Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

For The Record  

FTR #318 Kidding Around: Child Molestation and Pedophilia in the GOP

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This program examines allegations presented in a book by a very conservative Nebraska state senator concerning organized pedophile rings within the ranks of the Republican party. These alleged activities overlap not only the administration of the elder George Bush but some of the activities involved in the Iran-Contra scandal as well.

1. The program begins with discussion of the arrest of a GOP mayor for allegedly luring a minor for sex. As we shall see, this sort of thing is not as unusual as one might suppose within the ranks of the GOP. The allegations contained in The Franklin Cover-Up put the concept of “family values”—much ballyhooed by the GOP, in a dramatically different light.

“Mayor Philip A. Giordano of Waterbury, who lost a long-shot bid last year to unseat Senator Joseph I. Lieberman and whose city has been teetering on the edge of bankruptcy, was arrested in New Haven this morning by federal agents in New Haven and accused of luring a minor for sex. . . . At a news conference at the office of the United States attorney for Connecticut in New Haven, officials said Mr. Giordano had engaged in ‘inappropriate sex’ with ‘children,’ though they did not state the number, age or sex of the victims. The special agent in charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Connecticut, Michael J. Wolf, said, ‘The public expects and deserves utmost honesty, integrity and strong moral fiber from those who serve on their behalf.’ He called Mr. Giordano’s conduct ‘disgraceful.’”

(“Connecticut Mayor Is Arrested by U.S. Agents in Child Sex Case” by David M. Herszenhorn; The New York Times; 7/27/2001; p. A19.)

2. According to the conservative Nebraska state legislator John W. De Camp (a decorated Vietnam veteran), the sort of activities that Giordano was accused of engaging in are, to a certain extent, representative of how elements of the GOP get their kicks. While probing the collapse of a Nebraska financial institution, investigators came upon some interesting operations allegedly supervised by a prominent Nebraska GOP bigwig, Larry King (not to be confused with the syndicated talk show host.) Mr. Emory notes that the second edition of the book contains some material which is easily discredited—due, apparently, to De Camp’s having been overly trusting of some of the information being disseminated by the less responsible elements of the militia milieu.

(The Franklin Cover-Up; by John W. De Camp; Copyright 1992 by AWT, Incorporated; ISBN 0-9632158-0-9.)

3. De Camp describes Larry King’s political and “extracurricular” activities.

“When Larry King traveled the political circuit, he evidently had two agendas. To the public, he was the rising GOP star with the resonant baritone voice. Something else went on behind closed doors.”

(Ibid.; p. 166.)

4. What were the alleged clandestine activities that De Camp was referring to?

“At the Dallas [GOP] convention in 1984, King threw his splashy party at Southfork Ranch, remembered by me and many other delegates as an unparalleled extravaganza. According to several victim-witnesses, he also arranged some private events during the convention. They recall being flown to Dallas, to be sexually used by convention-goers. Gary Caradori mapped the recollections of the Webb foster children in his notes of February 1990: ‘During this visit [the children’s aunt] Marcy informed [social worker] Joanie that [the youngest Patterson Webb sister] Kendra had told her she had been transported around the country several times, she thought to Texas and Louisiana. Marcy remembered Texas in particular, and a Republican Convention because one of the children, possibly Kendra, had a book of matches from Texas and that is how the children had known where they were at. Joanie stated she remembered that the children had been exploited sexually in Texas, and she indicated that it was [the] feeling this activity had been occurring for several years.’”

(Ibid.; p. 167.)

5. De Camp continues with his allegations concerning King.

“I was later to learn from Paul Bonacci, that he was also at the famed Southfork party. He described it for me in exact detail, some seven years after the party took place. He had been here for the purpose of providing sexual favors for people Larry King wanted to accommodate, satisfy, or compromise. Paul said he was one of a troop of teenaged boys and girls, whom King had shipped to Dallas for his purposes.”

(Ibid.; p. 167.)

6.

“I have talked to Paul repeatedly about this party. I have listened to his description. Only by having been there, could someone describe the setting the way Paul did to me. Because I was there myself for the party, I am certain that Paul Bonacci was there and did not invent his story or his description of the party. This was, it happens, just one of Paul’s leads into matters surrounding Larry King and Franklin that I could personally check out and know the boy was telling the truth. Not because somebody told me he was telling the truth. Not because somebody said he passed a lie detector test on the subject. But because I was there and saw a part of it, and saw the exact same things this boy did.”

(Idem.)

7. More about King’s social activities and a Republican convention, this one in New Orleans in 1988.

“Again in 1988, attendance at Larry King’s party was virtually mandatory for any true Nebraska Republican attending the Republican National Convention, held this time in New Orleans. Most of the Nebraska delegation was transported to the party by bus. The theme of the festivities was Mardi Gras.”

(Idem.)

8. De Camp alleges that the “fun and games” that King was arranging at the New Orleans convention were similar to the activities at the 1984 Dallas convention.

“King’s parties were designed to bring in everybody, from the innocent to the top-ranking businessmen and politicians. I personally attended the two largest parties he ever threw, as did many Republican officials. As a guest at the party, you would not know from the outer glitter, what sordid activity was going on behind the scenes. I am sure that was the character of many of Larry King’s parties, particularly the political events. Outwardly, they had the appearance of legitimacy, with prominent people in attendance, from mayors to presidents, from businessmen to congressmen. So, when people say to me, Well, I was at one of Larry King’s parties and I did not see any of this sex or drug or pedophilia stuff,’ I understand that they may be speaking with honesty and accuracy. As to what really went on, I believe they are wrong.”

(Ibid.; p. 168.)

9. De Camp discusses some other interesting manifestations of King/GOP “family values.”

“King acquired contacts in Washington’s homosexual prostitution scene, one of whom was the late Craig Spence. A lobbyist and political operative, Spence maintained a call boy ring that catered to the political elite and, unlike most D.C. call boy rings, offered children to its clients.”

(Ibid.; p. 169.)

10. More about the aforementioned Craig Spence.

“Spence’s activities made banner headlines in the Washington Times on June 29, 1989: ‘Homosexual prostitution inquiry ensnares VIP’s with Reagan, Bush.’ Spence’s access was so good, that he could arrange nighttime tours of the White House for his clients. The Times added on August 9, 1989, that Spence ‘hinted the tours were arranged by ‘top level’ persons, including Donald Gregg, national security advisor to Vice President Bush. . . .” Spence, according to friends, was also carrying out homosexual blackmail operations for the CIA.”

(Idem.)

11. De Camp alleges that Larry King’s activities were discovered through an investigation into Spence’s operations.

“According to a Washington, D.C. investigative journalist who researched the Spence ring, ‘The way we discovered Larry King and this Nebraska-based call boy ring, was by looking through the credit card chits of Spence’s ring, where we found King’s name.’ Another investigator, with personal knowledge of the call-boy rings operating in Washington, put it this way: ‘Larry King and Craig Spence were business partners. Look at two companies, ‘Dream Boys’ and ‘Man to Man’, both of which operated under another service, ‘Bodies by God.’”

