Epstein suicide prompts conspiracy theories, skepticism

Jeffrey Epstein, financier and registered sex offender, who was arrested for child sex trafficking, Photo Date: Undated / Source: NY State Sex Offender Registry
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NEW YORK (AP) Jeffrey Epstein's apparent suicide in federal custody is provoking skepticism among online conspiracy theorists and even some officials.

Republican Sen. Rick Scott of Florida urged federal prison officials to say what mistakes -- or criminal acts -- could have allowed Epstein to kill himself. Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, now an attorney for President Donald Trump, questioned whether video surveillance captured Epstein's death.

Online theorists, meanwhile, quickly offered unsubstantiated and sometimes farfetched alternative explanations.

The well-connected financier had been charged with conspiracy and sex trafficking last month.

His case had already prompted speculation given Epstein's links to Trump and former President Bill Clinton and a 2008 deal in Florida that allowed him to plead to soliciting a minor for prostitution to avoid more serious charges.

Federal officials say they will investigate the death.