NEW YORK >> A judge has ordered a federal jail to improve housing conditions for one of Jeffrey Epstein’s former cellmates.
U.S District Judge Kenneth Karas threatened today to hold hearings on conditions at the Metropolitan Correctional Center if officials don’t improve Nicholas Tartaglione’s treatment and access to attorneys.
Tartaglione was sharing a cell with Epstein in July when the financier was placed on a suicide watch after being discovered with bruises on his neck.
Several weeks later, Epstein hanged himself.
Tartaglione’s lawyers had asked the judge to transfer him to another jail, saying he’d been threatened and mistreated amid investigations into Epstein’s death.
Tartaglione’s lawyer called him a “critical witness.”
Prosecutors said guards have been admonished not to retaliate against Tartaglione. They said they weren’t aware of all of Tartaglione’s complaints before today.