Disgraced millionaire Jeffrey Epstein, who was awaiting trial on federal sex trafficking charges, has died from an apparent suicide early Saturday morning. Epstein was denied bail earlier this summer as he was deemed a flight risk. The 66-year-old was reportedly placed on suicide watch after he allegedly tried to kill himself on July 23.
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Correction officers at Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan found Epstein’s body hanging in his cell around 7:30 am, the New York Times reported. He was transported to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead.
It’s currently unclear how he was able to hang himself since he was on suicide watch for the past three weeks. The FBI plans to investigate the matter.
Epstein, who was set to stand trial next year for allegedly sexually abusing dozens of minor girls in New York and Florida, pleaded not guilty to the charges and faced 45 years in prison if found guilty, ABC News reported.
The victims of Epstein voiced their frustration with his death. “I am extremely mad and hurt thinking he once again thought he was above us and took the easy way out … I still can’t wrap my head around the fact that’s really true,” said Jena-Lisa Jones, who was allegedly a victim of Epstein’s when she was 14. “God will have his judgement now.”
Epstein had many well-known celebrities and politicians in his inner circle, fueling speculation that he might be able to share potentially damaging information at his trial.
Even though Epstein is dead, The FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s office in Manhattan will continue the investigation into accomplices and additional evidence, sources told ABC News.
Last month, Epstein was found unconscious in his cell with marks around his neck. Authorities were in the middle of an investigation to determine if he was attacked by another inmate or if he had tried to commit suicide.
Given one alleged suicide attempt, it’s not far fetched to presume Epstein caused his own death. His death comes less than 24 hours after the court unsealed documents detailing his alleged illegal activity and those who were around him at the time, the Washington Post reported.