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Epstein death resulted from ‘perfect storm of screw-ups’, US attorney general says

His comments come days after two prison officers responsible for guarding Epstein were charged with falsifying records.

Jeffrey Epstein
Jeffrey Epstein
Image: AP/PA Images

THE DEATH OF Jeffrey Epstein was the result of a “perfect storm of screw-ups”, US Attorney General William Barr has said.

His comments came days after two prison officers responsible for guarding Epstein were charged with falsifying records.

Tova Noel and Michael Thomas are accused of sleeping and browsing the internet instead of checking on Epstein.

The billionaire was found dead on 10 August in a federal jail in Manhattan as he awaited trial charged with one count of sex trafficking of minors and one count of conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of minors.

A coroner ruled that he died by suicide.

In an interview with The Associated Press, Barr said his concerns were prompted by the numerous irregularities at the Manhattan jail where Epstein was being held.

However, he said after the FBI and the Justice Department’s inspector general continued to investigate, he realised there were a “series” of mistakes made that gave Epstein the chance to take his own life.

“I can understand people who immediately, whose minds went to sort of the worst-case scenario because it was a perfect storm of screw-ups,” Barr said.

Barr said federal prosecutors in New York are making good progress while they continue to investigate allegations against Epstein, and he is hopeful people “will see results soon”.

A lawyer for Thomas claimed both guards are being “scapegoated”.

Noel’s lawyer said he hopes to “reach a reasonable agreement” with the government to avoid a trial.

Includes reporting by Press Association and Associated Press

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