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Jeffrey Epstein prosecutor was previously rebuked for handling of a child sex case

Julie K. Brown, Miami Herald on

Published in News & Features

Family and acquaintances, including a former Fort Worth police lieutenant, submitted letters to the court vouching for McDaniel's character.

There were other issues, however, presented to the judge. While McDaniel was being held in federal lockup awaiting sentencing, he had corresponded with his victim, despite being ordered not to contact her, the court record shows.

Still, Hunt argued that a sentence of five years was overly harsh.

Villafana disagreed, but conceded that McDaniel would benefit from psychological treatment. She advocated for a sentence of five to six years, which was at the low end of the guideline.

It was then that the judge heard from the victim's mother.

In a statement, the mother decried the emotional and mental trauma her daughter suffered and the long road to recovery she had ahead of her. The mother mentioned she was further upset that McDaniel continued contact with her daughter after his arrest and she said she believed that McDaniel was still trying to manipulate her daughter by blaming her for his arrest.


The mother pointed out that prior to their sexual encounter, McDaniel had directed her daughter to watch sexually explicit movies and had described for her sex activities he had had with another underage girl.

At that point, the judge interrupted.

" ... There has been some reference to another incident with a minor girl. What do you know about that, if anything?" Zloch asked Villafana.

Only then did Zloch learn that McDaniel had preyed on other girls over the internet, including a 16-year-old California girl whom he brought to Texas and impregnated. He was also having another relationship with a 15-year-old girl at the time of his arrest, Villafana admitted in court.


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