According to a lawyer visiting the prison, accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein spent several hours locked up alone with a young woman in a private room reserved for inmates and their attorneys a day after the financier was taken off suicide watch, says a report by Forbes magazine.
The attorney told the publication the woman, who was alone with Epstein for at least two hours when he was there, was possibly a lawyer.
“The optics were startling. Because she was young. And pretty", the attorney said.
“If I was him, I would have hired... an old bald guy".
The witness said that the woman may have been a member of Epstein’s legal team, but appeared to have no paperwork or files with her, and was dressed casually, as if out for “Sunday brunch".
The room reserved for attorney’s to confer with clients is locked when prisoners enter, after their handcuffs are removed, and unlocked when prisoners leave and handcuffs are put back on, said the witness.
“I think she was there just to babysit him. Which is not supposed to be the way it works", the lawyer added.
Earlier NBC News reported the multimillionaire paid members of his legal team to visit him for nearly eight hours a day to sit in the designated room to avoid being in his cell.
This could have been such an incident, speculated the witness.
Epstein’s daily occupation of the room caused problems for attorneys, according to the source, as there are only two such facilities for legal teams visiting SHU clients, and instead of waiting 15 minutes for a room, the wait could stretch for hours, as it did that day.
“They wouldn't move anybody until he got where he was going, which is what they used to do with El Chapo, too", the visiting attorney said.
According to the witness’s statements to Forbes, he visited the Manhattan Correctional Centre on 30 July, a day after Epstein was reportedly taken off suicide watch and transferred to the Special Housing Unit (SHU).
While the witness was there, he reportedly did not see Epstein’s main lawyer, Reid Weingarten, or other named attorneys visiting him.
There has been no comment, according to the publication, from Weingarten or other attorneys representing Epstein.
On 16 August the New York Medical Examiner's Office released its official autopsy report on Jeffrey Epstein’s death, finding that he died from suicide by hanging.
The late financier is said to have used bed sheets to make a makeshift noose and hang himself on his prison bunk bed.
The report concluded the bones in Epstein’s neck were broken by his kneeling toward the floor with sufficient force to break them.
Epstein, 66, died 10 August in his cell at the Metropolitan Correctional Centre in Manhattan while awaiting trial on federal sex trafficking charges.
Due to an attempted suicide weeks before and the prisoner’s high profile status, the death sparked conspiracy theories that it might have been murder, instigated by highly-connected, powerful people who feared Epstein’s upcoming trial might expose their complicity in his alleged paedophilic sex ring.
Epstein's death is the subject of four federal investigations, including the conduct of the guards assigned to him the night of his death.