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Jeffrey Epstein on Monday was charged in a Manhattan federal court for allegedly operating a sex-trafficking ring involving underage girls.
The 66-year-old billionaire was charged with sex-trafficking conspiracy and sex trafficking (of minors).
He subsequently pleaded not guilty and was ordered to be jailed until a bail hearing Thursday, The Associated Press reported.
An indictment unsealed Monday (Epstein was arrested Saturday) alleges that between 2002 and 2005 the financier with Hollywood and political ties orchestrated sex trafficking of minors in New York and Florida, during which time he allegedly had previous victims procure dozens more underage girls (as young as 14) for sex acts.
“Epstein created a vast network of underage victims for him to sexually exploit in locations including New York and Palm Beach,” the indictment states. “Epstein knew that many of his New York victims were underage, including because certain victims told him their age.”
The indictment also claims friends and employees helped Epstein with his network of child victims, including scheduling sexual encounters.
In 2008, Epstein pleaded guilty to state charges of solicitation of prostitution but avoided federal charges.
He was sentenced to 18 months in jail. Later, his sentence was reduced to 13 months, with one year of parole, while incarcerated.
Epstein’s attorney could not immediately be reached for comment.
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