Damning new documents released in the sex-trafficking case against Ghislaine Maxwell have shed new light on the fight against the high-profile paedophile.
New details emerged Friday about the feds’ decision not to pursue charges against Jeffrey Epstein in 2016 – when a number of lawyers warned he might still be abusing girls.
Documents released in the sex-trafficking case against the late millionaire, on Friday show that lawyers for one of his accusers, Virginia Giuffre, told prosecutors at the time that the British socialite took sexually explicit photos of the younger woman regularly and even gave one to Epstein for his birthday — when Virginia was 16.
The discussion came during a February 2016 meeting between a New York assistant US attorney and a trio of lawyers representing Ms Giuffre.
At the time, Epstein had already pleaded guilty to statein 2007 but escaped related federal sex-trafficking charges through a controversial non-prosecution agreement.
In the meeting, Ms Giuffre’s lawyersagainst Epstein and Maxwell, including the alleged underage nude birthday photo, according to notes taken by the prosecutor, which were included in the documents.
After the meeting – which was held in a Lower Manhattan federal building – the prosecutor, who is identified as “AK”, spoke to the head of the criminal division for the Southern District of New York about the possibility of pursuing charges against Epstein.
“One thing that leaned in favour of taking action was that one of the lawyers … said that FBI agents in the Florida case were not happy with the result and how the case was resolved,” the prosecutor later recalled, according to the documents.
“That concerned AK because experienced FBI agents in this area usually, in AK’s experience, make collaborative decisions with the US (Attorney’s Office),” the documents state.
After speaking with the head of the criminal division, the prosecutor decided to call a higher-up in the FBI to ask him to ask the Florida agents if they felt “justice had not been served”.
The FBI honcho did not respond — and the prosecutor “took the radio silence to mean that the FBI agents in Florida did not express dissatisfaction”, according to the documents.
No investigation was launched in 2016 – and Epstein remained free until a series of damning articles alleging sex abuse in the Miami Herald again placed him on the feds’ radar.
He was charged with sex trafficking in 2019 but later died by suicide in a lower Manhattan jail cell.
Maxwell was arrested for allegedly grooming and sex-trafficking underage girls for Epstein to abuse in the 1990s and early 2000s. She maintains her innocence.
The documents unsealed Friday were included in legal briefs filed by federal authorities who argued against a number of Maxwell’s pre-trial motions in her Manhattan federal court criminal case.
This article originally appeared onand was reproduced with permission