(Idem.)

12. Apparently, the investigation of Spence’s activities was followed by a serious downturn in Spence’s health. De Camp alleges that both Spence and King were involved with the Iran-Contra imbroglio.

“When Craig Spence turned up dead—a suicide, police were quick to say—in a Boston hotel room, in November 1989, it was the latest in the long string of deaths of persons linked to Iran-Contra covert operations and funding. There is evidence that Larry King had Washington business in that area as well. ‘In the 6 ½ months since federal authorities closed Franklin, rumors have persisted that money from the credit union somehow found its way to the Nicaraguan contra rebels,’ said a World-Herald article on May 21, 1989.”

(Idem.)

13.

“The first World-Herald reporter on the Franklin case, James Allen Flanery, apparently found more than rumors about the money-laundering. In late 1988, Flanery called Carol Stitt to discuss what he had learned. Their conversation is related in a February 21, 1989 report by Jerry Lowe: ‘Carol’s notes also have a reference to Larry King running guns and money into Nicaragua . . . . Carol’s notes on Dec. 21, 1988 reflect that she talked with Flanery and in addition to the Nicaraguan info, he was also now talking about CIA involvement and provided info that yesterday (Dec. 20) the FBI quit cooperating with him . . . . Carol’s notes next jump to Feb.6, 1989, where she talked on the phone with Flanery and Flanery told her that the appropriate people didn’t want to believe any of this and who was ever going to prosecute it. Apparently Flanery told Carol he was close to resigning and the reasons he didn’t think anyone wanted to do anything was because of the possibility of a White House connection, the connections to a number of big people, and he fact that the investigators wanted badly to confine this all to the money. Also many white people made Larry King [who was African-American], he did not happen on his own.’”

(Ibid.; p. 170.)

“Apparently Flanery told Carol he was uncomfortable on the phone, his editor was distressed and things he had written were continually edited, he wanted to his byline off the article printed the 9th among other things . . . Flanery also expressed concern to Carol that if he didn’t get off this story he worried about being compromised.” Soon Flanery was off the Franklin case, which continued for months to be the major news lead in Nebraska, and went to the University of Kansas on Sabbatical. When he returned a year later, Flanery no longer wrote. about Franklin.”

(Idem.)

14. The subject of the Iran-Contra scandal will be revisited later in the discussion. One should note that the views expressed in what follows are those of the speakers and are not to be misconstrued as homophobia. Rather, the self-righteous chest-beating on the part of the GOP, their embrace of the Christian Right and their excoriation of gays and cynical manipulation of homophobia in order to advance the Republican electoral agenda are quite noteworthy in this context. (Writer David Brock noted the gay skeletons in the Republican Party when he was attacked for his own gayness following the publication of his book The Seduction of Hillary Clinton.) De Camp notes the reaction of an official of the Franklin National Credit Union to his investigation. Again, the views expressed here are De Camp’s.

“Squelching interest in an Iran-Contra connection to Fanklin was also a topic of the hour, in that phone call I received from National Credit Union administration official Fenner, back in the early months of the legislative Franklin probe. ‘Why would the head of the NCUA be wanting to talk to me?’ I wondered out loud, when my secretary said that Fenner was on the line. The man on the other end of the phone said he knew I was a close friend of former CIA head Bill Colby, and that I also was Senator Loran Schmit’s personal attorney. He quickly came to his point.”

(Ibid.; pp. 170-171.)

15. De Camp discusses his relationship with former CIA chief William Colby and discussion of the looting of Franklin in order to finance the Contras.

“‘I know there are a lot rumors, that Franklin was being used as a front for laundering money for the Contras and that a lot of the money that is missing from Franklin actually went to finance the Contras.’ I acknowledged that I had heard such talk, and told, him, ‘I myself am one of those who wonder, if that is not a real possibility, in light of the way things have been shaking out on the Contra scandal.’ Fenner then gave me a flood of details on the secret Franklin accounts, and where the missing money supposedly went. No destinations linked with Iran-Contra were mentioned.”

(Idem.)

16. Note that the views that follow are those of the speakers.

“‘So tell me,’ I said, ‘just what is at the bottom of it? If it is not laundered money involved in the Iran-Contra scandal, what the blazes is it? And how could Larry King get away with this, without you or somebody else knowing what was going on? Looks to me as if he had to have one heck of a lot powerful political protection at the highest levels.’ ‘Homosexuals,’ Fenner said, ‘Franklin financed the biggest group of homosexuals any state has ever seen. A lot of awfully powerful and prominent personalities involved. But probably not anything you can do anything about.’”

(Idem.)

17. Other sources have noted the role of sexual blackmail operations in the context of power politics and the world of covert operations. One of the most powerful alleged players on this stage is Robert Keith Gray.

“The career of another Nebraskan, Robert Keith Gray, illuminates this milieu and why it would be so congenial to a person like Larry King. Gray is the chairman and CEO of Hill and Knowlton, one of the two biggest public relations firms in the world, with such blue-chip clients as AT&T, IBM, Xerox, and DuPont. CBS-TV’s 60 Minutes has called Hill and Knowlton ‘by far, the biggest, most influential PR firm in Washington,’ adding that ‘critics accuse them of being an unelected shadow government.’ Gray first came to Washington D.C. during the Eisenhower Administration, as Ike’s appointments secretary and then secretary of the cabinet. He went to Hill and Knowlton in 1961. Gray played a role in Ronald Reagan’s 1976 presidential campaign and, in 1980, he was deputy director of communications. Reporting directly to Bill Casey.”

(Ibid.; p. 178.)

18.

“On the strength of his connections in the new administration, he left Hill and Knowlton to set up his own PR firm. Within a year, Gray and Company secured over $9 million in billings from a clientele including Warner Communications, NBC, GTE, Mutual of Omaha, the American Trucking Association, the American Iron and Steel Institute, and the governments of Canada and Turkey. In 1986, Hill and Knowlton bought out Gray and Co.; Gray became chairman and CEO of Hill and Knowlton. Said to be Harold Andersen’s ‘closest friend in Washington,’ Gray is also reportedly a specialist in homosexual blackmail operations for the CIA.”

(Idem.)

19. The relationship between Gray and the Wilson, Terpil operations detailed in RFA#4.

“During the Watergate era, Robert Keith Gray served on the board of Consultants International, founded by CIA agent Edwin Wilson. When Wilson and fellow agent Frank Terpil got caught running guns abroad, Gray tried to deny his connection with Wilson. ‘Yet ten years before,’ according to Peter Maas’ book Manhunt, ‘in a top secret Navy review of Wilson’s intelligence career, Gray described Wilson as a person of ‘unqualified trust,’ with whom he’d been in contact ‘professionally two or three times a month’ since 1963.’”

