Epstein estate reaches $105 million settlement with US Virgin Islands

Epstein Virgin Islands
This July 9, 2019, file photo shows a portion of Jeffery Epstein’s estate on Little Saint James Island in the U.S. Virgin Islands. A lawsuit filed Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2020, by prosecutors in the Virgin Islands says multimillionaire sex offender Jeffery Epstein used two private islands, including Little Saint James, in the U.S. territory to engage in a nearly two-decade-long conspiracy to traffic and abuse girls. (AP Photo/Gianfranco Gaglione, File)

Epstein estate reaches $105 million settlement with US Virgin Islands

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Jeffrey Epstein’s estate has reached a $105 million settlement with the U.S. Virgin Islands, ground zero for some of his alleged sex trafficking activities, the island’s attorney general announced Thursday.

Under the agreement, the Epstein estate and two co-defendants will dole out $105 million and half of the proceeds from the sale of Little St. James, an island on which many of his sexual transgressions were allegedly committed. The settlement ends a roughly three-year legal tangle.

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“This settlement restores the faith of the People of the Virgin Islands that its laws will be enforced, without fear or favor, against those who break them. We are sending a clear message that the Virgin Islands will not serve as a haven for human trafficking,” Attorney General Denise George proclaimed.

Back in 2020, George sued the estate for allegedly trafficking victims, including young women, to Little St. James, where they faced “sexual servitude” and were “coerced into commercial sexual activity,” per the suit.

“Through this lawsuit and settlement, the Attorney General’s Office, acting on behalf of the Government, is using its authority to enforce the laws of the Virgin Islands against criminal enterprises and to protect public safety. That is our solemn responsibility as a government, separate and independent of any claims filed by individual survivors,” George added.

In addition to the nine-figure cash payment and sale of Little St. James, the Epstein estate will also pay $450,000 for environmental damage near Great St. James, another island Epstein owned, and ensure “the islands cannot be used for illicit purposes by those associated with Epstein.” Epstein’s estate will also “assist the Government’s ongoing investigations,” per George.

Epstein used his property in the Virgin Islands to act as an offshore tax haven of sorts and reduce his tax bill, officials said. With the settlement, the Epstein estate will return $80 million in “economic development tax benefits” that were “fraudulently obtained” by Epstein and the co-defendants for his illicit activities.

Proceeds from the sale of Little St. James will be used to help victims of sexual assault, human trafficking, and child sexual abuse, as well as to bolster law enforcement investigations of such crimes, according to the attorney general.

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Coinciding with the Virgin Island development, Epstein’s luxury Paris apartment was recently sold for roughly $10.4 million to a Bulgarian plastic packaging mogul, Bloomberg reported. Epstein was arrested in 2019 for sex trafficking allegations, having been convicted of sex crimes nearly a decade prior.

He was found dead in his prison cell nearly a month after the 2019 arrest, a death that the medical examiner ruled a suicide.

© 2022 Washington Examiner

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