Labor Secretary Alex Acosta, the only Latino in Donald Trump’s cabinet, has announced his resignation for his performance in the case of tycoon sex offender Jeffrey Epstein when he was a federal prosecutor for the Southern District of Florida.
In an unannounced appearance in the White House with President Trump, Acosta said he called the president this morning after considering that “the right thing to do was to step aside”.
The president stressed that Acosta has been “a great secretary” and praised his “very good job” at head of the Department of Labor.
“It was his decision, not mine,” Trump added.
The resignation comes just two days after Acosta defended his performance as a prosecutor at a press conference, when he reached a controversial legal agreement with Epstein, now accused for the second time of child abuse.
The billionaire, arrested at the beginning of the month, already faced accusations of this caliber in Florida, but in 2008 he reached an unofficial agreement with the Prosecutor’s Office, then headed by Acosta, to close an investigation that could have ended with life imprisonment.
The agreed agreement then, nevertheless, contemplated that the New York mogul would serve a sentence of just 18 months in prison and become part of that registry.
Despite this ruling, the Office of the Prosecutor of New York has been able to re-accuse Epstein, without falling into a double prosecution, thanks to the new evidence and testimonies obtained in recent years.
Acosta, who leaves the Trump presidential cabinet without Latino representation among its secretaries, had taken office in April 2017.