Ghislaine Maxwell May Spend Up To 65 years in Prison Having Being Convicted of recruiting underage girls to be sexually abused by Epstein

 

Jeffrey Epstein And  Ghislaine Maxwell Clan Exposed The Whole Shocking Truth

The Complete Epstein Maxwell Story 3 Hours 

 

 John Preston Talks About Robert Maxwell's Mysterious Death

 

The Bizarre Life And Death Of Robert Maxwell 2.5 Hours

 

Das Milliardengeschäft Des Robert Maxwell -Dokumentary1994

 

 

The Mystery Of The Fall Of Robert Maxwell-by John Preston

 

Robert Maxwell Interview Evening News Re-Launch

TN-86-108-013-THAMES NEWS. 18.8.86

 

Robert Maxwell Oxford United 1984 TV Feature,

Marking Three Years Since Robert Maxwell Took Over The Club

Photos appeared to show Maxwell and Epstein had a close relationship (US Department of Justice)

Photos appeared to show Maxwell and Epstein had a close relationship

Ghislaine Maxwell sunbathes on a yacht in a photo issued by the US Department of Justice (PA)
Ghislaine Maxwell sunbathes on a yacht in a photo issued by the US Department of Justice (PA)
 
Maxwell’s trial heard she bragged of having high-profile friends such as the Duke of York (Chris Ison/PA)
Maxwell’s trial heard she bragged of having high-profile friends such as the Duke of York

Ghislaine Maxwell May Spend Up To 65 years in Prison Having Being Convicted of recruiting underage girls to be sexually abused by Epstein 

Ghislaine Maxwell was 'main enforcer' and 'you don't cross her', says woman allegedly raped by Jeffrey Epstein

Maxwell has been convicted of recruiting underage girls to be sexually abused by Epstein and now faces up to 65 years in prison in the US.

https://news.sky.com/story/ghislaine-maxwell-was-main-enforcer-and-you-dont-cross-her-says-woman-allegedly-raped-by-jeffrey-epstein-12506403

A woman who claims Ghislaine Maxwell forced her into a room to be raped by Jeffrey Epstein has told Sky News that the British socialite was the "main enforcer".

Sarah Ransome said "you don't cross her" and she was "the lady of the house".

Maxwell has been convicted of recruiting underage girls to be sexually abused by former boyfriend Epstein and now faces up to 65 years in prison in the US.

She was found guilty of five of the six counts brought about by the testimony of four women who all gave evidence in court in New York.

Ms Ransome, who settled a lawsuit with Epstein and Maxwell in 2018, was not among the four but she did attend the trial.

She said it was important for her to be in court to "smile right back" at the defendant as she said Maxwell had smiled at her after allegedly forcing her into one of Epstein's rooms to be abused by the financier.

She told Sky's US correspondent Martha Kelner: "Ghislaine was the main enforcer… even before I met Ghislaine, Jeffrey said 'you answer to Ghislaine'. She is the lady of the house… you just don't cross her.

"She forced me into Jeffrey's room to be raped. And then when I walked out - well, walked, limped, I mean whatever you do when you have just been brutally raped... I looked at her.

"That's why it was really important for me to be there (at the court) and look at her because when I looked at her after she forced me into that room to be raped she smiled, and that's why I had to be there because you know what? I smiled right back at her when I saw her."

Meanwhile, one of the four accusers who testified in court against Maxwell said her conviction was "one important step" toward justice.

"It's a tremendous relief," Annie Farmer said on ABC's Good Morning America. "I wasn't sure that this day would ever come."

Ms Farmer, the only one of the four to give her full name in the trial, added: "I just feel so grateful that the jury believed us and sent a strong message that perpetrators of sexual abuse and exploitation will be held accountable no matter how much power and privilege they have."

Ms Farmer was 16-years-old when she first met Epstein. She claimed she was flown to his ranch in New Mexico under the impression it was part of a scholarship programme with dozens of other students, but arrived to find she was there alone, apart from Epstein and Maxwell.

She said Maxwell instructed her how to give a foot massage to Epstein and later massaged Ms Farmer's "chest and upper breasts".

Ms Farmer is now a psychologist, treating patients who have had similar experiences.

She said: "Having the privilege of hearing so many stories from the people that I work with, I have really recognised that it's a very rare opportunity to be able to be in court and tell your story.

"And to be able to see the person who perpetrated the abuse held accountable.

Annie Farmer. Pic: AP

Annie Farmer testified in court against Maxwell. 

Undated handout photo issued by US Department of Justice of Ghislaine Maxwell with Jeffrey Epstein, which has been shown to the court during the sex trafficking trial of Maxwell in the Southern District of New York. The British socialite is accused of preying on vulnerable young girls and luring them to massage rooms to be molested by Epstein between 1994 and 2004. Issue date: Wednesday December 8, 2021.

Ghislaine Maxwell and her former boyfriend Jeffrey Epstein

 

Ghislaine Maxwell, youngest child of media proprietor and fraudster, Robert Maxwell (1923 - 1991), holding a framed photograph of her late father

Ghislaine Maxwell, youngest child of media proprietor and fraudster, Ian Robert Maxwell (1923 - 1991), holding a framed photograph of her late father Ian Robert Maxwell 

Ian Robert Maxwell 

Robert Maxwell 1989.jpg

Maxwell at the Global Economic Panel in Amsterdam (1989)

Ian Robert Maxwell MC (born Ján Ludvík Hyman Binyamin Hoch; 10 June 1923 – 5 November 1991) was a British media proprietor, former member of Parliament (MP), suspected spy, and fraudster.[1] Originally from Czechoslovakia, Maxwell rose from poverty to build an extensive publishing empire. After his death, huge discrepancies in his companies' finances were revealed, including his fraudulent misappropriation of the Mirror Group pension fund.[2]

Early in his life, Maxwell, then an Orthodox Jew, escaped from Nazi occupation, joined the Czechoslovak Army in exile during World War II and was decorated after active service in the British Army. In subsequent years he worked in publishing, building up Pergamon Press to a major publishing house. After six years as a Labour MP during the 1960s, Maxwell again put all his energy into business, successively buying the British Printing CorporationMirror Group Newspapers and Macmillan Publishers, among other publishing companies.

Maxwell had a flamboyant lifestyle, living in Headington Hill Hall in Oxford, from which he often flew in his helicopter, or his luxury yacht, the Lady Ghislaine. He was litigious and often embroiled in controversy. In 1989, Maxwell had to sell successful businesses, including Pergamon Press, to cover some of his debts. In 1991, his body was discovered floating in the Atlantic Ocean, having apparently fallen overboard from his yacht. He was buried in Jerusalem.

Maxwell's death triggered the collapse of his publishing empire as banks called in loans. His sons briefly attempted to keep the business together, but failed as the news emerged that the elder Maxwell had stolen hundreds of millions of pounds from his own companies' pension funds. The Maxwell companies applied for bankruptcy protection in 1992.

Early life[edit]

Robert Maxwell was born into a poor Yiddish-speaking Orthodox Jewish family in the small town of Slatinské Doly, in the region of Carpathian RutheniaCzechoslovakia (now SolotvynoUkraine).[3][4][5] His parents were Mechel Hoch and Hannah Slomowitz. He had six siblings. In 1939, the area was reclaimed by Hungary. Most members of Maxwell's family were murdered in Auschwitz after Hungary was occupied in 1944 by Nazi Germany, but he had years earlier escaped to France.[3] In May 1940, he joined the Czechoslovak Army in exile in Marseille.[6]

After the fall of France and the British retreat to Britain, Maxwell (using the name "Ivan du Maurier",[7] or "Leslie du Maurier",[8] the surname taken from the name of a popular cigarette brand) took part in a protest against the leadership of the Czechoslovak Army, and with 500 other soldiers he was transferred to the Pioneer Corps and later to the North Staffordshire Regiment in 1943. He was then involved in action across Europe, from the Normandy beaches to Berlin, and achieved the rank of sergeant.[3] Maxwell gained a commission in 1945 and was promoted to the rank of captain.

In January 1945, Maxwell's heroism in "storming a German machine-gun nest" during the war won him the Military Cross, presented by Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery.[9] Attached to the Foreign Office, he served in Berlin during the next two years in the press section.[5] Maxwell naturalised as a British subject on 19 June 1946[10] and changed his name by deed of change of name on 30 June 1948.[11]

In 1945, Maxwell married Elisabeth "Betty" Meynard, a French Protestant, and the couple had nine children over the next 16 years: Michael, Philip, Ann, ChristineIsabel, Karine, IanKevin and Ghislaine.[12] In a 1995 interview, Elisabeth talked of how they were recreating his childhood family who were killed in the Holocaust.[13] Five of his children – Christine, Isabel, Ian, Kevin and Ghislaine – were later employed within his companies. His daughter Karine died of leukaemia at age three, while Michael was severely injured in a car crash in 1961, at the age of 15, when his driver fell asleep at the wheel. Michael never regained consciousness and died seven years later.[14][15][16]

After the war, Maxwell used contacts in the Allied occupation authorities to go into business, becoming the British and US distributor for Springer Verlag, a publisher of scientific books. In 1951, he bought three-quarters of Butterworth-Springer, a minor publisher; the remaining quarter was held by the experienced scientific editor Paul Rosbaud.[17] They changed the name of the company to Pergamon Press and rapidly built it into a major publishing house.[18]

In 1964, representing the Labour Party, Maxwell was elected as Member of Parliament (MP) for Buckingham and re-elected in 1966. He gave an interview to The Times in 1968, in which he said the House of Commons provided him with a problem. "I can't get on with men", he commented. "I tried having male assistants at first. But it didn't work. They tend to be too independent. Men like to have individuality. Women can become an extension of the boss."[19] Maxwell lost his seat in 1970 to Conservative challenger William Benyon. He contested Buckingham again in both 1974 general elections, but without success.

At the beginning of 1969, it emerged that Maxwell's attempt to buy the tabloid newspaper News of the World had failed.[20] The Carr family, which owned the title, was incensed at the thought of a Czechoslovak immigrant with socialist politics gaining ownership, and the board voted against Maxwell's bid without any dissent. The News of the World's editor, Stafford Somerfield, opposed Maxwell's bid in an October 1968 front page opinion piece, in which he referred to Maxwell's Czechoslovak origins and used his birth name.[21] He wrote, "This is a British paper, run by British people ... as British as roast beef and Yorkshire pudding ... Let us keep it that way".[22] The paper was later purchased by Australian tycoon Rupert Murdoch, who later that year acquired The Sun, which had also previously interested Maxwell.[23]

Pergamon lost and regained[edit]

In 1969, Saul Steinberg, head of "Leasco Data Processing Corporation", was interested in a strategic acquisition of Pergamon Press. Steinberg claimed that during negotiations, Maxwell falsely stated that a subsidiary responsible for publishing encyclopedias was extremely profitable.[24][25] At the same time, Pergamon had been forced to reduce its profit forecasts for 1969 from £2.5 million to £2.05 million during the period of negotiations, and dealing in Pergamon shares was suspended on the London stock markets.[25]

Maxwell subsequently lost control of Pergamon and was expelled from the board in October 1969, along with three other directors in sympathy with him, by the majority owners of the company's shares.[26] Steinberg purchased Pergamon. An inquiry by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) under the Takeover Code of the time reported was conducted by Rondle Owen Charles Stable and Sir Ronald Leach in mid-1971.[27][5] The report concluded: "We regret having to conclude that, notwithstanding Mr Maxwell's acknowledged abilities and energy, he is not in our opinion a person who can be relied on to exercise proper stewardship of a publicly quoted company."[28][29] It was found that Maxwell had contrived to maximise Pergamon's share price through transactions between his private family companies.[24]

At the same time, the United States Congress was investigating Leasco's takeover practices. Judge Thayne Forbes in September 1971 was critical of the inquiry: "They had moved from an inquisitorial role to accusatory one and virtually committed the business murder of Mr. Maxwell." He further continued that the trial judge would probably find that the inspectors had acted "contrary to the rules of natural justice".[30] The company performed poorly under Steinberg; Maxwell reacquired Pergamon in 1974 after borrowing funds.[31]

Maxwell established the Maxwell Foundation in Liechtenstein in 1970. He acquired the British Printing Corporation (BPC) in 1981 and changed its name first to the British Printing and Communication Corporation (BPCC) and then to the Maxwell Communications Corporation (MCC). The company was later sold in a management buyout and is now known as Polestar.

Later business activities[edit]

In July 1984, Maxwell acquired Mirror Group Newspapers, the publisher of six British newspapers, including the Daily Mirror, from Reed International plc.[32] for £113 million.[33] This led to the famous media war between Maxwell and Murdoch, the proprietor of the News of the World and The Sun.

Mirror Group Newspapers (formerly Trinity Mirror, now part of Reach plc), published the Daily Mirror, a pro-Labour tabloid; Sunday MirrorSunday PeopleScottish Sunday Mail and Scottish Daily Record. At a press conference to publicise his acquisition, Maxwell said his editors would be "free to produce the news without interference".[32] Meanwhile, at a meeting of Maxwell's new employees, Mirror journalist Joe Haines asserted that he was able to prove that their boss "is a crook and a liar".[34][35] Haines quickly came under Maxwell's influence and later wrote his authorised biography.[34]

In June 1985 Maxwell announced a takeover of Clive Sinclair's ailing home computer company, Sinclair Research, through Hollis Brothers, a Pergamon subsidiary.[36] The deal was aborted in August 1985.[37] In 1987 Maxwell purchased part of IPC Media to create Fleetway Publications. The same year he launched the London Daily News in February after a delay caused by production problems, but the paper closed in July after sustaining significant losses contemporary estimates put at £25 million.[38] At first intended to be a rival to the Evening Standard, Maxwell had made a rash decision for it to be the first 24-hour paper as well.[39]

By 1988 Maxwell's various companies owned, in addition to the Mirror titles and Pergamon Press, Nimbus Records, Maxwell Directories, Prentice Hall Information Services and the Berlitz language schools. He also owned a half-share of MTV in Europe and other European television interests, Maxwell Cable TV and Maxwell Entertainment.[31] Maxwell purchased Macmillan Publishers, the American firm, for $2.6 billion in 1988. In the same year, he launched an ambitious new project, a transnational newspaper called The European. In 1991 Maxwell was forced to sell Pergamon and Maxwell Directories to Elsevier for £440 million to cover his debts;[31] he used some of this money to buy an ailing tabloid, the New York Daily News. The same year Maxwell sold 49 percent of the stock of Mirror Group Newspapers to the public.[5]

Maxwell's links with Eastern European totalitarian regimes resulted in several biographies[40] of those countries' leaders, with interviews conducted by Maxwell, for which he received much derision.[5] At the beginning of an interview with Romania's Nicolae Ceaușescu, then the country's communist leader, he asked, "How do you account for your enormous popularity with the Romanian people?"[41]

 
Global Economic Panel April 1989 in Amsterdam: Wisse Dekker, minister Hans van den BroekHenry Kissinger and Robert Maxwell.
 
For the last 32 years of his life, Robert Maxwell lived at Headington Hill Hall, which he rented from Oxford City Council and described as "the best council house" in the country.[42] It is now part of Oxford Brookes University.

Maxwell was also the chairman of Oxford United, saving them from bankruptcy and attempting to merge them with Reading in 1983 to form a club he wished to call "Thames Valley Royals". He took Oxford into the top flight of English football in 1985 and the team won the League Cup a year later. Maxwell bought into Derby County in 1987. He also attempted to buy Manchester United in 1984, but refused owner Martin Edwards's asking price.

