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The Latest: Victims speak out after Jeffrey Epstein charged

The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — The Latest on new sex-trafficking charges against financier Jeffrey Epstein (all times local):

3:20 p.m.

Some of Jeffrey Epstein's accusers say they're encouraged he's been charged with sex trafficking.

Accuser Sarah Ransome says in a statement Monday that Epstein's arrest "is a step in the right direction" for holding the wealthy registered sex offender accountable.

The 66-year-old Epstein pleaded not guilty Monday in his first court appearance following his weekend arrest. He will remain in jail at least until his July 15 bail hearing.

Epstein's lawyers contend the charges involve allegations that arose in a Florida case more than a decade ago. Epstein struck a secret deal to avoid significant punishment in that case.

Virginia Guiffre praised federal prosecutors in New York for taking on Epstein and showing the case is "being taken in a serious way."

___

3:10 p.m.

Jeffrey Epstein's bail hearing won't be held until next week, keeping him in jail at least until then.

Epstein pleaded not guilty Monday to sex trafficking charges following his arrest over the weekend.

After a discussion among prosecutors and defense lawyers, Epstein's bail hearing was moved from Thursday to Monday, July 15.

Prosecutors argue Epstein, a registered sex offender, is a significant flight risk. They want him jailed until trial.

The 66-year-old Epstein is accused of creating and maintaining a network that allowed him to sexually exploit and abuse dozens of underage girls from 2002 to 2005.

Epstein's lawyers argued the matter had been settled in a Florida case involving similar charges a decade ago.

___

2:25 p.m.

Jeffrey Epstein has been ordered jailed at least until a bail hearing Thursday after he pleaded not guilty to federal sex trafficking charges.

He made his first court appearance Monday following his arrest over the weekend.

Prosecutors say Epstein, a registered sex offender, is a significant flight risk and are asking that he be detained until his trial.

They say he has three active U.S. passports and has frequently traveled in and out of the country on his private jet.

The 66-year-old Epstein is accused of creating and maintaining a network that allowed him to sexually exploit and abuse dozens of underage girls from 2002 to 2005.

Prosecutors said several alleged victims have come forward since Epstein's arrest.

Epstein's lawyers argued the matter had been settled in a Florida case involving similar charges a decade ago.

___

1:40 p.m.

Financier Jeffrey Epstein was brought into federal court in Manhattan on sex trafficking and conspiracy charges.

Epstein arrived at court Monday afternoon in a blue jail uniform.

The 66-year-old Epstein is accused of creating and maintaining a network that allowed him to sexually exploit and abuse dozens of underage girls from 2002 to 2005.

Prosecutors say they found a trove of "nude photographs of what appeared to be underage girls" while executing a search warrant at his Manhattan mansion following his arrest Saturday.

He was being held at the federal lockup in Manhattan.

Epstein's lawyer didn't immediately return messages seeking comment.

___

1:05 p.m.

Prosecutors say Jeffrey Epstein kept perhaps thousands of sexually suggestive photographs at his Manhattan mansion.

Officials say in court papers Monday that the pictures included some on CDs with handwritten labels including "Misc nudes 1," ''Girl pics nude" and the names of specific young women.

Prosecutors say federal agents found some of the photos "of young-looking women or girls" in a locked safe while searching the seven-story town house after the wealthy financier's arrest Saturday on sex trafficking charges.

The 66-year-old Epstein is accused of creating and maintaining a network that allowed him to sexually exploit and abuse dozens of girls from 2002 to 2005.

Prosecutors say the lawyer for one of the girls pictured told them the girl was underage when the photos were taken.

It's not clear whether all the photos depict girls involved in the alleged sex trafficking operation.

Epstein's lawyer didn't immediately return messages seeking comment.

___

11:40 a.m.

Prosecutors say federal agents investigating wealthy sex offender Jeffrey Epstein found "nude photographs of what appeared to be underage girls" while searching his Manhattan mansion.

U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman said at a press conference Monday agents discovered the photos while executing a search warrant following Epstein's arrest Saturday on sex trafficking charges.

The 66-year-old Epstein is accused of creating and maintaining a network that allowed him to sexually exploit and abuse dozens of underage girls from 2002 to 2005.

Messages were sent to his defense attorney seeking comment.

Epstein was arrested at Teterboro Airport in New Jersey after his private jet landed from Paris.

He is expected to appear in Manhattan federal court later Monday.

Berman said prosecutors will ask that he remain jailed pending trial, arguing he is a flight risk.

___

9:50 a.m.

Federal prosecutors announced sex trafficking and conspiracy charges against wealthy financier Jeffrey Epstein.

Court documents unsealed Monday show Epstein is charged with creating and maintaining a network that allowed him to sexually exploit and abuse dozens of underage girls.

The alleged victims were as young as 14 at the time.

Epstein was taken into custody on Saturday.

Authorities say he paid underage girls for massages and then molested them at his homes in Florida and New York in the early 2000s.

Epstein is expected to appear in Manhattan federal court later Monday.

Messages were sent to his defense attorney seeking comment.

___

1:30 a.m.

Eleven years after letting Jeffrey Epstein off lightly with a once-secret plea deal, the U.S. government is taking another run at putting the wealthy sex offender behind bars.

Law enforcement officials say Epstein was arrested over the weekend on new sex-trafficking charges and is expected to make his first court appearance in New York City on Monday.

Prosecutors are likely to argue that he is a flight risk and should remain in jail instead of being released on bail pending trial.

One law enforcement official told The Associated Press the case deals with allegations that Epstein paid underage girls for massages and molested them at his homes in Florida and New York in the early 2000s.

The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the pending case.

___

Sisak reported from Orlando, Florida. Associated Press writers Colleen Long, Curt Anderson and Tom Hays contributed to this report.

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