Epstein affair New York judge reveals list of names

Epstein affair: New York judge reveals list of names

From Le Figaro with AFP

Published 2 hours ago, updated 2 hours ago

British Prince Andrew. ADRIAN DENNIS / AFP

The approximately 150 to 180 identities uncovered include former Democratic Presidents Bill Clinton and Republican Donald Trump, but there was no mention of any unlawful or reprehensible behavior on their part.

A New York judge began revealing the names of contacts, acquaintances, relatives, victims or alleged accomplices of American financier Jeffrey Epstein, who was accused of sex crimes but committed suicide in prison in 2019 before being sentenced. Among these approximately 150 to 180 identities – taken from thousands of pages of court documents released by the Manhattan federal judiciary – we find former Democratic Presidents Bill Clinton (1993-2001) and Republican Donald Trump (2017-2021) – but without mention either only the slightest illegal or reprehensible behavior on your part.

These legal revelations had been planned and anticipated since a Dec. 18 order by New York Judge Loretta Preska, a document that acted like a time bomb in America's financial capital when the courts released it on Dec. 19. This legal act is the result of a libel case against Jeffrey Epstein's ex-lover and accomplice, Ghislaine Maxwell – who has been serving a 20-year prison sentence since 2022 – and an American plaintiff against the couple, Virginia Giuffre.

Judge Preska listed 180 people in December – under numbers and the pseudonym “Doe” – and ordered that their identities be “completed” no later than “14 days” after December 18th and 19th, i.e. January 2nd or 3rd. must be disclosed. According to the British media Daily News, which revealed the existence of this list, Virginia Giuffre's libel lawsuit against Ghislaine Maxwell dates back to 2016 and was settled the following year. But the Miami Herald newspaper then took civil action to gain access to the file and investigate the Epstein network.

Clinton quoted dozens of times

The fallen financier, who circulated throughout New York, was arrested in 2019.

To justify the disclosure of names – including those of personalities already quoted in the press – the judiciary relies on the fact that certain people are easily identifiable in interviews published in recent years. In the case of Donald Trump, the New York billionaire is mentioned in the documents as an acquaintance of Esptein, but there is no mention of possible tortious or criminal behavior. As for Bill Clinton, who is much closer to the fallen financier and who traveled with him in the 2000s, his name is mentioned dozens of times, but again without clear evidence of illegal facts.

Ghislaine Maxwell and Jeffrey Epstein dated in the early 1990s before becoming professionals. The 61-year-old former British, French and American socialite was convicted in New York in December 2021 of sex trafficking of minors on behalf of Epstein and sentenced to 20 years in prison in June 2022. The man, who holds influential business and political positions in the United States and abroad, has himself been accused of sexually assaulting and raping young girls, but his suicide by hanging in a New York prison in August 2019 puts paid to public complaints against him .

Two deaths in prison

The influence of the Epstein network fueled a number of conspiracy theories after his death about an assassination attempt that was allegedly disguised as suicide. But New York forensic experts and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) concluded that he had actually killed himself and that this death “was not the result of a criminal act.” And last June, the Justice Department “confirmed the FBI’s conclusions regarding the absence of criminal activity in Epstein’s death.”

In another aspect of this international affair, in February 2022, Britain's Prince Andrew, friend of the Maxwell-Epstein couple, sealed an amicable settlement – worth $13 million, according to the Daily Telegraph – with 40-year-old Virginia Giuffre, who accused him of her was sexually abused in 2001 at the age of 17. The disgraced 63-year-old prince denies these allegations. Another close friend of Epstein, French modeling agent Jean-Luc Brunel, who was accused of raping minors, was found dead in a Paris prison in February 2022.

As for the international banks that had ties to Epstein, former Barclays boss James Staley was barred from banking last October, and JPMorgan and Deutsche Bank paid victims $290 million and $75 million, respectively, in the spring to settle their debts relations with the financier, who died at the age of 66.