Sunday, July 25, 2010
Billionaire pedophile goes free..."Did Epstein’s wealth and social connections—former President Bill Clinton; Prince Andrew; former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak; New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson; and former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers were just a few of the prominent passengers on his private jets—allow him to receive only a slap on the wrist for crimes that carry a mandatory 20-year sentence?"
by Conchita Sarnoff
Hedge fund mogul and sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, who went free this week, lived in a depraved world of thrice-daily massages, pornographic artwork, and hush money—that’s only now being revealed. Conchita Sarnoff follows up on her investigation of the legal wrangling that saved him from a long prison term and reports on the sordid details in part two of her exclusive exposé. Also:
• Palm Beach’s police chief objected to Epstein’s “special treatment” and gave The Daily Beast an exclusive look at his nine-hour deposition about the investigation.
• Earlier versions of the U.S attorney’s charges, including a sealed 53-page indictment, could have landed Epstein in prison for 20 years.
• Victims alleged that Epstein molested underage girls from South America, Europe, and the former Soviet republics, including three 12-year-old girls brought over from France as a birthday gift.
• The victims also alleged trips out of state and abroad on Epstein’s private jets, which would be evidence of sex trafficking—a much more serious federal crime than the state charges Epstein was convicted of.
• Epstein’s attorneys investigated members of the Palm Beach Police Department, while others ordered private investigators to follow and intimidate the victims’ families; one even posed as a police officer.
• Then-Attorney General Alberto Gonzales told The Daily Beast that he “would have instructed the Justice Department to pursue justice without making a political mess.”
Film director Roman Polanski is not the only convicted pedophile to walk free this month and return to a life of privilege. On Wednesday, hedge fund manager Jeffrey Epstein completes his one-year house arrest in Palm Beach, which has been even less arduous than Polanski’s time at a Swiss ski chalet.
During Epstein’s term of “house arrest,” he made several trips each month to his New York home and his private Caribbean island. In the earlier stage of his sentence for soliciting prostitution with a minor—13 months in the Palm Beach Stockade—he was allowed out to his office each day. Meanwhile, Epstein has settled more than a dozen lawsuits brought by the underage girls who were recruited to perform “massages” at his Palm Beach mansion. Seven victims reached a last-minute deal last week, days before a scheduled trial; each received well over $1 million—an amount that will hardly dent Epstein’s $2 billion net worth.
With that, the known victims of Epstein’s sexual compulsion have been officially silenced, and the case against him is closed unless new ones come forward. According to banking sources, he has been moving assets out of the U.S. and may well follow Polanski into a luxurious exile.
But the question remains: Did Epstein’s wealth and social connections—former President Bill Clinton; Prince Andrew; former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak; New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson; and former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers were just a few of the prominent passengers on his private jets—allow him to receive only a slap on the wrist for crimes that carry a mandatory 20-year sentence? Was he able, with his limitless assets and heavy-hitting lawyers—Alan Dershowitz, Gerald Lefcourt, Roy Black, Kenneth Starr, Guy Lewis, and Martin Weinberger among them—to escape equal justice?
CLICK HERE FOR PART 2