A little more than a year from now, Jeffrey Epstein, sex predator multi-millionaire, will stand trial for abusing and trafficking girls as young as 14 for sexual exploits. The new federal charges brought last month accuse Epstein of sexually abusing dozens of underage girls between 2002 and 2005. Epstein faces a very different situation than he did about 10 years ago, when the 66-year-old hedge fund manager was the beneficiary of a secret deal put together by former Labor Secretary Alex Acosta. Acosta was then the U.S. attorney in Miami, Florida. He signed off on an agreement that allowed Epstein to plead to lesser state charges of minor prostitution and 18 months behind bars. Except, he only served 13 months, followed by more leniency — a work release plan that allowed him to work in his office 12 hours a day, six days a week. His office!

Two weeks ago, Epstein was found unconscious on the floor of his jail cell with bruises on his neck. Convicted sex offenders, and especially pedophiles like Epstein, are often targets in jails and prisons, so he may have been attacked. But he was also denied bail last month, so some speculate he deliberately hurt himself, either for sympathy or out of desperation. Of course, he deserves no sympathy. And nothing can match the desperation of the exploited underage girls who weren’t even told about Epstein’s lenient secret deal — the ones paid to perform massages that led to sexual abuse, and with Epstein coercing the girls to draft others into the sex ring. Epstein’s crimes and the depth of his trafficking history were uncovered in a Miami Herald investigation tracing his stomach-turning behavior and exploitation — calculated moves to take advantage of the young girls, mostly disadvantaged and poor. One of the victims, an unnamed girl, now woman, told reporter Julie K. Brown that she and others were desperate for money for school clothes and shoes. “We were told we would sit in a room topless and he would just look at us. ... We were stupid, poor children.”

Power and influence helped Jeffrey Epstein keep his nasty business up and running in both Manhattan and Palm Beach. His powerful circle of friends and acquaintances included Presidents Trump and Clinton, and Britain’s Prince Andrew. Famed attorney Alan Dershowitz helped negotiate his Florida deal. Dershowitz, by the way, admits to having a massage in Epstein’s home, but he says it was administered by an adult woman and he kept his underwear on. Insert eyeroll here.

But more than the A-listers, countless monied partygoers and backslappers were likely in the room or steps away from a scene of illegal and immoral activity. I hoped the #MeToo movement would put the squeeze on the infamous bro code — the see nothing, hear nothing and say nothing code of conduct. Apparently, bros, be they regular guys or multi-millionaires, first instinct is to circle the wagons, even if the guy is a pervert. It’s hard enough to think about the self-protective silence of those who took part in the abuse. But how many partied with Epstein and looked away when they saw those girls being brought to the house, saw them giving massages? How many dismissed his penchant for underage girls as none of their business? And why did nobody see these girls as somebody’s daughter, worthy of protecting?

We may soon know the identities of some of the bros who shielded Epstein. The now 32-year-old Jennifer Araoz has charged Epstein with raping her when she was 15 years old and her lawyers have asked for the logs of "everyone who enter or exited his" New York penthouse during 2000 through 2003. According to her lawyer, "she’s not afraid anymore."