For months, federal prosecutors Alexander Acosta and Marie Villafana of the US Attorney’s Office in Miami lied to attorney Brad Edwards to keep his clients in the dark about the status of the federal investigation into Epstein’s sex crimes. It was hardly an investigation, but more like a series of plays called by a three-headed quarterback: Alan Dershowitz, Jay Lefkowitz, and Ken Starr (with other lawyers whispering in their ears). Marie Villafana acted like an agent—for the defense counsel. Acosta, no doubt, called shots from the sidelines, racking up career credit under the guise of prosecutorial discretion.
Among many other sketchy facts, Villafana offered to meet defense counsel “off campus,” and she asked for evidence to be sent to her home email address. She also provided her cell phone number to Lefkowitz and confessed in writing that she had a “bias against plaintiff ’s attorneys.”
But the plaintiffs were the girls whom Epstein had violated sexually, the persons whom Marie Villafana was duty-bound to protect on behalf of the public. Villafana seemed smitten with the sex pervert and his brilliant lawyers—defense lawyers who came off as eager to misuse their genius and thwart the law for enough money. When public lawyers go to bat for rich criminals instead of prosecuting them, it is modern-day anarchy. The public would be outraged if they knew, hence the clandestine negotiations.
Acosta’s and Villafana’s intent to violate the victims’ rights by acting as yes-men to Epstein’s defense team and agreeing to an unlawful and grossly lenient federal plea deal, known as a non-prosecution agreement (NPA), can be gleaned from the attorneys’ correspondence and other facts. The Crime Victims’ Rights Act mandates that victims be informed and allowed to weigh in on negotiations with sex offenders, but the attorneys violated the act in an open and obvious manner, apparently assuming no one would ever review their correspondence.
But Brad Edwards filed a federal lawsuit in 2008, as soon as he learned of the unlawful NPA negotiations conducted behind his clients’ backs. The lawsuit sought to set aside the NPA as violating The Crime Victims’ Rights Act. Over a decade later, on February 21, 2019, federal judge Kenneth A. Marra explained the evidence of the attorneys’ sneaky misconduct in circumventing the act.
September 24, 2007. The illicit NPA was finalized and signed, which would “defer” federal prosecution in favor of prosecution by the State of Florida (on much less serious charges and a risk of much less severe punishment). Lefkowitz wrote to Villafana: “Marie – Please do whatever you can to keep this [NPA] from becoming public.”
September 25, 2007. Villafana sent an email to Lefkowitz: “And can we have a conference call to discuss what I may disclose to . . . the girls regarding the agreement.”
September 26, 2007. Villafana sent an email to Lefkowitz: “Hi Jay – Can you give me a call at 561-[number redacted] this morning? I am meeting with the agents and want to give them their marching orders regarding what they can tell the girls.”