Prosecutors have told a judge that missing security footage from outside deceased pedophile Jeffrey Epstein’s New York City prison cell has been located, CNBC reported Friday.
Prosecutors said the video had been “preserved” by Metropolitan Correctional Center (MCC) at a prior request from attorneys for Epstein’s previous cellmate, according to the news outlet. The cellmate, accused killer and former police officer Nicholas Tartaglione, claims he helped save Epstein’s life after the disgraced financier attempted suicide on July 23.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York said in a Thursday court filing that prosecutors “confirmed with MCC [jail] staff that the Video was preserved by MCC staff upon defense counsel’s request in July 2019.”
“The Government is in the process of obtaining a copy of the Video from the MCC. Once the Government obtains a copy of the Video, the Government intends to make it available for defense counsel’s review at the United States Attorney’s Office,” the prosecutors added.
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Earlier this week, Assistant U.S. Attorney Jason Swergold told a White Plains District Court that the footage had gone missing.
“It is on the surface troubling,” said Bruce Barket, an attorney for Tartaglione, at the time.
The development was first reported by the New York Daily News.
Epstein hung himself in a second cell on August 10 while awaiting trial for child sex trafficking charges. In November, two Bureau of Prisons guards were charged with conspiracy and filing false records over their actions the evening the once high-flying investor died.
“The [guards] had a duty to ensure the safety and security of federal inmates in their care,” Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman said. “Instead, they repeatedly failed to conduct mandated checks on inmates, and lied on official forms to hide their dereliction.”
Epstein’s cell was just 15 feet from the guards’ desks, the indictment said. Prosecutors said they filed the false paperwork the afternoon of August 9, a few hours before security cameras showed Epstein escorted to his cell. Tova Noel and Michael Thomas filed another false count a short time later, the charges say, and Epstein was found dead early the next morning.
According to the 20-page indictment, Noel walked past Epstein’s cell a final time at 10:30 p.m., before the guards filed three more false headcounts. Guards are supposed to perform headcounts every 30 minutes.
The UPI contributed to this report.