(Ibid.; p. 179.)

20. De Camp relates Jim Hougan’s account of another aspect of Gray’s alleged activities. (Note that Tongsun Park—a key figure in the Koreagate scandal—was closely associated with the Moon organization, which also has strong connections to the Bush administration.

“Author Jim Hougan in Secret Agenda, reported another aspect of Wilson’s work for the CIA: ‘According to fugitive ex-CIA officer Frank Terpil, CIA-directed sexual blackmailing operations were intensive in Washington at about the time of the Watergate scandal. One of those operations, Terpil claims, was run by his former partner, Ed Wilson. Wilson’s base of operations for arranging trysts for the politically powerful was, Terpil says, Korean agent Ton Sun Park’s George Town Club. In a letter to the author, Terpil explained that ‘Historically, one of Wilson’s Agency jobs was to subvert members of both houses [of Congress] by any means necessary. . . .Certain people could be easily coerced by living out their sexual fantasies in the flesh. . . .A remembrance of these occasions [was] permanently recorded via selected cameras. . . . The technicians in charge of filming. . .[were] TSD [Technical Services Division of the CIA] The unwitting porno stars advanced in their political careers, some of [whom] may still be in office.’”

(Idem.)

21. De Camp alleges that the operations in which Wilson, Terpil and Gray allegedly engaged in were an extension of the activities of former Joseph McCarthy aide Roy Cohn.

“Gray’s associate Wilson was apparently continuing the work of a reported collaborator of Gray from the 1950’s—McCarthy committee counsel Roy Cohn, now dead of AIDS. According to the former head of the vice squad for one of America’s biggest cities, ‘Cohn’s job was to run the little boys. Say you had an admiral, a general, a congressman, who did not want to go along with the program. Cohn’s job was to set them up, then they would go along. Cohn told me that himself.’ The first president of Tong Sun Park’s George Town Club, where Wilson’s sexual blackmail operations were reportedly run, was Robert Keith Gray.”

(Ibid.; pp. 179-180.)

22. Gray’s activities overlap those activities of the Iran-Contra scandal and also the milieu of the Bush family. The Catholic youth home Covenant House was implicated in organized child molestation and also had ties to the Bushes.

“Gray employee Rob Owen set up a private group to solicit funds for the Contras. Owen was called before Congress, to testify on how he delivered bags of cash to the Contras. In February of 1989, Hill and Knowlton’s Charles Perkins rushed to New York for a fraction of the firm’s usual fee, to help with public relations for Covenant House. The youth organization’s director, Father Bruce Ritter, was alleged to have molested youth who took refuge with him.”

(Ibid.; p. 180.)

23.

“Lauded by the Reagan and Bush Administrations as a showcase for the privatization of social service, Covenant House had expanded into Guatemala as a gateway to South America. According to intelligence community sources, the purpose was procurement of children from South America for exploitation in a pedophile ring. The flagship Guatemalan mission of Covenant House was launched by a former business partner of Nicaraguan dictator Anastasio Somoza–Roberto Alejos Arzu–who had ties to the CIA, according to the Village Voice of Feb. 20, 1990. The Voice quoted Jean-Marie Simon, author of Guatemala: Eternal Spring, Eternal Tyranny: ‘It’s like having Idi Amin on the board of Amnesty International.’”

(Idem.)

24.

“A top source of money for Covenant House has been Robert Macauley, founder of Americares, a service organization implicated in channeling funds to the Contras. A close friend of the Bush family since Connecticut, Andover and Yale days, Macauley has George Bush’s brother Prescott on the Americares’ board. Father Ritter was a vice president of Americares, at least until he had to resign from Covenant House in February 1989, and spent weekends at Macauley’s estate in Connecticut, according to a former Covenant House employee. As in New York, also in Nebraska an institution that sheltered child abuse could count on protection from Washington. The attitude of federal agencies towards Larry King’s Franklin Credit Union fits the mold.”

(Ibid.; pp. 180-181.)

25. More of De Camp’s allegations concerning Larry King imply connections between King, the intelligence community and George Bush (the Elder.)

“If King was involved with CIA money laundering, that jibes with a report from a member of Concerned Parents: ‘I heard from two different black people in North Omaha that King used to send limousines down to Offutt Air Base [home of the Strategic Air Command] to pick up CIA personnel for parties.’ The sometimes expansive Larry King used to talk fondly about his friends. In a Sept. 7, 1988 interview with the Metropolitan, King said, ‘I know some of the people I admire aren’t very popular. Ed Meese. The late Bill Casey of the CIA. And I love former Chief Justice Burger. Those are the people I really like to talk to. Bill Casey. . . . I just thought so very highly of him.’”

(Ibid.; p. 175.)

26.

“Larry King adored Bill Casey, but what about one of Casey’s predecessors at Central Intelligence—George Bush? Ever since July 23, 1989, when the lead editorial in the World-Herald said that ‘one child . . . is said to believe that she saw George Bush at one of King’s Parties,’ King’s connection with Bush has been a frequently asked question about the Franklin case. Anxiety on this account has run especially high in Omaha’s black community, where in December 1990, one young lady stood up at a public meeting and proclaimed, ‘I think George Bush is involved in this child abuse case, and that is why all these people have been dying.’”

(Idem.)

27. According to De Camp, Bush’s name surfaced in the beginning of the investigation into the Franklin/pedophilia connection.

“Inside investigators of Franklin, and the Webb case before it, know that Bush’s name came up at the very beginning, and it came up more than once. The July 1989 World-Herald column, in an attempt to discredit this and other victim-witness testimony, attributed the mention of Bush to a person ‘under psychiatric care,’ meaning Loretta Smith. In reality, the report was from Nelly Patterson Webb.”

(Idem.)

28.

“Nelly first brought up Bush in 1986, when she told Julie Walters about the sex parties she was flown to in Washington and Chicago. She saw Bush at two of these parties, she said, one in each city. Nelly also told Walters that one frequent party-goer with King was a boy named ‘Brent,” the one who was ‘flown to another city somewhere’ after a falling out with King. Walters did not have the resources to cross-check this information with the life of Brandt Thomas, the Boys Town resident who had moved in with Larry King. Franklin credit union files contained a letter signed by King, in his capacity as Youth Affairs Committee advisor for the National Black Republican Council, listing Thomas as one of two national contact people for NBRC campus chapters.”

(Ibid.; p. 176.)

29.

“Three years later, with an investigation of abuse by King and the Webbs finally under way, Nelly was interviewed again. Speaking to Franklin committee Jerry Lowe, she repeated her account of the Chicago party, and said that Bush and two men he arrived with appeared to have left the affair with a young black man she called ‘Brandt.’ Of course, as I have made clear, mere attendance by a politician, be he the President or any other office-holder, at a Larry King party does not mean that person knew of or was involved in Larry King’s sordid activities. Almost every top Nebraska Republican, including myself, attended the two largest parties King ever hosted, the ones at the Republican national conventions in 1984 and 1988.”

