Multiple Alleged Victims of Jeffrey Epstein Speak Out After His Apparent Suicide in Jail

The billionaire financier was found dead early Saturday morning in New York City's Metropolitan Correctional Center

Jeffrey Epstein
Jeffrey Epstein. Photo: Rick Friedman/Getty Images

Multiple alleged victims of Jeffrey Epstein are calling for justice and answers following his death by apparent suicide on Saturday morning.

“The many victims of Jeffrey Epstein and his accomplices should not lose hope,” Roberta “Robbie” Kaplan, who represents a victim in the Epstein case, told PEOPLE in a statement following the 66-year-old’s death. “We will continue to fight tirelessly on their behalf not only to seek justice, but also to ensure that all of the facts of his monstrous crimes become known to the world.”

Kaplan added, “Justice Brandeis was 100% right when he said that sunlight is the best disinfectant. We need to expose the whole truth here so that crimes of this scale and scope never happen to any children ever again.”

David Boies, legal counsel to alleged victims Virginia Giuffre and Sara Ransome told PEOPLE in a statement, “This is the end of one chapter, but only one chapter, of the battle to bring the sex traffickers to justice. Jeffrey Epstein did not act, and could not have done what he did, alone. Justice demands that those who acted with him also be held to account.”

In July, PEOPLE confirmed that Epstein, who was well-known for his high-profile connections in the business and political worlds, was accused of sex-trafficking girls as young as 14 years old.

The businessman was charged with one count of sex trafficking of minors and one count of conspiracy to engage in sex trafficking of minor and was to face a maximum sentence of 45 years in prison.

The indictment alleged that Epstein would begin his illegal sexual encounters with a “massage” before he would “escalate the nature and scope of physical contact with his victim.”

He was arrested on July 6 after his private jet arrived from France, USA Today previously reported, and pleaded not guilty in a New York courtroom just two days later, according to CNN.

Jennifer Araoz, one of the women who said she was raped by Epstein when she was 15, told CNBC that she was “angry Jeffrey Epstein will not have to face his survivors of his abuse in court,” adding, “Epstein is gone, but justice must still be served. I hope the authorities will pursue and prosecute his accomplices and enablers, and ensure redress for his victims.”

Lisa Bloom, an attorney who represented Epstein’s alleged victims, tweeted her thoughts following his death.

“On behalf of the victims I represent, we would have preferred he lived to face justice,” she wrote. “Victims deserve to be made whole for the lifelong damage he caused. We’re just getting started.”

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, 29, also tweeted, “We need answers. Lots of them,” in response to Epstein’s death, linking to a New York Times article on this morning’s news.

CNBC reported the lawyer to Giuffre and other victims, Sigrid McCawley, said it “was no coincidence that Epstein took his life less than 23 hours after court documents were unsealed.”

“The reckoning of accountability begun by the voices of brave and truthful victims should not end with Jeffrey Epstein’s cowardly and shameful suicide,” McCawley said.

This is not the first time that Epstein had faced sex charges. In 2008, he pleaded guilty in Florida to soliciting a person under 18 for prostitution.

PEOPLE previously confirmed Epstein was sentenced to 13 months in jail, although he served much of the time in work release at his office in Palm Beach. He was required to register as a sex offender.

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