In case you missed this…
Federal prosecutors quietly announce they have DROPPED their case against Jeffrey Epstein’s jail guards, one day AFTER Ghislaine Maxwell’s guilty verdict
The two prison guards who admitted to falsifying records on the night Jeffrey Epstein purportedly killed himself have seen their charges dismissed by a federal judge.
Now some of our readers may have already read this report but many more it was a missed news item slipped out on December 31st 2021, with most news and political blogs still reporting on the Maxwell verdict this article just became part of the chatter.
The fact the plea bargain and acceptance took place in early December also missed the headlines it deserved.
As part of a plea deal, the pair agreed to complete 100 hours of community service and co-operate with an investigation by the justice department’s inspector general.
On 13 December, federal prosecutors filed a “nolle prosequi” – a legal document that declares they no longer wished to pursue the case – and said Ms Noel and Mr Thomas had satisfactorily complied with the agreement.
But the request did not appear in public records until Thursday 30th December 2021 – a day after Ghislaine Maxwell was found guilty of recruiting and trafficking young girls to be sexually abused by Epstein.
Noel and Thomas had been scheduled for a public hearing on December 16, but it was suddenly cancelled on December 15.
According to the legal notice made public just a day after Maxwell was found guilty of sex trafficking on the 29th of Dec 2021, it stated: Noel and Thomas ‘satisfactorily complied with the terms of the non-prosecution agreement and completed community service.
It is unclear why the document was not filed until 30 December, one day after Maxwell was found guilty.
WARNING GRAPHIC IMAGES
Maxwell is seen in 2005 with Jeffrey Epstein, who killed himself in jail in July 2019 while he was supposed to be under close watch
Epstein was found hanging in his cell at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in 2019 while awaiting trial for sex trafficking
Photos of Jeffrey Epstein’s dead body, his cell and the noose he used to take his own life
After they discovered the high-profile inmate dead at 6.30 am, the officers allegedly told a supervisor they had ‘messed up’ and ‘didn’t do any checks’ in the hours before he killed himself.
The two guards were allegedly shopping online for furniture and napping instead of checking on the millionaire pedophile in his jail cell just 15 feet away from them
The American financier had been awaiting trial on federal sex-trafficking charges, and had pleaded not guilty to sexually abusing dozens of girls, some as young as 14.
Epstein had been on suicide watch, he was found 10 August 2019, on his cell floor with bruises on his neck. He was taken off suicide watch about a week before his death, which meant he was less closely monitored but still supposed to be checked on every 30 minutes.
William Barr, the US attorney general at the time, was said to have been angered that such a high-profile inmate was able to kill himself while in federal custody.
Surveillance footage showed that no other people had entered the area where Epstein was held that evening, officials said.
In May 2021, Ms Noel and Mr Thomas admitted they had not conducted their required half-hourly checks on Epstein.
Instead, the prison workers, Tova Noel and Michael Thomas were accused of sleeping and browsing the internet instead of monitoring Epstein the night he killed himself in August 2019.
They were charged with lying on prison records to make it seem as though they had made required checks on the financier before he was found in his cell.
Epstein’s death and the revelation that he was able to kill himself while behind bars at one of the most secure jails in America was a major embarrassment for the Bureau of Prisons and cast a spotlight on the agency, which has also been besieged by serious misconduct in recent years.
Noel’s lawyer, Jason Foy, said his client had provided the government with insight into the “toxic culture, subpar training, staffing shortages, and dysfunctional management of the now closed” federal prison.
New York City’s medical examiner ruled Epstein’s death a suicide.
Epstein’s longtime associate, British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell, was convicted of helping recruit and groom underage girls for Epstein to abuse over at least a decade.
Maxwell is expected to appeal her conviction.
The case is U.S. v. Noel et al, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, No. 19-cr-00830.
Meanwhile, Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, is facing a civil case from Virginia Giuffre, who has accused him of sexually assaulting her when she was a teenager at the homes of Epstein and Maxwell.
Prince Andrew has consistently denied the allegations.