While the jury was busy hearing Ghislaine Maxwell’s case in her recently concluded trial, there was some other action related to her perverted boss taking place quietly in the background. Insider is reporting that the charges against Tova Noel and Michael Thomas, the guards charged with sleeping on the job while Epstein supposedly killed himself, were dropped. The timing of this decision was certainly curious, as was the fact that the decision to drop the charges wasn’t made public for more than two weeks. A public status conference for the case against the guards had been scheduled for December 15th, but it was canceled with no reason given and no new date scheduled. So how did this happen?
In the middle of Ghislaine Maxwell’s child-sex-trafficking trial, federal prosecutors quietly dropped their case against two jail guards accused of sleeping on the job and falsifying jail records as Jeffrey Epstein killed himself in his cell.
Federal prosecutors in Manhattan signed a nolle prosequi, a document announcing to the judge that they wished to drop the case, on December 13. The document didn’t appear on the court’s public docket until Thursday, one day after Maxwell was convicted on charges that she trafficked girls to Epstein for sex and participated in sexual abuse herself.
Prosecutors first filed charges against the guards, Tova Noel and Michael Thomas, in November 2019.
The way that the prosecutors handled this matter certainly looks suspicious at first glance, but some previously unreported details could explain this decision in a more routine fashion. Noel and Thomas pleaded not guilty to the charges in 2019. But in May of this year, they signed a deferred prosecution agreement, allowing them to avoid jail time if they cooperated with an ongoing investigation into the circumstances of Epstein’s death by the Justice Department’s OIG.
Since that time they have reportedly been cooperating fully with the Department of Justice. Once that process was finished earlier this month, the prosecutors signed a nolle prosequi, informing the judge that they wished to drop the charges against both men. As part of that agreement, both Noel and Thomas reportedly performed some unspecified community service.
What’s really curious about how this was handled is the fact that the request to drop the charges was granted on December 13th, but it didn’t appear on the court’s docket until yesterday, one day after Maxwell was found guilty. A plea agreement such as the one the two former guards worked out really isn’t all that unusual, so why wouldn’t it have been published in a timely fashion? It’s possible that letting the two of them off the hook would have looked even more suspect if the jury had decided in Maxwell’s favor and allowed her to go free. But with the former madame safely on her way toward sentencing, the perception that justice had been done likely made it look “safer” for the release of this information.
So were Noel and Thomas truly guilty? All they were charged with were crimes involving dereliction of duty and falsifying records. If you believe that Jeffrey Epstein really did hang himself, then those charges likely wouldn’t have amounted to more than costing them their jobs and possibly a fine. But with the entire sordid Epstein affair having such a toxic environment surrounding it, the men’s involvement drew a lot more attention. If someone else took Epstein’s life, at least one guard would have had to have known about it even if they weren’t directly involved. But it sounds like we may never know.