Jeffrey Epstein (left) and real estate developer Donald Trump at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Fla. in 1997. (Davidoff Studios / New York Daily News)
A woman who says she was Jeffrey Epstein’s first known victim claims in a new lawsuit that the multimillionaire sex offender introduced her to Donald Trump when she was 14, saying “This is a good one, right?”
Trump, according to the suit against Epstein’s estate, “smiled and nodded in agreement.” The woman filed the lawsuit Friday in Manhattan Federal Court under the pseudonym Jane Doe.
Trump and Epstein “both chuckled and Doe felt uncomfortable, but, at the time, was too young to understand why,” the lawsuit reads. The encounter happened in the mid-90s at Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s Florida resort, court docs said. The suit doesn’t accuse Trump of any abuse.
The victim met Epstein and his alleged madam, Ghislaine Maxwell, when she was 13 years old and attending Interlochen Arts Camp in Michigan, where she was in the voice program. The perverted financier and British socialite groomed her for abuse by frequently making references to sex and insisting she indulge their every whim, according to the suit. Epstein first sexually abused the girl toward the end of 1994, according to the suit. She claims she traveled with Epstein and Maxwell on his private jet….
In 1997, Epstein raped her the first of many times, the suit says.
The woman seeks a cut of Epstein’s $577 million estate. More than 15 other victims have filed similar federal suits against the notorious sex offender’s estate…..
Manhattan prosecutors have said they continue to investigate Epstein’s enablers. Trump and Epstein partied in the same social circles in the 1980s and 1990s but had a falling out in the early 2000s over a real estate dispute, according to reports.
“I was not a fan of his, that I can tell you,” Trump said after Epstein was arrested last year…..Maxwell has adamantly denied wrongdoing.
Jeffrey Epstein ran a ‘trafficking pyramid scheme’ from his private island until 2018, a new lawsuit alleges. Here are all the famous people he was connected to. Taylor Nicole Rogers Jan 16, 2020
Prosecutors in a new lawsuit against the estate of convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein allege that the former wealth manager ran a “trafficking pyramid scheme” from his private island in the US Virgin Islands until 2018.
Epstein was well connected in the US territory, as the wife of former Gov. John de Jongh sat on his company’s board for a decade….
Epstein was known for jet-setting with the likes of L Brands CEO Les Wexner, Bill Gates, President Bill Clinton, and Prince Andrew, the third child of the UK’s Queen Elizabeth.
Jeffrey Epstein ran a “trafficking pyramid scheme” from the US Virgin Islands, prosecutors allege in a new lawsuit against the former wealth manager’s estate.
Meanwhile, the convicted sex offender maintained a vast social and professional network both on and off the Islands, that even included the wife of the US Virgin Islands’ former governor. The former hedge-fund manager kept his client list under wraps, but he often bragged of his elite social circle that included presidents and Hollywood stars.
“I invest in people — be it politics or science,” Epstein was known to say, according to New York Magazine. “It’s what I do.”….
In 2007, Epstein pleaded guilty to charges of solicitation of prostitution and procurement of minors for prostitution in Florida.
Here’s what we know about the famous people who crossed paths with Epstein.
President Donald Trump once considered Epstein a friend….
The future president claimed in 2002 that he had a long friendship with Epstein. “I’ve known Jeff for 15 years. Terrific guy,” Trump said, according to New York Magazine. “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.”….
Former President Bill Clinton traveled with Epstein in 2002 and 2003.
A statement released in July by Clinton spokesperson Angel Ureña said the former president traveled to Europe, Asia, and twice to Africa on Epstein’s private jet. Clinton’s staff and Secret Service agents also went on these trips, which were to further the work of the Clinton Foundation, according to the statement.
At the time, Clinton told New York Magazine through a spokesperson that Epstein was “both a highly successful financier and a committed philanthropist with a keen sense of global markets and an in-depth knowledge of twenty-first-century science.”…..
Actor Kevin Spacey and comedian Chris Tucker also took trips with Epstein.
Epstein, Clinton, Spacey, and Tucker spent a week in 2002 touring AIDS project sites in South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, Rwanda, and Mozambique for the Clinton Foundation, according to a New York Magazine report.
Spacey was also charged with sexual assault, but in December, The New York Times reported that the case had been dropped by the plaintiff’s estate. The plaintiff, a 62-year-old massage therapist, died in September.
Socialite Ghislaine Maxwell is Epstein’s ex-girlfriend — and alleged madam.
