U.S. District Judge Kenneth Marra has refused to invalidate a secret agreement that allowed deceased sexual predator Jeffrey Epstein to avoid federal charges, issuing a ruling which indicated that his death effectively rendered the case moot.
Epstein’s alleged victims filed a lawsuit with hopes to expose the federal government’s inappropriate behavior in how they handled the Epstein prosecution. Marra’s ruling has effectively thrown out that case, and the federal judge elaborated on his decision a 15-page order released on Monday.
“As a result of Mr. Epstein’s death, there can be no criminal prosecution against him and the Court cannot consider granting this relief to the victims,” Marra wrote.
Marra also failed to remove immunity for four women and other unnamed individuals who were allegedly Epstein’s accomplices in helping him groom teenage women for his illicit sex operation with his ruling.
“Since the alleged co-conspirators are not parties to this case, any ruling this Court makes that purports to affect their rights under the NPA would merely be advisory,” he wrote.
Although Marra admitted that the rights of the accusers were violated under the federal Crime Victims’ Rights Act, his refused to remedy the injustice that was done to them with his ruling. He even admitted that accusers “are not receiving much, if any, of the relief they sought” in his order.
Former federal judge and University of Utah law professor Paul Cassell and Fort Lauderdale lawyer Bradley Edwards, who represented the victims in the lawsuit, are considering an appeal of Marra’s decision.
“We’re disappointed that no action will be taken to remedy the violation of the victims’ rights act,” Cassell said in a statement about the ruling.
Jack Scarola, another attorney who is representing Epstein’s accusers, voiced his displeasure with the ruling as well.
“Nevertheless, we do take solace in recognizing the role that a decade of legal work has played in focusing public attention on the failures of the criminal justice system in dealing with with Epstein’s horrendous crimes,” he said in a statement.
“The next chapter is making sure that every one of his co-conspirators is held fully accountable for their participation in those (horrendous) crimes and every government official is held to answer for allowing them and Epstein to escape a full measure of justice,” Scarola added.
The deal that Epstein received in 2008, under the jurisdiction of President Donald Trump’s former Labor Secretary Alex Acosta, allowed the late child sex fiend to serve only 13 months in jail with work release after he pleaded guilty to state prostitution charges.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has ordered a new investigation into the Palm Beach County Sheriff’ Office’s handling of Epstein while he was on work release after learning that he was involved in sexual activity while serving his sentence.
While the fall-out resulting from Epstein’s life of predatory behavior is far from over, this ruling shows how his untimely and bizarre death by hanging in a New York City jail cell is impeding his many victims from receiving the justice and closure that they deserve.
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