(Idem.)

30. De Camp relates another alleged connection between Bush and the Larry King/pedophilia connections.

“Bush’s name surfaced again in Lowe’s May 1989 review of reports by Thomas Vlahoulis from the state attorney general’s office: ‘Sorenson told Vlahoulis that both Kimberly and Nelly brought up the name of George Bush and indicated that they had both met him. . . .’ On June 10, 1989, Lowe received a letter from a citizen: ‘There is a psychologist in Omaha who used to work for the CIA. In response to a direct question by an Omaha psychiatrist regarding George Bush’s private life, this psychologist reported hearing rumors when Bush was head of the CIA, that correspond directly with one of the inferences made by Nelly Webb, and commented to the psychiatrist, ‘But how do you investigate your boss?’”

(Ibid.; pp. 176-177.)

31. De Camp notes the elder Bush’s proclivities for appointing Nebraska Republicans.

“In August 1990, Bush appointed Ronald Roskens of Nebraska, to head the Agency for International Development (AID). Roskens had been fired the previous year as chancellor of the University of Nebraska, where Larry King was a member of his ‘chancellor’s advisory committee.’ Gary Caradori’s daily notes for Feb. 19, 1989 record: ‘I was informed that Roskins [sic] was terminated by the state because of sexual activities reported to the Regents and verified by them. Mr. Roskins was reported to have had young men at his residence for sexual encounters. As part of the separation from the state, he had to move out of the state-owned house because of the liability to the state if some of this sexual behavior was ‘illegal.’ Upon Roskins vacating the house, he was provided a house by Joe Seacrist [sic] of the Lincoln Journal-Star.’ The leadership of AID is the kind of sensitive job—AID assignments have been used as a ‘cover’ by CIA agents, for instance—for which appointees undergo a background check that would have to turn up what Caradori also heard. Nevertheless, George Bush appointed Roskens.”

(Idem.)

32. Investigator Gary Caradori was among the many casualties of the Franklin investigation. De Camp has an appendix of a list of “suspicious deaths tied to the Franklin case.”

“(1.) BILL BAKER. He was a restaurant owner in Omaha, and a partner of Larry King in homosexual pornography operations. He was found shot in the back of the head.

(2.) SHAWN BONER. Brother of victim-witness Troy Boner, he died of a gunshot wound from ‘Russian Roulette.’

(3.) GARY CARADORI. Chief investigator for he legislative Franklin Committee, Caradori told associates days before his death that he had information that would ‘blow this case wide open.’ He died when his plane crashed on July 11, 1990.

(4.) ANDREW ‘A.J.’ CARADORI. Died at the age of 8, in the plane crash with his father.

(5.) NEWT COPPLE. A confidential informant for Caradori and his investigative firm, Copple was a key behind-the-scenes activist fighting the cover-up of the Franklin case. Son of Commonwealth Savings owner S.E. Copple, businessman in his own right, an ex-champion wrestler with no prior health problems and parents who lived into their late eighties and nineties, Copple suddenly ‘died in his sleep’ in March 1991, at the age of 70.”

(Ibid.; p. 250.)

33. More of De Camp’s Franklin death list follows.

“(6.) CLARE HOWARD. The former secretary of Alan Baer, who arranged Baer’s pedophile trysts, Howard ‘died in her sleep’ in 1991.

(7.) MIKE LEWIS. A former caregiver for victim-witness Loretta Smith. He died of a ‘severe diabetic reaction’ at the age of 32.

(8.) JOE MALEK, associate of Larry King and owner of Peony Park, where homosexual galas were held. His death from gunshot was ruled a suicide.

(9.) AARON OWEN, the brother of victim-witness Alisha Owen. He was found hanged in his cell in Lincoln, Nebraska, hours before one of his sister’s court appearances.

(10.) CHARLIE ROGERS. A reputed homosexual partner of Larry King, Rogers said that he feared for his life, in the days before his death. His head was blown off with a shotgun, in what was ruled a suicide.

(11.) DAN RYAN, an associate of Larry King. He was found strangled or suffocated in a car.

(12.) BILL SKOLESKI. An officer in the Omaha Police Department who was believed to be keeping a file on Larry King, he died of a heart attack.

(13.) KATHLEEN SORENSON. The foster parent for Nelly and Kimberly Webb after they fled the home of Larry King’s relatives, Jarrett and Barbara Webb, she was an outspoken activist against Satanism. Her death in a suspicious car crash is related in Chapter 15.

(14.) CURTIS TUCKER. An associate of Larry King, he fell or jumped out of the window of the Holiday Inn in Omaha.

(15.) HARMON TUCKER. A school superintendent in Nebraska and Iowa, a reputed homosexual, his death had signs of satanic ritual murder. He was found dead in Georgia, near the plantation which Harold Andersen and Nebraska-Iowa FBI chief Nicholas O’Hara used for hunting.”

(Ibid.; pp. 250-251.)

34. Among the casualties that De Camp believes to be connected to the Franklin investigation was the late William Colby, former director of the CIA. De Camp worked with Colby during the Vietnam War. Colby had worked with De Camp on the book, and served as an investigative source.

“It is a little over four years since I, John De Camp, wrote the words you have just read. My closes friend and mentor, Bill Colby, like so many others in the Franklin case, is dead; he was fished out of a river in front of his home, under the most questionable of circumstances, in April of 1996. Was he killed because of his involvement in Franklin? I don’t know. What I do know, is that Bill Colby was the heart and soul of the Franklin investigation. Although at a certain point he warned me against investigating the case further, it was he who relentlessly pushed to publicly expose what had already been discovered, when everyone else, including, at times, myself, wanted to call it quits. Without him, this book would never have been written.”

(Ibid.; p. 1.)

35. It is interesting that the late Colby had been a supporter of President Clinton and that his wife worked for Clinton.

“Not only was Bill’s wife, Sally Shelton Colby, in a senior position in the Clinton Administration, but Colby himself had emphasized to me, repeatedly, that Clinton was a great President, and that it was urgent that he be re-elected.”

(Ibid.; p. 388.)

36. De Camp describes the death of his friend and colleague.

“A week after out get-together, in which Bill spoke so enthusiastically about his work and his travels, he was dead—under the most unusual circumstances, his death officially labeled an ‘accident.’ I did not believe it then, and I do not believe it now. But I do believe what Bill said: ‘If it’s done right, you will never know how it was done, or who did it.’”

(Ibid.; p. 389.)

37. De Camp expounds on his skepticism concerning Colby’s death, based on extensive knowledge of the late director’s behavior.

