This Could Get Very Ugly

There are a lot of questions about how the Jeffrey Epstein trial and sentencing was handled in Florida. A lot of evidence has remained secret, and a lot of circumstantial evidence seems to require a much harsher sentence than was given. The Miami Herald has followed this story and done a lot of investigative reporting on the case.

Yesterday The Miami Herald posted an article about the latest twist in the Jeffrey Epstein case.

The article reports:

Two mysterious parties, labeling themselves Jane Doe and John Doe, have filed separate legal briefs in an attempt to limit the public release of personal information that could connect them to an underage sex trafficking operation allegedly run by New York financier Jeffrey Epstein and his partner, Ghislaine Maxwell.

Jane Doe, represented by Kerrie Campbell, a Washington-based gender equality lawyer, appears to be a victim who wants to remain unidentified, but indicated she is amicable to the release of some information — as long as it doesn’t identify her, court documents filed this week show.

The other party, John Doe, submitted a brief in support of Maxwell, who continues to mount a last-ditch legal campaign to keep court records that allegedly contain details of their sex exploits involving young girls — and other third party people who may be involved — under seal.

It’s not clear whether the latest challenges will delay release of the documents, said Sanford Bohrer, attorney for the Miami Herald, which filed an action to unseal the files last year as part of its investigation into Epstein called “Perversion of Justice.’’

The article concludes:

Epstein, who was not party to the lawsuit, has denied he ever ran a sex trafficking operation. In 2005, he came under investigation by Palm Beach police, accused of molesting three dozen underage girls by luring them to his mansion under the guise of paying them for massages.

Eventually, under a secret plea deal negotiated by then-Miami U.S. Attorney Alexander Acosta, Epstein pleaded guilty to two prostitution charges in state court and served 13 months in the county jail, where he enjoyed liberal work release privileges despite that being prohibited for sex offenders.

In November, the Miami Herald published a series of articles that deconstructed how Epstein and his lawyers manipulated the criminal justice system, working secretly with federal prosecutors to conceal and minimize his crimes. The handling of the case is now under investigation by the Department of Justice.

On March 4, some of Epstein’s lawyers wrote an op-ed letter to The New York Times denying that Epstein ran a sex trafficking ring and contending that the number of women involved in his criminal case was “vastly exaggerated.’’

Acosta, who is now President Trump’s secretary of labor, has come under pressure by some in Congress to resign his post, but the president on Tuesday expressed his support.

This is a story to keep an eye on. There are a lot of people involved in the Epstein story who would very much like to keep their names secret. We know a lot of their names because some of the flight logs of the plane to “Lolita Island” have been released. If more of the records regarding the Epstein trial are made public, there are a number of public figures who will have a lot of explaining to do.

This Could Take Some Very Interesting Turns

This article is based on two articles posted yesterday–one in The New York Post and one at Fox News.

The New York Post reports:

The Justice Department has opened an investigation into its own possible misconduct in the wrist-slap prosecution of multimillionaire serial pedophile Jeffrey Epstein.

The investigation is being conducted by the department’s Office of Professional Responsibility, according to MSNBC.

“OPR has now opened an investigation into allegations that Department attorneys may have committed professional misconduct in the manner in which the Epstein criminal matter was resolved,” Assistant Attorney General Stephen E. Boyd said in a Feb. 6 letter to Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.).

“OPR will thoroughly investigate the allegations of misconduct that have been raised and, consistent with its practice, will share its results with you at the conclusion of its investigation as appropriate,” he wrote.

Sasse, a member of the Judiciary Committee, had asked last month for an investigation into Justice’s treatment of Epstein, citing a Miami Herald series on the pervy hedge fund manager’s crimes and the sweetheart deal that let him off the hook.

Senator Sasse has a reputation as someone who opposes President Trump.

Fox News reports:

The Justice Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) has opened an investigation into a generous plea bargain awarded in 2007 by a top Florida prosecutor — who now serves as President Trump’s secretary of labor — to a wealthy, Clinton-connected financier and sex offender accused of abusing underage sex slaves.