A bugged version of the intelligence spy software PROMIS was sold in the mid-1980s for Soviet government use, with Robert Maxwell as a conduit.[43]

Maxwell was known to be litigious against those who would speak or write against him. The satirical magazine Private Eye lampooned him as "Cap'n Bob" and the "bouncing Czech",[44] the latter nickname having originally been devised by Prime Minister Harold Wilson[45] (under whom Maxwell was an MP). Maxwell took out several libel actions against Private Eye, one resulting in the magazine losing an estimated £225,000 and Maxwell using his commercial power to hit back with a one-off spoof magazine Not Private Eye.[46]

Israeli controversy[edit]

1948 war[edit]

A hint of Maxwell's service to Israel was provided by John Loftus and Mark Aarons, who described Maxwell's contacts with Czechoslovak communist leaders in 1948 as crucial to the Czechoslovak decision to arm Israel in the 1948 Arab–Israeli War. Czechoslovak military assistance was both unique and crucial for Israel as it battled for its existence. According to Loftus and Aarons, it was Maxwell's covert help in smuggling aircraft parts into Israel that led to the country having air superiority during their 1948 war of independence.[47]

Mossad allegations; Vanunu case[edit]

The Foreign Office suspected that Maxwell was a secret agent of a foreign government, possibly a double agent or a triple agent, and "a thoroughly bad character and almost certainly financed by Russia". He had known links to the British Secret Intelligence Service (MI6), to the Soviet KGB, and to the Israeli intelligence service Mossad.[48] Six serving and former heads of Israeli intelligence services attended Maxwell's funeral in Israel, while Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir eulogised him and stated: "He has done more for Israel than can today be told."[49]

Shortly before Maxwell's death, a former employee of Israel's Military Intelligence DirectorateAri Ben-Menashe, approached a number of news organisations in Britain and the US with the allegation that Maxwell and the Daily Mirror's foreign editor, Nicholas Davies, were both long-time agents for Mossad. Ben-Menashe also claimed that, in 1986, Maxwell informed the Israeli Embassy in London that Mordechai Vanunu revealed information about Israel's nuclear capability to The Sunday Times, then to the Daily Mirror. Vanunu was subsequently kidnapped by Mossad and smuggled to Israel, convicted of treason and imprisoned for eighteen years.[50]

Ben-Menashe's story was ignored at first, but eventually journalist Seymour Hersh of The New Yorker repeated some of the allegations during a press conference in London held to publicise The Samson Option, Hersh's book about Israel's nuclear weapons.[51] On 21 October 1991, Labour MP George Galloway and Conservative MP Rupert Allason (also known as espionage author Nigel West) agreed to raise the issue in the House of Commons under parliamentary privilege protection,[a] which in turn allowed British newspapers to report events without fear of libel suits. Maxwell called the claims "ludicrous, a total invention" and sacked Davies.[52] A year later, in Galloway's libel settlement against Mirror Group Newspapers (in which he received "substantial" damages), Galloway's counsel announced that the MP accepted that the group's staff had not been involved in Vanunu's abduction. Galloway referred to Maxwell as "one of the worst criminals of the century".[53]

Death[edit]

On 4 November 1991, Maxwell had an argumentative phone call with his son Kevin over a meeting scheduled with the Bank of England on Maxwell's default on £50,000,000 in loans. Maxwell missed the meeting, instead travelling to his yacht, the Lady Ghislaine, in the Canary IslandsSpain.[9]

On 5 November, Maxwell was last in contact with the crew of Lady Ghislaine at 4:25 a.m. local time, but was found to be missing later in the morning.[52] It has been speculated that Maxwell was urinating into the ocean nude at the time, as he often did.[9] He was presumed to have fallen overboard from the vessel, which was cruising off the Canary Islands, southwest of Spain.[52][54] Maxwell's naked body was recovered from the Atlantic Ocean and taken to Las Palmas.[50] Besides a "graze to his left shoulder", there were no noticeable wounds on Maxwell's body.[9] The official ruling at an inquest held in December 1991 was death by a heart attack combined with accidental drowning,[55] although three pathologists had been unable to agree on the cause of his death at the inquest;[50] he had been found to have been suffering from serious heart and lung conditions.[56] Murder was ruled out by the judge and, in effect, so was suicide.[55] His son discounted the possibility of suicide, saying, "I think it is highly unlikely that he would have taken his own life, it wasn't in his makeup or his mentality."[9]

Maxwell was afforded a lavish funeral in Israel, attended by Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir, Israeli President Chaim Herzog, at least six serving and former heads of Israeli intelligence[57] and many dignitaries and politicians, both government and opposition, and was buried on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem.[58][59][60] Herzog delivered the eulogy and the Kaddish was recited by his fellow Holocaust survivor, friend and longtime attorney Samuel Pisar.[61]

British Prime Minister John Major said Maxwell had given him "valuable insights" into the situation in the Soviet Union during the attempted coup of 1991. He was a "great character", Major added. Neil Kinnock, then Labour Party leader, spoke of him as a man with "a zest for life" who "attracted controversy, envy and loyalty in great measure throughout his rumbustious life."

A production crew conducting research for Maxwell, a 2007 biographical film by the BBC, uncovered tapes stored in a suitcase owned by his former head of security, John Pole. Later in his life, Maxwell had become increasingly paranoid about his own employees and had the offices of those he suspected of disloyalty bugged so he could hear their conversations. After Maxwell's death, the tapes remained in Pole's suitcase and were discovered by the researchers only in 2007.[62]

Aftermath: discovery of pension funds theft and collapse of a publishing empire[edit]

Maxwell's death triggered instability for his publishing empire, with banks frantically calling in their massive loans. Despite the efforts of his sons Kevin and Ian, the Maxwell companies soon collapsed. It emerged that, without adequate prior authorisation, Maxwell had used hundreds of millions of pounds from his companies' pension funds to shore up the shares of the Mirror Group to save his companies from bankruptcy.[63] Eventually, the pension funds were replenished with money from investment banks Shearson Lehman and Goldman Sachs, as well as the British government.[64] This replenishment was limited and also supported by a surplus in the printers' fund, which was taken by the government in part payment of £100 million required to support the workers' state pensions. The rest of the £100 million was waived. Maxwell's theft of pension funds was therefore partly repaid from public funds. The result was that in general, pensioners received about half of their company pension entitlement.

The Maxwell companies filed for bankruptcy protection in 1992. Kevin Maxwell was declared bankrupt with debts of £400 million. In 1995, Kevin, Ian and two other former directors went on trial for conspiracy to defraud, but were unanimously acquitted by a twelve-person jury the following year.

Family[edit]

In November 1994, Maxwell's widow Elisabeth published her memoirs, A Mind of My Own: My Life with Robert Maxwell,[65] which sheds light on her life with him, when the publishing magnate was ranked as one of the richest people in the world.[66] Having earned her degree from Oxford University in 1981, Elisabeth devoted much of her later life to continued research on the Holocaust and worked as a proponent of Jewish-Christian dialogue. She died on 7 August 2013.[67]

In July 2020, Maxwell's youngest child, his daughter Ghislaine Maxwell, was arrested and charged in New Hampshire, US, with six federal crimes, involving minors' trade, travel and seducing to engage in criminal sexual activity, and conspiracy to entice children to engage in illegal sex acts, allegedly linked to a sex-trafficking ring with Jeffrey Epstein (who had already died in jail the previous year). She was convicted on 29 December 2021. [68]

In popular culture[edit]

  • Maxwell, in addition to Ted Turner and Rupert Murdoch, was used as inspiration for the villainous media baron Elliot Carver in the 1997 James Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies, as well as its novelisation and video game adaptation.[69][70] At the film's conclusion, M orders a story spun disguising Carver's demise, saying that Carver is believed to have committed suicide by jumping off his yacht in the South China Sea.
  • A BBC drama, Maxwell, covering his life shortly before his death, starring David Suchet and Patricia Hodge, was aired on 4 May 2007.[71] Suchet won the International Emmy Award for Best Actor for his performance as Maxwell.[72]
  • one-person show about Maxwell's life, Lies Have Been Told, written by Rod Beacham, was performed by Phillip York at London's Trafalgar Studios in 2006.[73]
  • The Fourth Estate, a 1996 novel by Jeffrey Archer, is based on the lives of Robert Maxwell and Rupert Murdoch.[74]
  • Max, a novel by Juval Aviv, is based on Aviv's investigation into the death of Robert Maxwell.[75]
  • Maxwell pressured Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev to cancel the contract between Elorg and Nintendo concerning the rights to the game Tetris.[76]
  • In the 1992 final series of British sitcom The New Statesman, a recurring joke is Alan B'Stard's knowledge that Maxwell faked his death and is still alive. In the fifth episode, B'Stard visits war-torn Herzegovina, ostensibly to negotiate a peace treaty, but his plan all along has been to smuggle Maxwell out of the country to a luxury hideaway, in return for a handsome slice of the Mirror Group funds. It transpires, however, that Maxwell has already spent the money, and the episode ends with a vengeful B'Stard giving him "an amazing deja-vu experience" by pushing him over the side of his yacht, where he presumably dies.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Parliamentary privilege allows MPs to ask questions in Parliament without risk of being sued for defamation.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Robert Maxwell's sons speak out about their fraudster father". Retrieved 10 December 2019.
  2. ^ "A Notorious Fraud – the Robert Maxwell Farrago". Australian Guardians. Archived from the original on 27 August 2014. Retrieved 12 December 2017.
  3. Jump up to:a b c Марк Штейнберг. Евреи в войнах тысячелетий. p. 227. ISBN 5-93273-154-0 (in Russian)
  4. ^ Иван Мащенко (7–13 September 2002). Медиа-олигарх из СолотвинаЗеркало недели (in Russian) (#34 (409)). Archived from the original on 22 December 2012.
  5. Jump up to:a b c d e Whitney, Craig R. (6 November 1991). "Robert Maxwell, 68: From Refugee to the Ruthless Builder of a Publishing Empire"The New York Times. p. 5.
  6. ^ "Ludvík Hoch (Maxwell) in the database of Central Military Archive in Prague".
  7. ^ Walters, Rob (8 December 2009). "Naughty Boys: Ten Rogues of Oxford"google.se. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
  8. ^ LLC, Sussex Publishers (May 1988). Spy. Sussex Publishers, LLC.
  9. Jump up to:a b c d e Kirsch, Noah. "Long Before Ghislaine Maxwell Disappeared, Her Mogul Father Died Mysteriously"Forbes.
  10. ^ "No. 37658"The London Gazette. 19 July 1946. p. 3739.
  11. ^ "No. 38352"The London Gazette. 13 July 1948. p. 4046.
  12. ^ Haines, Joe (1988). Maxwell. London: Futura. pp. 434 et seq. ISBN 0-7088-4303-4.
  13. ^ Witchell, Alex (15 February 1995). "AT LUNCH WITH: Elisabeth Maxwell; Questions Without Answers"The New York Times. Retrieved 31 October 2013.
  14. ^ Maxwell: The final verdict
  15. ^ A mind of my own by Elisabeth Maxwell
  16. ^ Rampton, James (28 April 2007). "Maxwell was a monster - but much more, too"The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  17. ^ Haines (1988) 135
  18. ^ Cox, Brian (October 2002). "The Pergamon phenomenon 1951-1991: Robert Maxwell and scientific publishing"Learned Publishing15 (4): 273–278. doi:10.1087/095315102760319233.
  19. ^ Barwick, Sandra (25 October 1994). "The beast and his beauties"The Independent.
  20. ^ "1969: Murdoch wins Fleet Street foothold"BBC. 2 January 1969.
  21. ^ Greenslade, Roy (2004) [2003]. Press Gang: How Newspapers Make Profits From Propaganda. London: Pan. p. 395. ISBN 9780330393768.
  22. ^ Grundy, Bill (24 October 1968). "Mr Maxwell and the Ailing Giant"The Spectator. p. 6.
  23. ^ "The Maxwell Murdoch tabloid rivalry"BBC News. 5 November 2011.
  24. Jump up to:a b Dennis Barker and Christopher Sylvester "The grasshopper", – Obituary of Maxwell, The Guardian, 6 November 1991. Retrieved on 19 July 2007.
  25. Jump up to:a b Nicholas Davenport "Money Wanted: A Board of Trade inquiry"The Spectator, 29 August 1969, p.24
  26. ^ Nicholas Davenport "Money: The End of the Affair"The Spectator, 17 October 1969, p.22
  27. ^ Stable, Rondle Owen Charles; Leach, Sir Ronald; Industry, Great Britain Department of Trade and (1971). Report on the Affairs of the International Learning Systems Corporation Limited: And Interim Report on the Affairs of Pergamon Press Limited, Investigation Under Section 165(b) of the Companies Act 1948. H.M. Stationery Office. ISBN 978-0-11-510728-3.
  28. ^ Stable, Rondle Owen Charles; Leach, Sir Ronald; Industry, Great Britain Department of Trade and (1971). Report on the Affairs of the International Learning Systems Corporation Limited: And Interim Report on the Affairs of Pergamon Press Limited, Investigation Under Section 165(b) of the Companies Act 1948. H.M. Stationery Office. ISBN 978-0-11-510728-3.
  29. ^ Wearing, Robert (2005). Cases in Corporate Governance. London: SAGE Publications Ltd. p. 28. ISBN 1412908779.
  30. ^ Betty Maxwell, p. 542
  31. Jump up to:a b c "Robert Maxwell: Overview", keputa.net
  32. Jump up to:a b "Briton Buys the Mirror Chain"The New York Times, 14 July 1984
  33. ^ Roy Greenslade Press Gang: How Newspapers Make Profits From Propaganda, London: Pan, 2004 [2003], p.395
  34. Jump up to:a b "Say It Ain't So, Joe"The Spectator, 22 February 1992, p.15
  35. ^ Roy Greenslade Press Gang, p.395
  36. ^ "Sinclair to Sell British Unit"The New York Times. 18 June 1985. Retrieved 4 December 2009.
  37. ^ "Sinclair: A Corporate History"Planet Sinclair. Retrieved 4 December 2009.
  38. ^ "Maxwell Closes London Paper"Glasgow Herald, 25 July 1987, p.3
  39. ^ Duncan Campbell "The London legacy of Cap'n Bob"The Guardian, 28 August 2006
  40. ^ David Ellis and Sidney Urquhart "Maxwell's Hall of Shame"Time, 8 April 1991
  41. ^ Editorial: "Breaking the Spell"The Spectator, 21 December 1991, p.3
  42. ^ "", Headington History
  43. ^ "In New French Best-Seller, Software Meets Espionage".
  44. ^ Jon Kelly "The strange allure of Robert Maxwell", BBC News, 4 May 2007
  45. ^ Reuters "Murdoch conclusion stirs memories of his old foe Maxwell"Chicago Tribune, 1 May 2012
  46. ^ "Not Private Eye", Tony Quinn, Magforum.com, 6 March 2007
  47. ^ John Loftus and Mark AaronsThe Secret War Against the Jews.
  48. ^ "FO Suspected Maxwell Was a Russian Agent, Papers Reveal"The Telegraph, 2 November 2003
  49. ^ Gordon Thomas (1999), Gideon's Spies: The Secret History of the Mossad, New York: St. Martin's Press, p. 23
  50. Jump up to:a b c Robert Verkaik "The Mystery of Maxwell's Death"The Independent, 10 March 2006
  51. ^ Hersh, Seymour M. (1991). The Samson Option : Israel's Nuclear Arsenal and American Foreign Policy (1st ed.). New York. pp. 312–15. ISBN 0-394-57006-5OCLC 24609770.
  52. Jump up to:a b c Ben Laurance and John Hooper, et al. "Maxwell's body found in sea"The Guardian, 6 November 1991
  53. ^ "Scottish MP wins libel damages"The Herald (Glasgow), 22 December 1992
  54. ^ "Robert Maxwell: A Profile"BBC News. 29 March 2001. Retrieved 4 April 2009.
  55. Jump up to:a b Larry Eichel (14 December 1991). "Maxwell's Legacy Of Money Troubles Maxwell's Own Daily Mirror Newspaper Now Routinely Calls Him 'The Cheating Tycoon'"Philadelphia Inquirer
  56. ^ Marlise Simons (12 December 1991). "Autopsy Indicates Maxwell Did Not Drown"The New York Times.
  57. ^ Gordon ThomasGideon's Spies: The Secret History of the Mossad, page 210
  58. ^ Clyde Haberman (11 November 1991). "The Media Business; Maxwell Is Buried In Jerusalem"The New York Times.
  59. ^ "Israel gives Maxwell farewell fit for hero"The Washington Post, 11 November 1991
  60. ^ "George Galloway sheds light on Maxwell family and its links to Jeffrey Epstein", 23 August 2019
  61. ^ "Maxwell, Colossus Even in Death, Laid to Rest on Mount of Olives", jta.org, 11 November 1991
  62. ^ "BBC reveals secret Maxwell tapes". BBC. 25 April 2007.
  63. ^ Prokesch, Steven (24 June 1992). "Maxwell's Mirror Group Has $727.5 Million Loss"The New York Times. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  64. ^ Chapter 11: Major Corporate Governance Failures
  65. ^ Diski, Jenny (26 January 1995). "Bob and Betty"London Review of Books17 (2). Retrieved 16 December 2014.
  66. ^ MacIntyre, Ben (1 January 1995). "A Match for Robert Maxwell"The New York Times. Retrieved 22 May 2010.
  67. ^ Roy Greenslade, "Betty, Robert Maxwell's widow, dies aged 92", The Guardian (9 August 2013)
  68. ^ "Ghislaine Maxwell, confidante of Jeffrey Epstein, arrested on federal charges"The Wall Street journal, 2 July 2020.
  69. ^ Kempley, Rita (19 December 1997). "'TOMORROW NEVER DIES': JAMES BOND ZIPS INTO THE '90S"The Washington Post. Retrieved 9 August 2018.
  70. ^ Turner, Kyle (30 May 2018). "There's No News Like Fake News: Tomorrow Never Dies Today"Paste Magazine. Retrieved 9 August 2018.
  71. ^ "Suchet in title role of BBC Two's Maxwell". bbc.co.uk. 16 February 2007. Retrieved 31 October 2013.
  72. ^ Luft, Oliver (25 November 2008). "UK scoops seven International Emmys"The Guardian. Retrieved 15 August 2014.
  73. ^ Benedict Nightingale. "Portrait of a megalomaniac." The Times, London, 13 January 2006: pg 39.
  74. ^ Archer, Jeffrey (1996). The Fourth Estate (First ed.). London: HarperCollins. ISBN 0002253186.
  75. ^ Aviv, Juval (2006). Max (First ed.). London: Random House UK. ISBN 1844138755.
  76. ^ Ichbiah, Daniel (1997). La Saga des Jeux Vidéo (in French) (1st ed.). Pix'N Love Editions. p. 95. ISBN 2266087630.

