NEW YORK – Three women on Tuesday sued the estate of Jeffrey Epstein, saying they were sexually abused by the financier, both before and after the widely criticized 2007 plea deal that allowed him to avoid federal prosecution for sex crimes.
The lawsuits, filed in Manhattan federal court, bring to at least five the total number of civil cases against Epstein’s estate since his apparent suicide in jail on Aug. 10.
Two of the women, “Katlyn Doe” and “Lisa Doe,” met Epstein when they were 17, and the third, “Priscilla Doe,” when she was 20, according to the lawsuits. All said Epstein used a “vast enterprise” of associates to recruit them, subject them to unwanted sex acts and keep them under his control.
All three said the abuse continued after Epstein reached a deal with federal prosecutors in Florida in 2007. The deal allowed him to plead guilty to state prostitution charges and spend 13 months in a county jail, during which he was allowed to leave during the day on work release.
The lawsuits said Epstein had Katlyn and Priscilla flown to Florida so he could continue to abuse them even while he was on work release from jail. He made Katlyn feel dependent by promising to pay for medical treatment she needed, according to her lawsuit.
He exerted control over Lisa and Priscilla by promising, falsely, to advance their dance careers, their lawsuits said.
The lawsuit by Katlyn alleges that in 2013, Epstein forced her to marry one of his associates who needed the arrangement to become a legal resident of the United States.
In addition to Epstein’s estate, the lawsuits target several corporate entities he allegedly controlled.
Epstein was arrested on July 6 and pleaded not guilty to charges of sex trafficking involving dozens of underage girls as young as 14. He died on Aug. 10 in his jail cell at age 66, and an autopsy report released on Friday concluded he hanged himself.