Justice Department opens probe into Jeffrey Epstein plea deal

The Department of Justice has opened an investigation into Secretary of Labor Alex Acosta’s role in negotiating a controversial plea deal with a wealthy New York investor accused of molesting more than 100 underage girls in Palm Beach.

The probe is in response to a request by Sen. Ben Sasse, a a Nebraska Republican and member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, who raised questions about the case following a series of stories in the Miami Herald. The Herald articles detailed how Acosta, then the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and other DOJ attorneys worked hand-in-hand with defense attorneys to cut a lenient plea deal with multimillionaire Jeffrey Epstein in 2008.

The Herald’s three-part series, Perversion of Justice,’ was cited by Assistant Attorney General Stephen E. Boyd in his letter to Sasse. DOJ’s Office of Professional Responsibility will head the investigation, he said.

“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,’’ wrote Boyd in the letter dated Wednesday.

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