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Acosta resigns as labor secretary over Epstein plea deal

Acosta resigns as labor secretary over Epstein plea deal

Jeffrey Epstein accused of abusing dozens of underage girls
Acosta resigns as labor secretary over Epstein plea deal
Labor Secretary Alex Acosta speaks to reporters in Washington on Wednesday, July 10, 2019.
Photographer: Anna Moneymaker/The New York Times

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump said Friday that Alex Acosta, his embattled secretary of labor, will resign following controversy over his handling of a sex crimes case involving the financier, Jeffrey Epstein, when he was a prosecutor in Florida.

Acosta called the president in the morning and informed him of his decision to resign, Trump said, as he left the White House for travel to Milwaukee and Cleveland.

The resignation comes just two days after Acosta convened a news conference to defend his actions in the 2008 case when he was the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida.

Earlier this week, federal prosecutors in Manhattan brought new charges against Epstein, accusing him of sex trafficking, which revived concerns about the federal government’s handling of sex crimes charges against Epstein more than a decade ago. They also resurrected Trump’s previous relationship with Epstein, whom he described as “a terrific guy” in 2002.

Democrats on Thursday demanded a briefing from the Justice Department about the 2008 agreement not to prosecute Epstein.

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