Jeffrey Epstein, the disgraced financier who was being held in a Manhattan jail awaiting federal sex trafficking charges, died early Saturday from an apparent suicide, according to federal authorities.
Attorney General William Barr said he was “appalled” by the report of Epstein’s apparent suicide while in federal custody at the Metropolitan Correctional Center, a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility under the jurisdiction of the Department of Justice.
“Mr. Epstein’s death raises serious questions that must be answered,” Barr said in a statement. “In addition to the FBI’s investigation, I have consulted with the Inspector General who is opening an investigation into the circumstances of Mr. Epstein’s death.”
Epstein’s death came within 24 hours after long-sealed documents were released by a federal court in a since-settled lawsuit against Epstein’s ex-girlfriend by Virginia Giuffre, one of Epstein’s accusers.
The documents included depositions of years of alleged sex acts involving underage girls. The material, released as a result of petitions by the Miami Herald and other news media, included sordid allegations involving prominent individuals.
Among the documents are police reports, flight logs and even a purported memoir by a woman who says she was a victim of Epstein’s when she was teenager. —USA