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Jeffrey Epstein’s victims urge Joe Biden to pursue Prince Andrew ‘more aggressively’

Jeffrey Epstein‘s victims have urged Joe Biden to pursue Prince Andrew ‘more aggressively’ once he is sworn in as US President.

Lisa Bloom, a lawyer who represents five of the women, said she hopes the new administration will ‘fully investigate’ the Duke of York.

The Royal, 60, has been accused of having sex with Virginia Giuffre three times but denies the claims.

Ms Bloom told the Mirror: ‘I do have hope that the Biden-Harris administration will be more aggressive in standing with victims of sexual assault.

‘It is essential that Prince Andrew cooperate with authorities, as he said he would, so that they can fully investigate him and all others accused of enabling prolific predator Jeffrey Epstein.’

Jeffrey Epstein's victims have urged Joe Biden to pursue Prince Andrew (pictured in Windsor this month) 'more aggressively' once he is sworn in as US President

Jeffrey Epstein’s victims have urged Joe Biden to pursue Prince Andrew (pictured in Windsor this month) ‘more aggressively’ once he is sworn in as US President

Ms Bloom said: 'I do have hope that the Biden-Harris administration will be more aggressive in standing with victims of sexual assault.' Pictured: Biden

Ms Bloom said: ‘I do have hope that the Biden-Harris administration will be more aggressive in standing with victims of sexual assault.’ Pictured: Biden

Lisa Bloom (pictured), who represents five of the women, said she hopes the new administration will 'fully investigate' the Duke of York

Lisa Bloom (pictured), who represents five of the women, said she hopes the new administration will ‘fully investigate’ the Duke of York

The victims have voiced concerns over President Donald Trump’s old friendship with Epstein and his alleged ‘madam’ Ghislaine Maxwell had hampered any probe.

Trump previously said of the billionaire financier: ‘I’ve known Jeff for 15 years. Terrific guy. He’s a lot of fun to be with.

‘It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side.’

The President changed tact after Epstein was arrested last year, adding: ‘I had a falling out a long time ago with him. I don’t think I’ve spoken to him in 15 years. I was not a fan of his.’

Prince Andrew’s representatives have declined to comment.

The victims’ plea comes after the US Department of Justice cleared Alex Acosta and his team of prosecutors of misconduct but says they showed ‘poor judgement’ with the sweetheart deal they gave Epstein in 2008.

Former Labor Secretary Alex Acosta (right) put together the deal in 2008 that gave Jeffrey Epstein just 13 months in prison for soliciting underage girls for prostitution. He was cleared of misconduct on Thursday

Former Labor Secretary Alex Acosta (right) put together the deal in 2008 that gave Jeffrey Epstein just 13 months in prison for soliciting underage girls for prostitution. He was cleared of misconduct on Thursday

Former Labor Secretary Alex Acosta (right) put together the deal in 2008 that gave Jeffrey Epstein just 13 months in prison for soliciting underage girls for prostitution. He was cleared of misconduct on Thursday

In 2008, the financier pleaded guilty to soliciting a minor for prostitution after being investigated in Palm Beach for sexually trafficking multiple girls.

As part of his deal, he spent a year in ‘prison’ but he was allowed to go to his office every day and work.

The deal also protected three co-conspirators from prosecution in Palm Beach, and it was kept secret from his victims for a year.

It was widely criticised as a slap on the wrist for the paedophile, who killed himself in a New York jail awaiting trial for sex trafficking last summer.

The deal has been under investigation by the Office of Professional Responsibility  for months and on Thursday, it said released its decision.   

The office said in a statement: ‘While OPR did not find that Department attorneys engaged in professional misconduct, OPR concluded that the victims were not treated with the forthrightness and sensitivity expected by the Department. 

‘OPR also concluded that former US Attorney Acosta exercised poor judgment by deciding to resolve the federal investigation through the non-prosecution agreement and when he failed to make certain that the state of Florida intended to and would notify victims identified through the federal investigation about the state plea hearing.’

It released an executive summary of the report but not the full report, citing privacy laws that protect the victims involved as the reason why.

Epstein's home in Palm Beach, where he trafficked girls over many years

Epstein’s home in Palm Beach, where he trafficked girls over many years 

It was immediately criticised by politicians who say this is another example of Epstein’s victims being failed by the government.

Senator Ben Sasse, a Republican from Nebraska, said: ‘Letting a well-connected billionaire get away with child rape and international sex trafficking isn’t ”poor judgment6” – it is a disgusting failure. Americans ought to be enraged.

‘Jeffrey Epstein should be rotting behind bars today, but the Justice Department failed Epstein’s victims at every turn.’ 

The report found Acosta, who took responsibility in interviews for his decisions, had the authority as the US attorney ‘to resolve the case as he deemed necessary and appropriate, as long as his decision was not motivated or influenced by improper factors.’

 The office said its investigation had turned up no evidence Acosta was swayed by ‘impermissible considerations, such as Epstein’s wealth, status, or associations’.

It found he had resisted efforts by defence lawyers to return the case to the state for whatever outcome the state wanted.

The report also did not find a 2007 breakfast meeting with one of Epstein’s attorneys led to the non-prosecution agreement — which had been signed weeks earlier — ‘or to any other significant decision that benefited Epstein.’

Records reviewed by the office show that prosecutors weighed concerns about witness credibility and the impact of a trial on victims, as well as Acosta’s concerns about the Justice Department’s proper role in prosecuting solicitation crimes.

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