tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC July 8, 2019 7:00pm-7:31pm EDT
toght, the billionaire accused of sex trafficking, jeffrey epstein appears in court on charges going back yes as federal prosecutors say they seized hundreds of nude photos of underaged girls in his townhouse. tonight their plea to other potential victims who may he been abused by him to me forward. after the two biggest uakes to hit california in decades, a wake up call for what may lie ahead. >> my kids are really scared. just another after shock, just another big one. at >> as we look ow prepared california is or not for a bigger quake. a heartbreaking mix up at a californ fertility clinic, a couple say they gave
birth toeone else's twins, notla d to them, not even related to each other, raising new questions about the industry. a tragic acciden in puerto rico, a toddler fell to her h from a window while her grandfather held her. new about cruise ship safety the new warning about a phone scam hitting record levels, criminals ng to be from the government going after your money, what to do if you get calls. and the trmph and return of america's super star. >> announcer: this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. good evening everyone. former high flying nc faier jeffrey epstein was indicted today on charges of sex trafficking involving underaged girls. epstein remains behind bars tonight after prosecutors reveal the pornographic images of young looki women in
his new york townhouse. he's accused of sexually exploiting dozens of teenage girls. today's federal indictment also bringing to light the previous plea deal that critics say was far too generous to epstein. our stephanie gosk reports. >> reporter: billionaire, hedge fund manager, socialite, accused sex trafficker. >> the alleged behavior shocks the conscience. >> reporter: federal prosecutors say jeffrey epstein created a network of dozens of ims, some as young as 14 who he sexually abused from 2002 to 2005 at his estate in palm beach, florida, and mansion in new york city. according to documents, the fbi seized a vastve trof lewd photographs of young looking women or girls during a search over the weekend. hundreds and perhaps thousands, of sexually suggestive photographs. epstein was arrested on saturday when his isrivate jet landed from p he was charged with sex trafficking and conspiracy to traffic
minors for the purpose wef sex. victim initially recruited to provide massages according to the indictment which would become increasingly sexual in nature. >> the victims, all underaged girls at e time of the alleged conduct, were given hundreds of dollars in cash after each encounter either by epstein or by one of epstein's employees. >> reporter: the w6-year-old has palled arouh some of the most powerful in politics and busess including bill clinton and president trump. today he pleaded not guilty to the charges which many including some officials and alleged victims say should have come more than a decade ago la after a simir investigation by law enforcement in florida. but in 2008, florida u.s. attorney alex acosta, the current secretary of labor, okered a secret last-minute deal. epstein avoided ge serious charby pleading guilty to state charges including soliciting prostitution from a minor. he had to spd 13 months in jail and offender.as a sex
>> it's such a shocking disparity between what he could have been charged with, what the evidence and the allegations seemed to show, and what he was allowed to get away with. >> reporter: durina confirmation hearing, he said it was the best deal given the evidence. >> it was a broadly held decision. >> reporter: the deal became the focus of anpl exive report last year. several of epstein's alleged victims speaking out for the first time. >> i was 16. >> i was 16. >> i started going to him when i was like ur4, 15. 14 tns 15. >> reporter: today the u.s. attorney said investigative journalism significanelped the case, and he called on new victims to come forward. >> while the charged conduct is froa number of years ago, they deserve their day in court. >> stephanie joins us now from feder court. stephanie, prosecutors are arguing that epstein be held without bail.
why? >> reporter: two reasons, lester. one they say he's a flight risk. he owns two private planes. aalso they say he's risk to the community, citing the photos they seized at his apartment over the weekend. according to prosecutors, he is not reformed, he is not repentant. lester. >> thanks. another breaking story, we're following the first flas flood emergency ever issued for washington, d.c. earlier today. torrential rain hit with force rarely seen in the nation's pi catal overwhelming roads and forcing rescues. >> reporter: during d.c.'s morning rush ers r, comm competing with rushing war. the road became a river. >> reporter: torrential rain bringing flash floods, washing out roads and stranding cars, kids carried to safety by adults. washington receiving a month's worth of rain in a single morning, 3.3 inch in one
hour, more than an inch of rain in the previous daily record set in 1958. a stream in virginia rose more than 11 feet in one hour. backyards looking like lakes. and pools morphing into muddy ponds. and in the mro system, a water fall cascading from the ceiling while the elevators at the pentagon stop looked like shower plus. some took risky chances requiring s. dozens of resc >> people made the mistake of trying to drive through high water. >> reporter: no deaths were repd and residents keeping a sense of humor. >> you trying to go fishing? nichols, nbc news washington. ig and ton also developing in washington has president trump firi back after highly critical leaked comments about him by the britishmb aassador to the the united states. andrea mitchell has that story. >> eporter: tonight the u.s. and britain in an uproar over a diplomatic bombshell,
secret cables leaked to a british tinloid. brutal critique of president trump going back two years, telling downing street the president radiates insecurity, calling his administration iq
inept and unly dysfunctional. the president tweeting today i do not know the ambassador, but he is not liked or well thought of within the u.s. we will no longer deal with him. erhe good news for the wondful united kingdom is that they will soon have a new prime minister. the front nner to become prime minister, the president's favorite, boris johnson. contrary to the president's twt, the ambassador's highly thought of british officials. >> i do not share the president's thoughts of the u.s. administration but i do defend his right to make that frank assessment. >> reporte british government is investigating the leak and looking inside to a possible cyber attack either from russia or iran. this as the u.s. and
