William Barr: Jeffrey Epstein’s death to be investigated by Justice Department watchdog

The Federal Bureau of Prisons confirmed Epstein’s death, saying he was found unresponsive in his cell on Saturday at New York’s Metropolitan Correctional Center around 6:30 a.m. ET. The bureau’s release called it “an apparent suicide,” and said the FBI is investigating. Two law enforcement sources told CNN that Epstein died by suicide.

Barr said he was “appalled” to learn of Epstein’s death while in federal custody awaiting trial.

Jeffrey Epstein has died by suicide, sources say

“I was appalled to learn that Jeffrey Epstein was found dead early this morning from an apparent suicide while in federal custody. Mr. Epstein’s death raises serious questions that must be answered,” Barr said in a statement. “In addition to the FBI’s investigation, I have consulted with the Inspector General who is opening an investigation into the circumstances of Mr. Epstein’s death.”

Epstein had been jailed since early July, when he pleaded not guilty to charges by New York federal prosecutors after an indictment accused him of sex trafficking dozens of underage girls, some as young as 14 years old.

The Southern District of New York’s investigation into Epstein’s conduct is ongoing after his death, a person familiar with the investigation said.

No foul play is suspected in Epstein’s death, a federal official told CNN. Authorities believe Epstein hanged himself, a law enforcement source told CNN.

Barr is livid at the events surrounding the apparent suicide of Epstein and is determined to get to the bottom of what happened, according to a source familiar with the situation.

Former deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein, who left the Justice Department in May, said in a tweet Saturday that “pedophiles facing federal criminal charges are at high risk for suicide.”

“It happened in several of my Maryland cases when defendants were released on bail,” Rosenstein, a former US attorney for the District of Maryland, wrote. “Detained pedophiles require special attention. Stopping people from harming themselves is difficult.”


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