Multiple major news outlets are reporting tonight that the FBI and federal prosecutors at the SDNY arrested Jeffrey Epstein tonight on charges of sex trafficking of minors. This is sending major shockwaves for a few reasons – not the least of which is that he’s an old friend of Donald Trump. There are clues that this whole thing may be heading in Trump’s direction.
Former prosecutor Alexander Acosta previously gave Jeffrey Epstein a ridiculously lenient plea deal to avoid child molestation charges. Donald Trump then appointed Acosta to be his Secretary of Labor, causing observers to ask if Trump did this as a reward for protecting his friend Epstein. In any case the SDNY has managed to work around this bad plea deal by hitting Epstein with new charges, as he was allegedly trafficking the underage women across state lines – hence tonight’s sex trafficking charges. One detail jumps off the page.
The Daily Beast says that the new Epstein case is being handled by the Public Corruption Unit of the SDNY. To be clear, that only happens when a public official is somehow involved in the case. Former FBI Assistant Director Frank Figliuzzi tweeted that we should all “Watch for the current Secretary of Labor; Watch for why this is being handled by the Public Corruption section at SDNY.”
This of course leads to a number of scenarios. If Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta is indeed the public official involved in this new case against Jeffrey Epstein, it wouldn’t simply be because Acosta gave out an absurd plea deal; that in and of itself would not be a criminal act. Acosta would only be a target if he allegedly did something specifically corrupt in exchange for giving the plea deal. That said, we don’t know for sure that it’s Acosta; that answer should come on Monday, when the case is presented in court.
It’ll be bad enough for Donald Trump if his Secretary of Labor is a target in a criminal case involving an alleged sex trafficker. It’ll be far worse for Trump if it turns out he was involved in Acosta’s decision to let Jeffrey Epstein off the hook. There are also longtime unconfirmed rumors across social media that Trump was involved in Epstein’s alleged sex crimes; we don’t need to tell you how bad that would be for Trump. In any case, look for everyone involved to scramble and panic between now and Monday.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report