Epstein’s death: A mystery that may end up rivaling JFK assassination?

Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell

U.S. financier Jeffrey Epstein, awaiting trial on charges he trafficked underage girls for sex, was found dead in jail Saturday from an apparent suicide, triggering outcry over how the high-profile detainee could die in custody.

Just that morning, thousands of documents from a civil suit had been released, providing lurid accounts accusing Epstein of sexually abusing scores of girls.

Jeffery Epstein was found dead.

Sigrid McCawley, an attorney representing one accuser, said in a statement that "the reckoning of accountability begun by the voices of fearless and truthful victims should not end" with Epstein's death.

The Department of Justice's Bureau of Prisons, which oversees the center, said that Epstein was found unresponsive in his cell around 6:30 a.m. Saturday and pronounced dead after being rushed to a nearby hospital.

Officials cautioned that their initial findings about his detention were preliminary and could change.

Inmates on suicide watch are subjected to 24 hours per day of "direct, continuous observation", according to U.S. Bureau of Prisons policy.

In a court filing on July 25, the government said it was pursuing an "ongoing investigation of uncharged individuals" in connection with the case.

Senior law enforcement officials, members of Congress and Epstein's accusers have all demanded answers.

He previously avoided federal criminal charges in 2008 after prosecutors brokered a widely criticised deal that allowed him to plead to solicitation of prostitution from a minor and serve 13 months in jail.

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"Epstein is now dead - there will never be a criminal trial to hold him accountable, either in the Southern District of Florida, the Southern District of NY, or elsewhere", the filing reads.

The Bureau of Prisons confirmed he had been housed in the jail's Special Housing Unit, a heavily secured area that separates high-profile inmates and, until recently, home to the Mexican drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, now serving life at the Supermax prison in Colorado. (Getty) A general view of the Manhattan Correctional Center where the United States financier Jeffrey Epstein was found dead in NY.

The statement released by his office read: "President Clinton knows nothing about the bad crimes Jeffrey Epstein pleaded guilty to in Florida some years ago, or those with which he has been recently charged in NY".

Because of Epstein's ties to a number of high-profile figures, his death has been shrouded in mystery, with questions being raised about why he, despite a recent attempt on his own life, was reportedly no longer on suicide watch.

Monday, Barr said that the case against Epstein would continue.

US Attorney General Bill Barr has instructed the Justice Department's inspector general to probe Epstein's death, saying it "raises serious questions that must be answered".

Being on suicide watch entails harsh conditions, and there is pressure in the system to remove the restrictions once prisoners have demonstrated stability, experts said. His friends had once included Britain's Prince Andrew, former U.S. President Bill Clinton and U.S. President Donald Trump.

Ms McCawley urged authorities to continue their investigation, focusing on Mr Epstein associates who she said "participated and facilitated [Mr] Epstein's horrifying sex trafficking scheme".

Epstein's suicide has spawned online conspiracy theories online, including that Epstein was killed to keep him from incriminating others.

President Trump's former Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta, who had been the federal prosecutor handling the Epstein case in Florida at the time of that plea deal, has resigned over his handling of the matter.

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