Further reading[edit]

Ghislaine Maxwell
Ghislaine Maxwell (cropped).jpg

Ghislaine Noelle Marion Maxwell (/ˌɡˈln, -ˈlɛn/ ghee-LAYN, -⁠LEN; born 25 December 1961)[5][6] is a British former socialite,[7] convicted of sex trafficking and other offences[8] connected with the financier and sex offender Jeffrey Epstein. She worked for her father Robert Maxwell until his death in 1991, when she moved to the United States and became a close associate of Epstein. Maxwell founded a non-profit group for the protection of oceans, The TerraMar Project, in 2012. The organisation announced cessation of operations on 12 July 2019, a week after the sex trafficking charges brought by New York federal prosecutors against Epstein became public.[9] Maxwell is a naturalised US citizen but retains citizenship of the UK and France.[1]

On 2 July 2020, Maxwell was arrested and charged by the federal government of the United States with the crimes of enticement of minors and sex trafficking of underage girls, related to her association with Epstein.[10] On 29 December 2021, she was convicted on five counts, including one of sex trafficking of a child.[2][3][4]

 
Headington Hill Hall

Ghislaine Maxwell was born in 1961, in Maisons-LaffitteYvelines, France,[11] the ninth and youngest child of Elisabeth (née Meynard), a French-born scholar, and Robert Maxwell, a Czechoslovak-born British media proprietor. Her father was from a Jewish family, and her mother was of Huguenot (French Protestant) descent. Maxwell was born two days before a car accident that left her fifteen-year-old brother Michael in a prolonged coma until his death in 1967.[12] Her mother later reflected that the accident had an effect on the entire family, and surmised that Ghislaine had shown signs of anorexia while still a toddler.[12] Throughout childhood, Ghislaine lived with her family in Oxford at Headington Hill Hall, a 53-room mansion, where the offices of Pergamon Press, a publishing company run by Robert Maxwell, were also located.[9][11][13] Her mother said that all her children were brought up as Anglicans.[14] She studied at Oxford High School for Girls in North Oxford. Maxwell was enrolled at Edgarley Hall boarding school in Somerset aged nine, followed by Headington School at thirteen.[15] Maxwell attended Marlborough College[5] where she studied modern history with languages before going on to earn a degree from Balliol College, Oxford[5] in 1985.[15]

Maxwell had a close relationship with her father and was widely credited with being her father's favourite.[9][16][17] According to Tatler, Maxwell recalled that her father installed computers at Headington in 1973 and her first job was training to use a Wang and later programming code.[18] The Times reported that he did not permit Ghislaine to bring her boyfriends home or to be seen with them publicly, after she started attending Oxford University.[19][6]

 
The Dancing Hare yacht, formerly known as the Lady Ghislaine

Career

Ghislaine Maxwell was a prominent member of the London social scene in the 1980s.[20] She founded a women's club named after the original Kit-Cat Club[17][21] and was a director of Oxford United Football Club during her father's ownership.[22][23] She also worked at The European,[24] a publication Robert Maxwell had established. According to Tom Bower, writing for The Sunday Times, in 1986 Robert Maxwell invited her to the naming in her honour of his new yacht the Lady Ghislaine, at a shipyard in the Netherlands.[25] Maxwell spent a large amount of time in the late 1980s aboard the yacht, which was equipped with a Jacuzzisauna, gym and disco.[26] The Scotsman said Robert Maxwell had also "tailor-made a New York company for her".[27] The company, which dealt in corporate gifts, was not profitable.[19][25][28]

The Sunday Times reported that Ghislaine Maxwell flew to New York on 5 November 1990 to deliver an envelope on her father's behalf that, unknown to her, was part of "a plot initiated by her father to steal $200m" from Berlitz shareholders.[25]

After Robert Maxwell purchased the New York Daily News in January 1991, he sent Ghislaine to New York City to act as his emissary.[19][29] In May 1991, Maxwell and her father took Concorde on business to New York, from where he soon departed for Moscow and left her to represent his interests at an event honouring Simon Wiesenthal.[30]

In November 1991, Robert Maxwell's body was found floating in the sea near the Canary Islands and the Lady Ghislaine.[31] Soon afterwards, Ghislaine flew to Tenerife, where the yacht was berthed, to attend to his business paperwork.[19] Ghislaine attended her father's funeral in Jerusalem alongside Israeli intelligence figures, president Chaim Herzog, and prime minister Yitzhak Shamir, who gave his eulogy.[32][33] Although a verdict of death by accidental drowning was recorded, Maxwell has since said she believes her father was murdered,[34] commenting in 1997: "He did not commit suicide. That was just not consistent with his character. I think he was murdered."[35] After his death, Robert Maxwell was found to have fraudulently appropriated the pension assets of Mirror Group Newspapers, a company that he ran and in which he held a large share of ownership, to support its share price.[36] Pension funds in excess of £400m were said to be missing, and 32,000 people were affected.[37] Two of Maxwell's brothers, Ian and Kevin, who were the most involved with their father in daily business dealings, were arrested on 19 June 1992 and charged with fraud related to the Mirror Group pension scandal.[38] The brothers were acquitted three and a half years later in January 1996.[39]

Ghislaine Maxwell moved to the United States in 1991, shortly after her father's death. She was photographed boarding a Concorde to cross the Atlantic.[16][17] Maxwell was provided with an annual income of £80,000 from a trust fund established in Liechtenstein by her father.[40][41] By 1992, she had moved to an apartment of an Iranian friend overlooking Central Park. At the time, Maxwell worked at a real estate office on Madison Avenue and was reported to be socialising with celebrities.[42] She quickly rose to wider prominence as a New York City socialite.[17][43]

Relationship with Jeffrey Epstein

Accounts differ on when Maxwell first met American financier Jeffrey Epstein. According to Epstein's former business partner, Steven Hoffenberg, Robert Maxwell introduced his daughter to Epstein in the late 1980s.[44] The Times reported that Maxwell met Epstein in the early 1990s at a New York party following "a difficult break-up with Count Gianfranco Cicogna Mozzoni" (1962–2012) of the CIGA Hotels clan.[45]

Maxwell had a romantic relationship with Epstein for several years in the early 1990s and remained closely associated with him for more than 25 years until his death in 2019.[17][43][46] The nature of their relationship remains unclear. In a 2009 deposition, several of Epstein's household employees testified that Epstein referred to her as his "main girlfriend" who also hired, fired, and supervised his staff, starting around 1992.[47] She has also been referred to as the "Lady of the House" by Epstein's staff and as his "aggressive assistant".[48] In a 2003 Vanity Fair profile on Epstein, author Vicky Ward said Epstein referred to Maxwell as "my best friend".[49] Ward also observed that Maxwell seemed "to organize much of his life".[49]

Politico reported that Maxwell and Epstein had friendships with several prominent individuals in elite circles of politics, academia, business and law, including former Presidents Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, attorney Alan Dershowitz, and Prince Andrew, Duke of York.[50]

Maxwell is known for her longstanding friendship[51] with Prince Andrew, and for having escorted him to a "hookers and pimps" social function in New York.[52] She introduced Epstein to Prince Andrew, and the three often socialised together.[53] In 2000, Maxwell and Epstein attended a party thrown by Prince Andrew at the Queen's Sandringham House estate in Norfolk, England, reportedly for Maxwell's 39th birthday.[54] In a November 2019 interview with the BBC, Prince Andrew confirmed that Maxwell and Epstein had attended an event at his invitation, but he denied that it was anything more than a "straightforward shooting weekend".[55]

In 1995, Epstein renamed one of his companies the Ghislaine Corporation; based in Palm Beach, Florida, the company was dissolved in 1998.[47] As a trained helicopter pilot, Maxwell also transported Epstein to his private Caribbean island.[56][6]

In 2008, Epstein was convicted of soliciting a minor for prostitution and served 13 months of an 18-month jail sentence. Following Epstein's release, although Maxwell continued to attend prominent social functions, she and Epstein were no longer seen together publicly.[9]

By late 2015, Maxwell had largely retreated from attending social functions.[9][57]

Civil cases and accusations

Virginia Giuffre v. Maxwell (2015)

Details of a civil lawsuit, made public in January 2015, contained a deposition from "Jane Doe 3" that accused Maxwell of recruiting her in 1999, when she was a minor, and grooming her to provide sexual services for Epstein.[17] A 2018 exposé by Julie K. Brown in the Miami Herald revealed Jane Doe 3 to be Virginia Giuffre, who was previously known as Virginia Roberts. Giuffre met Maxwell at Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, when Giuffre was a 16-year-old spa attendant.[17] She asserted that Maxwell had introduced her to Epstein, after which she was "groomed by the two [of them] for his pleasure, including lessons in Epstein's preferences during oral sex".[17][58]

Maxwell has repeatedly denied any involvement in Epstein's crimes.[46] In a 2015 statement, Maxwell rejected allegations that she has acted as a procurer for Epstein and denied that she had "facilitated Prince Andrew's [alleged] acts of sexual abuse". Her spokesperson said "the allegations made against Ghislaine Maxwell are untrue" and she "strongly denies allegations of an unsavoury nature, which have appeared in the British press and elsewhere, and reserves her right to seek redress at the repetition of such old defamatory claims".[53][59]

Giuffre asserted that Maxwell and Epstein had trafficked her and other underage girls, often at sex parties hosted by Epstein at his homes in New York, New MexicoPalm Beach, and the United States Virgin Islands. Maxwell called her a liar. Giuffre sued Maxwell for defamation in federal court in the Southern District of New York in 2015. While details of the settlement have not been made public, in May 2017 the case was settled in Giuffre's favour,[60] with Maxwell paying Giuffre "millions".[61]

Sarah Ransome v. Epstein and Maxwell (2017)

In 2017, Sarah Ransome filed a suit, in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, against Epstein and Maxwell, alleging that Maxwell hired her to give massages to Epstein and later threatened to physically harm her or destroy her career prospects if she did not comply with their sexual demands at his mansion in New York and on his private Caribbean island, Little Saint James. The suit was settled in 2018 under undisclosed terms.[9][43][62][63]

Affidavit filed by Maria Farmer (2019)

On 16 April 2019, Maria Farmer went public and filed a sworn affidavit in federal court in New York, alleging that she and her 15-year-old sister, Annie, had been sexually assaulted by Epstein and Maxwell in separate locations in 1996. Farmer's affidavit was filed in support of a defamation suit by Virginia Giuffre against Alan Dershowitz.[64] According to the affidavit, Farmer had met Maxwell and Epstein at a New York art gallery reception in 1995. The affidavit says that in the summer of the following year, they hired her to work on an art project in billionaire businessman Leslie Wexner's Ohio mansion, where she was then sexually assaulted by both Maxwell and Epstein.[65][66] Farmer reported the incident to the New York Police Department and the FBI.[47][67] Her affidavit also stated that during the same summer, Epstein flew her then 15-year-old sister, Annie, to his New Mexico property where he and Maxwell molested her on a massage table.[68][69]

Farmer was interviewed for CBS This Morning in November 2019 where she detailed the 1996 assault and alleged that Maxwell had repeatedly threatened both her career and her life after the assault.[70]

Jennifer Araoz v. Epstein's estate, Maxwell, and Jane Does 1–3 (2019)

On 14 August 2019, Jennifer Araoz filed a lawsuit in New York County Supreme Court against Epstein's estate, Maxwell, and three unnamed members of his staff; the lawsuit was made possible under New York state's new Child Victims Act, which took effect on the same date.[71] Araoz later amended her complaint on 8 October 2019 with the names of the previously unidentified women enablers to include Lesley Groff, Cimberly Espinosa, and the late Rosalyn Fontanilla.[72]

Priscilla Doe v. Epstein's estate (2019)

Ghislaine Maxwell was named in one of three lawsuits filed in New York on 20 August 2019 against the estate of Jeffrey Epstein.[73] The woman filing the suit, identified as "Priscilla Doe", claimed that she was recruited in 2006 and trained by Maxwell with step-by-step instructions on how to provide sexual services for Epstein.[74][75]

Annie Farmer v. Maxwell and Epstein's Estate (2019)

Annie Farmer, represented by David Boies, sued Maxwell and Epstein's estate in Federal District Court in Manhattan in November 2019, accusing them of rape, battery and false imprisonment and seeking unspecified damages.[76][77]

Jane Doe v. Maxwell and Epstein's Estate (2020)

In January 2020, a lawsuit was filed against Maxwell and Epstein alleging that they recruited a 13-year-old music student at the Interlochen Center for the Arts in the summer of 1994 and subjected her to sexual abuse.[76][78] The suit states that Jane Doe was repeatedly sexually assaulted by Epstein over a four-year period and that Maxwell played a key role both in her recruitment and by participating in the assaults.[76] According to the lawsuit, Jane Doe was targeted by Epstein and Maxwell for being fatherless and from a struggling family, in much the same manner as many of the other alleged victims.[78]

