Gov. DeSantis vows to sign Jeffrey Epstein records bill, calls on Joe Biden to release federal files

‘People look at this and they’re like, “Give me a break.”’

Gov. Ron DeSantis has promised to sign legislation to release grand jury evidence in an 18-year-old case against serial sex abuser and human trafficker Jeffrey Epstein.

He said President Joe Biden should do something similar with Epstein’s federal records, which are “probably much more extensive” and could expose high-profile people who have long evaded punishment.

“How could you have had this going on for so long?” DeSantis said. “Here we are now, 15, 20 years later, and literally nobody else has been held accountable. You just have (Epstein) and (Ghislaine Maxwell), and that’s it.”

“People look at that and they’re like, ‘Give me a break.’ And clearly, you have wealth and power involved,” the Governor continued. “They have a way to potentially get out. So, I think it’s going to be good for everybody that (the information is) out there.”

Florida lawmakers Wednesday unanimously approved a bill to ease the unsealing of 2006 grand jury testimony and evidence in a Palm Beach County case against Epstein. A South Florida circuit judge may release those records sooner in accordance with a lawsuit the Palm Beach Post filed in 2019.

The case began after the mother of a 14-year-old girl filed a complaint with the Town of Palm Beach Police Department. Instead of taking it on himself, then-State Attorney Barry Krischer referred the Epstein case to a grand jury, a decision that ensured all testimony and evidence would be kept from the public. And it has ever since, despite repeated attempts to unseal records and bring closure to Epstein’s many victims, their families and the community — or justice to Epstein’s accomplices and those who let him get off easy.

Epstein received what many have called a “sweetheart deal” under which he served just 13 months in a private prison and enjoyed a lax work-release program. After he got out, he continued abusing underage girls for more than a decade until he was again arrested by FBI agents in 2019 and died of an apparent suicide in jail while awaiting trial.

Scores of celebrities and politicians have been implicated as participants in Epstein’s sex-trafficking ring and as passengers on a “Lolita Express” to his private island. But to date, only Epstein and Maxwell — his former girlfriend, who is serving a 20-year prison sentence after being convicted in 2021 of luring girls to Epstein’s home to be molested — have faced punishment.

Biden should do his part to ensure everyone involved in Epstein’s crimes are brought to justice, DeSantis said.

“You have this notorious offender … catering to all these rich people, and yet nobody has ever been held accountable for any of this. How does that happen? How (was) the case … taken out of state court and taken to federal court, where he got a slap on the wrist? What has happened since then?” he said.

“Biden should release the Epstein files associated with the federal government, which is probably much more extensive.”

Under Biden, nearly 3,000 pages of federal records on Epstein have been released so far.

Jesse Scheckner

Jesse Scheckner has covered South Florida with a focus on Miami-Dade County since 2012. His work has been recognized by the Hearst Foundation, Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Society of News Editors, Florida MMA Awards and Miami New Times. Email him at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @JesseScheckner.


  • Dangerous florida

    February 23, 2024 at 1:55 pm

    Christians’’ preoccupation with this subject…and then there is Floridian Matt Gaetz…

    • Sally B

      February 27, 2024 at 1:33 pm

      What about your preoccupation with Christians? What faith are you, if any? Agnosticism is not a religion whereas atheism is.

  • PeterH

    February 23, 2024 at 2:26 pm

    DeSantis…..struggling to remain relevant to his handful of supporters!

    • Sally B

      February 27, 2024 at 1:38 pm

      The Governor did not write the law. He simply signaled his intent to sign it into law during a press conference called for another subject. The legislation was bipartisan. It passed both chambers of the Legislature UNANIMOUSLY. You likely lack the predisposition or will not to act as activist or not to act in a hyperpartisan manner for one moment, but you can try. Baby steps …

  • Tom Palmer

    February 23, 2024 at 4:11 pm

    Maybe Donald Trump should reveal what he knows.;

    • Sally B

      February 27, 2024 at 1:39 pm

      Agreed. That would be a first for him.

  • Florida man

    February 24, 2024 at 8:25 am

    Thats great! Now let’s see about Rick and how he got his money from insurance fraud. And mat that has a history of sex abuse and much much more! Time to drain the pound but start in florida! Just like eligals lol miami has tons of them go to all the home depots and the water ,flowers and fruit sellers. Oh right governor miami is not part of florida lol

    • A.T.

      February 25, 2024 at 8:48 am

      Maybe Florida man got it right. Plenty of room for political rehabilitation in Floriduh. Starting with this gov. Repubs are burning down our state.

    • Sally B

      February 27, 2024 at 1:41 pm

      Please try to stay on topic. Yikes!

  • Jimmy J

    February 25, 2024 at 5:06 pm

    Your mean the POST won their case against the Southern Charm guy in PBC with a small penis.
    These elected are just trying to rewrite the story.
    The judge has the records already
    Penis guy lost the dase

Comments are closed.


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