April 24, 2024

JPMorgan saw Epstein as ‘Advisor’ to Google Founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page

As JPMorgan’s compliance officers tried to push Jeffrey Epstein as a client over the years for his sex crimes against children, bank executives apparently resisted because he brought in new business — including wealthy clients like Google founder Sergey Brin.

According to bombshell legal filings, Epstein introduced JPMorgan honcho Jes Staley to Google co-creators Brin and Larry Page by 2003. By 2011, the sex trafficker was considered the “largest revenue producer” for JPMorgan Private Bank and called “the advisor to the founders of Google,” according to the document filed by the US Virgin Islands government. Brin’s relationship with the Private Bank brought in more than $4 billion, one state memo.

Epstein also referred wealthy clients to JPMorgan including billionaires Glenn Dubin, Bill Gates, Leon Black, Mort Zuckerman and Thomas Pritzker, the USVI says. The legal filing states that other Epstein referrals included in the Gates secret were Boris Nikolic, former Harvard President Larry Summers, the Sultan of Dubai, Britain’s Prince Andrew, former Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak, current Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, UK politician Lord Peter Mandelson, and former White House adviser David Gergen. (A spokesperson for Gates told the Daily Beast, however, that the Microsoft tycoon was “never” a JPMorgan client.)

“Epstein was too big to fail,” the USVI notes in a memorandum filed Monday night, adding that JPMorgan continued to work with Epstein until he was arrested in 2019 for minors. Epstein was a JPMorgan client from about 1998 to 2013, when he was sidelined for years for questionable cash withdrawals and damning news reports of his sexual abuse.

The USVI argues in a lawsuit that JPMorgan acted as the financial arm of Epstein’s sex ring and instead of stopping the abuse, profited from his connections. The bank denies these allegations, saying that the USVI was “complicit” in Epstein’s crimes and that the territory’s officials had a “quid pro quo relationship” with him.

The latest court filings reiterate the USVI’s claims in its complaint: the bank also looked the other way — apparently in violation of its own internal policies — as Epstein withdrew millions and paid for questionable activities, even after his arrest.

In 2004, the documents note, JPMorgan opened “accounts and credit cards for two teenagers” who were “models in NYC and friends of Jeffrey Epstein.” Other transactions over the years included payments to “young women in Lithuania and Russia” and “Russian models,” credit cards for monthly travel for young women “through Paris, Europe and the US and US Virgin Islands,” “payments for women’s school tuition, hotel expenses and rent,” and a “revoked” credit card for an alleged recruiter who spoke to police.

One filing included a spreadsheet of payments to women, which ranged from a few hundred or a few thousand dollars up to more than $700,000. He also notes that in 2011 employees sent an email about Epstein’s “assistant or young woman he brought over from Praque. [sic],” noting that the girl had opened accounts with the Epstein-sponsored bank and that her debit transactions were “extremely happy [sic] compared to countless stories related to his escapades. Many salons, lingerie stores, drug stores ny palm beach and i st. Thomas (his residence). In addition to many videos like girls gone wild … surprisingly she was not subpoenaed.”

The latest revelations come three months before a trial scheduled in Manhattan federal court. Among other new allegations, Epstein admitted to Staley that he had sex with young women for money after his arrest in 2006 for abusing scores of underage girls in Florida, though he denied they were underage. Staley allegedly reported Epstein’s claims to her boss, Private Bank CEO Mary Erdoes at the time.

“At that time, JPMorgan could have left Epstein immediately,” the USVI says in a memorandum, adding that the bank’s former chairman Douglas “Sandy” Werner once called Epstein “one of the people I’m most associated with in New York” and encouraged Staley to contact him. This seems to have paid off. In 2004, the undisputed statement of facts notes, Brin became a client of San Francisco Private Bank JPMorgan. Staley then referred Brin to the bank’s managing director. Eventually, Brin and executives from his family office, Bayshore Global, met with Erdoes and JPMorgan bigwigs.

JPMorgan even opened accounts for “all the girls and women publicly alleged in 2006 to have been recruiters, accomplices or victims,” ​​including Ghislaine Maxwell, the British socialite convicted in Epstein’s scheme in 2021.