britain face a new threat from iran set by the iran nuclear deal moving a step closer to possibly a n nuclear weapon. president trump abandoned the deal last yr and is threatening more sanctions. here in southern california the after shocks in the two major earthquakes are still being felt tonight both on the opground and in pes' minds. miguel almaguer reports from the epicenter. >> let's go, let's go, let's go! >> reporter: triggering shockwaves of panic and fear. >> oh, my god. oh, my god. >> reporter: the two massive back to back tremors rattle ridgecrest and were felt across southern california. a 7.1 magnitude earthqua friday after a 6.4 the day before. but even after igniting fires, buckling homes, and crumbling roads, no fatalities. really bada one. >> reporter: tonight e the size of
the quake, damage is not catastrophic but families are on edge.ea scared. every truck that drives by, they think it's another after shock, another big orne. >> repter: with building inspectors overwhelmed as they check on homes and businesses, families picking up the pieces of their lives. >> very heartbreaking. >> reporter: april rodriguez's house is in shambles. >> this is our childhood home. any time in our whole lives thate didn't feel safe, this is where we came. >> reporter: with new tremors every day, a seismic shift is under way. nd>> the fault lines a fractures especially here in the desert are growing. geologists say they may be up to 30 miles long. in the coming months ea and even y we may still be feeling earthquakes here. tonight with more than 5,000 quakes reported, many rattled, living on shaky ground.
all of the avenue after shocks here helping with the damage. the good news at this home and so many others, what you see here can be repaired. the bad news, the tremors are sending shockwaves of fear as they rattle roofs and foundations. many people have decided to sleep outside. >> thanks. and in a region where the occasional small tremor is quickly shrugged off, the intensity and length of a holiday weekend quake has grabbed the attention of a lot of folks in the los angeles area. i can tell you firsthand they grabbed mine. years pleas for earthquake preparedness are nating loudly. >> reporter: the two major earthquakes uncomfortably close to los angeles surfacing anxiety tonight that many californians haven't felt for more than 20 years about the many fault lines that straddle below this region of some 18 million people. >> what are we looking at? >> we are going to be looking at almost certainly fatalities because we have a lot of people and bad buildings, electricity, water are likely to be gone for ite a while. >> dr. lucy jones is a
ho seismologist w worked for the usgs for three decades. >> we know 7.1, very t strong earthquake a the epicenter. here in l.a. over 100 miles away, what was it? >> there's no way there was damage in los angeles at least physically. psychologicay, coming out of the blue going on for so long, that scared people. >> you liked the fact that some people are scared. >> it doesn't hurt. quietest th 20 years in southern california history and it can lead to some complacency or at least individuals not knowing what they should be doing. n his has got peoples' attention at ngeast and they're thinki about the haroblem again. >> tpsychological damage from last week's quakes that dr. jones speaks of is having at least a temporary effect. more people seem to be talk about getting these emergency go bags with critical tipg hads like flashlights and water and other important supplies in case you have to get out fast. i found eartuake related supplies in demand at this l.a.
area home depot. has it got you to ou thinking about own earthquake safety and preparedness? >> yes, definitely. i want some sneakers in my trunk, some water. >> the quakes also focusing attention on making sure homes can withstand major jolt. kenneth o'dell is a structural engineer. this has been retrofitted. what's been changed? >> here you can see these two columns towards the middle are lularger than the comn at the end. those columns have ne been strengthed. >> as images from a californuake disaster zone reveal the risks are not theoretical. >> i think when people o ook at earthquake, we tend terestimate the risk to our lives, and we underestimate the risk to our pocketbooks. and what this could do economically i think is underappreciated. >> i learned a lot talking to experts like dr. jones today and they remind that clean water is one of the first casualties of a major earthquake
and they stresthe ed to keep a healthy stock of water on hand. more ahead tonight including the heartbreaking tragedy during a family vacation, a toddler slipped out of her rms at ather's a cruise ship, falling more than 100 feet to her death.ga be gutierrez reports. >> tonight in puerto rico an investigation is under way how a apparently slipped from her grandfather's hand. police say she fell to her death sunday from the 11 story window of a cruise shipn san juan landing on the dock. it was a very tragic scenadding the toddler was traveling with her family from indiana aboard royal caribbean's freedom of the seas. the police chief of south bend says the girl's dad is officer allen weegann and is asking the community to pray for the entire family. over the last ten years, about 240 people have fallen from cruise ships and ferries. fewer than 1 in 5 have been rescued alive. c> what's alarming is theonditions under
which people go over board and the absence of systems for identifying that in fact they have gone over board. >> but the cruise line says ships have gotten safer pointing out while capacity has grown 55% over the pa decade, over board incidents have dropped by 35%. royal caribbean says it's deepl saddened by the tragic accident. another story a lot of us are watching today, late today the s. women's soccer team got a hero's welcome as they cubrought the world championship home. but they still have battle off the field for equal pay. >> reporter: tonight arousing welcome for the women's soccer world champions. back in the usa after win r incredib against the netherland a victory they celebrated all night. >> just cloud nine. i woke up just like --ju st crazy. >> reporter: in new york the stage is almost set for wednesday's ticker tape parade.
