Not to be outdone by Puerto Rico, which is embroiled in a huge corruption scandal, the US Virgin Islands had their own corruption scandal explode this week when a Virgin Islands Senator alleged Jeffrey Epstein had corrupted a large number of politicians in the territory:
U.S. Virgin Islands Sen. Oakland Benta, a St. Croix Democrat who previously served as the island’s chief of police, is speaking out in an exclusive interview with Breitbart News about billionaire Democrat donor Jeffrey Epstein and demanding wide-ranging investigations in the territory into Epstein’s and others’ alleged “widespread corruption.”
“There is widespread corruption within the territory that needs to be addressed and looked at with fresh eyes,” Benta said in an exclusive interview with Breitbart News on Thursday.
Benta contends that Epstein, whose infamous private island in the U.S. Virgin Islands served as a home base for alleged illicit activities, ran a massive influence operation to get powerful politicians, nonprofit organizations, law enforcement, and government agencies charged with stopping such corruption and criminal activity from focusing on him.
“He [Epstein] has people on his payroll,” Benta alleges. “He has campaign contributions. He has donated to a lot of agencies and nonprofits. Maybe part of the reason why they’re not vocal is a lot of the nonprofit organizations have been recipients of contributions from Jeffrey Epstein and a lot of surrounding programs with children.”
One person of note on Epstein’s payroll is the wife of now former U.S. Virgin Islands Gov. John de Jongh’s wife, who as this reporter revealed in 2012 was working for Epstein while her husband was governor and himself facing a bribery scandal. According to a Bloomberg News report this week, Cecile de Jongh still works for Epstein per his company’s published records.
Benta is demanding the local government of the U.S. Virgin Islands step up and root out the public corruption.
Benta appears to be at least partly correct, because a number of key Virgin Islands politicians have been fingered recently as having taken money from Epstein. These include Stacey Plaskett, the US Virgin Islands Delegate to the US Congress, Virgin Islands Senator Alicia Barnes, and Virgin Islands Senator Donna Frett-Gregory. All three politicians are rushing to get rid of the money he gave them. As mentioned in the linked Breitbart piece above, former Governor John de Jongh’s wife also worked directly for Epstein.
Epstein’s island home, Little Saint James, is located off the coast of the US Virgin Islands, and while it is privately owned by him, it is considered to be part of the territory, which was likely why Epstein was greasing so many palms in the islands.