Maxwell, 57, is a British socialite and the daughter of media tycoon Robert Maxwell.
She started dating Epstein shortly after moving to New York in 1991, Business Insider previously reported. After they broke up, court documents allege that Maxwell started recruiting underage girls for him to have sex with.
The FBI is investigating Maxwell’s relationship with Epstein, Reuters reported in December, as the British heiress is reportedly hiding out with armed guards in the United States or the United Kingdom.
Prince Andrew and Epstein were close friends, the Guardian reported in 2015.
Maxwell introduced Epstein and the Duke of York in the 1990s, the Guardian reported, and the two became close friends.
The Duke is the son of the UK’s Queen Elizabeth. He has also been criticized for frequently taking flights on the taxpayer’s dime while serving as the country’s special representative for international trade. This earned him the nickname “Airmiles Andy,” according to the Washington Post.
Court documents reviewed by the Guardian allege that Epstein instructed Virginia Roberts Giuffre, a 15-year-old employee at Trump’s Mar-a-Largo resort, to have sex with Prince Andrew on three separate occasions.
Buckingham Palace said in 2015 that the allegations against Prince Andrew were “false and without any foundation,” according to the Guardian.
According to a July 22 article from NY Magazine’s Intelligencer, a number of royals and royal connections were among Epstein’s contacts. That includes Prince Andrew’s then-wife, Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York; and Charles Althorp, Princess Diana’s brother. According to Intelligencer, all three were named in Epstein’s black book; Ferguson and Prince Andrew were also named in his private jet log.
In a interview with the BBC in November, Prince Andrew said his relationship with Epstein brought him “opportunities,” and that his slowness in ditching Epstein as a friend was because of his tendency to be “too honorable.” The interview was widely criticized over Prince Andrew’s lack of sympathy with Epstein’s victims and his defense of his friendship with the convicted sex offender, Business Insider reported.
Prince Andrew resigned from public royal duties in November, Business Insider reported.
L Brands CEO Les Wexner is Epstein’s only confirmed client.
Epstein became a trusted confidant of Wexner’s while Epstein managed the CEO’s fortune, according to Vanity Fair. Wexner has a net worth of $6.7 billion, Bloomberg reported. The magazine reported that Wexner allowed Epstein to take an active role in L Brands, which owns Bath & Body Works, Express, and Victoria’s Secret.
In 1989, Wexner used a trust to buy an Upper East Side townhouse that is believed to be the largest private residence in Manhattan for $13.2 million, Vanity Fair reported. Epstein moved in after Wexner and his wife, Abigail Koppel, moved to Ohio in 1996. Wexner’s trust transferred ownership of the house to Epstein in 2011 for $0, Bloomberg reported.
Former Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta worked with Epstein’s legal team to arrange a plea deal after Epstein was charged with solicitation of prostitution and procurement of minors for prostitution in Florida in 2007.
An investigation by the Miami Herald revealed that Acosta, then a US attorney, had enough evidence against Epstein to request a life sentence. Instead, he reportedly met with one of Epstein’s lawyers, who happened to be a former colleague of Acosta’s.
In the resulting plea deal, Epstein served 13 months in a private wing of a county prison, which he was allowed to leave six days a week to work in his office.
Acosta resigned on July 12.
Film publicist Peggy Siegal planned a star-studded dinner party for Epstein and Prince Andrew at Epstein’s New York mansion in 2010.
Siegal, known for hosting events to promote films including “The Big Short,” “Argo,” and “The Revenant” to Oscar voters, invited Epstein to screenings after he was released from prison in 2010, according to The New York Times.
“I was a kind of plugged-in girl around town who knew a lot of people,” Siegal told The New York Times. “And I think that’s what he wanted from me, a kind of social goings-on about New York.”
Siegal also planned a dinner party for Epstein and Prince Andrew at his Upper East Side home. The event was attended by Katie Couric, George Stephanopoulos, and Chelsea Handler. “The invitation was positioned as, ‘Do you want to have dinner with Prince Andrew?'” Ms. Siegal said. Many of the guests didn’t know who the host was or about his criminal history, The New York Times reported.
Netflix, FX and Annapurna Pictures severed their ties with Siegal in July after her connection to Epstein became public, Variety reported.
Epstein also told the Times that he spoke often with Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman.
Epstein said that MBS had visited Epstein’s Manhattan mansion many times and had a framed photo of the crown prince hanging on the wall, according to New York Times reporter James B. Stewart.
According to the New York Times, Epstein claimed to have advised Tesla CEO Elon Musk.
