No One Should Be Above The Law, Especially Not The People Enforcing It
Washington D.C.– Amid growing calls for Labor Secretary Alex Acosta’s resignation following the news Jeffrey Epstein had been charged with federal sex trafficking crimesfor targeting young girls, Allied Progress called on Chairman Elijah Cummings of the House Oversight Committee and Chairman Lindsey Graham of the Senate Judiciary Committee to hold hearings on how and why Acosta let Epstein escape the serious prison time he deserved as the U.S. Attorney prosecuting the case. Letters to each are being hand-delivered and sent electronically to their Washington offices today. [SEE: Graham version HERE; Cummings version HERE]
“Not even a federal judge’s ruling that Alexander Acosta broke the law by giving Epstein a ‘get out of jail free’ card without telling the victims was enough for the Secretary to take any responsibility or offer any apology for letting a monster off easy,” said Kyle Herrig, Senior Advisor to consumer watchdog group Allied Progress. “But while Acosta and President Trump may hope for this all to go away, Congress needs to assert its oversight authority and make sure there’s a full accounting of how a serial sex abuser was left on the streets for ten years. Alex Acosta may consider his work on the Epstein case a “point of pride,” but to everyone else it looks like business as usual: one set of rules for the rich and powerful, another set for everyone else. Acosta must answer for his record on Jeffrey Epstein.”
In February, the Department of Justice’s Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) announced its own investigation into Acosta’s misconduct in the Epstein case, however such an investigation is simply incapable of going far enough due to OPR’s lack of subpoena power, its inability to issue binding disciplinary recommendations and its reputation of secrecy with regard to its probes. Acosta’s illegal plea deal was conducted in secret; the investigation into why should not also be conducted out of the public view. Congress must step up and fully bring to light the facts of how and why this happened.
Added Herrig: “Waiting on the OPR to finish its toothless investigation is no excuse to delay a more serious and transparent Congressional investigation.”
BACKGROUND: In February, Allied Progress launched a digital ad campaignurging Senators hold Acosta accountable by moving forward on H.R. 202, the Inspector General Access Act, which would give the DOJ Inspector General the authority he asked for to conduct a serious investigation into Acosta’s prosecutorial misconduct in the Epstein case. In March, Allied Progress ran full page adsin the home state newspapers of Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Ben Sasse (R-NE), and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) calling on these members of the Senate Judiciary Committee to stop obstructing the Inspector General Access Act.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
New Federal Charges Against Jeffrey Epstein Seen As A “Rebuke” Against Trump Labor Secretary Alex Acosta’s Past Leniency Toward The Billionaire Serial Sex Abuser
Federal Prosecutors Have Indicted Billionaire Jeffrey Epstein With Child Sex Trafficking Charges That Could Land Him In Prison For 45 Years…
Federal Prosecutors Have Indicted Jeffrey Epstein With Sex Trafficking Charges For “Engaging In Sex Acts With Dozens Of Vulnerable Minors” And Conspiring To Recruit Girls Into His Network—Charges That Could Carry A 45-Year Prison Sentence.
Federal Prosecutors Unsealed An Indictment Against Jeffrey Epstein Accusing Him Of Engaging In “Sex Trafficking And Sex Trafficking Conspiracy” From 2002 And 2005, Charges That Could Carry A 45-Year Prison Sentence. “The indictment unsealed in Manhattan […] said that from 2002 to 2005 Mr. Epstein and his employees engaged in a sex-trafficking scheme, bringing underage girls to his Upper East Side mansion and to his palatial compound in Palm Beach, Fla., to engage in sex acts with him. He is charged with sex trafficking and sex trafficking conspiracy. He faces a combined maximum sentence of up to 45 years in prison if convicted.” [Ali Watkins, “Nude Photos of Underage Girls Seized From Jeffrey Epstein Mansion,”The New York Times, 07/08/19]
- Jeffrey Epstein Is Being Held Without Bail. “Mr. Berman said prosecutors would seek to have Mr. Epstein held without bail, given his immense wealth and access to private jets.” [Ali Watkins, “Nude Photos of Underage Girls Seized From Jeffrey Epstein Mansion,”The New York Times, 07/08/19]
Jeffrey Epstein Is Accused Of “Engaging In Sex Acts With Dozens Of Vulnerable Minors, Some As Young As 14” And Asking Some Of The Victims To Recruit Other Minors Into His Network. “Mr. Epstein, 66, is accused of engaging in sex acts with dozens of vulnerable minors, some as young as 14, during naked massage sessions, then paying them hundreds of dollars in cash. He also asked some of the girls to recruit other underage girls, the indictment said.” [Ali Watkins, “Nude Photos of Underage Girls Seized From Jeffrey Epstein Mansion,”The New York Times, 07/08/19]
…The Indictment Is Seen As A “Rebuke” Against Former U.S. Attorney Alex Acosta’s Incredibly Lenient Plea Deal For Jeffrey Epstein In 2008.
The Indictment Is Seen As “An Implicit Rebuke” Against Former U.S. Attorney Alex Acosta’s 2008 Plea Deal That Allowed Epstein “To Avoid Federal Prosecution,” Leave Jail Six Days A Week, And Only Face State Prostitution Charges.
The U.S. Attorney’s Indictment Against Jeffrey Epstein “Was An Implicit Rebuke” To Alex Acosta’s 2008 Lenient Plea Deal For Jeffrey Epstein That “Allowed Him To Avoid Federal Prosecution.” “[U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman’s]decision to seek an indictment in Manhattan was an implicit rebuke to the decision by prosecutors in Miami in 2008 to enter an agreement with Mr. Epstein that allowed him to avoid federal prosecution and a possible life sentence.” [Ali Watkins, “Nude Photos of Underage Girls Seized From Jeffrey Epstein Mansion,”The New York Times, 07/08/19]
- In 2008, Then-U.S. Attorney Alex Acosta Oversaw A Plea Deal For Epstein That Permitted Him To Leave Jail Six Days A Week And Only Charged Him With State Prostitution Charges. “Under that deal, Mr. Epstein pleaded guilty to state prostitution charges and spent about a year in a Palm Beach jail and was required to register as a sex offender. He was permitted to leave the facility six days a week to work. Mr. Berman made it clear that his office was not bound by the 2008 agreement, which was overseen by Alexander Acosta, then the United States attorney in Miami, and now President Trump’s labor secretary.” [Ali Watkins, “Nude Photos of Underage Girls Seized From Jeffrey Epstein Mansion,”The New York Times, 07/08/19]
The New Charges Could Reveal More Details About Alex Acosta’s Light Treatment Of Jeffrey Epstein.
The Epstein Case Could Reveal More Details About How Much Alex Acosta And Even Donald Trump “Knew About Or Downplayed” Epstein’s Behavior.
The Developments In Epstein’s Case Are Expected To Reveal More About How Much Donald Trump And Alex Acosta “Knew About Or Downplayed” Allegations Against Epstein. “The case could shed new light not only on the allegations, which span years and countries, but also on the extent to which officials who have been linked to Mr. Epstein — including, most notably, President Trump and his labor secretary, Alexander Acosta — knew about or downplayed them.” [Vivian Wang, “Why the Trump White House Is Caught Up in the Jeffrey Epstein Scandal,”The New York Times, 07/07/19]