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Epstein Told New York Times Columnist He Had Dirt on Famous Acquaintances

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Epstein Told New York Times Columnist He Had Dirt on Famous Acquaintances

2019-08-13 15:29:101 Oct 2018 01:53 AM EST

By Laura Tucker, Staff writer; Image: Jeffrey Epstein (Image source: Screenshot)


All the conspiracy theories surrounding Jeffrey Epstein's death revolve around one thing: he had a lot of famous friends and acquaintances. Some of them may have had reason to keep him quiet. Two of them are presidents, past and current. The obvious question is whether they committed the same crimes he did.


He was friends with former President Bill Clinton. Could he have been involved in the sex-trafficking ring that utilized young girls? That's unknown, but he did have his own sex scandal when he embarked on a physical relationship with White House intern Monica Lewinsky who was young, but she definitely was not a minor. 

And what about the current president? Donald Trump was known to be tight with Epstein as well. There's a video floating around of them ogling cheerleaders together. An anonymous woman filed a lawsuit against the two of them accusing them of rape. She was never believed. Trump and Epstein had a falling out about 15 years ago over a real estate deal. This has caused more speculation.


With Epstein headed to trial next year, any secrets he was holding could have come tumbling out. But maybe those secrets died with him. 

When his Manhattan home was raided last month, officers found videotapes that were labeled with young girls' names, and some had the names of the girls plus another person. Maybe the other person in the tapes is one or more of Epstein's famous friends. Some have suggested that's how he acquired his fortune, by blackmailing his famous acquaintances.


A New York Times journalist, James B. Stewart, has written an op-ed discussing the billionaire's disclosure to him, that he had dirt on powerful people. 

Stewart visited Epstein on August 16 last year. He admits one of his first thoughts on hearing of his interview subject's suicide was that "many prominent men and at least a few women must be breathing sighs of relief that whatever Mr. Epstein knew, he has taken it with him."


Epstein acknowledged his crimes to Stewart, but that was just the current charges for those crimes, the ones he had already done time for. He'd accepted a plea deal for soliciting prostitution from underage girls. Only this year was he charged with running a sex-trafficking ring that involved young girls. 

Stewart notes Epstein was "unapologetic" and said his notoriety was why people confided their own secrets to him, although he found the others' secrets to be innocuous compared to his own.


But that's not what this interview was about. It was about Epstein's conversation with Tesla CEO and founder Elon Musk who was being investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission.  

It was hard to ignore Epstein's life with young women, however, as when Stewart arrived, a young woman ("late teens or perhaps 20") with what seemed like an Eastern European accent, opened the door and led him up to a room where Epstein later entered. He remembers him as "undeniably charismatic."


The room had a wall covered with framed pictures. One was who he explained was "M.B.S.," meaning Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. He had visited Epstein many times, according to the financier. 

In another room there was a table covered with photographs. One was Epstein with Clinton and another was him with Woody Allen. Stewart found it odd that he was displaying photos of his friends who'd also been caught in sex scandals.


He told the writer at one point that having sex with teenage girls shouldn't be against the law, that it was a culture aberration, and at times in history it was accepted. He compared it to homosexuality that at one time was a crime and still is in some countries. 

People in Silicon Valley were discussed at one point, with Epstein saying that while they have a reputation for being geeky workaholics, they're actually hedonistic and use drugs regularly. He'd seen prominent figures in the tech world taking drugs and arranging for sex.


He felt at the end that Epstein was only embellishing his connection to Musk and Tesla to make himself look more important and get more attention. 

After the interview, Epstein invited him to dinner with Woody Allen, but Stewart said he'd be out of town. A few weeks later he asked him to go to dinner with author Michael Wolff, who wrote a couple scathing books about the Trump presidency, and Steve Bannon, Trump's former adviser. He again declined


Earlier this year Epstein asked Stewart to write his biography, but he knew he'd have no choice but to listen to his story, so he told him he was busy with another book. 

But now he's wondering what Epstein would have told him and if he would have possibly divulged the secrets of his famous acquaintances.

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