In an interview published in the New York Times on August 12, Epstein claimed that Elon Musk had sought him out to help manage the trouble he had gotten into with the SEC a year earlier, in August of 2018.
Epstein told reporter James B. Stewart that he had promised to keep his work for Tesla private because of his prior conviction. Epstein also warned that both Musk and Tesla would deny their connection to Epstein if it ever became public, the Times reported. In a statement to Business Insider, a spokesperson for Musk denied Epstein’s claims of having served as an adviser to the CEO.
Musk has confirmed crossing paths with Epstein at least once, Business Insider reported. Musk, Epstein, and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg were all guests at a dinner hosted by LinkedIn CEO Reid Hoffman sometime after he was released from jail in 2008.
MIT Media Lab director Joi Ito quietly worked with Epstein to secure anonymous donations, Vanity Fair reported.
Ito worked with other directors and staff at the MIT Media Lab to quietly receive large anonymous donations from Epstein after he was convicted of soliciting underage girls for prostitution, a The New Yorker exposé published on September 6 reports. The article contains emails sent between Ito and Epstein.
The emails show Epstein also worked as an in-between for other wealthy donors, including Bill Gates and Leon Black, and that Epstein had a role in determining what his donations would be used for at MIT, contradicting previous statements from Ito and the university.
Ito resigned from his posts at MIT, The New York Times Company, and the MacArthur Foundation on September 7, Business Insider reported.
Emails obtained and published by The New Yorker show former MIT Media Lab Director Joi Ito wrote that Gates was “directed by” Epstein to donate $2 million to the research lab in October 2014.
Gates also met with Epstein at least once in New York in 2013, and flew on one of his private planes to Palm Beach, Business Insider previously reported. “Bill attended a meeting in New York with others focused on philanthropy. While Epstein was present, he never provided services of any type to Bill,” a Gates spokesperson told Business Insider.
A spokesperson for Gates told Business Insider that “Epstein was introduced to Bill Gates as someone who was interested in helping grow philanthropy. Although Epstein pursued Bill Gates aggressively, any account of a business partnership or personal relationship between the two is simply not true. And any claim that Epstein directed any programmatic or personal grantmaking for Bill Gates is completely false.”
A New York Times investigation published in October found that Gates met with Epstein multiple times after Epstein’s conviction in 2011, including at least three meetings at Epstein’s Manhattan townhouse. Following the publication of that story, a spokesperson for Gates said Gates regretted the association, but Gates himself hadn’t publicly addressed it until November, Business Insider’s Aaron Holmes reported.
Gates said at The New York Times’ Dealbook Conference that he believed “billions of dollars” would come from his meetings with Jeffrey Epstein. “I made a mistake in judgment in thinking those discussions would go to global health,” Gates said. “That money never appeared.”
Reid Hoffman defended Ito after news of Epstein’s connections to the MIT Media Lab broke.
A “few years ago,” Epstein attended a dinner Hoffman hosted to honor an MIT neuroscientist, Vanity Fair reported in July. Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk were also in attendance. Both denied having had ongoing relationships with Epstein to Vanity Fair through spokespeople.
Hoffman also implicated himself in the coverup of Epstein’s donations to the MIT Media Lab. As pressure mounted on Media Lab director Joi Ito to resign, Hoffman defended Ito to author and fellow MIT Media Lab Disobedience Award jury member Anand Giridharadas in a private email, Giridharadas tweeted in September. “Hoffman basically hid behind bureaucracy and the old ‘ongoing investigation’ excuse,” Giridharadas said. “He said it would be complicated to release the correspondence publicly because other names might get dragged in. Someone should tell him about redaction.”….
A new lawsuit has also shined light on Epstein’s connection to former U.S. Virgin Islands Gov. John P. de Jongh while he was in office.
Gov. John P. de Jongh’s wife Cecile de Jongh served on the board of Epstein’s Financial Trust Co. for most of her husband’s time in office, Business Insider’s Becky Peterson and John Cook reported. Cecile de Jongh held the titles of secretary and vice president in her decade-long tenure with the company, even staying on board after Epstein was first charged with sexual assault in 2007.
Prosecutors in the US Virgin Islands now allege that Epstein was trafficking women and children through the US territory during that same time, as stated in a new lawsuit. The lawsuit describes one 15-year-old victim who was “forced into sexual acts with Epstein and others and then attempted to escape by swimming off the Little St. James island.”….