“Colby had a sailboat and his little get-away cottage, where he went as often as he could. I visited him there on several occasions, as Bill invited me sailing whenever I was in town. Inevitably, however, the weather forecast would warn of a possibility of rain, or a drop of rain would fall, or he’d notice that the moon was not in the right position, or the sun too hot, or whatever. And Bill would decide not to take the risk and go out sailing.”

(Ibid.; pp. 384-385.)

38.

“My point is simple. Bill Colby was the single most meticulously careful, programmed, organized individual I have ever encountered, especially when it came to matters of safety, security, and personal activities. Therefore, the description given in the media, surrounding his death, does not cohere with Bill Colby’s personality, his character, his modus operandi, and my personal experiences with him over many years. Bill Colby was not the kind of person who would take off on an evening boating expedition, leaving his computer still turned on at his desk, his half-finished dinner still sitting on the table, and most of the lights on in the cottage. That was not Bill.”

(Ibid.; p. 385.)

39. Recounting an incident that escaped most people’s notice (including Mr. Emory’s), De Camp relates an incident that foreshadowed Colby’s death.

“Furthermore, Bill had been the victim of a ‘robbery’ in Washington, D.C., not too long before his death, in which he had been badly beaten, and easily could have died. This ‘robbery’ and his actual death were both mysterious incidents, in a relatively short span of time. I have a hard time believing in coincidences, when it comes to people like Bill Colby. His mysterious death has also brought, to my mind, his own explanations of how people end up dead, in the course of our discussing the death of Franklin case investigator Gary Caradori—a death Colby himself had investigated. His exact statement on this was: ‘If it’s done right, you’ll never know how it was done, or who did it for sure. That’s what professionalism is all about.’”

(Idem.)

Discussion

15 comments for “FTR #318 Kidding Around: Child Molestation and Pedophilia in the GOP”

  1. http://articles.businessinsider.com/2011-11-10/sports/30381212_1_child-molester-madden-claims-jerry-sandusky

    SHOCKING PENN STATE RUMOR: Jerry Sandusky ‘Pimped Out Young Boys To Rich Donors’
    Tony Manfred|November 10, 2011

    (AP) Sportswriter Mark Madden went on WEEI in Boston and reported a rumor that alleged child molester Jerry Sandusky would pimp out boys to rich donors.

    “I hear a rumor that there will be a shocking development from the Second Miles Foundation … That Jerry Sandusky and Second Mile were pimping out young boys to rich donors.”

    Madden claims it’s being investigated by “two prominent columnists.”

    We’d say this is ridiculous, and that you should take it with a grain of salt. But Madden actually wrote about Sandusky for the Beaver County Times six months ago — long before the scandal blindsided everyone else this week.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/jerry-sandusky-column-2011-11

    A Newspaper Ran A Column About The Horrifying Penn State Scandal Six Months Ago
    Tony Manfred | Nov. 9, 2011, 3:12 PM

    Penn State’s bungled response to the Jerry Sandusky scandal is even more shocking when you consider this: there was a report about Sandusky’s alleged abuses six months ago.

    On April 3, the Beaver Country Times ran a column by Mark Madden headlined, “Sandusky A State Secret.”

    The column calls out the university for failing to stop Sandusky a decade ago, and warns that a impending grand jury report could cause a massive scandal.

    It also asks many of the same questions we are asking this week.

    “What did Paterno know, and when did he know it? What did Penn State’s administration know, and when did they know it?” he asks.

    It’s hard to understand how anyone at Penn State — from Paterno to the president to the PR department — could have been unprepared for the scandal to explode considering it was already relatively public.

    The column doesn’t make the alleged conduct of PSU officials any better or worse, it just makes the messy PR moves by the school over the last few days look even more terrible.

    There was also a news story in the Patriot-News about the grand jury investigation in late March.

    . . . . .

    Original article from Mark Madden, who now accuses a pedophile ring involving “rich donors & boosters” in the Penn State/Sandusky case:

    http://www.timesonline.com/columnists/sports/mark_madden/madden-sandusky-a-state-secret/article_863d3c82-5e6f-11e0-9ae5-001a4bcf6878.html#user-comment-area

    Sandusky A State Secret

    Posted: Sunday, April 3, 2011 11:55 pm | Updated: 4:34 pm, Mon Apr 4, 2011.
    by Mark Madden

    The Jerry Sandusky situation seems a matter of failure to connect certain dots, or perhaps unwillingness in that regard. Lots of people besides the former Penn State defensive coordinator have some explaining to do.

    Allegations of improper conduct with an underage male first surfaced in 1998, while Sandusky was still employed by Penn State. That incident allegedly occurred in a shower at Penn State’s on-campus football facility. No charges were filed.

    Sandusky retired the next year, in 1999. He was 55, prime age for a coach. Odd, to say the least – especially with Joe Paterno thought even then to be ready to quit and Sandusky a likely, openly-discussed successor.

    It seems logical to ask: What did Paterno know, and when did he know it? What did Penn State’s administration know, and when did they know it?

    Best-case scenario: Charges are never brought, and Sandusky walks away with his reputation permanently scarred. The rumors, the jokes, the sideways glances – they won’t ever stop. Paterno and Penn State do the great escape.

    Worst-case scenario: Sandusky is charged. Then it seems reasonable to wonder: Did Penn State not make an issue of Sandusky’s alleged behavior in 1998 in exchange for him walking away from the program at an age premature for most coaches? Did Penn State’s considerable influence help get Sandusky off the hook?

    Don’t kid yourself. That could happen. Don’t underestimate the power of Paterno and Penn State in central Pennsylvania when it comes to politicians, the police and the media.

    In 1999, Penn State was rid of Sandusky. His rep was unblemished, which allowed him to continue running a charitable foundation that gave him access to underage males. To be a volunteer assistant with a high school football team, thus gaining access to underage males.

    If Paterno and Penn State knew, but didn’t act, instead facilitating Sandusky’s untroubled retirement – are Paterno and Penn State responsible for untoward acts since committed by Sandusky?

    This is far from an outrageous hypothesis, especially given the convenient timeline.

    Initially accused in 1998. Retires in 1999. Never coaches college football again. Sandusky was very successful at what he did. The architect of Linebacker U. Helped win national championships in 1982 and 1986. Recognized as college football’s top assistant in 1986 and 1999.

    Never any stories about Sandusky being pursued for a high-profile job. Never any rumors about him coming out of retirement.

    But there’s no shortage of stories and rumors about Penn State football sweeping problems under the rug, is there?

    Why did college football let an accomplished coach like Sandusky walk away at 55? Why did he disappear into relative anonymity?

    A grand jury, spurred by a complaint made by a 15-year-old boy in 2009, has been investigating Sandusky for 18 months. Witnesses include Paterno and Penn State athletic director Tim Curley.

