July 9, 2019 / 3:28 PM / 2 months ago

U.S. Attorney General Barr won't recuse himself from New York case against Epstein-official

FILE PHOTO: House Oversight and Reform Committee chairman Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) holds a gavel during the committee hearing on contempt votes on whether to find Attorney General William Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in contempt of Congress for withholding Census documents on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., June 12, 2019. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Attorney General William Barr will not recuse himself from involvement in the new indictment unveiled this week by federal prosecutors in Manhattan charging financier Jeffrey Epstein with sex trafficking, a Justice Department official said Tuesday.

The official added, however, that Barr has been and will remain recused from overseeing the department’s review into how federal prosecutors in Florida, including now-Labor Secretary Alex Acosta, previously reached a plea deal with Epstein that has since come under scrutiny as being too lenient.

His recusal in that review stems from Barr’s prior work with the law firm Kirkland & Ellis. Acosta also previously worked at the firm.

Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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