TAMPA -- Labor Secretary Alex Acosta claims that the state attorney in Palm Beach County was willing to let financier Jeffrey Epstein off without jail time for sex trafficking allegations, as he defended his intervention in Jeffrey Epstein's Florida case as Miami's U.S. Attorney a decade ago.
Jeffrey Swartz, a law professor at the Tampa campus of Western Michigan-Cooley Law School and a former Miami-Dade judge, calls that "insulting" to Palm Beach prosecutors:
"I'm not sure that I accept Mr. Acosta's version that he... saved that prosecution... and even if he did... he certainly didn't do everything he should have done (under the law)."
Swartz maintains Acosta should be sanctioned by the Justice Department and the Florida Bar over his conduct. Acosta defended his decision not to notify victims of the Epstein plea deal, by saying that had jurors in a potential civil trial been told that the victims knew they could have recovered damages from Epstein, it would have harmed their ability to seek restitution.
Acosta says the 2008 deal "raised eyebrows" in South Florida's legal community, bringing many questions but few answers.
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