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The Latest: Epstein says foreign passport needed for safety

July 16, 2019
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Courtney Wild, left, joined by her attorney Brad Edwards, leaves after reading a statement a news conference, calling on victims of Jeffrey Epstein to contact the FBI or lawyers with their information, Tuesday, July 16, 2019, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)
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Courtney Wild, left, joined by her attorney Brad Edwards, leaves after reading a statement a news conference, calling on victims of Jeffrey Epstein to contact the FBI or lawyers with their information, Tuesday, July 16, 2019, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

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

7:25 p.m.

Attorneys for financier Jeffrey Epstein say he obtained a foreign passport under an alias in the 1980s to defend himself from potential kidnappers while traveling in the Middle East.

Epstein’s defense team filed court papers Tuesday saying Epstein worried about the perils he faced traveling there as “an affluent member of the Jewish faith.”

They say the passport expired more than 30 years ago and that prosecutors offered no evidence that Epstein ever used it.

Prosecutors say the foreign passport was found in a safe in Epstein’s Manhattan mansion following his arrest on sex trafficking charges.

They wrote in court filings that the passport raises new concerns that Epstein could try to flee the country if released on bail.

Epstein has pleaded not guilty.

A federal judge is expected to decide Thursday whether to grant bail.

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6:05 p.m.

Financier Jeffrey Epstein says his finances are too complex to provide an immediate valuation of his assets to a federal judge.

Epstein’s attorneys filed court papers Tuesday saying they needed more time to offer a full accounting of Epstein’s wealth following his arrest on federal sex charges.

They wrote in the filings that Epstein has “meaningful domestic ties” and that his brother is willing to co-sign a bond equal to his own net worth, more than $100 million.

Prosecutors have argued that Epstein should not be granted bail because his extraordinary wealth and foreign properties make him a flight risk.

They wrote in their own filing that no set of conditions will guarantee Epstein’s appearance at court proceedings and protect the community.

The judge says he intends to announce his decision on bail Thursday.

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1:30 p.m.

One of Jeffrey Epstein’s accusers is urging victims to speak out against the wealthy financier as authorities prosecute him on sex charges.

Courtney Wild told reporters Tuesday that Epstein “will never stop sexually abusing children until he is in jail.”

Wild’s remarks came a day after she urged a federal judge to deny Epstein bail.

Wild said Epstein started sexually abusing her when she was 14 in Palm Beach, Florida.

An email was sent to Epstein’s attorney seeking comment.

Epstein has pleaded not guilty to conspiracy and sex trafficking charges brought by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Manhattan. Wild’s accusations are not part of that indictment.

Epstein’s attorneys have argued that the new charges should not have been filed because he signed a non-prosecution agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Miami year ago.

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