Maxwell v. Epstein's Estate, Darren K. Indyke, Richard D. Kahn, and NES LLC (2020)

On 12 March 2020, Maxwell filed a lawsuit in Superior Court in the US Virgin Islands seeking compensation from Epstein's estate for her legal costs.[79][80] Maxwell claimed she had been a longtime employee of Epstein (from 1998 to 2006)[81] who had served to manage his property holdings in the US Virgin Islands, New York, New Mexico, Florida and Paris[82] while continuing to deny any knowledge or involvement in his criminal activities.[79][80] According to the lawsuit, Maxwell was seeking damages for the legal fees associated with defending herself against her accusers, expenses that she claims Epstein had promised to cover for her.[79][80]

Jane Doe v. Epstein's estate (2021)

Maxwell was named in a civil suit filed against Epstein's estate in March 2021 by a Broward County woman who accused Epstein and Maxwell of trafficking her after repeatedly raping her in Florida in 2008.[83]

Dispute over release of court documents

On 2 July 2019, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ordered the unsealing of documents from the earlier civil suit against Maxwell by Virginia Giuffre.[84] Jeffrey Epstein was arrested on 6 July 2019 at Teterboro Airport in New Jersey and charged with sex trafficking and sex trafficking conspiracy.[85]

Maxwell requested a rehearing in a federal appeals court on 17 July 2019, in an effort to keep documents sealed that were part of a suit by Giuffre.[86] On 9 August 2019, the first batch of documents was unsealed and released from the earlier defamation suit by Giuffre against Maxwell.[87] Epstein was found dead on 10 August 2019, after reportedly hanging himself in his Manhattan prison cell.[88][89]

Maxwell and her lawyers continued to argue against the further release of court documents in December 2019.[90] Reuters confirmed on 27 December 2019 that Maxwell was under investigation by the FBI for facilitating Epstein's criminal activities.[91]

Additional documents from the Giuffre v. Maxwell defamation suit were released on 30 July 2020.[92] The documents included a deposition given by Giuffre and more recent email exchanges between Maxwell and Epstein,[92] with some of the correspondence from 2015.[44]

Court livestream controversy

On 19 January 2021, a court hearing was disrupted by believers in QAnon – who believe Maxwell to be working in cohort with a cabal of child-sacrificing Satanist liberal elites who traffic children for sex – as the proceedings were illegally livestreamed to YouTube.[93][94]

Arrest and indictment

Attempts to locate Maxwell to serve court documents

On 27 December 2019, Reuters reported that Maxwell was among those under FBI investigation for facilitating Epstein.[91] After his arrest, Maxwell was in hiding, communicating with the courts only through her lawyers who, as of 30 January 2020, had refused to accept on her behalf service of three lawsuits against her.[76] The New York Times reported that by 2016, Maxwell was no longer being photographed at events.[9] By 2017, her lawyers claimed before a judge that they did not know her address; they further stated that she was in London but they did not believe she had a permanent residence.[9]

Maxwell has a history of being unreachable during legal proceedings.[76][95][96][97] During the lawsuit filed in 2017 from Ransome against Maxwell, District Judge John G. Koeltl granted a motion for "alternative service" on the grounds that the plaintiff's efforts to reach Maxwell were persistently thwarted; these included hiring a private investigation firm that attempted service at three physical addresses, sending information to several email addresses, and reaching out to the lawyers actively representing Maxwell in another lawsuit who refused to become a "general agent of process" to relay the information to her.[96]

According to court documents from a lawsuit filed by Epstein against Bradley Edwards (a representative for several of his accusers), in 2010 Maxwell had agreed to provide a deposition in the case but reportedly left the country one day before Edwards was scheduled to fly to New York to take her deposition, "claiming she needed to return to the United Kingdom to be with her deathly ill mother"[97] with no intention of returning to the United States.[95] However, Maxwell returned within a month to attend Chelsea Clinton's wedding.[95]

In January 2020, it was reported that Maxwell had refused to allow her lawyers to be served with several lawsuits in which she has been directly named in 2019 and 2020, including one by Farmer and from Araoz.[76] While Maxwell's lawyers continued to argue on her behalf against the release of additional court documents from the Giuffre v. Maxwell lawsuit,[90] they claimed to not know where she was or to have permission to accept the lawsuits filed against her.[76][66]

Authorities in the United States Virgin Islands (USVI) were unsuccessful in locating Maxwell during the three and a half months they were seeking to serve her with a subpoena.[98] USVI prosecutors consider Maxwell to be a "critical fact witness" in their lawsuit against Epstein's estate.[98] A court filing from the USVI Department of Justice, released on 10 July 2020, stated that Maxwell was also under investigation for her alleged participation in Epstein's sex trafficking operation in the US Virgin Islands.[99]

Arrest in July 2020

Maxwell faced persistent allegations of procuring and sexually trafficking underage girls for Epstein and others, charges she has denied.[9] Maxwell was arrested in Bradford, New Hampshire by the FBI on 2 July 2020, through the use of an IMSI-catcher ("stingray") mobile phone tracking device on a phone used by her to call one of her lawyers, her husband Scott Borgerson, and her sister Isabel.[100]

Legal proceedings

Maxwell was charged with enticement of minors, sex trafficking of children, and perjury.[10][101][102] On 14 July 2020, federal Judge Alison Nathan of the Southern District of New York denied Maxwell bail after determining that her risks of fleeing "are simply too great".[103] Prosecutors, led by United States District Attorney Audrey Strauss, charged her with six federal crimes, including enticement of minors, sex trafficking, and perjury.[101][104][105][106] The indictment charged that between 1994 and 1997, she "assisted, facilitated, and contributed" to the abuse of minor girls despite knowing that one of three unnamed victims was 14 years old.[107]

As of 28 April 2021, Maxwell was being held at the Metropolitan Detention Center, Brooklyn, New York.[108][109][110] Lawyers requested that Judge Nathan release her on $5 million bond with monitored home confinement while awaiting trial.[111] Maxwell's attorney reiterated her request for bail on 18 December 2020, her attorneys indicating that Maxwell could reside with a friend in New York City during which time she would be under 24-hour surveillance as she awaited her July trial if she was released on bail.[112] She would not be staying with Borgerson, who has made a secured offer of US$22 million to guarantee her presence at future appearances. The bail request was considered by Judge Nathan, who rejected a US$5 million bail package for Maxwell in July 2020. At that time, Nathan had agreed with prosecutors that Maxwell was an "extreme flight risk."[112] Maxwell had appeared by video link before a court in Manhattan on 14 July 2020. She pleaded not guilty to the charges.[113] A naturalised US citizen since 2002 who also holds passports from France and the United Kingdom, Maxwell was denied bail as a flight risk amid concerns regarding her "completely opaque" finances, her skill at living in hiding, and the fact that France does not extradite its citizens.[103][111][114][115][116] Her lawyers argued unsuccessfully that she was at risk of catching COVID-19 in detention. The judge set a trial date of 12 July 2021.[113][117][118]

On 28 December 2020, a further request for bail was again rejected by a judge.[119] Maxwell's bail request was opposed by alleged victim Annie Farmer.[112]

On 26 January 2021, a motion by Maxwell's attorneys challenged her grand jury indictment, claiming that it did not reflect the ethnic diversity of the jurisdiction in which the violations of the law were alleged to have occurred.[120]

On 29 March 2021, US prosecutors added new charges of sex trafficking a minor and sex trafficking conspiracy, alleging that Maxwell was involved in grooming a fourth girl, aged 14, to engage in sexual acts with Epstein between 2001 and 2004 at his Palm Beach estate.[121][122] Maxwell appeared in court on 23 April 2021 and pleaded not guilty to the additional charges; she faces six counts that include sex trafficking of a minor and sex trafficking conspiracy, in addition to two counts of perjury.[123]

Maxwell's attorneys have regularly protested about the conditions of her confinement. These include being kept awake by a light shined in her eyes every fifteen minutes to deter the chances of her committing suicide, and being denied a sleep mask.[124] One, David Marcus, protested, "There's no evidence she's suicidal. They're doing it because Jeffrey Epstein died on their watch", and that, "She's not Jeffrey Epstein, this isn't right".[124]

Sex-trafficking trial

In April 2021, US District Judge Alison Nathan ruled that Maxwell would face two separate trials, one for the sex trafficking charges and another for perjury.[125] In May 2021, Nathan delayed the trial to 29 November 2021 after Maxwell's defence lawyers successfully argued that the sex trafficking charges added in March 2021 gave them insufficient time to investigate the new charges and prepare for trial.[126] Maxwell appeared in court on 15 November 2021.[127] The trial commenced on 29 November 2021 with opening statements.[126] Twelve jurors had been picked, plus six alternates, from a pool of forty to sixty people.[128]

It was announced in November 2021 that psychologist Elizabeth Loftus, an expert on false memory syndrome, would be called as an expert witness for the defense.[129]

On 28 December, as the jury completed its fourth full day of deliberations, judge Nathan said she feared jurors and trial participants might become infected with COVID-19 and forced to quarantine, raising the possibility of a mistrial. She later said that she had extended the jury's hours to 6 p.m. and would also have deliberations continue through the holiday weekend until the jury reached a verdict.[130][131]

Conviction

On 29 December 2021, Maxwell was convicted by a jury in US federal court on five sex trafficking-related counts carrying a potential custodial sentence of up to 65 years imprisonment: one of sex trafficking of a minor (maximum: 40 years), one of transporting a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity (10 years) and three of conspiracy to commit also-charged choate felonies (15 years total).

She was acquitted on the charge of enticing a minor to travel to engage in illegal sex acts.[2][3][4] Her family said they had commenced the appeal process.[132][133]

Perjury trial

Maxwell will face trial, probably in 2022, on two charges that she lied under oath about Epstein's abuse of underage girls, which each carry a maximum sentence of five years in prison.[134][135]

TerraMar Project

In 2012, Maxwell founded The TerraMar Project,[136] a nonprofit organisation that advocated the protection of oceans. She gave a lecture for TerraMar at the University of Texas at Dallas and a TED talk, at TEDx Charlottesville in 2014.[137] Maxwell accompanied Stuart Beck, a 2013 TerraMar board member, to two United Nations meetings to discuss the project.[28]

The TerraMar Project announced closure on 12 July 2019, less than a week after the charges of sex trafficking brought by New York federal prosecutors against Epstein became public.[9] An associated, UK-based company, Terramar (UK), listed Maxwell as a director.[138] An application for the United Kingdom organisation to be closed was made on 4 September 2019, with the first notice in The London Gazette made on 17 September 2019.[139] The company Terramar (UK) was listed as officially dissolved on 3 December 2019.[139]

Personal life

Since at least 1997, Maxwell has maintained a residence in Belgravia, London.[140][141] In 2000, Maxwell moved into a 7,000 sq ft (650 m2) townhouse on East 65th Street, New York City, fewer than 10 blocks from Epstein's mansion. Maxwell's townhouse was purchased for US$4.95 million by an anonymous limited liability company, with an address that matches the office of J. Epstein & Co. Representing the buyer was Darren Indyke, Epstein's longtime lawyer.[9] In April 2016, the New York townhouse where she had lived was sold for US$15 million.[9]

Following her personal and professional involvement with Epstein, Maxwell was romantically linked for several years to Ted Waitt, founder of Gateway Computers.[28][142] She attended the wedding of Chelsea Clinton in 2010 as Waitt's guest.[28] Maxwell helped Waitt obtain and renovate a luxury yacht, the Plan B, and used it for travel to France and Croatia before their relationship ended, in late 2010[26] or early 2011.[17][28]

On 15 August 2019, reports surfaced that Maxwell had been living in Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts, in the home of Scott Borgerson, who in October 2020, due to the publicity surrounding Maxwell, stepped down as CEO of CargoMetrics,[143] a hedge fund investment company involved in maritime data analytics.[26][144][145] Maxwell and Borgerson were described as having been in a romantic relationship for several years.[26][144][146] Locals in the town of Manchester-by-the-Sea said Maxwell had kept a low profile, went by "G" instead of her full first name, and had been seen on several occasions walking a Vizsla dog along the beach.[147][148]

Borgerson and Maxwell filed documents in Massachusetts Land Court about Borgerson's residence, known as Phippin House, during a civil dispute with neighbours regarding rescinded access rights to the larger Sharksmouth Estate in 2019.[149] A neighbouring property manager attested that Maxwell and Borgerson were living together at the property in question.[150] Others have said they had been seen repeatedly running together in the mornings.[145]

Borgerson stated in August 2019 that Maxwell was not currently living at the home and that he did not know where she was.[144] On 15 August 2019, the New York Post published photographs of Maxwell dining at a fast-food restaurant in Los Angeles, claiming that "The Post found the socialite hiding in plain sight in the least likely place imaginable — a fast-food joint in Los Angeles".[151] The photos were later proven to have been taken at a meeting with Maxwell's friend and attorney Leah Saffian, who also gave other pictures to the Daily Mail.[152][153]

Maxwell moved to a remote 156-acre (63 ha) property in Bradford, New Hampshire in late 2019,[154] where she used former British military personnel as personal security until her arrest in July 2020.[109] At the time of her arraignment, federal prosecutors stated that Maxwell was married; she did not disclose the identity of her spouse (or their respective finances).[155]

In December 2020, it emerged that she had married Borgerson in 2016.[156][157][112]

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Epstein in 2013

 
Jeffrey Epstein in 2013, photographed for the sex offender registry
 
At the time of his death, Epstein was being held at the Metropolitan Correctional Center (pictured here in 2010), awaiting trial for sex-trafficking.[202]
 
Jeffrey Edward Epstein
 
 
Epstein in 1980

Jeffrey Edward Epstein (/ˈɛpstn/ EP-steen;[2] January 20, 1953 – August 10, 2019) was an American financier and convicted sex offender.[3][4] Epstein, who was born and raised in BrooklynNew York City, began his professional life by teaching at the Dalton School in Manhattan, despite lacking a college degree. After his dismissal from the school, he entered the banking and finance sector, working at Bear Stearns in various roles; he eventually started his own firm. Epstein developed an elite social circle and procured many women and children; he and some of his associates then sexually abused them.[5][4][6][7]

In 2005, police in Palm Beach, Florida, began investigating Epstein after a parent complained that he had sexually abused her 14-year-old daughter.[8] Epstein pleaded guilty and was convicted in 2008 by a Florida state court of procuring a child for prostitution and of soliciting a prostitute.[5][9] He served almost 13 months in custody, but with extensive work release. He was convicted of only these two crimes as part of a controversial plea deal; federal officials had identified 36 girls, some as young as 14 years old, whom Epstein had allegedly sexually abused.[1][10]

Epstein was arrested again on July 6, 2019, on federal charges for the sex trafficking of minors in Florida and New York.[11][12] He died in his jail cell on August 10, 2019.[13] The medical examiner ruled the death a suicide.[14] Epstein's lawyers have disputed the ruling, and there has been significant public skepticism about the true cause of his death, resulting in numerous conspiracy theories.[15][16] Since Epstein's death precluded the possibility of pursuing criminal charges against him, a judge dismissed all criminal charges on August 29, 2019.[17][18] Epstein had a decades-long association with the British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell, leading to her 2021 conviction on US federal charges of sex trafficking and conspiracy for helping him procure girls, including a 14-year-old, for child sexual abuse and prostitution.[19][20][21][22] Epstein also maintained long-term friendships with various high-profile individuals, including Donald TrumpLeslie WexnerBill ClintonAlan Dershowitz, and Prince Andrew, Duke of York.[23]