at this soccer summer camp kids taking notice too both girls and boys inspired. >> she works hard and she's a leader on and off the field. >> reporter: learning how to play while hi wa their heroes. >> i feel like they were reay good and they're brave. >> a lesson in a level playing field too. >> it keeps showing thhat girls and boys are e same and they can play just the same way. >> reporter: but the fight to pay the same way is now the womens' next challenge as they confront u.s. soccer for the same money the men get. >> with back to back world cups and the world's attention, the women's team may have ore leverage in that fight. both sides have now agreed toed mtion. lester. >> kelly, thank you. just ahead tonight the shocking mistake. a woman says she gave birth to other peoples' babies after a fertily clinic mix up. and a new warning
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next tonight a prominent fertility clinic accused of an outrages you mistake. one woman says an ivf mix up next tonight a icrominent fertility clin accused of an outrages you mistake. one woman says an ivf mix up led to her giving birth to other op peles' babies. >> reporter: on its website, the clinic calls itself "world renowned" wifa lities in seoul, south korea, and los angeles posting happy testimonials. but a fedel lawsuit filed by an unnamed couple alleges the cha clinic mixed up their embryos showing reckless disregard, causing severe emotional distress. according to the lawsuit, the couple was told two of the embryos used were female. the husband and wife were ecstatic to learn that after years of trying to conceive mhey had success.
but inarch the couple was shocked when she gave birth to twin boys who were not of asian descent using embryos belonging to two other couples. they had to turn over of the custody the babies according to the lawsuit and theydo t know what happened to their embryos. the cha clinic has not responded to the lawsuit or nbc requestr focomment. >> i'mot all that surprised that these mistakes are reported. no state or feral or professional sociation monitors or regulates closely. >> just ahead how to owrotect yourself from a grg phone scam. t this is hal. this is it's been broken.ba and together. this is also hal's heart. and this is hal's relief, knowing he's covered. this is hal's heart. and it's beating better than ever. this is what medicare from blue cross blue shield does for hal.
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>> we have received sis suspicious trails of information in your name. >> reporter: when julianne stafford googled the number, it came back at social security, so she called. the person on the other end already knew nder social security numberddress, then said fraudulent bank accounts had been opened in her name. >> you're so scared in that moment that they're saying you're going to go to federal prison. you're like oh, my god, no, how do i stop this from happening? i will tell you everything. >> reporter: the scammer said she shou act quickly to safeguard her money, transfer into a digital wallet using google play gift cards d and he staye on the phone as she drove to a nearby store where thankfully an a manager recognized she was in trouble. >> she said you are being scammed, i cannot sell this to you in good conscience. >> reporter: the federal trade commissions says the scams are exploding. 200,000 complaints of calls so far this year. most people hang up
and never report the scam, buose who are scammed lose nearly a thousand dollars on average. the scammers are very convincing scaring everyday americans in thinking they'll be arrested if they don't pay up immediately. >> if you get one of these phone calls, the number one aice is hang up. the government does not call you to threaten you. the government does not demand payment from you by gift cards or anything like that. >> i was going to lose the contents of my bank account if it weren't for that manager. >> reporter: now julianne is paying it forwarwarning others to be aware and report it if you get a call. tom costello nbc news, washington. up next for us tonight the american stars who have taken europe by storm at wimbledon. with all day comfort for all day fun...®
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finally joy and heartbreak at wiledon. 15-year-old coco gauff's magical run coming to an end while a fellow american d'shocked the worls number one player. here is blaine alexander. >> reporter: it was the wimbledon run that kept t world watching. coco gauff, a 15-year-old rookie toppling tennis giants. ng> i'm a fighter. anythis possible if you work hard. >> reporter: but even after her fourth round loss here at wimbledon for so many people cheering her on, coco is still a winner. on social media a celebrity cheering section. >> joe ellen posted me, beyonce posted me!>> eporter: enough to send this teen into a t of giggles. while coco's run is over, another american, alison riske, upset the number one seed today claiminger place in the quarterfinals taking on serena