American financier Mr Jeffrey Epstein who was indicted on sex trafficking charges last month, has been reportedly found dead inside his prison cell at the Manhattan Correctional Centre on Saturday morning. He allegedly hanged himself while awaiting trial for sex abuse and trafficking of minors.
According to the report by Associated Press (AP), an official who spoke about the death of Jeffrey Epstein on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to discuss it publicly, said the death has been ruled as suicide by the medical examiner’s office in Manhattan who confirmed Epstein’s death.
The arrest of Jeffrey Epstein last month launched separate investigations into how authorities handled his case initially when similar charges were first brought against him in Florida more than a decade ago. U.S. Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta resigned last month after coming under fire for overseeing that deal when he was U.S. attorney in Miami.
Epstein, 66, had pleaded not guilty and was facing up to 45 years in prison if convicted.
A little over two weeks ago, Epstein was found on the floor of his jail cell with bruises on his neck early, according to a person familiar with the matter who spoke on condition of anonymity. At the time, it was not clear whether the injuries were self-inflicted or from an assault.
Epstein’s arrest drew national attention, particularly focusing on a deal that allowed Epstein to plead guilty in 2008 to soliciting a minor for prostitution in Florida and avoid more serious federal charges.
Federal prosecutors in New York reopened the probe after investigative reporting by The Miami Herald stirred outrage over that plea bargain.
But his lawyers maintained that the new charges brought by federal prosecutors in New York were covered by the deal and were improper.
They said he hasn’t had any illicit contact with underage girls since serving his 13-month sentence in Florida.
Before his legal troubles, Epstein led a life of extraordinary luxury that drew powerful people into his orbit.
He socialized with princes and presidents and lived on a 100-acre private island in the Caribbean and one of the biggest mansions in New York. A college dropout, he became a sought-after benefactor of professors and scientists, donating millions of dollars in donations to Harvard University and other causes.
Still, it was never entirely clear how the middle-class Brooklyn math whiz became a Wall Street master of high finance.
The somewhat reclusive Epstein splashed into the news in 2002 after a New York tabloid reported he had lent his Boeing 727 to ferry former President Bill Clinton and other notables on an AIDS relief mission to Africa.
Magazine profiles followed and established Epstein’s reputation as a stealthy yet exorbitantly successful money man with a gilded social circle and as a somewhat ascetic streak.
His friends over the years have included Donald Trump, Britain’s Prince Andrew and former Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz. But Epstein also enjoyed surrounding himself with women much younger than he, including Russian models who attended his cocktail parties and beautiful women he flew aboard his plane, according to the Vanity Fair profile.