NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – On Saturday, Aug. 10, 2019, financier Jeffrey Epstein was found dead in his jail cell at the Manhattan Correctional Center, far downtown from the Upper East Side townhouse where he allegedly had orchestrated a child sex trafficking ring.
Here’s a timeline of the last criminal case against Epstein and highlights from his crimes investigated more than a decade earlier.
Jan. 20, 1953: Jeffrey Epstein born in Brooklyn, New York.
Summer 1974: Epstein begins teaching physics and math classes at the Dalton School on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. There he connects with a student’s father, Alan Greenberg, who was the chief executive officer of Bear Stearns.
1976 to 1981: Epstein leaves teaching and rises through the ranks at Bear Stearns as first a trader, then limited partner.
1981: Epstein founds Intercontinental Assets Group Inc., a consulting firm that soon attracted several very wealthy international clients. Throughout the 1980s he also works with Steven Hoffenberg to develop a strategy of corporate raiding to take over vulnerable corporations. (Hoffenberg would later plead guilty to SEC charges in connection to $475 million in fraud called at the time “one of the largest Ponzi schemes in history.”)
The 1990s: Epstein founds his financial management firm, which included the CEO of Victoria’s Secret as a client.
The 2000s: Epstein continues to invest millions in various funds, including $57 million into the Bear Stearns High-Grade Structured Credit Strategies Enhanced Leverage hedge fund – a fund found to be leveraged 17:1 and a ticking time bomb that would eventually factor into Bear Stearns collapse in the financial crisis of 2008.
March 2005: A 14-year-old girl becomes the earliest underage victim to formally accuse Epstein of molestation, citing an incident at his Palm Beach mansion. According to investigators, the girl was brought from her high school by another teenager to give Epstein a massage in exchange for money.
Oct. 20, 2015: Investigators execute a search warrant on Epstein’s Florida home as the case brings forward several other teenage sex victims.
May 2006: Police charge Epstein with multiple counts of unlawful sex acts in a minor. State Attorney Barry Krischer refers the case to a grand jury.
June 2006: The grand jury hears from only one accuser and returns an indictment of one count of solicitation of prostitution. Accusations from other victims, including minors, are not reflected in the decision.
July 2006: After the Palm Beach grand jury, the FBI opens a federal investigation on Epstein that involves multiple accusers in Florida, New York and elsewhere in the United States.
Summer 2007: As investigators work toward an indictment, Epstein’s legal team begins to negotiate terms of a plea deal with then-U.S. attorney Alexander Acosta in Miami.
June 30, 2008: After more than a year of investigation and bargaining between the two legal sides, Epstein appears in a Florida courtroom and pleads guilty to one count of solicitation of prostitution and one count of solicitation of prostitution of a minor under the age of 18. Epstein is given a sentence of 18 months in jail plus a year of community service, and he is registered as a sex offender.
July 2008: Epstein’s victims learn of the plea deal and and file an emergency petition under the Crime Victims’ Rights Act as they were never informed about the deal or its details. Several accusers are represented by attorney Bradley Edwards, whom Epstein would later launch a personal campaign against. The federal non-prosecution agreement would not be made public for more than a year.
October 2008: Epstein begins work release from jail. According to the Miami Herald, this includes the prisoner being “picked up by his private driver six days a week and transported to an office in West Palm Beach, where he accepts visitors for up to 12 hours a day” before returning to jail at night. The Washington Post reported Epstein’s cell door was left unlocked, and once deputies allowed him to travel unsupervised in Palm Beach for four hours.
July 2009: Epstein is given early release from jail. He never serves time in a federal prison.
November 2011: Epstein registers as a level 3 sex offender, one in which a “high risk of repeat offense and a threat to public safety exists,” in New York.
January 2015: Accuser Virginia Roberts files papers saying Epstein forced her to have sex with members of his social set while she was just 16 years old. A federal judge blocks her claim, but a follow-up lawsuit against another person involved in the accusation is settled in June 2017 for an undisclosed sum.
Feb. 16, 2017: President Donald Trump announces Alexander Acosta as his nominee for U.S. labor secretary.
Jeffrey Epstein (Credit: CBS2)December 2018: A defamation suit by attorney Bradley Edwards against Epstein is settled out of court one day into the trial, with Epstein apologizing and agreeing to other confidential terms. Nearly 2,000 pages of records around the case would remain sealed until a federal appeals court judge in New York ordered them opened in mid-2019.
February 2019: A judge rules that then-U.S. attorney Alexander Acosta did violate the Crime Victims’ Rights Act by not informing Epstein’s victims about the plea deal in Florida 11 years earlier.
July 6, 2019: Epstein is arrested at New Jersey’s Teterboro Airport by the FBI-NYPD Crimes Against Children Task Force. He is charged with sexual abuse and sexual trafficking charges. United States Attorney Geoffrey Berman said a search of Epstein’s $77 million Upper East Side townhouse found pictures which appear to be nude photos of underage girls. A judge would later deny bail for Epstein.
READ: U.S. v. Jeffrey Epstein Indictment (PDF)
Secretary of Labor Alex Acosta speaks during a press conference July 10, 2019 at the Labor Department in Washington, DC. (credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images)July 12, 2019: Alexander Acosta resigns as the Trump administration’s labor secretary after public outage over his handling of the plea deal around Epstein’s alleged sex crimes in 2008. President Trump took to Twitter saying: “Alex Acosta informed me this morning that he felt the constant drumbeat of press about a prosecution which took place under his watch more than 12 years ago was bad for the Administration, which he so strongly believes in, and he graciously tendered his resignation.”
July 25, 2019: Epstein is found injured on the floor of his jail cell at the Manhattan Correctional Center, but it is unclear if his injuries were self-inflicted or caused by another.
Aug. 10, 2019: Epstein is found dead of an apparent suicide by hanging in his jail cell.