In October 2006, JPMorgan employees became aware of Epstein’s felony charges of solicitation of underage girls and held a “Rapid Response” meeting that investigated frequent cash withdrawals of up to $80,000 per month and $750,000 per year. “JPMorgan knew, during the period of the incidents investigated by Palm Beach police, and prior to Epstein’s plea, that it had processed nearly $1.75 million in cash withdrawals for Epstein,” the filing states.

About two years later—around the time Epstein was convicted in Florida—JPMorgan’s Anti-Money Laundering (AML) compliance group created a “Human Trafficking Overview,” which noted that “nearly two-thirds of women trafficked for prostitution worldwide come from Eastern Europe.” At the same time, JPMorgan knew that Epstein had transferred thousands of dollars to a woman he called a “Yugoslav sex slave.” The filing states that “JPMorgan also knew it made more than $1.2 million in payments to girls or women, many with Eastern European surnames, from Epstein’s accounts from 2003 to 2008.”

“Since 2008, some payments have been sent to high-risk locations, such as Belarus, Lithuania and Russia,” the document says.

One AML employee wrote in an email, “My fear is that all our goodwill will be on the HT [human trafficking] work, if anyone would still say we’re going to bank on Epstein, a well-known child to fall apart.”

The filing says that JPMorgan handled “$678,741.57 and $607,804.30 in payments” to two alleged co-conspirators from 2006 to 2013. And in 2006, JPMorgan “facilitated millions of dollars in payments to other ‘rock star’ Epstein lawyers that the Bank knew were working on victims in plants and that the Bank that they were working on victims in a sex plant.

JPMorgan also managed Epstein’s business with MC2 Model Management – the agency run by the late Jean-Luc Brunel – and “knowing that Epstein was accused of using the supposed modeling agency to traffic and abuse underage girls.”

Part of the bank’s reluctance to terminate Epstein, the filing says, was “personal.”

“Epstein was also a personal resource for Staley and Erdoes, two business executives not opposed to JPMorgan who were involved in the decision to retain Epstein at the Bank,” the memorandum states. On her behalf, Erdoes requested “personal assistance from Epstein to resolve a $600 million tax issue” for a person or entity that is redacted in the court document.

After the revelation of Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme in 2008, Erdoes asked Staley to get information from Epstein, writing in an email: “Glenn and I have been going back and forth all night. We have hundreds of clients…. Can you call JE to get the scoop on that?”

Meanwhile, the legal filings suggest that JPMorgan may have kept Epstein on as a client not only because he helped make important introductions to wealthy people, but also because he wanted to settle lawsuits against the bank, [including] one involved his investments at Bear Stearns.”

Despite the shocking allegations against Epstein – and his arrest for soliciting an underage girl – JPMorgan executives and their friends often joked about their star client’s predilections for young girls. In May 2008, when Erdoes told an email correspondent that an event she was attending was “a cheezy broker fest”, the person replied, “Epstein there with miley cyrus?” (At the time, Cyrus was 15 years old and a Disney Channel star.) And in 2012, the bank’s Chief Financial Officer of Assets and Wealth Bank wrote about a mansion he had recently visited: “It reminded me of JE’s house except it was tastier, and less nymphettes…” Erdoes only replied: “Wow.”

And in 2011, JPMorgan employees sent a concerned email about a Law and Order SVU episode and a subsequent story on Gawker that appeared to be “directly aimed at Epstein.” The episode focused on “‘billionaire pervert flying in underage girls for sex’ on his private jet.” His parties make the society page, he is friends with a ‘former president’ …”

However, JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon said he was unaware of Epstein’s close relationship with Staley, and that the bank could not have been aware that its key client was engaged in criminal activity. As the filing notes, he told CNN in 2023: “Looking back is a great gift.”

But Shaun O’Neill, a former FBI agent cited as an expert in USVI legal papers, said the agency relies on financial institutions to report trafficking and suggested JPMorgan was guilty of looking the other way. He said the red flags were “the enormous amount of cash being circulated,” “Epstein paid more than $3 million to women, many of whom had Eastern European surnames,” and Epstein’s loan to MC2.

Had the FBI been informed of this banking activity, O’Neill said, Epstein “would not have been able to continue his criminal activity from 2008 onward.”

“Epstein would have been charged federally at a much earlier date,” he said.

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