On Thursday, Elie Honig, a former U.S. Attorney from the Southern District of New York (SDNY), raised questions over the charges against Jeffrey Epstein’s associate, Ghislaine Maxwell, who was arrested by the FBI the same day. As reported by Raw Story, Honig noted the staffing of the case, which is being handled by the Public Corruption Unit (PCU) as opposed to the sex crimes unit.
“SDNY just announced the Ghislaine Maxwell case – like the original Epstein case – is staffed by the Public Corruption Unit,” Honig tweeted.
“I worked at SDNY and did sex trafficking cases. They do NOT run out of Public Corruption – unless there is some potential angle against a public official.”
At the time of Epstein’s arrest, Honig also noted that the case was being handled by the PCU, as reported by Law & Crime. In addition, Gene Rossi, a trial analyst for Law & Crime, claimed the PCU grants prosecutors the ability to add more charges to the defendant, including corruption, money laundering, or tax-related crimes.
Former federal prosecutor Mimi Rocah also pointed out that Epstein’s case was handled by the PCU, but suggested at the time that was too early to determine why this was the case, New York Magazine reported.
“It could mean that a public official is being investigated or will be charged with Epstein. That could be a minor public figure or a major one. It could mean that SDNY is investigating misconduct in the plea that Epstein was given in 2008.”
Conversely, Rocah noted that the reason could be none of these possible scenarios.
Former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti also noted the unusual nature of the PCU handling the Epstein case. Like Rocah, he cautioned against reading into it until the charges were made public.
Maxwell has been charged with six counts: enticing a minor to travel to engage in illicit sex acts, transporting a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, conspiracy to entice a minor to travel to engage in illegal sex acts, conspiracy to transport minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, and two counts of perjury.
Maxwell has long been accused of arranging for Epstein’s sexual encounters with underage girls. One of Epstein’s accusers, Virginia Roberts Giuffre, claimed that Maxwell approached her with promises of money.
Speaking to The Inquisitr, attorney David Reischer claimed that Maxwell was unlikely to receive supervised release and said the trial would likely “look like a complete media circus.”