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Palm Beach Circuit Court Judge Releases Transcripts of 2006 Grand Jury Investigation of Jeffrey Epstein's Sex Trafficking

Jeffrey Epstein's final mugshot before his death
U.S. Department of Justice via Wikipedia
Jeffrey Epstein's final mugshot before his death

Florida - Monday July 1, 2024: A Florida judge released Monday afternoon the transcripts of a 2006 grand jury investigation that looked into sex trafficking and rape allegations made against the late millionaire and financier Jeffrey Epstein.

The judge's release of the approximately 150 pages came as a surprise as he had scheduled a hearing for next week on when and how to release them. Gov. Ron DeSantis had signed a bill in February allowing the release on Monday or any time thereafter that Circuit Judge Luis Delgado ordered.

“The details in the record will be outrageous to decent people,” Delgado wrote in his order. “The testimony taken by the Grand Jury concerns activity ranging from grossly unacceptable to rape — all of the conduct at issue is sexually deviant, disgusting, and criminal.”

After the grand jury investigation, Epstein cut a deal with South Florida federal prosecutors in 2008 that allowed him to escape more severe federal charges and instead plead guilty to state charges of procuring a person under 18 for prostitution and solicitation of prostitution. He was sentenced to 1.5 years in the Palm Beach County jail system, followed by a year of house arrest. He was required to register as a sex offender.

That deal has been widely criticized as too lenient. Epstein in 2018 was charged with federal sex trafficking crimes in New York — where he also had a mansion that was a scene of abuse — after the Miami Herald published a series of articles that renewed public attention on the case, including interviews with some victims who had been pursuing civil lawsuits against him. Epstein was 66 when he killed himself in a New York City jail cell in August 2019, federal officials say.

Delgado in his order called Epstein “the most infamous pedophile in American history."

“For almost 20 years, the story of how Jeffrey Epstein victimized some of Palm Beach County’s most vulnerable has been the subject of much anger and has at times diminished the public’s perception of the criminal justice system,” Delgado wrote.

“Epstein is indeed notorious and infamous and is widely reported to have flaunted his wealth while cavorting with politicians, billionaires, and even British Royalty," he continued. "It is understandable that given those reports the public has a great curiosity about what was widely reported by news (agencies) as 'special treatment’ regarding his prosecution.”