How This Billionaire Escaped Sex Trafficking Charges
Jeffrey Epstein could have done 20 years
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 21, 2010 11:18 AM CDT
Jeffrey Epstein is shown with a female companion.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Billionaire financial adviser Jeffrey Epstein allegedly flew in teenage girls from all over the world to give him “massages”, was once presented with three 12-year-olds from France as a birthday gift, and brought over a 14-year-old from the Balkans who he called his “Yugoslavian sex slave.” So how did the hedge fund mogul manage to escape a 20-year sex trafficking sentence, scoring instead 13 months in the county jail—during which he was allowed to visit his office each day—followed by a cushy one-year house arrest?

That’s the question Conchita Sarnoff investigates in an extensive Daily Beast article. The former Palm Beach police chief who started the investigation says Epstein, who has connections to Bill Clinton and Prince Andrew, among others, received “special treatment” from the State Attorney’s Office and the US Department of Justice. His team of lawyers is accused of digging up dirt on Epstein’s roughly 40 victims, following them, and intimidating them. They’ve now effectively been silenced, many with $1 million settlements, and yesterday Epstein, who was allowed to plead guilty to two lower-level state crimes rather than face child sex trafficking charges, became a free man.