 Jeffrey Epstein's Early Life
 

Epstein was born in 1953 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. His parents Pauline (née Stolofsky, 1918–2004)[24] and Seymour G. Epstein (1916–1991) were Jewish and had married in 1952 shortly before his birth.[25] Pauline worked as a school aide and was a homemaker.[25][26][27][28] Seymour Epstein worked for the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation as a groundskeeper and gardener.[25][27] Jeffrey was the oldest of two siblings; he and his brother Mark grew up in the working-class neighborhood of Sea Gate, a private gated community in Coney Island, Brooklyn.[26]

Epstein attended local public schools, first attending Public School 188, and then Mark Twain Junior High School nearby.[26] In 1967, Epstein attended the National Music Camp at the Interlochen Center for the Arts.[29] He began playing the piano when he was five.[30] He graduated in 1969 from Lafayette High School at age 16, having skipped two grades.[31][32] Later that year, he attended classes at Cooper Union until he changed colleges in 1971.[31] From September 1971, he attended the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences at New York University, but left without receiving a degree in June 1974.[31][32]

 
Aerial view of Epstein's childhood neighborhood of Sea Gate, Brooklyn
 
Career

Teaching

Epstein started working in September 1974 as a physics and mathematics teacher for teens at the Dalton School on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.[31][33] Donald Barr, who served as the headmaster until June 1974,[34][35][36] was known to have made several unconventional recruitments at the time, although it is unclear whether he had a direct role in hiring Epstein.[33][37][38] Three months after Barr's departure, Epstein began to teach at the school, despite his lack of credentials.[38] Epstein allegedly showed inappropriate behavior toward underage students at the time.[33][37] He became acquainted with Alan Greenberg, the chief executive officer of Bear Stearns, whose son and daughter were attending the school. Greenberg's daughter, Lynne Koeppel, pointed to a parent-teacher conference where Epstein influenced another Dalton parent into advocating for him to Greenberg.[35] In June 1976, after Epstein was dismissed from Dalton for "poor performance",[33][39][40] Greenberg offered him a job at Bear Stearns.[30][41]

Banking

Epstein joined Bear Stearns in 1976 as a low-level junior assistant to a floor trader.[42] He swiftly moved up to become an options trader, working in the special products division, and then advised the bank's wealthiest clients, such as Seagram president Edgar Bronfman, on tax mitigation strategies.[32][43][44] Jimmy Cayne, the bank's later chief executive officer, praised Epstein's skill with wealthy clients and complex products. In 1980, four years after joining Bear Stearns, Epstein became a limited partner.[42]

In 1981, he was asked to leave Bear Stearns for, according to his sworn testimony, being guilty of a "Reg D violation".[45][32][30] Even though Epstein departed abruptly, he remained close to Cayne and Greenberg and was a client of Bear Stearns until its collapse in 2008.[42]

Financial consulting

In August 1981, Epstein founded his own consulting firm, Intercontinental Assets Group Inc. (IAG),[46] which assisted clients in recovering stolen money from fraudulent brokers and lawyers.[30] Epstein described his work at this time as being a high-level bounty hunter. He told friends that he worked sometimes as a consultant for governments and the very wealthy to recover embezzled funds, while at other times he worked for clients who had embezzled funds.[30][47] Spanish actress and heiress Ana Obregón was one such wealthy client, whom Epstein helped in 1982 to recover her father's millions in lost investments, which had disappeared when Drysdale Government Securities collapsed because of fraud.[48]

Epstein also stated to some people at the time that he was an intelligence agent.[49] During the 1980s, Epstein possessed an Austrian passport that had his photo, but with a false name. The passport showed his place of residence in Saudi Arabia.[50][51] In 2017 "a former senior White House official" reported that Alexander Acosta, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida who had handled Epstein's criminal case in 2008, had stated to Trump transition interviewers, that "I was told Epstein 'belonged to intelligence' and to 'leave it alone'", and that Epstein was "above his pay grade".[52][53]

During this period, one of Epstein's clients was the Saudi Arabian businessman Adnan Khashoggi, who was the middleman in transferring American weapons from Israel to Iran, as part of the Iran–Contra affair in the 1980s.[6] Khashoggi was one of several defense contractors that he knew.[30][49] In the mid-1980s, Epstein traveled multiple times between the United States, Europe, and Southwest Asia.[50][51] While in London, Epstein met Steven Hoffenberg. They had been introduced through Douglas Leese, a defense contractor, and John Mitchell, the former U.S. Attorney General.[30]

Towers Financial Corporation

Steven Hoffenberg hired Epstein in 1987, as a consultant for Towers Financial Corporation (unaffiliated with the company of the same name founded in 1998, and acquired by Old National Bancorp in 2014),[54] a collection agency that bought debts people owed to hospitals, banks, and phone companies.[55][56] Hoffenberg set Epstein up in offices in the "Villard Houses" in Manhattan and paid him US$25,000 per month for his consulting work (equivalent to $57,000 in 2020).[30]

Hoffenberg and Epstein then refashioned themselves as corporate raiders using Towers Financial as their raiding vessel. One of Epstein's first assignments for Hoffenberg was to implement what turned out to be an unsuccessful bid to take over Pan American World Airways in 1987. A similar unsuccessful bid in 1988 was made to take over Emery Air Freight Corp. During this period, Hoffenberg and Epstein worked closely together and traveled everywhere on Hoffenberg's private jet.[30]

In 1993, Towers Financial Corporation imploded when it was revealed as being one of the biggest Ponzi schemes in American history, losing its investors over US$450 million (equivalent to $806,185,000 in 2020).[30] In court documents, Hoffenberg claimed that Epstein was intimately involved in the scheme.[57][58] Epstein left the company by 1989 and was never charged for being involved with the massive investor fraud committed. It is unknown if Epstein acquired any stolen funds from the Towers Ponzi scheme.[30]

Financial management firm

In 1988, while Epstein was still consulting for Hoffenberg, he founded his own financial management firm, J. Epstein & Company.[56][46] The company was said by Epstein to have been formed to manage the assets of clients with more than US$1 billion in net worth, although others have expressed skepticism that he was restrictive of the clients that he took.[32]

The only publicly known billionaire client of Epstein was Leslie Wexner, chairman and CEO of L Brands (formerly The Limited, Inc.) and Victoria's Secret.[30][59] In 1986, Epstein met Wexner through their mutual acquaintances, insurance executive Robert Meister and his wife, in Palm Beach, Florida. A year later, Epstein became Wexner's financial adviser and served as his right-hand man. Within the year, Epstein had sorted out Wexner's entangled finances.[32][60] In July 1991, Wexner granted Epstein full power of attorney over his affairs. The power of attorney allowed Epstein to hire people, sign checks, buy and sell properties, borrow money, and do anything else of a legally binding nature on Wexner's behalf.[61]

By 1995, Epstein was a director of the Wexner Foundation and Wexner Heritage Foundation. He was also the president of Wexner's Property, which developed part of the town of New Albany outside Columbus, Ohio, where Wexner lived. Epstein made millions in fees by managing Wexner's financial affairs. Although never employed by L Brands, he corresponded frequently with the company executives. Epstein often attended Victoria's Secret fashion shows, and hosted the models at his New York City home, as well as helping aspiring models get work with the company.[60][61]

In 1996, Epstein changed the name of his firm to the Financial Trust Company[32] and, for tax advantages, based it on the island of St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands.[32] By relocating to the U.S. Virgin Islands, Epstein was able to reduce federal income taxes by 90 percent. The U.S. Virgin Islands acted as an offshore tax haven, while at the same time offering the advantages of being part of the United States banking system.[62]

Media activities

In 2003, Epstein bid to acquire New York magazine.[63] Other bidders included advertising executive Donny Deutsch, investor Nelson Peltzmedia mogul and New York Daily News publisher Mortimer Zuckerman, and film producer Harvey Weinstein. The ultimate buyer was Bruce Wasserstein, a longtime Wall Street investment banker, who paid US$55 million.[63]

In 2004, Epstein and Zuckerman committed up to US$25 million to finance Radar, a celebrity and pop culture magazine founded by Maer Roshan. Epstein and Zuckerman were equal partners in the venture. Roshan, as its editor-in-chief, retained a small ownership stake. It folded after three issues as a print publication and became exclusively an online one.[64]

Liquid Funding Ltd.

Epstein was the president of the company Liquid Funding Ltd. between 2000 and 2007.[65][66] The company was an early pioneer in expanding the kind of debt that could be accepted on repurchase, or the repo market, which involves a lender giving money to a borrower in exchange for securities that the borrower then agrees to buy back at an agreed-upon later time and price. The innovation of Liquid Funding, and other early companies, was that instead of having stocks and bonds as the underlying securities, it had commercial mortgages and investment-grade residential mortgages bundled into complex securities as the underlying security.[65]

Liquid Funding was initially 40 percent owned by Bear Stearns. Through the help of the credit rating agencies – Standard & Poor'sFitch Ratings and Moody's Investors Service – the new bundled securities were able to be created for companies so that they got a gold-plated AAA rating. The implosion of such complex securities, because of their inaccurate ratings, led to the collapse of Bear Stearns in March 2008 and set in motion the financial crisis of 2007–2008 and the subsequent Great Recession. If Liquid Funding were left holding large amounts of such securities as collateral, it could have lost large amounts of money.[65][67]

Investments

Hedge funds

Between 2002 and 2005, Epstein invested $80 million in the D.B. Zwirn Special Opportunities hedge fund.[68] In November 2006, Epstein, while under federal investigation for sex crimes,[69] attempted to redeem his investment after he was informed of accounting irregularities in the fund.[70][71] By this time, his investment had grown to $140 million. Zwirn refused to redeem the investment. Zwirn worried that Epstein's redemption could cause a "run on the bank" at the hedge fund. It is unknown how much Epstein personally lost when the fund was wound down in 2008.[68]

In August 2006, Epstein, a month after the federal investigation of him began,[69] invested $57 million in the Bear Stearns High-Grade Structured Credit Strategies Enhanced Leverage hedge fund.[68][72] This fund was highly leveraged in mortgage-backed collateralized debt obligations (CDOs).[72]

On April 18, 2007, an investor in the fund, who had $57 million invested, discussed redeeming his investment.[73] At this time, the fund had a leverage ratio of 17:1, which meant for every dollar invested there were seventeen dollars of borrowed funds; therefore, the redemption of this investment would have been equivalent to removing $1 billion from the thinly traded CDO market.[74] The selling of CDO assets to meet the redemptions that month began a repricing process and general freeze in the CDO market. The repricing of the CDO assets caused the collapse of the fund three months later in July, and the eventual collapse of Bear Stearns in March 2008. It is likely Epstein lost most of this investment, but it is not known how much was his.[73][72]

By the time that the Bear Stearns fund began to fail in May 2007, Epstein had begun to negotiate a plea deal with the U.S. Attorney's Office concerning imminent charges for sex with minors.[68][69] In August 2007, a month after the fund collapsed, the U.S. attorney in Miami, Alexander Acosta, entered into direct discussions about the plea agreement.[69] Acosta brokered a lenient deal, according to him, because he had been ordered by higher government officials, who told him that Epstein was an individual of importance to the government.[52][53] As part of the negotiations, according to the Miami Herald, Epstein provided "unspecified information" to the Florida federal prosecutors for a more lenient sentence and was supposedly an unnamed key witness for the New York federal prosecutors in their unsuccessful June 2008 criminal case against the two managers of the failed Bear Stearns hedge fund. Alan Dershowitz, one of Epstein's Florida attorneys on the case, told Fox Business Network "We would have been touting that if he had [cooperated]. The idea that Epstein helped in any prosecution is news to me."[1][68][75]

Israeli startup

In 2015, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that Epstein invested in the startup Reporty Homeland Security (rebranded as Carbyne in 2018).[76][77][78] The startup is connected with Israel's defense industry. It is headed by former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak, who was also at one time the defense minister, and chief of staff of the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF). The CEO of the company is Amir Elihai who was a special forces officer, and Pinchas Bukhris, who is a director of the company, was at one time the defense ministry director general and commander of the IDF cyber unit 8200.[79] Epstein and Barak, the head of Carbyne, were close, and Epstein often offered him lodging at one of his apartment units at 301 East 66th Street in Manhattan.[80][81] Epstein had past experience with Israel's research and military sector.[82] In April 2008, he went to Israel and met with a number of research scientists and visited different Israeli military bases.[82] During this trip, he thought about staying in Israel in order to avoid trial, and possible jail, for charges he was facing for sex crimes; however, he opted to return to the United States.[83]

Video recordings

Epstein installed concealed cameras in numerous places on his properties to allegedly record sexual activity with underage girls by prominent people for criminal purposes, such as blackmail.[84] Ghislaine Maxwell, Epstein's close companion, told a friend that Epstein's private island in the Virgin Islands was completely wired for video and the friend believed that Maxwell and Epstein were videotaping everyone on the island as an insurance policy.[85] When police raided his Palm Beach residence in 2006 two hidden pinhole cameras were discovered in his home.[86] It was also reported that Epstein's mansion in New York was wired extensively with a video surveillance system.[87]

Maria Farmer, an artist who worked for Epstein in 1996, noted that Epstein showed her a media room in the New York mansion where there were individuals monitoring the pinhole cameras throughout the house. The media room was accessed through a hidden door. She stated that in the media room "there were men sitting here. And I looked on the cameras, and I saw toilet, toilet, bed, bed, toilet, bed." She added that "It was very obvious that they were, like, monitoring private moments."[88]

Epstein allegedly "lent" girls to powerful people to ingratiate himself with them and also to gain possible blackmail information.[89] According to the Department of Justice, he kept compact discs locked in his safe in his New York mansion with handwritten labels that included the description: "young [name] + [name]".[90] Epstein implied that he had blackmail material when he told a New York Times reporter in 2018, off the record, that he had dirt on powerful people, including information about their sexual proclivities and recreational drug use.[91]

Legal proceedings

Initial developments (2005–2006)

In March 2005, a woman contacted Florida's Palm Beach Police Department and alleged that her 14-year-old stepdaughter had been taken to Epstein's mansion by an older girl. While there, she was allegedly paid $300 (equivalent to $400 in 2020) to strip and massage Epstein.[92] She had allegedly undressed, but left the encounter wearing her underwear.[93]

Palm Beach Police began a 13-month undercover investigation of Epstein, including a search of his home.[69][94] During the investigation, Palm Beach Police Chief Michael Reiter publicly accused the Palm Beach County state prosecutor, Barry Krischer, of being too lenient and called for help from the FBI.[92]

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) then became involved. Subsequently, the police alleged that Epstein had paid several girls to perform sexual acts with him.[89] Interviews with five alleged victims and 17 witnesses under oath, a high-school transcript and other items found in Epstein's trash and home allegedly showed that some of the girls involved were under 18, the youngest being 14, with many under 16.[95][96] The police search of Epstein's home found two hidden cameras and large numbers of photos of girls throughout the house, some of whom the police had interviewed in the course of their investigation.[93] Adriana Ross, a former model from Poland who became an Epstein assistant, reportedly removed computer drives and other electronic equipment from the financier's Florida mansion before Palm Beach Police searched the home as part of their investigation.[97] The court documents record that a search of Epstein's residence by Palm Beach Police detective Joseph Recarey in 2005 uncovered an incriminating Amazon receipt containing books on sex slavery. The books he ordered are titled: "SM 101: A Realistic Introduction", "SlaveCraft: Roadmaps for Erotic Servitude – Principles, Skills and Tools" and "Training with Miss Abernathy: A Workbook for Erotic Slaves and Their Owners."[98]