    Interviewing Paterno about a subject like this had to have been one of the single most uncomfortable acts in the history of jurisprudence.

    Plenty of questions remain yet unanswered.

    Potentially among them: What’s more important, Penn State football or the welfare of a few kids?

    You might not want to hear the answer.

    Posted by R. Wilson | November 24, 2011, 10:44 pm
  2. I’m sure there’s a perfectly reasonable explanation for all of this (and that). Let’s be charitable.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | June 4, 2012, 1:10 pm
  3. Pterrafractyl: Your first link is broken (on the word ‘that’).

    I seem to be having problems as well posting here at Spitfire. If this comment takes, it will be the first in a couple weeks of trying

    Posted by R. Wilson | June 4, 2012, 7:55 pm
  4. @R. Wilson: Yeah, me too, unfortunately. I still believe there may be a glitch in the format. =(

    Posted by Steve L. | June 4, 2012, 11:46 pm
  5. @R. Wilson: Whoops! Looks like I left off the “http://” part from the URL and it got interpreted as a local link. This should work. And yeah, not sure what’s going on with the comments…

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | June 5, 2012, 9:15 am
  6. Let’s not forget that GW’s college nickname was Lips. In elite circles there is an element who practice homosexuality and pedophilia as an expression of depravity, contempt for mainstream morays and for inner circle initiation. Homosexual preferences can be more or less healthy but not so here. The sexual moralizing by the far right is an ongoing huge joke on the unwashed. Witness Roy Cohn’s adamant, vocal public opposition to all things homosexual while in the constant company of a parade of young male companions.

    Posted by Dwight | June 6, 2012, 10:41 am
  7. Continuing difficulties for a week trying to post any comment to this page.

    I’ll try to write out the URL and see if that works:

    www (dot) ibtimes (dot) co (dot) uk (slash) articles (slash) 397824 (slash) 20121024 (slash) tom-watson-child-sex-ring-sire-peter (dot)htm

    Was Margaret Thatcher’s Top Aide Peter Morrison in Paedophile Ring?

    By DOMINIC GOVER
    October 24, 2012 6:50 PM GMT

    The politician implicated in an alleged child sex ring at 10 Downing Street was Sir Peter Morrison, one of Margaret Thatcher’s closest advisers, IBTimes UK can reveal.

    Morrison was the mystery “senior aide” MP Tom Watson alluded to at Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs). Watson’s allegation of a paedophile ring close to Downing Street stunned the House of Commons.

    Morrison was a Conservative politician who acted as Thatcher’s parliamentary private secretary while she was prime minister. He also masterminded her failed bid to hold on to the leadership in 1990.

    Morrison left office in 1992 and died in 1995.

    The sexual tastes of the prime minister’s trusted adviser were an open secret in some quarters but were concealed by a police cover-up and threats of libel by Morrison himself, according to a former editor of the Sunday Mirror, Peter Connew.

    Simon Heffer wrote in the Daily Telegraph in 2009: “At least one member of Mrs Thatcher’s first cabinet was homosexual. Her last parliamentary private secretary, Sir Peter Morrison, was a constant trial to the whips, who were afraid that his late-night cruises around and skirmishes in Sussex Gardens would come to the attention of the press.”

    Connew told IBTimes UK that he saw first-hand how efforts to name and shame Morrison were hampered.

    Morrison, the MP for Chester, was arrested more than once for pestering young boys in public toilets for sex, said Connew. When police officers tried to charge him, the cover-up began.

    “Such was the hush-up that nobody could get hold of the log of the arrest,” Connew told IBTimes UK.

    “As soon as he was brought in for importuning young boys in public toilets, the seniors would come down. That was the reason the officers leaked the details: they were outraged that the seniors had ticked them off for arresting him.

    “If they had nicked a lorry driver, he would have been up before the judge in no time.”

    Print and I’ll sue you

    When reporters acting on tip-offs doorstepped Morrison, he came out fighting, added Connew.

    “When they doorstepped him, he said ‘print and I’ll sue you.’ This is something that Lord Leveson might want to consider.”

    Allegations against Morrison first surfaced in the press in 1998. Investigative journalist Nick Davies reported how Chris House, crime editor at the Mirror, had been tipped off by police about Morrison’s activities – but was gagged by legal fears.

    Not being able to expose the politician close to No 10 irked House, said Connew. “He categorised it as the most frustrating scoop he could never write. He was more involved in it than me.

    “I had no idea Tom Watson was going to set off that hand grenade in parliament,” he added.

    Morrison’s activities were thrown under the spotlight by Labour MP Watson at PMQs. The West Bromwich East MP alluded to a political figure who was cited in evidence at the 1992 trial of paedophile Peter Righton, real name Paul Pelham.

    Watson said in parliament: “The evidence file used to convict paedophile Peter Righton, if it still exists, contains clear intelligence of a paedophile ring.

    “One of its members boasts of his links to a senior aide of a former prime minister who could smuggle indecent images of children from abroad.

    “The leads were not followed up but if the file still exists I want to ensure that the Metropolitan Police secure the evidence, re-examine it and investigate clear links of a powerful paedophile network linked to parliament and No 10.”

    Righton was a high-profile public expert on the UK childcare system. He was convicted of importing and possessing child pornography in 1992.

    UPDATE (25 OCTOBER 2012) Watson has gone on record to deny that the mystery aide referred to in his statement at PMQs was Peter Morrison, former aide to Margaret Thatcher when she was in power. Morrison was recently named by former Tory MP Edwina Currie as having had sex with teenage boys.

    Posted by R. Wilson | November 5, 2012, 7:09 pm
  8. While it’s never a good time to be an elite pedophile, it looks like it’s going to be an especially bad time for any UK elite pedophiles. Let’s hope we don’t see a repeat of anything like this. Or this.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | January 18, 2013, 8:04 am
  9. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/tory-mp-warned-of-powerful-paedophile-ring-30-years-ago-8507780.html

    New evidence supports late MP’s claim of elite paedo ring

    Tory MP warned of powerful paedophile ring 30 years ago

    New evidence supports claim former backbencher’s life was threatened

    FRIDAY 22 FEBRUARY 2013

    A burly veteran of scores of amateur boxing bouts, the Tory MP Geoffrey Dickens was best known during his bustling 16-year career in Parliament as a pugnacious right-winger who supplied “hang ‘em and flog ‘em” quotes to the tabloids.

    Eighteen years after his death, however, the backbencher’s reputation as a political lightweight is being revised in the wake of a Scotland Yard investigation which is exhuming a scandal long buried in the Westminster of Margaret Thatcher’s premiership.

    New evidence suggests that Dickens stumbled upon an Establishment paedophile ring in the early 1980s – and that his efforts to expose a cover-up left him in fear of his life. Dickens told fellow MPs that after warning of the existence of the network, he had received threatening phone calls and been burgled twice. He also claimed he had been placed on a “hit-list”, he told the House of Commons in a little-noticed speech.

