There is much speculation around the life and death of Jeffrey Epstein. It is a great possibility the evidence and the documents in the case will linger for months if not years. Documents and address books have been in possession of Judge Loretta Preska, who has the authority to keep the documents sealed or release the contents of approximately 1,000 names of famous people who have been associated with Epstein. A “John Doe” has requested for the names who were not involved directly to remain sealed through a New York Federal Judge. The 2015 defamation lawsuit was settled in 2017 when Virginia Roberts Giuffre had filed against Ghislaine Maxwell, who was Epstein’s partner in crime. The details of the case are now coming to light.
Some documents were unsealed, which held accountable former Governor Bill Richardson of New Mexico and Senator George Mitchell. Other prominent figures were also named who were tied with Epstein and Maxwell, who solicited the underaged girls in sex trafficking. Maxwell has repeatedly denied the charges brought against her as well as the New Mexico governor and Senator. They denied meeting her, and all of their attorneys are not commenting on the allegations.
As the “John Doe” requested from Judge Preska in a formal letter requesting the reconsideration on how the courts release the documents in the future concerning the case, it is said this “John Doe” has no idea the contents of the materials. The courts call him a “third party” in the case. It was stated the letter did say, “it is clear that these materials implicate the privacy and reputational interests of many persons other than Giuffre and Maxwell.” Both of their attorneys were present at the hearing as they debated if the documents should remain sealed, redacted, or released.
Maxwell’s lawyer Jeffrey S. Pagliuca stated, “The documents include 29 depositions that could include dozens, if not hundreds, of names. He said that in the attached documents, there are literally hundreds of pages of investigative reports that mention hundreds of people. He also stated there was “an address book” which holds 1,000 names. So multiple people are involved, and the people who are listed in the sealed documents may not even have the knowledge they are listed within the contents.
The legal teams will have to break down and go through each name and contact everyone on the list before any of the materials are released. Nick Akerman, who is a former New York federal prosecutor, stated the judge is viewing the privacy acts before a decision is made on the release. Still, he feels with time, some of the names will be released, but not all of them. He said, “It’ll be a matter of balancing their privacy against the public right to know what happened.”
Mimi Rocah, an MSNBC legal analyst and former federal prosecutor, stated, “Individuals could be implicated in the sex trafficking conspiracy if they were even minimally aware of the age of the girls being exploited and participated or furthered that exploitation in some way. But, just because someone’s name is listed in Epstein’s address book isn’t enough to make someone chargeable with a crime. We would need to know details about what the book was used for, and actual conduct of the individuals listed.”
As of recently, there has been “no agreement” on any party “as to what documents would remain sealed,” said Giuffre’s attorney Sigrid McCawley. McCawley proposed the documents be unsealed “in a staggered form, starting from the back of the docket and moving forward.” The proposal was also made only redacting “Social Security numbers, the names of minor victims, as well as any highly sensitive, personal medical information. People would be notified if their name appeared and be given the opportunity to object.”
Judge Pagliuca argued the system proposed would not work due to a large number of people having to be contacted. He stated, he wanted the documents separated into three stacks, one to be released, one to remain sealed, and one to have the individuals who were notified.
The Epstein case is one of the most suspicious instances in which conspiracy is a factor. After Epstein’s death, a federal judge dismissed the case on August 29. Both the Department of Justice and the prosecutors in New York are vowing to continue the investigations and bringing to justice any and all co-conspirators. This is a case that will haunt those involved for a long time to come.