…Alexander Acosta negotiated what critics are calling a sweetheart, potentially corrupt plea deal with Jeffrey Epstein when he was the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida. The arrangement required Epstein to pay restitution to dozens of victims, but offered a variety of unusual concessions as part of a non-prosecution agreement.

So let’s back up and look at this for a minute. Jeffrey Epstein was (and is) very well connected politically. Bill Clinton is directly involved in this scandal–there are records of him flying to Epstein’s island on Epstein’s plane. However, the Clintons have lost a lot of their political sway in the past two years. It is quite possible that this investigation will snare Bill Clinton, but it will also make President Trump look bad because he appointed Alexander Acosta as Secretary of Labor. For a never-Trumper like Senator Sasse, it’s a win-win situation–the Republicans get Bill Clinton and he gets President Trump.

The matter did come up during Alexander Acosta’s confirmation hearing.

Fox News reports:

In 2017, Virginia Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine asked Acosta about the plea deal during his confirmation hearings.

“Why cut a non-prosecution deal despite your staff saying you shouldn’t?” Kaine asked.

“That is not accurate,” Acosta, who at the time was dean of Florida International University’s law school, responded. ““It was a broadly-held decision. … The grand jury recommended a single count of solicitation not involving minors. That would have resulted in zero jail time, zero registration as a sexual offender and zero restitution for the victims in this case.”

Instead, Acosta said, he pushed to escalate Epstein’s case to the federal level, even as he recognized that proving all of the allegations against him would be difficult.

“It was highly unusual where a U.S. attorney becomes involved in a matter that has already gone to the grand jury at the state level,” Acosta told senators. “We decided that Mr. Epstein should plead guilty to two years, register as a sexual offender, and concede liability so the victims should get restitution in this matter.”

Asked about keeping the deal confidential, Acosta suggested that he was following common practice.

Jeffrey Epstein’s sentence was a joke. The Department of Justice should investigate it. However, considering some of the bias shown in the recent actions of the Department of Justice, I have no idea what to expect.

Western Culture Is A Good Thing For Women

Despite what the feminists rage, western culture and its dreaded patriarchy are actually protective of women. This was illustrated recently by a decision in a French court. The Voice of Europe posted an article about the case on November 22.

The article reports:

A refugee from Bangladesh was tried by a French court and was acquitted of the rape of a high school girl. The verdict was handed down yesterday.

The young man also sexually assaulted another young girl. He was charged with both cases but acquitted of the rape.

According to the defense the refugee has ‘different cultural norms’ or ‘cultural codes’ and could have misinterpreted the contact with the girl.

Experts who investigated the man, described him as narcissistic and self-centred and that in the male culture of Bangladesh, his country of origin, “women are relegated to the status of sexual object”.

…In custody, the refugee says that the girl was consenting and the police closed the case. After which the young girl attempts suicide in late 2015 was hospitalised for a week.

Four months later the refugee was arrested again and the final verdict was handed down yesterday.

The refugee is acquitted of the rape but sentenced to two years in prison as a suspended sentence for the sexual assault of the first victim.

He will be registered in the sex offender file, according to the court’s decision.

I guess we should be grateful that he will at least be registered as a sex offender.

Who Gets Hurt In Our Hook-Up Society?

I realize that things have changed since the age of dinosaurs when I was dating. I don’t know how anyone survives the current dating scene unscathed. I assume there are people out there with some sort of moral values, but they don’t seem to be the ones getting the publicity. Even nice kids can make mistakes, though, and sometimes the cost of those mistakes is way out of proportion to the mistake.

RTV6 posted a story about a 19-year old boy from Indiana who is now a registered sex offender because a girl he hooked up with lied about her age. She told him she was 17 when she was 14. I am not condoning the behavior of either teenager, but I am wondering why he is the one who has to pay a very high price.

