Jeffrey Epstein bombshell files unsealed: Bill Clinton, Michael Jackson, Prince Andrew named

A US court on Wednesday released a new batch of documents related to Jeffrey Epstein, a millionaire and jet-setting financier who killed himself in 2019 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges. Former US President Bill Clinton, pop icon Michael Jackson and Britain’s Prince Andrew were among a few of those named in the documents.

Epstein was also known for associating with celebrities, politicians, billionaires and academic stars.

According to the Associated Press, nearly 40 documents made public largely contained material that had been released previously, or exhaustively had been covered. More such documents are expected to be released in the coming days.

The records also included transcripts of interviews with some of Epstein’s victims, reiterating the fact that the offender surrounded himself with famous and powerful figures, including a few who have also been accused of misconduct.

The newly released documents also mentioned Epstein’s past friendship with Bill Clinton and Prince Andrew. While no wrongdoings were proved against Clinton, Andrew had previously settled a lawsuit accusing him of having sex with a 17-year-old girl who travelled with Epstein.

The unsealed documents were also related to a lawsuit filed in 2015 by one of Epstein’s victims, Virginia Roberts Giuffre. She is one of the dozens of women who sued Epstein, accusing him of harassing them at his homes in Florida, New York, the US Virgin Islands and New Mexico.

Virginia Giuffre, one of Epstein’s victims in sex assault (Credits: AP)

A suit was also filed against Epstein’s former girlfriend, Ghislaine Maxwell, who was convicted in 2021 on charges of helping recruit Epstein’s victims and is serving a 20-year prison term.

Giuffre’s lawsuit against Maxwell was settled in 2017, but the court had kept some court documents blacked out or sealed because of concerns about the privacy rights of Epstein’s victims and other people whose names had come up during the legal battle.

According to Johanna Sjoberg, one of Epstein’s accusers, she once met Michael Jackson at Epstein’s Palm Beach, Florida, home, but said nothing untoward happened with the late pop icon, the documents revealed.

Wednesday’s records also included court memos in which lawyers for Giuffre complained that some of the women who had worked for Epstein were proving difficult to serve with subpoenas, as was Epstein himself.

Epstein’s former girlfriend chaffed on being asked if she ever arranged for Giuffre or other women to have sexual encounters with Prince Andrew, or purchased sex toys or revealing outfits, or saw young, topless women at Epstein’s home.

However, one of Epstein’s domestic staff said in a deposition that he felt uncomfortable with the number of young women showing up at the house, and felt threatened by Maxwell to stay quiet after he left his job, the document stated.

Other documents included legal arguments over whether Giuffre should be allowed more time to depose potential witnesses, including Clinton.

Giuffre never alleged Clinton was involved in illegal behavior, but her attorneys said the former President was a “key person who can provide information about his close relationship” with Maxwell and Epstein.

Meanwhile, Maxwell’s attorneys countered that Clinton’s testimony was not relevant and that Giuffre’s attorneys didn’t diligently try to subpoena him to testify.

The records also included the depositions of several of Epstein’s victims, many of whom have told their stories publicly previously.

Besides the mention of Michael Jackson, Sjoberg’s May 2016 deposition also shed new light on an April 2001 trip to New York in which she said Prince Andrew touched her breast while they posed for a photo at Epstein’s Manhattan townhouse.

In the testimony, some of which appeared as excerpts in previous court filings, Sjoberg said she and Giuffre had flown with Epstein to New York on his private jet. Maxwell and Prince Andrew met them there, she said.

At one point, she testified, Maxwell called her to an upstairs closet where they pulled out a puppet of Prince Andrew.

On the way to New York, Sjoberg testified, Epstein’s jet was diverted to Atlantic City, New Jersey, where they spent a few hours at one of former US President Donald Trump’s casinos, because of bad weather.

In her deposition, Giuffre said that at the age of 17, she was lured away from a job as a spa attendant at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club to become a “masseuse” for Epstein — a job that involved performing sexual acts.

Sjoberg, in her testimony, said she was never asked to give Trump a massage.

Sjoberg also testified that though she never met Clinton, Epstein once remarked to her that “Clinton likes them young,” a remark she took as a reference to young women or girls.

The records released Wednesday included many references to Jean-Luc Brunel, a French modelling agent close to Epstein who was awaiting trial on charges that he raped underage girls when he killed himself in a Paris jail in 2022. Giuffre was among the women who had accused Brunel of sexual abuse.

Clinton’s name also came up because Guiffre was questioned by Maxwell’s lawyers about inaccuracies in newspaper reports about her time with Epstein, including a story quoting her as saying she had ridden in a helicopter with Clinton and flirted with Trump.

Giuffre said neither of those things happened.

Published By:

Vani Mehrotra

Published On:

Jan 4, 2024

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