    For four years between 1981 and 1985, Dickens railed in Parliament against a paedophile ring which he claimed was connected to a trade in child pornography, then controlled by gangsters.

    In 1981 Dickens had used Parliamentary privilege to name a diplomat and MI6 operative, Sir Peter Hayman as a pederast and demanded the Attorney General explain why he had escaped prosecution over the discovery of violent pornography on a London bus two years previously.

    Last month Metropolitan Police began Operation Fernbridge into allegations that residents of a childrens home in Richmond, west London, were taken to the nearby Elm Guest House in Barnes, where they were abused. Pornography involving adults having sex with children was allegedly shot at the property and then circulated commercially.

    Sir Peter was among the visitors to the property. Others, according to a list seized by Scotland Yard last month, were the late Liberal MP Cyril Smith, the former Russian spy Sir Anthony Blunt, a Sinn Fein politician, a Labour MP, and several Conservative politicians.

    After neighbours complained about the arrival of children, the police raided the guesthouse in 1982 but the operation was mysteriously cut short. A 2003 investigation also failed.

    “Honourable Members will understand that where big money is involved and as important names came into my possession so the threats began.

    “First, I received threatening telephone calls followed by two burglaries at my London home. Then, more seriously, my name appeared on a multi-killer’s hit list.”

    However twenty-eight years after he made [the comments], Scotland Yard officers kept their new investigation secret for weeks, fearful that it would be closed down like earlier inquiries.

    In a blog on his website, the Labour MP Tom Watson – whose claims of a powerful paedophile network prompted the new inquiry – said that he had been advised by childcare experts who have tried to expose the scandal to be careful about his personal security. He has asked the Home Office for the dossier presented by Dickens to Sir Leon, but it has not yet been found.

    Posted by R. Wilson | February 22, 2013, 10:18 pm
  10. Well, it looks like the Pope’s call for prayers have been answered: The night before the Pope’s resignation we saw a new pedophile scandal emerge involving powerful people…and it doesn’t involve the Vatican. Tom Flanagan, Steven Harper’s former political adviser and a man characterized as the Godfather of Canada’s modern conservative, just told an audience that he’s been on the NAMBLA mailing list for years while defending child porn. It wasn’t well received:

    Toronto Star
    Former political adviser Tom Flanagan says viewing child porn shouldn’t be a crime
    People should not be jailed for their taste in pictures, says former adviser to Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

    By: Jeff Green News reporter, Published on Thu Feb 28 2013

    Tom Flanagan, the man behind Stephen Harper’s rise to power, the godfather of the rebirth of right-wing Canadian politics, transformed himself into a pariah yesterday.

    Flanagan set off a firestorm Thursday, condoning the viewing of child pornography by saying it shouldn’t be a crime.

    “I certainly have no sympathy for child molesters, but I do have some grave doubts about putting people in jail because of their taste in pictures,” Flanagan said Wednesday night during a small talk at the University of Lethbridge, later posted to YouTube. “I don’t look at these pictures.”

    By mid-afternoon, the former Harper adviser and professor at the University of Calgary met an onslaught of criticism with an apology. Flanagan said his words “were badly chosen.”

    But the damage was done. The Prime Minister’s Office called his comments “repugnant and appalling.” The CBC’s Power and Politics dumped him, saying his comments crossed the line, impacting his credibility. Wildrose Party Leader Diane Smith said there was no language strong enough to condemn his comments and that the party would have no role with Flanagan. He was her campaign manager in 2012. Smith was his star student.

    “I absolutely condemn the sexual abuse of children, including the use of children to produce pornography,” Flanagan said Thursday in a statement.

    The night before, Flanagan was at a talk to discuss Indian Act reform when he was asked about comments in 2009 at the University of Manitoba in which Flanagan said, “What’s wrong with child pornography — in the sense that it’s just pictures?”

    His response was met with jeers from the crowed. Flanagan stumbled, and revealed his closest brush with child pornography was that he was on the mailing list for the North American Man/Boy Love Association (NAMBLA) for several years.

    “So it is a real issue of personal liberty, to what extent we put people in jail for doing something in which they do not harm another person,” Flanagan said.

    Flanagan’s relationship with Harper has been on the outs since 2007, after Flanagan published Harper’s Team, an in-depth look at Harper’s rise to power.

    As a pair of Reform Party members, they co-authored a 1997 article called Our Benign Dictatorship, condemning extended liberal rule as a stunt to democracy.

    The backroom brain trust for the Reform and Conservative parties centered at the University of Calgary was dubbed the “Calgary School.”

    In 2000, Flanagan published First Nations? Second Thoughts, his argument against “aboriginal orthodoxy” dismissed Firsts Nations as “first immigrants.”

    Flanagan was once the right-hand man to Preston Manning, and was Harper’s chief adviser until 2004. He was brought back to serve in Harper’s successful 2005-06 election campaign as Harper’s senior communications adviser.

    In the lead-up to the 2004 election, a profile of Flanagan in The Walrus asked Ezra Levant, a former student of Flanagan, about a report that referred to Flanagan as the “original godfather of the city’s conservative mafia.”

    Levant’s response: “I call him Don Tomaso . . . . He is the master strategist, the godfather — even of Harper.”

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | February 28, 2013, 9:43 pm
  11. This isn’t exactly the kind of issue a party wants to deal with weeks before an election:

    Der Spiegel
    Too Much Tolerance: Pedophilia Debate Hits Germany’s FDP
    September 05, 2013 – 06:33 PM

    By Florian Gathmann, Ann-Katrin Müller and Christian Teevs

    Germany’s Free Democratic Party has consistently denied ever having supported pedophilia. But archival materials show just how tolerant the party once was of activists advocating for sex with children.

    In November of 1982, Germany’s business-friendly Free Democratic Party (FDP), today the junior coalition party of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s ruling conservatives, threw a party at the close of its federal convention. The invitations promising “disco and discussion” went out not only to party members who had participated in the convention in Berlin, but also to a selection of gays, lesbians — and pedophiles. The invitation bore the FDP logo, emblazoned at the bottom right, and explicitly welcomed “Lesbians and Liberals, Gossips and Sisters, Celebrities and Pederasts.”

    The gathering was organized by the working group on homosexuality of the party’s regional association in Berlin. Jürgen Kunze, regional party chair, signed off on it. The invitation also went to at least 26 party functionaries. No one raised any opposition.

    Pedophiles and the FDP? Deputy party chair Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger, who serves as Germany’s Justice Minister, is sure there must be some mistake. “Pedophilia was not and is not an issue in the FDP. Not in the party’s history and certainly not today,” she told daily newspaper Die Welt threeweeks ago.

    But that isn’t true. Documents from archives linked to the FDP show that the classically liberal party decidedly did demonstrate tolerance and support for pedophiles’ views in the early 1980s.

