Barr not recusing himself from case against Jeffrey Epstein: report

Source: The Hill | July 9, 2019 | Justin Wise

Attorney General William Barr will not recuse himself from a case involving sex trafficking-related charges filed against billionaire financier Jeffrey Epstein, according to reports.

Bloomberg News, citing an anonymous Justice Department official, reported Barr came to the decision after speaking with ethics officials within the department.

But Barr will remain recused from any Justice Department review of its decision in 2008 to let Epstein avoid prosecution on federal sex trafficking offenses. Federal prosecutors in Florida at the time reached a plea deal with Epstein that allowed him to plead guilty to two state charges of soliciting a prostitute while avoiding a long prison sentence. 

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Barr had considered whether he needed to recuse himself from the new case because Epstein had once hired attorneys from the law firm Barr previously worked at. 

The attorney general had told reporters on Monday that he would not play a role in the “matter because one of the law firms that represented Epstein long ago was a firm that I subsequently joined for a period of time.”

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