The story reports:

According to court documents, the girl’s mother told the judge, “I don’t want him to be a sex offender because he really is not.” Her daughter added, “I feel nothing should happen to Zach.”

But the judge condemned what he called a culture of “meet, hook-up, have sex, sayonara, totally inappropriate behavior,” according to court documents.

Zach was sentenced to 90 days in jail and ordered to register as a sex offender.

“The hardest part probably for me was to see him being led away, because he turned and looked at us, and it’s like, we want to give him a hug, and you don’t even have that opportunity,” said his father, Les Anderson.

Zach will be listed on the sex offender registry until 2040. His parents say the label is incredibly unfair.

I have no problem with the judge condemning the behavior and the hook-up culture, but I am not sure what is accomplished by declaring this young man a sex offender.

Somehow This Just Doesn’t Make Me Feel Safer

CNS News posted a story yesterday that illustrates one way common sense has departed from out government. The headline of the story is “ICE Released 2,837 Convicted Alien Sex Offenders.”

The article reports:

The 2,837 sex offenders represented five percent of the 59,347 deportable aliens that have been released from detention under the supervision of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), according to the GAO (Government Accountability Office) report, which was released Thursday.

“There are circumstances in which criminal aliens who have been ordered removed from the United States – including those convicted of a sex offense – cannot be removed,” the report states. “For example, a criminal alien may not be removed because the designated country will not accept the alien’s return.”

The obvious question here is, “Why didn’t we just keep them is jail?”

In explaining why ICE was required to release these criminals, the GAO referred to the 2001 Supreme Court case Zadvydas v. Davis. In that case the court ruled that the indefinite detention of removable aliens for greater than six months is unconstitutional unless there is “significant likelihood of removal in the reasonably foreseeable future.” I guess I don’t understand why the fact that the person had committed a crime might be a more important reason for detaining them than the fact that they are here illegally.

The article reports:

“According to the data that ICE-ERO provided to us,” said the GAO report, “of 4359 alien sex offenders who were removed from the country between January and August 2012, 220 of them (5 percent) had previously been removed but subsequently returned to the United States and were arrested for another offense.”

Also, about five percent of released aliens sex offenders did not register as sex offenders in the communities where they settled as required by federal law. “The risk that alien sex offenders will reside in U.S. communities without being registered is increased,” the GAO concluded.

It seems as if we are extending rights to illegal aliens that American citizens do not have.

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We Need To Do A Better Job Of Protecting Our Children

Fox News in Boston reported that 119 registered sex offenders in Massachusetts have the same addresses as child care providers.

The article reports:

State Auditor Suzanne Bump is asking a state agency to regularly cross-reference the addresses of registered sex offenders and child care providers following disturbing new information revealed in an audit.

The recommendation was made to the Department of Early Education and Care on Wednesday after an audit revealed 119 instances where the address listed for a Level 2 or Level 3 sex offender was the same as an EEC-licensed child care provider.

Bump’s office also says that in four of the 119 cases, the EEC revoked the provider’s license because its operators had prior knowledge of the registered sex offender status, but did not report it to the department.

The current law requires Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) checks, but not Sex Offender Registry Information (SORI) checks on child-care providers or people living at the same address as at home child-care facilities.

Daycare is a necessity for most families today. We need to make sure that the children of families who use daycare facilities can be sure that their children are safe. Better background checks and checks against the SORI would be a good step in that direction.

Our Legal System Turned Upside Down

CBN News reported yesterday that 7th U.S. Circuit of Appeals in Chicago has struck down an Indiana law that bars sex offenders from using social networking websites.

The article reports:

The American Civil Liberties Union filed the suit on behalf of sex offenders, including a man who served three years for child exploitation.

Supporters of the law have stated that they will work to put together a new law that will get past the Court of Appeals. It should be noted that the law did not forbid sex offenders from using the Internet–the restriction was only only on the use of social networking websites. The question here is, “Are we willing to protect our children from people who have already shown that they prey on children?”

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