that he was "given" three twelve-year-old girls from France as a "birthday gift" — emerged too late. This week, some of the victims sued under the Victims Crimes Act, contesting the "non-prosecution agreement."
And then there was a legal team that included Kenneth Starr and Alan Dershowitz. The U.S. attorney claims in a letter that there was a "year-long assault on the prosecution and the prosecutors...One member of the defense team warned me that the office's excess zeal in forcing a good man to serve time in jail might be the subject of a book if we continued." He added, "Defense counsel investigated individual prosecutors and their families," and "often failed to negotiate in good faith. They would obtain concessions as part of a negotiation and agree to proceed, only to change their minds, and appeal the office's position to Washington."
Legal wrangling aside, Epstein's life has pretty much gone back to normal. He hosted a dinner party for Prince Andrew last month, which was attended by Katie Couric, George Stephanopoulos, and Charlie Rose. And he recently cracked to the New York Post, "I'm not a sexual predator, I'm an 'offender.'" What's the distinction? "It's the difference between a murderer and a person who steals a bagel."
How The BIlionaire Pedophile Got Off Easy [Daily Beast]
Perv Mogul Gets The Royal Treatment [NYP]
Billionaire Jeffrey Epstein: I'm A Sex Offender, Not A Predator [NYP]
Earlier: Pervy Billionaire May Have All The Sex Trafficking Defense Money Can Buy