Employees at the prison where convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein took his own life last week are not cooperating with investigators, it was claimed.
Attorney General William Barr sent two senior officials from the Department of Justice to speak with staff at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in order to get information on Epstein’s death.
The officials have been on site since Thursday as the FBI and the Justice Department’s inspector general are investigating conditions at MCC in Downtown Manhattan.
Employees at the prison where convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, (pictured), took his own life last week are not cooperating with investigators, it was claimed
Barr claimed that officials uncovered ‘serious irregularities’ at the jail, a senior DOJ official told Fox News.
New York City’s medical examiner ruled Jeffrey Epstein’s death a suicide Friday, confirming after nearly a week of speculation that the financier faced with sex trafficking charges hanged himself in his jail cell.
Epstein, 66, was found dead at the Metropolitan Correctional Center on August 10, prompting outrage that such a high-profile prisoner could have gone unwatched at the Manhattan federal lockup.
He was found with several broken bones in his neck, including the hyoid bone, when guards were doing their morning rounds last Saturday.
Officials with the Federal Bureau of Prisons, (BOP), have also been at the Manhattan facility to assist with the investigation as speculation and rumor surrounds Epstein’s death.
A separate BOP ‘After Action Team’ went to MCC earlier this week in an effort to examine what happened the night Epstein died, Fox News reported.
It is part of the protocol whenever a significant event takes place at a prison.
It also emerged that 20 of 21 prison guard posts were filled between 4pm and midnight non August 9, the day before Epstein was found unresponsive in his cell, Fox News reported.
Between midnight and 8am on August 10, the day he was found unresponsive, 18 of 19 guard posts were filled.
Attorney General William Barr, (pictured), sent justice officials to speak to staff at Metropolitan Correctional Facility over Epstein’s death. Reports emerged that jail staffers have not been initially cooperative with investigators
It has emerged that that 20 of 21 prison guard posts were filled between 4 pm and 12 am on August 9, the day before Epstein was found unresponsive in his cell. Pictured is an illustration of the cell where Epstein was housed
Ten of those 18 employees were working overtime and all but one of those were doing so voluntarily.
Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Barbara Sampson said in a statement that she made the suicide determination on Epstein’s death ‘after careful review of all investigative information, including complete autopsy findings.’
Sampson’s announcement came as a Justice Department official told The Associated Press that some prison staffers believed to have relevant information aren’t cooperating with investigators.
Epstein, a multi-millionaire who once counted Britain’s Prince Andrew and US President Donald Trump as friends, was charged with one count of sex trafficking of minors and one count of conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of minors.
There was speculation following Epstein’s initial attempt that he had been trying to get away from his prior cellmate – former NYPD officer Nicholas Tartaglione, (pictured)
Epstein, 66, was found dead at the Metropolitan Correctional Center, (pictured), on August 10, prompting outrage that such a high-profile prisoner could have gone unwatched
According to prosecutors, Epstein sexually exploited dozens of teenagers at his homes in Manhattan and Florida between 2002 and 2005.
He denied the charges but faced up to 45 years in jail if found guilty.
Epstein’s lawyers said Friday they were ‘not satisfied with the conclusions of the medical examiner’ and would conduct their own investigation into his death, including demanding to see video footage from the jail.
‘It is indisputable that the authorities violated their own protocols,’ the lawyers said, decrying the ‘harsh, even medieval conditions’ at the facility.
The warden of the Metropolitan Correctional Center where Epstein was housed has been temporarily reassigned and two guards put on administrative leave pending an investigation.
The guards were reportedly asleep when they should have been checking on Epstein.
Epstein had been placed on suicide watch last month after he was found on his cell floor on July 23 with bruising on his neck
Jail guards on duty the night he died are suspected of falsifying log entries to show they were checking on inmates every half-hour as required.
A guard in Epstein’s unit was working a fifth straight day of overtime and another guard was working mandatory overtime, sources said earlier this week.
U.S. District Judge Richard Berman, who is in charge of the criminal case against Epstein, asked the jail’s warden this week for answers about the earlier episode, writing in a letter Monday that it had ‘never been definitively explained’.
The warden replied that an internal investigation was completed but that he couldn’t provide information because the findings were being incorporated into investigations into Epstein’s death.
There was speculation following Epstein’s initial attempt that he had been trying to get away from his prior cellmate – former NYPD officer Nicholas Tartaglione – who is accused of killing four men over a drug deal gone wrong.
Tartaglione, who was questioned over the incident, said that he instead saved Epstein’s life after finding him unconscious in their cell and calling for help.
His lawyer told NBC that Tartaglione had been cleared of any wrongdoing just a few days before the medical examiner released the autopsy findings.
‘We’ve always maintained Nick did nothing wrong and that’s clearly been borne out here by the jail itself,’ attorney Bruce Barket said.
Revelations of the broken bones in his neck lead to speculation that his death was a homicide and conspiracy theories continue to swirl almost a week after his body was found
Jeffrey Epstein’s body is brought out by medical examiners at lower Manhattan hospital in New York and put into an SUV and taken to the Medical Examiners office
He was moved out of the cell he shared with Epstein while the billionaire was on suicide watch.
Epstein had been placed on suicide watch last month after he was found on his cell floor on July 23 with bruising on his neck.
The medical examiner’s ruling came a day after two more women sued Jeffrey Epstein’s estate, saying he sexually abused them.
The suit, filed Thursday in a federal court in New York, claims the women were working as hostesses at a popular Manhattan restaurant in 2004 when they were recruited to give Epstein massages. One was 18 at the time. The other was 20.
The lawsuit says an unidentified female recruiter offered the hostesses hundreds of dollars to provide massages to Epstein, saying he ‘liked young, pretty girls to massage him,’ and wouldn’t engage in any unwanted touching. The women say Epstein groped them anyway.
One plaintiff now lives in Japan, the other in Baltimore. They seek $100 million in damages, citing depression, anxiety, anger and flashbacks.
Other lawsuits, filed over many years by other women, accused him of hiring girls as young as 14 or 15 to give him massages, then subjecting them to sex acts.