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Business News/ News / World/  US judge begins to unseal Jeffrey Epstein's contacts
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US judge begins to unseal Jeffrey Epstein's contacts

A judge has ordered the disclosure of the identities of individuals associated with Jeffrey Epstein, the late financier accused of sex crimes. First set of documents, comprising 40 records, has been unsealed, with the complete collection expected to reveal influential figures connected to the case.

(FILES) This undated trial evidence image obtained December 8, 2021, from the US District Court for the Southern District of New York shows British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell and US financier Jeffrey Epstein. A New York judge began to unseal January 3, the identities of people linked in court documents to Jeffrey Epstein, the US financier who killed himself in 2019 as he awaited trial for sex crimes. The initial tranche includes 40 previously undisclosed documents with almost 1,000 pages of depositions and statements, with the final library of documents expected to name prominent individuals. (Photo by Handout / US District Court for the Southern District of New York / AFP) (AFP)Premium
(FILES) This undated trial evidence image obtained December 8, 2021, from the US District Court for the Southern District of New York shows British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell and US financier Jeffrey Epstein. A New York judge began to unseal January 3, the identities of people linked in court documents to Jeffrey Epstein, the US financier who killed himself in 2019 as he awaited trial for sex crimes. The initial tranche includes 40 previously undisclosed documents with almost 1,000 pages of depositions and statements, with the final library of documents expected to name prominent individuals. (Photo by Handout / US District Court for the Southern District of New York / AFP) (AFP)

A New York judge on Wednesday started the process of revealing the identities of individuals associated with Jeffrey Epstein, the American financier who died by suicide in 2019 while awaiting trial for sex crimes.

As reported by AFP, the first set of documents, consisting of 40 previously undisclosed records comprising nearly 1,000 pages of depositions and statements, has been unsealed.

The complete collection of documents is anticipated to disclose the names of influential figures connected to the case.

The report said that the individuals to be revealed include many Epstein associates who were previously referred to as John or Jane Does in a lawsuit filed against Ghislaine Maxwell, Epstein's former mistress.

Also Read: Bill Clinton named as ‘Doe 36’ in confidential court papers for Jeffrey Epstein’s sexual abuse case

It's important to note that the disclosure carries no accusations of involvement in Epstein's crimes. The list of names is expected to feature both notable figures and individuals who have openly discussed their connections to Epstein in media interviews, as specified in the order mandating the disclosure of their identities.

The disclosure of identities is a component of a defamation case involving Ghislaine Maxwell, Epstein's former mistress, who was sentenced to 20 years in prison in 2022, and Virginia Giuffre, a plaintiff against both Maxwell and Epstein, AFP reported.

In a recent development, a judge detailed approximately 180 cases, using pseudonyms, and mandated that their identities be disclosed within 14 days of the order's issuance, specifically in the early days of January.

Also Read: Bill Gates was blackmailed by Jeffrey Epstein for his affair with a 20-yr-old Russian bridge player

Some individuals have objected to the disclosure of their identities in the case.

AFP reported that lawyers for one individual, “Doe 107", wrote to the judge in the case arguing they could face victimization in their home country, and requested time to submit grounds for their name to remain sealed.

Accomplices in sex crimes

AFP reported citing British media, that Virginia Giuffre's defamation lawsuit against 62-year-old Ghislaine Maxwell traces back to 2016 and was resolved the following year.

Subsequently, the Miami Herald pursued legal action to obtain the file, aiming to probe into the Epstein network. In 2019, a portion of the case documents was made public just days before Epstein, awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges, died by suicide in prison.

Also Read: 'Negligence and misconduct’ by jail staff led to Jeffrey Epstein’s suicide

During the early 1990s, Maxwell and Epstein were initially a romantic couple before transitioning into professional collaborators, engaging in sex crimes together for nearly three decades.

Jeffrey Epstein, a well-connected financier with influence both in the United States and internationally, faced allegations of sexually assaulting young girls. However, his prosecution came to a halt with his suicide by hanging in a New York prison in August 2019.

Over the years, fabricated lists and manipulated photos of Epstein have circulated in conspiratorial corners of the internet, contributing to speculation about his potential associates. The forthcoming disclosure of names from court documents has reignited this speculative fervor.

Also Read: JPMorgan agrees to $290 million settlement with Jeffrey Epstein victims in lawsuit

Comedian Jimmy Kimmel issued a legal threat against Aaron Rodgers, the American football star, in response to Rodgers suggesting that Kimmel might be on a certain list. This unfounded accusation was repeated on various platforms, including X, where numerous posts also implicated actor Tom Hanks in the speculation.

(With inputs from AFP)

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Published: 04 Jan 2024, 06:18 AM IST
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