Jeffrey Epstein, the wealthy financier accused of child sex trafficking, has reportedly committed suicide. Media reports have surfaced stating that Epstein was 'found dead' in his cell.
Epstein had been arrested on charges of child sex trafficking and conspiracy to commit child sex trafficking.
The United States government launched an investigation Saturday into the apparent suicide in his prison cell.
Attorney General Bill Barr said he was "appalled" to hear of the death and had instructed the Department of Justice's inspector general to probe its circumstances. The FBI is also investigating the Epstein's death.
At the time, lurid details were splashed across the media as prosecutors detailed the alleged crimes that occurred at Epstein's homes in Manhattan and Palm Beach, Florida, from 2002 to 2005 involving minors as young as 14 and accused Epstein of "creating a vast network of victims."
Epstein paid victims hundreds of dollars in cash after sex acts, prosecutors said. They were initially recruited to give Epstein massages, which became increasingly sexual in nature.
At least three of Epstein's employees were involved in recruiting and scheduling minors for sexual encounters with him, as well as other unspecified "associates," the U.S. said. One was based in New York, while two other assistants based at his mansion in Palm Beach were responsible for scheduling the encounters there and escorting victims to a room in the house, according to the indictment.
He faced a maximum sentence of 45 years in prison.
- With inputs from Bloomberg; Details to follow