Alleged victims, politicians react to Jeffrey Epstein's suicide

NEW YORK -- The alleged victims of Jeffrey Epstein and public figures are reacting to the accused sex trafficker's suicide.

Sources said the multi-millionaire financier hanged himself in his Manhattan jail cell, where he was awaiting trial on charges of conspiracy and sex trafficking. He was accused of sexually abusing girls as young as 14 and pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Some of his alleged victims and their lawyers said they're upset that Epstein will not be held accountable for his actions.

Jennifer Araoz, 32, who claimed that Epstein raped her at the age of 15 in New York, said she's angry that her alleged abuser won't face his victims in court.

"We have to live with the scars of his actions for the rest of our lives, while he will never face the consequences of the crimes he committed the pain and trauma he caused so many people," she said. "Epstein is gone, but justice must still be served."

Jena-Lisa Jones, 30, who was allegedly abused in Florida at 14, said Epstein took "the easy way out." An attorney representing several victims called the act "selfish" but "predictable."

Alleged victim Michelle Licata said she didn't want anyone to die.

"I just wanted him to be held accountable for his actions. Simple as that," she said.

RELATED: Jeffrey Epstein dies by suicide in Manhattan jail

U.S. Attorney General William Barr is also "appalled" that Epstein died in federal custody.

"Mr. Epstein's death raises serious questions that must be answered," he said in a statement.

Both the FBI and the Inspector General have opened investigations.

Speaking at the Presidential Gun Sense Forum in Des Moines, New York Senator and presidential hopeful Kristen Gillibrand said the suicide should be reviewed.

"We would have preferred obviously him to face justice, but it's always sad that someone doesn't survive suicide," she said.



Former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara pointed out that the suicide was more than likely recorded on video.

"One hopes it is complete, conclusive, and secured," he tweeted.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio echoed this sentiment but emphasized that the victims will see justice.

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