- REUTERS/Peter Nicholls
- Jeffrey Epstein, the disgraced financier charged with sex trafficking of teenage girls this month, had personal relationships with some of Wall Street’s most powerful executives, according to The New York Times.
- Epstein referred dozens of clients to James “Jes” Staley, a former JPMorgan executive who is now CEO of Barclays, provided personal tax services to Apollo Global Management founder Leon Black, and invested millions with Glenn Dubin, co-founder of Highbridge Capital Management.
- Epstein received a visit from Staley while he was serving time for soliciting prostitution from a minor, sat on the board of Black’s family foundation, and attended the Dubins’ Thanksgiving party in 2009.
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Jeffrey Epstein, the disgraced financier charged with sex trafficking of teenage girls this month, had close personal relationships with some of Wall Street’s most powerful executives, according to The New York Times.
Epstein “managed to affix himself to a handful of prominent Wall Street veterans,” the Times reported. He “funneled dozens of wealthy clients” to James “Jes” Staley, a former JPMorgan executive who is now CEO of Barclays, the newspaper said.
Epstein provided tax and estate-planning services to Leon Black, head of private-equity titan Apollo Global Management, despite lacking expertise in those fields. He also invested millions with Glenn Dubin, co-founder of Highbridge Capital Management, one of America’s largest hedge funds.
Epstein was a client of JPMorgan’s private bank, which was run by Staley in the late 1990s. He referred wealthy people to Staley, who converted dozens of them into clients. Epstein also connected Staley with Dubin, laying the groundwork for JPMorgan’s purchase of a majority stake in Highbridge in 2004, and Dubin and his co-founder becoming JPMorgan employees, the Times reported.
Staley and JPMorgan continued to work with Epstein for years after he pleaded guilty to soliciting prostitution from a minor – a period during which he oversaw an elaborate sex trafficking operation, according to prosecutors. For example, Staley visited Epstein at his Palm Beach office while he was serving his 13-month sentence, the Times reported. JPMorgan only cut ties with Epstein around 2013, when Staley left the bank and Epstein stopped being a client.
A Barclays spokesman referred Business Insider to the statement to the Times, where the bank said: “Mr. Staley has never engaged or paid fees to Mr. Epstein to advise him, or to provide professional services, either in his various roles at JPMorgan, or personally.” A JPMorgan spokesman declined to comment to Business Insider.
Apollo founder Black met with Epstein at his Manhattan townhouse, even after Epstein’s guilty plea. Black appointed Epstein to the board of his family foundation in 2000, where he served until 2012, according to public records. Epstein also invested in an environmental company along with Black and his four children, and an investment vehicle owned by Black contributed $10 million to one of Epstein’s charities, the Times said. The Times did not quote Black’s response to the allegations, and Black has not responded to previous attempts by Business Insider to reach him for comment.
As for Dubin, Epstein invested $10 million in Highbridge and withdrew $30 million a few years later. Dubin also advised Epstein to invest in a hedge fund run by Daniel Zwirn, which turned his $80 million into as much as $140 million at one point. Epstein also joined the Dubins at their Palm Beach home for Thanksgiving in 2009.
The “Dubins are horrified by the new allegations” against Epstein, a family spokeswoman told the Times, adding that Dubin’s business relationship with Epstein was “extremely limited” and the Dubins believed Epstein had rehabilitated himself and gave him a second chance.
While Epstein clearly had an extensive professional network, he falsely claimed ties to Tesla founder Elon Musk, former Treasury secretary Lawrence Summers, and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, the Times said. He also tried to win the business of Nicholas and Thomas Pritzker, two heirs to the Hyatt fortune, but was unsuccessful.
Epstein has plead not guilty to charges of sex trafficking.