A former employee told the police that Epstein would receive massages three times a day.[93] Eventually the FBI compiled reports on "34 confirmed minors" eligible for restitution (increased to 40 in the NPA) whose allegations of sexual abuse by Epstein included corroborating details.[99] Julie Brown's 2018 exposés in the Miami Herald identified about 80 victims and located about 60 of them.[1][69][100] She quotes the then police chief Reiter as saying "This was 50-something 'shes' and one 'he'—and the 'shes' all basically told the same story."[1] Details from the investigation included allegations that 12-year-old triplets were flown in from France for Epstein's birthday, and flown back the following day after being sexually abused by the financier. It was alleged that young girls were recruited from Brazil and other South American countries, former Soviet countries, and Europe, and that Jean-Luc Brunel's "MC2" modeling agency was also supplying girls to Epstein.[95][101][102]

In May 2006, Palm Beach police filed a probable cause affidavit saying that Epstein should be charged with four counts of unlawful sex with minors and one count of sexual abuse.[93][103] On July 27, 2006, Epstein was arrested by the Palm Beach Police Department on state felony charges of procuring a minor for prostitution and solicitation of a prostitute. He was booked at the Palm Beach County jail and later released on a $3,000 bond.[5][9][104][105] State prosecutor Krischer later convened a Palm Beach County grand jury, which was usually only done in capital cases. Presented evidence from only two victims, the grand jury returned a single charge of felony solicitation of prostitution,[106] to which Epstein pleaded not guilty in August 2006.[107]

Epstein's defense lawyers included Roy BlackGerald LefcourtHarvard Law School professor Alan Dershowitz, and former U. S. Solicitor General Ken Starr.[92][108] Linguist Steven Pinker also assisted.[109]

Non-prosecution agreement (NPA) (2006–2008)

In July 2006, the FBI began its own investigation of Epstein, nicknamed "Operation Leap Year".[110] It resulted in a 53-page indictment in June 2007.[69] Alexander Acosta, then the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, agreed to a plea deal, which Alan Dershowitz helped to negotiate,[111] to grant immunity from all federal criminal charges to Epstein, along with four named co-conspirators and any unnamed "potential co-conspirators". According to the Miami Herald, the non-prosecution agreement "essentially shut down an ongoing FBI probe into whether there were more victims and other powerful people who took part in Epstein's sex crimes". At the time, this halted the investigation and sealed the indictment. The Miami Herald said: "Acosta agreed, despite a federal law to the contrary, that the deal would be kept from the victims."[1]

Acosta later said he offered a lenient plea deal because he was told that Epstein "belonged to intelligence", was "above his pay grade" and to "leave it alone".[52][53][112] Epstein agreed to plead guilty in Florida state court to two felony prostitution charges, serve 18 months in prison, register as a sex offender, and pay restitution to three dozen victims identified by the FBI.[1][89] The plea deal was later described as a "sweetheart deal".[113]

A federal judge later found that the prosecutors had violated the victims' rights in that they had concealed the agreement from the victims and instead urged them to have "patience".[114][115]

According to an internal review conducted by the Department of Justice's Office of Professional Responsibility, which was released in November 2020, Acosta showed "poor judgment" in granting Epstein a non-prosecution agreement and failing to notify Epstein's alleged victims about this agreement.[116]

Conviction and sentencing (2008–2011)

On June 30, 2008, after Epstein pleaded guilty to a state charge (one of two) of procuring for prostitution a girl below age 18,[117] he was sentenced to 18 months in prison. While most convicted sex offenders in Florida are sent to state prison, Epstein was instead housed in a private wing of the Palm Beach County Stockade and, according to the sheriff's office, was after 3+12 months allowed to leave the jail on "work release" for up to 12 hours a day, 6 days a week. This contravened the sheriff's own policies requiring a maximum remaining sentence of 10 months and making sex offenders ineligible for the privilege. He was allowed to come and go outside of specified release hours.[100]

Epstein's cell door was left unlocked, and he had access to the attorney room where a television was installed for him, before he was moved to the Stockade's previously unstaffed infirmary. He worked at the office of a foundation he had created shortly before reporting to jail; he dissolved it after he had served his time. The Sheriff's Office received $128,000 from Epstein's non-profit to pay for the costs of extra services being provided during his work release. His office was monitored by "permit deputies" whose overtime was paid by Epstein. They were required to wear suits, and checked in "welcomed guests" at the "front desk". Later the Sheriff's Office said these guest logs were destroyed per the department's "records retention" rules (although inexplicably the Stockade visitor logs were not).[118] He was allowed to use his own driver to drive him between jail and his office and other appointments.[100][118]

Epstein served almost 13 months before being released on July 22, 2009, for a year of probation on house arrest until August 2010.[119][120][121] While on probation he was allowed numerous trips on his corporate jet to his residences in Manhattan and the U.S. Virgin Islands. He was allowed long shopping trips and to walk around Palm Beach "for exercise".[100]

After a contested hearing in January 2011, and an appeal, he stayed registered in New York State as a "level three" (high risk of repeat offense) sex offender, a lifelong designation.[122][123] At that hearing the Manhattan District Attorney argued unsuccessfully that the level should be reduced to a low-risk "level one" and was chided by the judge. Despite opposition from Epstein's lawyer that he had a "main" home in the U.S. Virgin Islands, the judge confirmed he personally must check in with the New York Police Department every 90 days. Though Epstein had been a level-three registered sex offender in New York since 2010, the New York Police Department never enforced the 90-day regulation, though non-compliance is a felony.[115]

Reactions

The immunity agreement and his lenient treatment were the subject of ongoing public dispute. The Palm Beach police chief accused the state of giving him preferential treatment,[92] and the Miami Herald said U.S. Attorney Acosta gave Epstein "the deal of a lifetime".[1] Following Epstein's arrest in July 2019, on sex trafficking charges, Acosta resigned as Secretary of Labor effective July 19, 2019.[124]

After the accusations became public, several persons and institutions returned donations that they had received from Epstein, including Eliot SpitzerBill Richardson,[125] and the Palm Beach Police Department.[96] Harvard University announced it would not return any money.[125] Various charitable donations that Epstein had made to finance children's education were also questioned.[117]

On June 18, 2010, Epstein's former house manager, Alfredo Rodriguez, was sentenced to 18 months' incarceration after being convicted on an obstruction charge for failing to turn over to police, and subsequently trying to sell a journal in which he had recorded Epstein's activities. FBI Special Agent Christina Pryor reviewed the material and agreed it was information "that would have been extremely useful in investigating and prosecuting the case, including names and contact information of material witnesses and additional victims."[126][127]

Civil cases

Jane Does v. Epstein (2008)

On February 6, 2008, an anonymous Virginia woman, known as Jane Doe No. 2, filed a $50-million civil lawsuit[128] in federal court against Epstein, saying that when she was a 16-year-old minor in 2004–05, she was "recruited to give Epstein a massage". She claims she was taken to his mansion, where he exposed himself and had sexual intercourse with her, and paid her $200 immediately afterward.[106]

A similar $50-million suit was filed in March 2008, by a different woman, who was represented by the same lawyer.[129] These and several similar lawsuits were dismissed.[130]

All other lawsuits have been settled by Epstein out of court.[131] Epstein made many out-of-court settlements with alleged victims.[130]

Victims' rights: Jane Does v. United States (2014)

A December 30, 2014, federal civil suit was filed in Florida by Jane Doe 1 (Courtney Wild) and Jane Doe 2 against the United States for violations of the Crime Victims' Rights Act by the U.S. Department of Justice's NPA with Epstein and his limited 2008 state plea. There was a later unsuccessful effort to add Virginia Roberts (Jane Doe 3) and another woman (Jane Doe 4) as plaintiffs to that case.[132] The addition accused Alan Dershowitz of sexually abusing a minor, Jane Doe 3, provided by Epstein.[133] The allegations against Dershowitz were stricken by the judge and eliminated from the case because he said they were outside the intent of the suit to re-open the plea agreement.[134][135] A document filed in court alleges that Epstein ran a "sexual abuse ring", and lent underage girls to "prominent American politicians, powerful business executives, foreign presidents, a well-known prime minister, and other world leaders".[136]

This long-running lawsuit is pending in federal court, aimed at vacating the federal plea agreement on the grounds that it violated victims' rights.[137] On April 7, 2015, Judge Kenneth Marra ruled that the allegations made by alleged victim Virginia Roberts against Prince Andrew had no bearing on the lawsuit by alleged victims seeking to reopen Epstein's non-prosecution plea agreement with the federal government; the judge ordered that allegation to be struck from the record.[134] Judge Marra made no ruling as to whether claims by Roberts are true or false. Though he did not allow Jane Does 3 and 4 to join the suit, Marra specifically said that Roberts may later give evidence when the case comes to court.[138]

On February 21, 2019, in the case of Two Jane Does v. United States, Senior Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida Kenneth Marra said federal prosecutors violated the law by failing to notify victims before they allowed him to plead guilty to only the two Florida offenses. The judge left open what the possible remedy could be.[139]

Virginia Giuffre v. Epstein (2015)

n a December 2014 Florida court filing by Bradley Edwards and Paul G. Cassell meant for inclusion in the Crime Victims Rights Act lawsuit,[140] Virginia Giuffre (then known as Virginia Roberts), alleged in a sworn affidavit that at age 17, she had been sexually trafficked by Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell for their own use and for use by several others, including Prince Andrew[141] and retired Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz.[8][142] Giuffre also claimed that Epstein, Maxwell and others had physically and sexually abused her.[143] She alleged that the FBI may have been involved in a cover-up.[144] She said she had served as Epstein's sex slave from 1999 to 2002, and had recruited other underage girls.[145] Prince Andrew, Epstein, and Dershowitz all denied having had sex with Giuffre. Dershowitz took legal action over the allegations.[146][147][148] Giuffre filed a defamation suit against Dershowitz, claiming he purposefully made "false and malicious defamatory statements" about her.[111] A diary purported to belong to Giuffre was published online.[149][150] Epstein entered an out-of-court settlement with Giuffre, as he had done in several other lawsuits.[89]

In 2019, Giuffre was interviewed by the BBC's Panorama where she continued to attest that Epstein had trafficked her to Prince Andrew.[151] She appealed directly to the public by stating "I implore the people in the UK to stand up beside me, to help me fight this fight, to not accept this as being ok.”[151] As of 2016, these accusations had not been tested in any court of law.[152]

Virginia Giuffre v. Ghislaine Maxwell (2015)

As a result of Giuffre's allegations and Maxwell's comments about them, Giuffre sued Maxwell for defamation in September 2015. After much legal confrontation, the case was settled under seal in May 2017. The Miami Herald, other media, and Alan Dershowitz filed to have the documents about the settlement unsealed. After the judge dismissed their request, the matter was appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.[153]

On March 11, 2019, in the appeal of the district judge's refusal to unseal the documents relating to the 2017 defamation settlement of Giuffre v. Maxwell, the Second Circuit Court gave parties one week to provide good cause as to why they should remain under seal, without which they would be unsealed on March 19, 2019. Later the Court ordered these documents to be unsealed (after having them redacted to protect innocent parties). In Giuffre's testimony, she claims that she was "directed" by Maxwell to give erotic massages and engage in sexual activities with Prince AndrewJean-Luc BrunelGlenn DubinMarvin Minsky; Governor Bill Richardson; another unnamed prince; an unnamed foreign president; "a well known Prime Minister"; and an unnamed hotel chain owner from France, among others.[154] The deposition does not claim that any of these men in fact engaged with Giuffre, and as of August 2019, none of these men have been indicted or sued for related sex crimes.[154] Giuffre testified, "my whole life revolved around just pleasing these men and keeping Ghislaine and Jeffrey happy. Their whole entire lives revolved around sex."[154][153]

On August 9, less than 24 hours before Epstein's death, 2,000 pages of previously sealed documents from the case were released. Two sets of additional sealed documents will be analyzed by a federal judge to determine whether they should also be made public. A "John Doe" asked the judge on September 3 to permanently keep the documents secret, claiming "unproven allegations of impropriety" could damage his reputation, though he had no evidence his name was included.[155]

Jane Doe v. Epstein and Trump (2016)

A federal lawsuit filed in California in April 2016, against Epstein and Donald Trump by a California woman alleged that the two men sexually assaulted her at a series of parties at Epstein's Manhattan residence in 1994, when she was 13 years old. The suit was dismissed by a federal judge in May 2016 because it did not raise valid claims under federal law. The woman filed another federal suit in New York in June 2016, but it was withdrawn three months later, apparently without being served on the defendants. A third federal suit was filed in New York in September 2016.[citation needed]

The two latter suits included affidavits by an anonymous witness who attested to the accusations in the suits, asserting Epstein employed her to procure underage girls for him, and an anonymous person who declared the plaintiff had told him/her about the assaults at the time they occurred. The plaintiff, who had filed anonymously as Jane Doe, was scheduled to appear in a Los Angeles press conference six days before the 2016 election, but abruptly canceled the event; her lawyer Lisa Bloom asserted that the woman had received threats. The suit was dropped on November 4, 2016. Trump attorney Alan Garten denied the allegations, while Epstein declined to comment.[156][157][158][159][160]

Sarah Ransome v. Epstein and Maxwell (2017)

In 2017, Sarah Ransome filed a suit against Epstein and Maxwell, alleging that Maxwell had hired her to give massages to Epstein and later threatened to physically harm her or destroy her career prospects if she did not comply with their sexual demands at his mansion in New York City and on his private Caribbean island, Little Saint James. The suit was settled in 2018 under undisclosed terms.[161][20][162]

Bradley Edwards' defamation v. Epstein (2018)

A state civil lawsuit in Florida filed by attorney Bradley Edwards against Epstein was scheduled for trial in December 2018. The trial was expected to provide victims with their first opportunity to make their accusations in public. However, the case was settled on the first day of the trial, with Epstein publicly apologizing to Edwards; other terms of the settlement were confidential.[137][163]

Maria Farmer v. Epstein and Maxwell (2019)

On April 16, 2019, Maria Farmer went public and filed a sworn affidavit in federal court in New York, alleging that she and her 15-year-old sister, Annie, had been sexually assaulted by Epstein and Maxwell in separate locations in 1996. Farmer met Epstein and Maxwell at her graduate art gallery reception at the New York Academy of Art in 1995. The following year, in the summer of 1996, they hired her to work on an art project in Leslie Wexner's Ohio mansion, where she was then sexually assaulted.[164] Farmer reported the incident to the New York City Police Department and the FBI.[165]

Farmer's affidavit also stated that during the same summer, Epstein flew her then-15-year-old sister to his New Mexico property where he and Maxwell sexually abused her on a massage table.[166]

Jennifer Araoz v. Epstein and Maxwell (2019)

On July 22, 2019, while in jail awaiting trial, Epstein was served with a petition regarding a pending state civil lawsuit filed by Jennifer Araoz.[167] She stated that an associate for Epstein had recruited her outside Talent Unlimited High School at age 14 and she was gradually groomed for over a year before Epstein raped her in his New York City mansion when she was 15.[168] Araoz filed her suit on August 14, 2019, when New York State law was updated to allow one year for adult survivors of child sexual abuse to sue for previous offenses, regardless of how long ago the abuse took place.[169] In October 2019, Araoz amended her complaint to include over 20 corporate entities associated with Epstein and named the additional individuals Lesley Groff and Cimberly Espinosa as enablers.[170]

Katlyn Doe, et al. v. Epstein's estate (2019)

Three women (Katlyn Doe, Lisa Doe and Priscilla Doe) sued the estate of Jeffrey Epstein on August 20, 2019. Two of the women were 17 and one was 20 when they met Epstein. The women allege they were recruited, subjected to unwanted sex acts, and controlled by Epstein and a "vast enterprise" of co-conspirators.[171][172]

Jane Doe v. Epstein's estate (2019)

A New York accuser of Epstein, known only as Jane Doe, announced a federal lawsuit against his estate in the Southern District of New York on September 18, 2019, stating that she was recruited in 2002 and sexually abused by Epstein for three years starting at age 14.[173]

Teresa Helm, et al. v. Epstein's estate (2019)

