Fantastic (albeit possibly unintentionally) reporting via Vicky Ward of The Daily Beast.
This Epstein story is just getting started and its potential destination might very well rock a nation to its core.
…For almost two decades, for some nebulous reason, whether to do with ties to foreign intelligence, his billions of dollars, or his social connections, Epstein, whose alleged sexual sickness and horrific assaults on women without means or ability to protect themselves are well-known in his circle, remained untouchable.
I spent many months on his trail in 2002 for Vanity Fair and discovered not only that he was not who he claimed to be professionally, but also that he had allegedly assaulted two young sisters, one of whom had been underage at the time. Very bravely, they were prepared to go on the record. They were afraid he’d use all his influence to discredit them—and their fear turned out to be legitimate.
But much worse was to come from Epstein’s army of willfully blind lobbyists. In 2007 and 2008, as the FBI prepared a 53-page indictment that would charge Epstein with sex crimes, Epstein’s powerful legal team played the influence card.
After the one meeting with then-U.S. Attorney Acosta, where presumably “intelligence” was mentioned, the indictment was shelved and, instead, Epstein signed a non-prosecution agreement with federal prosecutors, pleading guilty to one count of solicitation of prostitution and one count of procurement of minors for prostitution, which earned him a cushy 13 months in county jail, from where he was allowed to leave to work at his office and go for walks.
The deal granted immunity to “any potential co-conspirators.” Most significantly, federal prosecutors agreed to keep the deal secret from Epstein’s victims, which meant they would not know to challenge it in court. As it turned out, this actually broke the law, because victims have a right to know of such developments, under the Crime Victims’ Rights Act.
We, the public, had access to all this information as it played out over the years in plain sight. And yet the outrage just was not there. After his absurdly soft jail time, Epstein carried on as before. He shamelessly wandered the streets of New York accompanied by startlingly young-looking foreign women. People in his social set still tell me how “brilliant” he is and phone him for financial advice. A few years ago the journalist Michael Wolff wrote a profile of him for New York magazine that was meant to “rehabilitate” Epstein’s image and would tell of all the billionaires who still, secretly, hung out with Epstein. The piece had “fact-checking” issues and never ran. Even so, the notion that it was considered is mind-boggling.
…The story in the indictment that was unsealed earlier Monday was eerily familiar to all of us who have been paying attention to Epstein’s sick story. What is different, finally, after 16 years, is the reaction, which is, at last, appropriate.
One of the young women who spoke to me 16 years ago emailed Monday evening. “Shocked and elated,” she said. “Fingers crossed they all finally go down.” Amen to that.
Did you catch the mention of Mr. Epstein’s alleged ties to foreign intelligence and how it was THAT reason that he may have been granted a pass by both Bush and Obama-era DOJ officials?
(And don’t forget, Robert Mueller as the then-FBI Director was likely deeply involved in the Epstein cover-up as well.)
Such foreign intelligence leverage is not easily given and must come from of the highest levels of government—a fact which then points directly to Epstein’s long relationship with figures like Bill and Hillary Clinton, the Saudi government, and a multitude of high-profile British figures, to name a few.