Move of Epstein's former prison warden stalled due to investigation: BOP

The bureau originally said the move would be in early February.

January 28, 2020, 4:37 PM

The relocation of the warden in charge of the Metropolitan Correctional Center in New York, at the time convicted sex offender and financier Jeffery Epstein died by suicide, has been stalled the Bureau of Prisons told ABC News on Tuesday.

BOP says Lamine N'Diaye's move has been "deferred pending the conclusion of investigations."

He was originally slated to be moved to a leadership position at a minimum security prison at FCI Fort Dix in New Jersey on Feb. 2, putting him back in the field with inmates despite the ongoing Epstein investigation.

PHOTO: File photo of the Metropolitan Correctional Center, which is operated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons, in lower Manhattan of New York City on Nov. 19, 2019
File photo of the Metropolitan Correctional Center, which is operated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons, in lower Manhattan of New York City on Nov. 19, 2019.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The agency’s backtracking came after Attorney General William Barr stepped in and told officials at the Bureau of Prisons to reverse course, a source familiar with the matter confirmed to ABC News.

The news came after the warden was temporarily reassigned to the Bureau of Prisons' regional office in Philadelphia, a senior BOP official told ABC News.

"Today, the Attorney General directed the Bureau of Prisons to temporarily assign the warden at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in New York to the Bureau’s Northeast Regional Office pending the outcome of the FBI and [Office of Inspector General] investigations into the apparent suicide of Jeffrey Epstein, a former MCC inmate," Kerri Kupec, a spokesperson for the Department of Justice, said in a statement in August.

PHOTO: Handout provided by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement of Jeffrey Epstein posing for a sex offender mugshot after being charged with procuring a minor for prostitution on July 25, 2013.
Handout provided by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement of Jeffrey Epstein posing for a sex offender mugshot after being charged with procuring a minor for prostitution on July 25, 2013.
Florida Department of Law Enforcement via Getty Images

Two correctional officers in charge of watching over Epstein, Tova Noel and Michael Thomas, were indicted in November.

The union that represents the two guards expressed outrage at the report.

"Disgraceful. How can they allow this warden to supervise staff and inmates," Joe Rojas a senior BOP union official told ABC News.

They plead not guilty to charges of falsifying government documents "in an effort to defraud" and impair the functions of the MCC, according to a release from the Southern District of New York.

The charges alleged the guards lied on their records saying they checked in on Epstein before his death. Investigators during the trial said the two were sleeping and browsing the internet during a two hour period.

Noel and Thomas have yet to be interviewed in the internal evaluation, a source said.

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