U.S. Virgin Islands Officials: Epstein Trafficked Girls On Private Island Until 2018
January 16, 2020 Bobby Allyn
Prosecutors in the U.S. Virgin Islands have unveiled a new lawsuit against the estate of Jeffrey Epstein alleging that over two decades he ran a conspiracy in which he transported young women and girls to his private Caribbean islands by helicopter and boat and then subjected them to sexual abuse.
Authorities claim Epstein’s sexual predation on the hideaway islands occurred as recently as 2018 and involved children as young as 11 years old. The suit alleges the activity was covered up by Epstein’s associates through a complex web of corporations.
In one instance, investigators say a 15-year-old who was forced into sexual acts with Epstein attempted to escape by swimming off one of Epstein’s private islands, Little St. James. Eventually, Epstein’s crew found her after assembling a search team and took her passport, prosecutors say.
Along with Epstein’s other privately owned island, Great St. James, authorities estimate that the islands are worth $86 million, just a slice of Epstein’s total assets, valued by the government to be more than $577 million.
The lawsuit filed by Attorney General Denise George seeks to confiscate all property used in the alleged criminal conspiracy, including his two private islands, and is asking for the recovery of millions of dollars from the Epstein estate. Epstein’s victims would be the beneficiaries of what authorities are hoping to seize, George said.
Addressing reporters on Wednesday, George said the civil suit detailed an “expansive scheme” that shows a “pattern and practice of human trafficking, sexual abuse and forced labor of young women.”….
The lawsuit filed this week by Virgin Islands prosecutors significantly widens the scope of his alleged sexual abuse to include conduct in 2018, the same year public scrutiny began to mount on the wealthy money manager in the wake of a Miami Herald investigation into his long history of alleged sexual abuse.
The lawsuit filed on Tuesday lays out how Epstein allegedly enticed and entrapped dozens of victims.
As the prosecutors tell it, his associates would locate young women and lure them with the promise of advancing a modeling career, pursuing educational opportunities or landing other work. Epstein would then arrange for the victims to visit his islands, flying them by helicopter or plane, or transporting them by boat.
“As recent as 2018, air traffic controllers and other airport personnel reported seeing Epstein leave his plane with young girls some of whom appeared to be between the age of 11 and 18 years old,” the complaint alleges.
Epstein, prosecutors say, paid for women to show up to his estates on the islands, often providing extra money if the victims brought along additional young women and girls….
“Once the girls and women were recruited, participants in the Epstein Enterprise enforced their sexual servitude of victims by coercion, including but not limited to, confiscating passports, controlling and extinguishing external communications, and threatening violence. They also made fraudulent statements to family members of victims, claiming victims were being well cared for and supported financially in college and other educational opportunities,” prosecutors allege…. https://www.wbur.org/npr/797011139/u-s-virgin-islands-officials-epstein-trafficked-girls-on-private-island-until-20
Survivor recounts confused, chaotic cult rite that killed 7
by JUAN ZAMORANO Associated Press Monday, January 20th 2020
SANTIAGO, Panama (AP) — A survivor of the cult ceremony that killed 7 people in a remote village in Panama says she was ordered to close her eyes, was beaten and knocked unconscious during the ritual.
The account Monday by Dina Blanco suggests the 14 surviving participants were helpless, bound, unconscious or sightless much of the time.
So the truth about what happened in the bizarre ceremony may only come out at the trials of the nine villagers charged with killing their neighbors in the hamlet of El Terrón last week.
Blanco said from her hospital bed in the nearest city, Santiago, that she had gone to previous prayer meetings at the improvised church in a long wooden shed before. But this time, the tone had changed, and she didn’t go willingly.
The cult, which had operated in the village for about three months, changed after a member had a vision, telling the lay preachers they had been “annointed” to exterminate unbelievers.
Blanco, 24, said a neighbor, Olivia, came to call her to the meeting of “the New Light of God” sect on Jan. 13, saying she would have to come “whether you like it or not.”….
Authorities say cult members used Bibles, cudgels and machetes to hit the congregants. Blanco still bears a broad bruise across her forehead from whatever hit her….
But the worst was yet to come. Late that night or in the early morning hours of the 14th, a sect member approached and told her that her daughter Inés had died….In fact, Inés, like Blanco’s pregnant neighbor and five of her children, had been murdered during the ritual — by some accounts, decapitated — and their naked bodies slung into hammocks and dumped in a freshly-dug common grave in the village cemetery.
Nine of the 10 lay preachers detained last week have been charged with murder and kidnapping.