Five women (Teresa Helm, Annie Farmer, Maria Farmer, Juliette Bryant, and an unidentified woman), represented by David Boies, sued Epstein's estate in Federal District Court in Manhattan in November 2019, accusing him of rape, battery and false imprisonment and seeking unspecified damages.[174]

Jane Doe 15 v. Epstein's estate (2019)

On November 18, 2019, a woman identified as Jane Doe 15 made a public appearance with her attorney Gloria Allred to announce that she was suing the estate of Jeffrey Epstein in the District Court for the Southern District of New York, alleging that he manipulated, trafficked, and sexually abused her in 2004, when she was 15 years old.[175]

Teala Davies v. Epstein's estate (2019)

On November 21, 2019, Teala Davies appeared with her attorney Gloria Allred and announced her lawsuit in Manhattan federal court against Epstein's estate.[176][177] Davies stated that after meeting Epstein in 2002, he sexually assaulted and trafficked her in New York, New Mexico, Florida, the Virgin Islands and France.[176]

Jane Does 1-9 v. Epstein's estate (2019)

On December 3, 2019, lawyer Jordan Merson filed a lawsuit in New York on behalf of nine anonymous accusers (Jane Does 1–9) and against Epstein's estate for battery, assault, and intensional emotional distress.[178] The claims date from 1985 through the 2000s, and include individuals who were 13, 14, and 15 when they first encountered Epstein.[178]

JJ Doe v. Epstein's estate (2019)

The lawsuit was filed by Bradley Edwards on behalf of his client in late December 2019. The accuser, JJ Doe, is described as being a 14-year-old resident of Palm Beach County at the time Epstein abused her in 2004.[179]

US Virgin Islands v. Epstein's estate, et al. (2020)

A lawsuit was filed in Superior Court of the US Virgin Islands in January 2020 alleging that Epstein ran a sex trafficking conspiracy for over two decades, through 2018, with children as young as 11 years old on Epstein's Caribbean islands.[180] According to Attorney General Denise George, his alleged criminal activities on the islands were concealed through a complex network of companies.[180]

Jane Doe v. Maxwell and Epstein's estate (2020)

In January 2020, a lawsuit was filed against Maxwell and Epstein alleging that they recruited a 13-year-old music student at the Interlochen Center for the Arts in 1994 and subjected her to sexual abuse[181] The suit states that Jane Doe was repeatedly sexually assaulted by Epstein over a four-year period and that Maxwell played a key role in both her recruitment and by participating in the assaults.[181]

Jane Does v. Epstein estate (2020)

In August 2020 9 Jane Does filed suit accusing Epstein of sexual abuse. The alleged victims in the lawsuit include a 11 and 13 year old and a victim who alleged abuse in 1975.[182]

Jane Doe v. Epstein estate (2020)

In August 2020 Epstein was sued by a Jane Doe accusing him of sexually abusing her for one and a half years, beginning when she was an 18-year-old aspiring singer and model in New York.[183]

Jane Doe v. Epstein estate (2021)

A civil suit was filed against Epstein's estate in March 2021 by a Broward County woman who accused Epstein and Maxwell of trafficking her after repeatedly raping her in Florida in 2008.[184]

Second criminal case

Trafficking charges

On July 6, 2019, Epstein was arrested by the FBI-NYPD Crimes Against Children Task Force at Teterboro Airport in New Jersey on sex trafficking charges.[27][185][186][187] He was jailed at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in New York City, which has held prisoners such as John GottiJoaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, and Paul Manafort.[188][189]

According to witnesses and sources on the day of his arrest, about a dozen FBI agents forced open the door to his Manhattan townhouse, the Herbert N. Straus House, with search warrants. The search of his townhouse turned up evidence of sex trafficking and also found "hundreds – and perhaps thousands – of sexually suggestive photographs of fully – or partially – nude females". Some of the photos were confirmed as those of underage females. In a locked safe, compact discs were found with handwritten labels including the descriptions: "Young [Name] + [Name]", "Misc nudes 1", and "Girl pics nude".[90] Also found in the safe were $70,000 in cash, 48 diamonds,[190] and a fraudulent Austrian passport, which expired in 1987, that had Epstein's photo but another name. The passport had numerous entrance and exit stamps, including entrance stamps that showed the use of the passport to enter France, Spain, the United Kingdom, and Saudi Arabia in the 1980s. The passport showed his place of residence as Saudi Arabia.[50][51][191][192][193] According to his attorneys, Epstein had been advised to acquire the passport because "as an affluent member of the Jewish faith", he was in danger of being kidnapped while traveling abroad.[194]

On July 8, prosecutors with the Public Corruption Unit of the Southern District of New York charged him with sex trafficking and conspiracy to traffic minors for sex. The grand jury indictment alleges that "dozens" of underage girls were brought into Epstein's mansions for sexual encounters.[11][12][195] Judge Kenneth Marra was to decide whether the non-prosecution agreement that protected Epstein from the more serious charges should still stand.[196]

Epstein requested to be released on bond, offering to post $100 million with the condition that he would also submit to house arrest in his New York City mansion.[197] US District Judge Richard M. Berman denied the request on July 18, saying that Epstein posed a danger to the public and a serious flight risk to avoid prosecution.[197]

On July 23, Epstein was found injured and semiconscious at 1:30 a.m. on the floor of his cell, with marks around his neck that were suspected to be the result of either a suicide attempt or an assault.[198] His cellmate, former New York City police officer Nicholas Tartaglione, who was charged with four counts of murder, was questioned about Epstein's condition. He denied having any knowledge of what happened. Epstein himself said he recollected nothing.[190][199][200][201] According to NBC News, two sources said that Epstein might have tried to hang himself, a third said the injuries were not serious and could have been staged, and a fourth source said that an assault by his cellmate had not been ruled out.[202]

On August 29, 2019, following Epstein's death 10 days prior, the case against Epstein was closed after Judge Berman dismissed all sex trafficking charges.[17][18] However, he also expressed support for Epstein's accusers.[17] Prosecutors objected to the ruling and stated they would continue an investigation for potential co-conspirators.[18]

Investigation in France

On August 23, 2019, the prosecutor's office in Paris, France, opened a preliminary investigation into Epstein. He is being investigated for rape and sexual assault of minors under and over the age of 15, criminal association with a view to committing crimes, and association with criminals with a view to committing offenses. The prosecutors said that the goal of the investigation is to find possible crimes committed in France and elsewhere against French citizens.[203]

Personal life

Previous long-term girlfriends associated with Epstein include Eva Andersson-Dubin[204][205] and publishing heiress Ghislaine Maxwell.[30] Epstein was romantically linked to Andersson-Dubin for an 11-year period[206] mostly in the 1980s and the two later remained friendly well after her marriage to Glenn Dubin.[204][205] Epstein met Maxwell, daughter of disgraced media baron Robert Maxwell, by 1991.[162][207][208] Epstein had Maxwell come to the United States in 1991 to recover from her grief following the death of her father.[209] Maxwell was implicated by several of Epstein's accusers as procuring or recruiting underage girls in addition to once being Epstein's girlfriend.[161][162][208] In a 2009 deposition, several of Epstein's household employees testified that Maxwell had a central role in both his public and private life, referring to her as his "main girlfriend" who also handled the hiring, supervising, and firing of staff starting around 1992. In 1995, Epstein renamed one of his companies the Ghislaine Corporation in Palm Beach, Florida; the company was dissolved in 1998.[165] In 2000, Maxwell moved into a 7,000-square-foot townhouse, less than 10 blocks from Epstein's New York mansion. This townhome was purchased for $4.95 million by an anonymous limited liability company, with an address that matches the office of J. Epstein & Co. Representing the buyer was Darren Indyke, Epstein's longtime lawyer.[20] In a 2003 Vanity Fair exposé, Epstein refers to Maxwell as "my best friend".[30]

Epstein was a longtime acquaintance of Prince Andrew and Tom Barrack,[210] and attended parties with many prominent people, including Bill ClintonGeorge StephanopoulosDonald Trump,[211] Katie CouricWoody Allen,[212] and Harvey Weinstein.[213] His contacts included Rupert MurdochMichael BloombergRichard BransonMichael JacksonAlec Baldwin and the Kennedys.[214] His contacts also included Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak, British prime minister Tony Blair, and Saudi Arabian crown prince Mohammed bin Salman.[215][216][217] Both Clinton[218] and Trump[219] claimed that they never visited Epstein's island.

Epstein owned a private Boeing 727 jet and traveled in it frequently, logging "600 flying hours a year ... usually with guests on board".[220] The jet was nicknamed the Lolita Express by the locals in the Virgin Islands, because of its frequent arrivals at Little Saint James with apparently underage girls.[221] In 2003, Epstein flew to Cuba aboard his plane with Colombian president Andrés Pastrana Arango at the invitation of Cuban president Fidel Castro. According to Fabiola Santiago of the Miami Herald, Epstein was likely considering relocating to Cuba in order to escape U.S. law enforcement; Epstein was under investigation from U.S. law enforcement at the time.[222] In 2009, Epstein's brother Mark claimed Trump had flown on Epstein's plane at least once. He later told The Washington Post that Trump flew "numerous times" on Epstein's airplane, although Mark was present on only one of the flights.[223][224] According to Michael Corcoran, Trump flew Epstein on his own airplane at least once.[225] In September 2002, Epstein flew Clinton, Kevin Spacey, and Chris Tucker to Africa in this jet.[32][226][227] Flight records obtained in 2016 show Bill Clinton flew 27 times to at least a dozen international locations.[228] Flight logs did not list any Secret Service detail for at least five flights, on an Asia trip,[228] and Secret Service stated that there is no evidence of the former president making a trip to Epstein's private island.[228] In 2019, a Clinton spokesperson stated that, in 2002 and 2003, Clinton took four trips on Epstein's airplane, making stops on three continents, all with his staff and Secret Service detail.[229] At the time of Epstein's 2019 arrest, Clinton's spokeswoman Angel Ureña stated that Clinton had "not spoken to Epstein in well over a decade, and has never been to Little St. James Island, Epstein's ranch in New Mexico, or his residence in Florida."[230]

In a profile of Epstein in New York magazine in 2002, former Democratic Senate leader George J. Mitchell said of Epstein, "I would certainly call him a friend and a supporter". In the same article, Donald Trump remarked, "I've known Jeff for fifteen years. Terrific guy. He's a lot of fun to be with. It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it – Jeffrey enjoys his social life."[231] In July 2019, Trump said "I knew him like everybody in Palm Beach knew him," stating four times he had not been "a fan" of Epstein and that he had not spoken to him in about fifteen years. A video shot in 1992 surfaced showing the two men partying together at Mar-a-Lago.[232][233][234][235] By 2007, Trump reportedly banned Epstein from his Mar-a-Lago club for unseemly pursuit of young females.[236][237][238][239] The ban allegation was included in court documents filed by attorney Bradley Edwards,[240] although Edwards later said it was a rumor he tried to, but could not, confirm.[241][242]

Bill Clinton lauded Epstein as "a committed philanthropist" with "insights and generosity".[243] At the time Epstein was on the board of Rockefeller University, a member of the Trilateral Commission and the Council on Foreign Relations, and was a major donor to Harvard University.[32]

Epstein visited the White House while Clinton was president on four known occasions.[244] In 1993, he went to a donor event at the White House with his companion Ghislaine Maxwell. Around the same time, he also met with President Clinton's aide Mark Middleton on at least three occasions at the White House. In 1995, financier Lynn Forester discussed "Jeffrey Epstein and currency stabilization" with Clinton.[244] Epstein, according to his own accounts, was heavily involved in the foreign exchange market and traded large amounts of currency in the unregulated forex market.[30][32] In 1995, Epstein also attended a small political fundraiser dinner for Bill Clinton which included 14 other people including Ron PerelmanDon JohnsonJimmy Buffett, and dinner organizer Paul Prosperi.[245]

From the 1990s to mid-2000s, Epstein often socialized with the future President Donald Trump.[246] Author Michael Wolff wrote that Trump, Epstein, and Tom Barrack were at the time like a "set of nightlife musketeers" on the social scene.[6][247] Epstein and Trump socialized both in New York City and Palm Beach, where they both had houses.[234][246] In April 2003, New York magazine reported Epstein hosted a dinner party in his Manhattan residence to honor Bill Clinton, who did not attend, although Trump did attend.[248] According to The Washington Post, one person who knew Epstein and Trump during this time noted that "they were tight" and "they were each other's wingmen". In November 2004, Epstein and Trump's friendship ran into trouble when they became embroiled in a bidding war for a $40 million mansion, Maison de L'Amitie, which was being auctioned in Palm Beach. Trump won the auction for $41 million, and successfully sold the property four years later for $95 million to the Russian billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev. That month was the last time Epstein and Trump were recorded to have interacted.[223]

Wealth

The exact origin of Epstein's wealth is unknown.[249] Leslie Wexner was one source of Epstein's original wealth.[249] An assistant of Epstein also stated that he got his fortune started through Robert Maxwell, the media mogul father of Ghislaine Maxwell.[250][251]

When Epstein pleaded guilty in 2008 to soliciting and procuring prostitution, his lawyers stated he was a billionaire with a net worth of over one billion dollars.[249] A number of sources, however, have questioned the extent of Epstein's wealth and his status as a billionaire. According to an article in The New York Times, his "fortune may be more illusion than fact". Epstein lost "large sums of money" in the 2008 financial crisis, and "friends and patrons"—including retail billionaire Leslie Wexner, "deserted him" following his pleading guilty to prostitution charges in 2008.[56] New York magazine claimed that "there's scant proof" of Epstein's "financial bona fides",[249] and Forbes also ran an article entitled "Why sex offender Jeffrey Epstein is not a billionaire".[252]

Spencer Kuvin, an attorney for three of Epstein's alleged victims in the case where Epstein pleaded guilty to sexual activity with minors, stated that "he and his team 'pursued every possible angle' to find out Epstein's net worth but found that much of his wealth is offshore."[252] An investigation by the Miami Herald of the Swiss Leaks documents indicated that Epstein had multiple financial accounts with millions of dollars in offshore tax havens. In the Paradise Papers, records showed that Epstein in February 1997, became a client of Appleby, a Bermuda-based law firm which specialized in the creation of offshore companies and investment vehicles for the ultra-wealthy. A client profile of Epstein described his job cryptically as the "Manager of Fortune".[65][66]

Federal prosecutors on July 12, 2019, stated in court documents that, based on records from one financial institution, that Jeffrey Epstein was "extravagantly wealthy" and had assets worth at least $500 million and earned more than $10 million a year. The extent of his wealth, however, was not known, since he had not filled out a financial affidavit for his bail application.[253][254][255] According to Bloomberg News, "Today, so little is known about Epstein's current business or clients that the only things that can be valued with any certainty are his properties."[256] The Miami Herald in their investigation of the Paradise Papers and Swiss Leaks documents concluded that Epstein's wealth is likely spread secretly across the globe.[65]

In 2020 Epstein estate's finances revealed that it had paid out nearly $50 million between June 2020 and December 2020 to more than 100 women who brought claims to the "Epstein Victims Compensation Fund" set up in the U.S. Virgin Islands.[257] By February 2021, the estate was valued at about $240 million, down from estimates of $630 million a year earlier. This prompted the attorney general of the U.S. Virgin Islands, Denise George, to file an emergency motion seeking the immediate asset freeze. She contended in the court filing, which the victims joined, that the estate executors had “mismanaged” the money.[258]

