Victims slam ‘cowardly’ Epstein after suicide
Lawyers for Jeffrey Epstein's sex slaves in an underage sex trafficking ring have condemned the billionaire's "cowardly and shameful suicide".
Cairns mother-of-three Virginia Guiffre has been the brave figurehead in a fight for justice and chief accuser of the financier who was found dead in his Manhattan jail cell overnight.
The now 35-year-old far North Queensland charity worker alleges in court documents unsealed in the United States on the weekend she was lent for sex to rich and powerful world figures two decades ago.
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The 66-year-old reportedly hanged himself in his prison cell while awaiting trial for sex trafficking but wild conspiracies are swirling about how he could have killed himself when he had just been on suicide watch.
The FBI and US Inspector-General are investigating serious questions about his death with reports of a malfunction in the surveillance cameras at the time inside the jail.
Lawyer Sigrid McCawley, who represents Mrs Guiffre and other victims, said the timing of Epstein's alleged suicide was no coincidence.
"The reckoning of accountability begun by the voices of brave and truthful victims should not end with Jeffrey Epstein's cowardly and shameful suicide,'' she said, in a statement to The Courier-Mail.
"The fact that Epstein took his own life within 24 hours of the unsealing of detailed and devastating documents and exhibits in Virginia Giuffre's lawsuit against Ghislaine Maxwell, which informed the public of the scope, scale and sophistication of the international sex trafficking operation Epstein conducted, is no coincidence.
"We are hopeful that the government will continue to investigate and will focus on those who participated and facilitated Epstein's horrifying sex trafficking scheme that damaged so many.
"The victims await the true justice they have sought and deserve."
In documents unsealed in the defamation case, Mrs Guiffre alleges she was forced to have sex with dozens of high-profile names including Prince Andrew, Duke of York, former Maine Senator George Mitchell and ex-New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson. All men have vehemently denied the allegations.
Epstein's lawyer Marc Fernich said many have "blood on their hands" over his client's apparent suicide with an autopsy pending.