When it comes to the sort of crimes that Jeffrey Epstein is accused of, Americans are pretty clear: Justice must be served.
Epstein previously escaped a lengthy prison sentence in 2008, after a sweetheart deal turned what would have been charges of pedophiliac rape into “solicitation”, netting the wealthy financier only 13 months of punishment – much of which was spent on “work release”.
This time around, as Epstein faces charges of child sex trafficking and related conspiracy, there is little hope that the well-connected and ultra wealthy playboy will be getting away with it. His previous “luck” even cost Labor Secretary Alex Acosta his job, after he was forced to resign due to his involvement with the sweetheart plea deal.
In 2019’s investigation, however, authorities are consistently widening their nets around Epstein, leaving no stones unturned. Next up on the witness list are Epstein’s pilots.
Federal prosecutors subpoenaed Jeffrey Epstein’s personal pilots—who flew Epstein’s celebrity friends around the world—in the hopes they can corroborate the accounts of women who allege Epstein transported them on private planes to facilitate their sexual abuse.
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Prosecutors might be able to use the pilots’ testimonies to confirm the accounts of Epstein’s accusers, according to the Wall Street Journal. The 66-year-old former financier is charged with two counts of sex trafficking and sex conspiracy, and allegedy ran a sex ring of dozens of underage girls.
Multiple women have filed civil lawsuits against Epstein that mentioned the pilots. None of the pilots, however, were named as defendants.
From around 1998 to 2002, the women said, Epstein allegedly conspired with his pilots and associates to make sure he avoided law enforcement.
Some of Epstein’s flight logs became public through the civil lawsuits. And some of his accusers’ names appear in the flight logs, which the women said helped confirm their allegations of being sexually abused by Epstein.
Neither Epstein’s legal team nor the Manhattan U.S. Attorney’s office commented on the pilots’ subpoenas. It’s unclear how many pilots were subpoenaed, if they will cooperate with federal prosecutors or what information they will provide.
Epstein was infamous for his private plane, nicknamed “The Lolita Express”, which was believed to be transporting underage girls to Little St. James Island, also owned by Epstein.
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