I’ll leave it to the defense lawyers to comment on the overall approach taken here but this proposed language on settling several related civil suits sure seems unusual:
On its first draft in September 2007, it required that Epstein pay an attorney – tapped by the U.S. Attorney’s Office and approved by Epstein – to represent some of the victims in civil suits they had filed against Epstein. That attorney is prominent Miami lawyer Bob Josefsberg.
Former prosecutor Johnson said he has never seen a provision like that before.
But an addendum to the agreement signed the following month struck Epstein’s duty to pay Josefsberg if he and the victims did not accept a settlement and instead pursued litigation.
The agreement, signed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Maria Villafana, does not expressly state whether any victims were contacted or consulted before the deal was made.
Attorney Brad Edwards of Fort Lauderdale, who represents three of the young women, believes that none of the between 30 and 40 woman identified as victims in the federal investigation were told of the deal. Edwards said his clients were still receiving letters in the mail months afterwards saying the U.S. Attorney’s Office assuring them Epstein would be prosecuted.
“Never consulting the victims is probably the most outrageous aspect of it…” Edwards said. “It taught them that someone with money can buy his way out of anything. It’s outrageous and embarrassing for United States Attorney’s Office and the State Attorneys Office.”
Epstein now faces many civil lawsuits filed by the women, who are represented by a variety attorneys. In many, the facts alleged are the same: that Epstein had a predilection for teenage girls, identified poor, vulnerable ones and lured them to his home via other young women. The teens describe ascending a staircase lined with nude photographs of young girls and to the spa room where Epstein would appear in a small towel.
Former Circuit Judge Bill Berger, who represents one of the victims, and The Palm Beach Post sought the unsealing of the agreement. Berger refers to it as a “sweetheart deal.”
Why would there be a proposed provision requiring payment only to one attorney who represents only some of the victims? Has anyone ever heard of this before?
BTW, Epstein you are one sick dude.