Residences

Epstein owned the Herbert N. Straus House on 9 East 71st Street in the Upper East Side of Manhattan in New York City.[259][260] It was originally purchased for $13.2 million in 1989 by Epstein's mentor, Les Wexner, who renovated it completely.[186][261][262] Epstein moved into the mansion in 1995 after Wexner married and moved with his wife to Columbus, Ohio, to raise their family.[32][261] He took full possession of the mansion in 1998, when he paid Wexner $20 million for it.[56] The house was valued in 2019 by federal prosecutors at $77 million, while the city assessed its value at $56 million.[259] The mansion is reputedly the largest private residence in Manhattan at 21,000 sq ft (2,000 m2).[186][259] Hidden under a flight of stairs, there is a lead-lined bathroom fitted with its own closed-circuit television screens and a telephone, both concealed in a cabinet under the sink. The house also has its own heated sidewalk to melt away the snow.[87] The entrance hall is lined with rows of individually framed prosthetic eyeballs that were made in England for injured soldiers.[30]

The financier's other properties include a residence in Palm Beach, Florida, purchased in 1990;[263] seven units in an apartment building near the Arc de Triomphe at 22 Avenue Foch in ParisFrance;[259] a 7,500-acre (30 km2) ranch named Zorro Ranch near Stanley, New Mexico, purchased in 1993;[261][264][265] a private island near Saint Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands called Little Saint James, which includes a mansion and guest houses, purchased in 1998; and the neighboring island of Great Saint James purchased in 2016.[266][267] Epstein was building a compound on the latter including an amphitheater and "underwater office & pool" but ran into problems when a stop-work order was issued in late 2018; work continued despite the order.[268]

Epstein, previous to his final Manhattan home, lived in a spacious townhouse, which was a former Iranian government building that had been taken over by the State Department during the Iranian revolution, at 34 East 69th Street for a rate of $15,000 a month from 1992 to 1995.[269] He also previously owned a mansion outside Columbus, Ohio, near Wexner's home from 1992 to 1998 which he purchased from his mentor.[61] Before the Herbert Straus house was purchased, Wexner purchased in 1988 the adjacent townhouse at 11 East 71st Street. Like in the case of the 9 East 71st Street house, Epstein was on the deed of the 11 East 71st Street house as the trustee. The townhouse was sold in 1996 to the Comet trust which holds part of the assets of the de Gunzburg/Bronfman family.[270]

Epstein rented offices for his business dealings in the Villard House at 457 Madison Avenue.[92] Steven Hoffenberg originally set up the offices for Epstein in 1987 when he was consulting for Tower Financial.[30] Epstein used these offices until at least 2003. Around this time, Michael Wolff saw the financier in his office, which in the past were the offices of Random House.[92] Wolff noted that Epstein's offices were a strange place which did not have a corporate feel at all. Wolff stated that the offices were "almost European. It's old—old-fashioned, unrehabbed in its way." Wolff continued that "the trading floor is filled with guys in yarmulkes. Who they are, I have no idea. They're like a throwback, a bunch of guys from the fifties. So here is Jeffrey in this incredibly beautiful office, with pieces of art and a view of the courtyard, and he seems like the most relaxed guy in the world. You want to say 'What's going on here?' and he gives you that Cheshire smile."[92]

Epstein rented multiple apartment units for his employees, models, and guests since the 1990s at 301 East 66th Street. The majority of the apartment complex at this address is owned by Ossa properties, which is owned by Jeffrey Epstein's brother, Mark, who purchased the complex in the early 1990s from Wexner. Over the years Epstein has housed different friends at 11 East 71st Street, including his ex-girlfriend Eva Andersson, who is now married to his hedge-fund friend Glenn Dubin, MC2 Models founder Jean-Luc Brunel, and on occasions former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak. He has housed some of his workers, including his pilot, housekeeper and office work staff, in the apartment complex. Epstein has also housed underage girls, who Brunel scouted for his MC2 modeling agency.[80][81] On August 6, 2012, a model and party promoter associated with MC2, Pedro Gaspar, who lived above another of the modeling agency's locations in Manhattan, died of what some consider to be a suspicious drug overdose.[271]

Political donations

From 1989 until 2003, Epstein donated more than $139,000 to U.S. Democratic Party federal candidates and committees and over $18,000 to U.S. Republican Party candidates and groups.[272]

Epstein contributed $50,000 to Democrat Bill Richardson's successful campaign for Governor of New Mexico in 2002 and again for his successful run for reelection in 2006. Also that year, he contributed $15,000 to Democrat Gary King's successful campaign for Attorney General of New Mexico. He later contributed $35,000 to King's 2014 unsuccessful campaign for Governor. Other contributions in New Mexico included Epstein $10,000 toward Jim Baca's campaign to become head of the land commission and $2,000 toward Santa Fe County Sheriff Jim Solano's bid for reelection. In 2010, Epstein received a notice from New Mexico Department of Public Safety which said, "You are not required to register [as a sex offender] with the state of New Mexico." This was in contravention of federal law, which would seem to say that the conviction in Florida required him to register in New Mexico.[273]

Philanthropy

In 1991, Epstein was one of four donors who pledged to raise US$2 million for a Hillel student building Rosovsky Hall at Harvard University.[274][275] In 2000, Epstein established the Jeffrey Epstein VI Foundation, which funds science research and education. Prior to 2003, the foundation funded Martin Nowak's research at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey. In May 2003, Epstein pledged a series of donations totaling US$30 million to create a mathematical biology and evolutionary dynamics program at Harvard which was run by Martin Nowak.[274] According to The Boston Globe, the actual amount received from Epstein was US$6.5 million.[125][274][275] In 2019, Forbes deleted a 2013 article that called Epstein "one of the largest backers of cutting edge science" after The New York Times revealed its author, Drew Hendricks, had been paid $600 to submit it falsely as his own.[205]

According to attorney Gerald B. Lefcourt, Epstein was "part of the original group that conceived of the Clinton Global Initiative".[276] Epstein co-organized a science event with illusionist and skeptic Al Seckel called the Mindshift Conference.[277] The conference took place in 2010 on Epstein's private island Little Saint James.[277] In attendance were scientists Murray Gell-MannLeonard Mlodinow, and Gerald Jay Sussman.[41]

The true extent of Epstein's donations is unknown. The Jeffrey Epstein VI Foundation fails to disclose information which other charities routinely disclose. Concerns have been raised over this lack of transparency. In 2015, the Attorney General of the state of New York was reported to be trying to gain information but was refused since the charities were based outside of the state and did not solicit in New York State.[278] Epstein, besides making donations through the Jeffrey Epstein VI Foundation, also made a number of charitable donations through his three private charities: Epstein Interest, the COUQ Foundation, and Gratitude American Ltd. According to federal tax filings, Epstein donated $30 million between 1998 and 2018, through these three charities.[279] Following his death, a number of scientists and institutions—including Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)—came under criticism for accepting money from Epstein and his foundation, with some individuals offering to give away money donated by Epstein.[280]

Interest in eugenics and transhumanism

According to various sources, beginning in the early 2000s Epstein developed a strong interest in improving the human race through genetic engineering and artificial intelligence, including using his own sperm. He addressed the scientific community at various events and occasions and communicated his fascination with eugenics.[281] It was reported in August 2019 that Epstein had planned to "seed the human race with his DNA" by impregnating up to 20 women at a time using his New Mexico compound as a "baby ranch", where mothers would give birth to his offspring. He was an advocate of cryonics and his own idiosyncratic version of transhumanism, and had said that he intended to have his penis and head frozen.[282][283]

Kathleen Hall Jamieson, director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania said: "Scientists need funding for important work ... if the funding is for legitimate scientific work, there is nothing wrong with accepting support from a billionaire. However it would have been wrong for scientists to accept his funding if they were aware that he was planning a eugenics experiment that might draw legitimacy from his association with them." Professor George Church also publicly apologized for meeting Epstein after his 13-month sentence, saying "There should have been more conversations about, should we be doing this, should we be helping this guy? There was just a lot of nerd tunnel vision."[280]

Death

On July 23, 2019, three weeks prior to his death, Epstein was found unconscious in his jail cell with injuries to his neck.[198][201] Epstein said he believed that he was attacked by his cellmate, who was awaiting trial for four counts of murder, while the correctional staff suspected attempted suicide.[202][284] After that incident, he was placed on suicide watch.[198][285] Six days later, on July 29, 2019, Epstein was taken off suicide watch and placed in a special housing unit with another inmate.[198] Epstein's close associates said he was in "good spirits".[13]

When Epstein was placed in the special housing unit, the jail informed the Justice Department that he would have a cellmate, and that a guard would look into the cell every 30 minutes. These procedures were not followed on the night of his death.[286][198][287] On August 9, 2019, Epstein's cellmate was transferred out, but no one took his place.[288] Later in the evening, contrary to the jail's normal procedure, Epstein was not checked every 30 minutes.[286][198][287] The two guards who were assigned to check his jail unit that night fell asleep and did not check on him for about three hours; the guards falsified related records.[198][289] Two cameras in front of Epstein's cell also malfunctioned that night.[16]

Epstein was found dead in his cell at the Metropolitan Correctional Center (MCC) in New York City at 6:30 a.m. EDT on August 10, 2019.[290][291] The Bureau of Prisons said lifesaving measures were initiated immediately upon the discovery of Epstein's body. Emergency responders were called and he was taken to a hospital. On August 10, 2019, the Bureau of Prisons and U.S. Attorney General William Barr called the death an apparent suicide, although no final determination had been made.[13] The circumstances leading up to his death are being investigated by the United States Department of Justice.[292][293]

Autopsy

On August 11, 2019, an autopsy was performed.[294] It appeared likely that Epstein had thrown himself violently off the cell's top bunk, which would explain the damage he suffered, other than strangulation.[295] The preliminary result of the autopsy found that Epstein sustained multiple breaks in his neck bones. Among the bones broken in Epstein's neck was the hyoid bone. Such breaks of the hyoid bone can occur from those who hang themselves, but they are more common in victims of homicide by strangulation. A 2010 study found broken hyoids in 25 percent of cases of hangings. A larger study conducted from 2010 to 2016 found hyoid damage in just 16 of 264, or six percent, of cases of hangings. Hyoid bone breaks become more common with age, as the bones become more brittle.[296] Forensic pathologist Cyril Wecht noted that hanging by leaning forward would not result in broken cervical bones.[297]

On August 16, 2019, Barbara Sampson, the New York City medical examiner, ruled Epstein's death a suicide by hanging.[298] The medical examiner, according to Epstein's defense counsel, only saw nine minutes of footage from one security camera to help her arrive at her conclusion.[15] Epstein's defense lawyers were not satisfied with the conclusion of the medical examiner and were conducting their own independent investigation into the cause of Epstein's death, including taking legal action, if necessary, to view the pivotal camera footage near his cell during the night of his death.[299] Epstein's lawyers said that the evidence concerning Epstein's death was "far more consistent" with murder than suicide.[15] Michael Baden, an independent pathologist hired by the Epstein estate, observed the autopsy. In October 2019, Dr. Baden said that Mr. Epstein, 66, experienced a number of injuries – among them a broken bone in his neck – that "are extremely unusual in suicidal hangings and could occur much more commonly in homicidal strangulation". Baden stated that he thinks that the evidence points to homicide rather than suicide."[300]

Final will

On August 18, 2019, it was reported that Jeffrey Epstein had signed his last will and testament on August 8, 2019, two weeks after being found injured in his cell and two days before his death.[202][301] Until this time, Epstein had been depositing money in other inmates' commissary accounts to avoid being attacked.[198] The signing of the will was witnessed by two attorneys that knew him. The will named two longtime employees as executors, and immediately gifted all of his assets, and any assets remaining in his estate, to a trust.[301]

Burial

Following the autopsy, Epstein's body was claimed by his brother Mark.[302][303] On September 5, 2019, Epstein's body was buried in an unmarked grave next to those of his parents at the I.J. Morris Star of David Cemetery in Palm Beach, Florida. The names of his parents were also removed from their tombstone in order to prevent vandalism.[304]

Investigations

Attorney General Barr ordered an investigation by the Department of Justice Inspector General in addition to the investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, saying that he was "appalled" by Epstein's death in federal custody.[13][305] Two days later Barr said there had been "serious irregularities" in the prison's handling of Epstein, promising "We will get to the bottom of what happened, and there will be accountability."[306]

On August 14, 2019, Manhattan federal court Judge Richard M. Berman, who was overseeing Epstein's criminal case, wrote to the Metropolitan Correctional Center warden Lamine N'Diaye inquiring as to whether an investigation into the millionaire's apparent suicide would include a probe into his prior (July 23) injuries. Judge Berman wrote that to his knowledge it has never been definitely explained what they concluded about the incident.[307]

The national president of the Council of Prison Locals C-33, E. O. Young, stated that prisons "can't ever stop anyone who is persistent on killing themselves".[308] Between 2010 and 2016, around 124 inmates killed themselves while in federal custody, or around 20 prisoners per year, out of an inmate population of 180,000.[309][310] The previous reported inmate suicide in the MCC facility in Manhattan was in 1998.[311] The union leader Young said it was unclear if there was video of Epstein's hanging or direct observations by jail officials. He said that while cameras are ubiquitous in the facility, he did not believe that the interior of inmates' cells were within their range. Young said union officials had long been raising concerns regarding staffing, as the Trump administration had imposed a hiring freeze and budget cuts on the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP), adding "All this was caused by the administration."[308]

President Serene Gregg, of the American Federation of Government Employees Local 3148, said MCC is functioning with fewer than 70 percent of the needed correctional officers, forcing many to work mandatory overtime and 60 to 70-hour workweeks.[308][312] In previous congressional testimony, Attorney General Barr admitted the BOP was "short" about 4,000 to 5,000 employees. He had lifted the freeze and was working to recruit sufficient new officers to replace those who had departed.[308]

Epstein's attorneys asked Judge Berman to probe their client's death, alleging they could provide evidence that the incident resulting in his death was "far more consistent with assault" than suicide.[15]

One week after having signed his final will; it had been reported that at least one camera in the hallway outside Epstein's cell had footage that was unusable, although other usable footage was recorded in the area.[284] Two cameras that malfunctioned in front of Epstein's cell were sent to an FBI crime lab for examination.[16] Federal prosecutors subpoenaed up to 20 correctional officers concerning the cause of Epstein's death.[313]

On November 19, 2019, federal prosecutors in New York charged Metropolitan Correctional Center guards Michael Thomas and Tova Noel with creating false records, and with conspiracy, after video footage obtained by prosecutors revealed that Epstein had, against regulation, been in his cell unchecked for eight hours prior to being found dead.[314][315][316] On May 22, 2021, the two guards admitted they falsified records but were spared from any time behind bars under a deal with federal prosecutors.[317]

As part of a deferred prosecution agreement, on May 25, both officers pleaded guilty to falsifying records and conspiracy to defraud the United States. They were sentenced to six months supervisory release and will be required to perform 100 hours of community service.[318]

 
Graffiti featuring the phrase on an overpass on Interstate 71 in Cincinnati

In popular culture

Epstein's death became the subject of widespread controversy and debate, with the belief that his death was a homicide becoming a popular meme.[319] HBO is creating a limited series on Epstein's life and death to be directed and executive produced by Adam McKay.[320][321] Sony Pictures Television is additionally developing miniseries based on Epstein's life.[322] In the season four finale of the CBS series The Good Fight, the plot revolves around Epstein's death.[323][324] The Netflix documentary series Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich premiered in May 2020.[325] The Lifetime documentary Surviving Jeffrey Epstein premiered in August 2020.[326]

On July 1, 2020, a statue of Epstein appeared in Albuquerque, New Mexico.[327][328]

Footage of Trump and Epstein talking at the 1992 Mar-a-Lago party appears in the 2020 comedy mockumentary Borat Subsequent Moviefilm, where the footage is shown inspiring Borat to gift his teen daughter to someone in Trump's inner circle (with Borat deciding on Mike Pence, and later Rudy Giuliani). Later in the film, one of Borat's children also changes his name to Jeffrey Epstein.[329][330]