NEW YORK – A foreign passport found in Jeffrey Epstein’s Upper East Side mansion has entry stamps for France, Spain, the U.K. and Saudi Arabia in the 1980s, prosecutors said in a court filing to counter a defense argument that there is no evidence he ever used it.
Prosecutors revealed the existence of the passport during a bail hearing on Monday, saying the document had expired, but was issued sometime in the 1980s and had a picture of Epstein and a different name. They said the existence of the passport is further evidence that he should be kept in jail before trial.
Defense lawyers asked a federal judge not to be swayed by the discovery of the Austrian passport, which they said Epstein had in case he was taken hostage in a hijacking when such incidents were common in travel to the Middle East in the 1980s — not to deceive authorities.
On Wednesday, prosecutors said Epstein hasn’t said how he obtained the passport, and still hasn’t disclosed whether he is a citizen or a legal permanent resident of a country other than the U.S.
Epstein was arrested in New Jersey after stepping off his private jet from Paris and charged with sex trafficking of minors and conspiracy. Since then, he’s been held in jail — the same facility where Paul Manafort and Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman are held. Epstein will learn Thursday whether he’ll be allowed to go home or spend the time before trial behind bars.
Epstein, who has pleaded not guilty, is accused of molesting girls from 2002 to 2005 and could spend the rest of his life in prison if convicted.