Prosecutor Knew Jeffrey Epstein Was a Pedophile When Arguing for Leniency
Confidential state assessment considered Epstein to be a highly dangerous offender
The Manhattan DA’s office was already in possession of graphic evidence that billionaire Jeffrey Epstein was a dangerous pedophile when the prosecutor fought for leniency during his sex offender registry hearing in 2011.
Before the hearing, the then-deputy chief of Sex Crimes, Jennifer Gaffney was handed a confidential state assessment considered Epstein to be a highly dangerous pedophile that is likely to continue preying on young girls, according to the DA's appellate brief following the hearing.
Since 2011, the brief has been sealed, but the New York Post recently obtained it.
It describes how the state assessment’s findings deemed Epstein was dangerous enough to be monitored in New York as a level three offender.
According to the NY Post: In making its assessment, the NY State Board of Examiners of Sex Offenders evaluated the sworn, corroborated accounts of numerous young girls who had been lured into Epstein’s Palm Beach, Fla., a compound in 2005 and 2006.
Girls aged 14 to 17 years old were recruited and paid $200 to $1,000 to give Epstein erotic massages that included sexual contact, intercourse, and rape, Palm Beach cops found.
Epstein pleaded guilty in Palm Beach to abusing just one of these young victims and was required to register as a sex offender in New York since he had an Upper East Side home.
Manhattan prosecutors were aware the state board had assigned Epstein a risk assessment of 130, a number that is “solidly above the 110 qualifying number for level three,” with “absolutely no basis for downward departure,” the brief notes.
Nevertheless, Gaffney argued that he should be labeled a level one offender, the least restrictive, which would keep him off the online database.
Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Ruth Pickholz sided with the board and against Gaffney in designating Epstein a level three offender.
Epstein appealed, and the DA’s change-of-heart brief was agreeing that Epstein deserved the highest level of monitoring was filed in opposition to that appeal.
The appellate division ultimately upheld that Epstein is monitored as a level three offender, and he remains on the registry.
“Our prosecutor made a mistake,” Danny Frost, spokesman for DA Cyrus Vance Jr., told The Post in December when news broke that Epstein’s sweetheart Palm Beach deal had buried evidence he had allegedly abused some 80 girls and young women.
Reached late Thursday, Frost declined to say who above Gaffney might have approved her decision to go easy on Epstein.
Vance’s office has insisted that he was unaware of the sex-offender registry hearing at the time.
Epstein was suspected by the FBI of running an international sex trafficking operation involving minors, and federal prosecutors had drafted a 53-page indictment that was shelved after Acosta signed off on a non-prosecution agreement in September 2007.