NEW YORK: A third batch of court documents from a lawsuit connected to the late disgraced American financier and sex offender Jeffrey Epstein have been unsealed, just days after the first and second lot of bombshell files were made public which contained the names of noted celebrities including former US President Bill Clinton, Britain’s Prince Andrew and late pop icon Michael Jackson, according to media reports.
The files released on Friday included over 1,300 pages which follwed hundreds of pages of documents that were unsealed on Wednesday and Thursday, with more expected in the coming days, reports CNN.
The unsealed documents are part of a 2015 civil defamation suit brought by Virginia Roberts Giuffre, an American woman who claimed Epstein sexually abused her as a minor and that Ghislaine Maxwell, the late financier’s former girlfriend, aided in the abuse.
Maxwell is currently serving a 20-year jail term for crimes she committed with Epstein. The unsealing this week stems from a December 18, 2023 court order from the judge overseeing the lawsuit, a response to media’s legal efforts to publicly release the documents.
The documents in total, including material yet to be unsealed, are expected to include nearly 200 names, including some of Epstein’s accusers, prominent businesspeople, as well as politicians.
During a 2009 deposition unsealed on Friday, Juan Alessi — a former employee of Epstein — recounted a list of famous and influential people, including two former Presidents connected to the sex offender, CNN reported.
Alessi told attorneys that he had dinner with former US President Donald Trump in the kitchen of Epstein’s Palm Beach home and also met Clinton on Epstein’s plane.
He also recounted meeting Prince Andrew and his former Sarah Ferguson, at the Palm Beach home, according to the deposition.
Alessi further revealed that he met foreign beauty queens and an unnamed winner of a Nobel Prize in Chemistry, according to the deposition.
Both Trump and Clinton have not been accused of any crimes or wrongdoing related to Epstein.
Meanwhile, the documents unsealed on Friday also included famed magician and illusionist David Copperfield’s name as among the high-profile men identified as a friend to Epstein, reports CNN.
Copperfield’s name is mentioned during deposition testimony released on Friday of one of Epstein’s former employees. The magician was also named in a 2016 deposition released on Wednesday by a woman who massaged Epstein for years in the early 2000s.
Another name that appeared was that of disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, who is currently in jail after being convicted on sex crimes charges in New York and California.
The documents revealed that a handwritten note of a telephone message dated March 1, 2005, was left for Epstein of Weinstein attempting to call him that morning. This note was among the nearly 200 written phone messages included in the files.
The other big names that have surfaced in the previous unsealed files include late theoretical physicist Steven Hawking; Hollywood actors Leonardo DiCaprio, Cate Blanchett, Cameron Diaz, Bruce Willis and Kevin Spacey.
Epstein was indicted in 2019 on federal charges of operating a sex trafficking ring in which he allegedly sexually abused dozens of underage girls.
He died in jail in 2019 as he awaited federal sex-trafficking charges. His death was ruled to be a suicide by the New York medical examiner. (IANS)