    Working for Decriminalization

    For one thing, the Young Democrats, the FDP’s youth organization at the time, resolved at its general assembly in March 1980 to support the removal of Paragraphs 174 and 176, which forbid sexual abuse of children and teenagers, from the German Criminal Code.

    This tolerance of pedophiles’ views, though, went far beyond just the FDP-funded Young Democrats. From today’s perspective it seems incomprehensible that the FDP ever discussed decriminalizing sex between adults and children. But in the wake of the massive societal changes brought about by the “1968 generation,” many in the FDP, much like their counterparts in the Green Party during the same period, were no longer certain where the boundaries of tolerance should lie. And many in the party felt an obligation to aid the project of emancipation.

    “This was the spirit of all those who saw themselves as working for civil rights and wanted to liberate society completely from the ‘fug’ of Adenauer’s republic and from the ‘anti-sex bigotry’ of Catholicism,” writes Franz Walter, a professor in Göttingen who is investigating the Green Party’s past entanglement with pedophiles.

    That liberal spirit brought about the long overdue decriminalization of homosexuality, but also led to calls to do away with Paragraphs 174 and 176. According to Walter, the FDP was “unquestionably the first place to turn” for civil rights activists and sexual reformers. In its struggle to achieve the highest possible degree of liberality, the party lost perspective.

    ‘Working Group on Pedophilia’

    A campaign ad for the FDP ahead of Berlin’s 1981 state parliament election provides a prime example. “The taboo is broken!” reads the heading, followed by text praising five of the party’s initiatives. In addition to worthwhile projects such as a counseling center for gays and lesbians in Berlin’s Kreuzberg district, the FDP also obtained government funding for the General Homosexual Working Group (AHA). At the time, AHA didn’t just advocate the urgently needed decriminalization of homosexuality — it was also a lobbying group for pedophiles.

    This meant taxpayers’ money went to an organization whose “Working Group on Pedophilia” called for a reform of Germany’s sex crime legislation, offered support to pedophiles facing trial and published corresponding views on these subjects in the country’s newspapers. Olaf Stüben, one of the most famous and outspoken pedophiles of the period, was coordinator of AHA at the time the ad was published.

    FDP members of the Bundestag, Germany’s parliament, also took up the subject of sex crime legislation. On May 5, 1981, the FDP’s parliamentary group invited experts to a hearing on the possibility of repealing the notorious Paragraph 175, which made homosexuality a crime.

    The 11 experts who accepted the invitation included lawyers specializing in criminal law, sex researchers, a social worker and two gay activists. And among them were two professors, Rüdiger Lautmann and Helmut Kentler, both known at the time for their pro-pedophilia stance. Lautmann, a sociologist, told the parliamentarians that current beliefs concerning “age differences, the behavior of the younger party and the nature of the sexual contact” were entirely incorrect.

    A Presentation on Pedophile Therapy

    Kentler, a sex researcher who taught social education at Hanover University, even sat on the board of the German Study and Working Group on Pedophilia (DSAP) in 1980. At his appearance before the FDP parliamentary group, he presented a report on a project in Berlin being funded by the city’s senate.

    As a psychologist, Kentler explained, he worked with children in the foster care system who suffered from “secondary mental retardation.” Starting in 1970, he explained, he placed these boys, ages 13 to 15, in the homes of pedophiles. He felt he had a good reason for doing so. “These people were able to put up with these retarded boys only because they were in love with them, infatuated with them, crazy about them,” Kentler said. He added that these “relationships” were closely supervised.

    It was an outrageous act, a professor of psychology placing vulnerable young people at the mercy of self-confessed pedophiles. Yet this didn’t seem to disturb the FDP parliamentarians. According to a transcript of the hearing, there were no interjections or questions.

    Dubious Connections

    The FDP had connections even to those highest up in the pedophilia movement. In 1980, the highly active DSAP shared a post office box with the Humanistic Union (HU) in Düsseldorf. That organization’s federal chair was Ulrich Klug, an FDP politician, since deceased, who served as state secretary in the justice ministry of the federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia from 1971 to 1974 and as justice senator in Hamburg from 1974 to 1977.

    The HU, which describes itself as an “independent civil rights organization,” also had a longstanding problematic position on the issue of pedophilia, maintaining close contact with the Working Group on Human Sexuality (AHS), which advocated the legalization of sex between adults and children. Not until 2004 did the HU distance itself from the AHS and its pro-pedophilia stance.

    Lautmann, the sociologist, still serves on the HU’s advisory board, along with Green Party politicians Renate Künast and Claudia Roth. His 1994 book “Die Lust am Kind” (“Attraction to Children”) continues to be touted by pedophiles, although Lautmann has since distanced himself from the book in response to public criticism.

    Justice Minister Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger of the FDP also serves on the HU’s advisory board. She was there nine years ago, when the civil rights organization grappled with — and ultimately distanced itself from — its past connections to pedophilia.

    This makes it all the more strange that Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger now says the FDP doesn’t need to examine its own past. There seems ultimately to be ample evidence that the party once lacked critical distance from proponents of pedophilia.

    Since the FDP is an ally of Merkel’s CDU it will be interesting to see how this impacts the electoral outcome, if at all. It might but maybe not too much.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | September 9, 2013, 11:41 am
  12. Cue the QAnon disinformation campaign: The issue of high-level pedophile networks is back in the news following the surprise arrest of billionaire alleged child trafficker Jeffrey Epstein over the weekend.

    This is one of those stories that intersects with the Trump administration in a number of way. First, there’s the direct Trump connections. As the following article describes, Trump himself was an associate of Epstein in the 90’s and early 2000’s. Epstein frequented Mar-a-Lago. Trump even gave a 2002 interview where he said, ““I’ve known Jeff for fifteen years. Terrific guy…He’s a lot of fun to be with. It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it — Jeffrey enjoys his social life.” So Trump was hinting at Epstein’s child trafficking in that 2002 interview.

    Another connection is that one of Epstein’s victims, Virginia Roberts, was working at Mar-a-Lago when she was recruited into Epstein’s network.

    Trump himself was sued for rape in 2016 by an anonymous woman claiming to have been one of Epstein’s victims. But that accusation was eventually withdrawn and the journalists who pursued that story remain skeptical of the accuser. That’s the only instance of Trump himself being directly accused of having been involved with Epstein’s sexual trafficking.

    So, at a minimum, Trump is a tangential character to this story. Bill Clinton is also a tangential character to this story, having flowing on Epstein’s planes multiple times. And those are just two of the shocking number of other powerful figures who could potentially be swept up in this investigation. In other words, we might be on the cusp of seeing a powerful underage sex trafficking network involving some of the most powerful people on the planet getting exposed, which means a lot of powerful people are going to be paying very close attention to this story and working to shape the public’s perception. If this new investigation does start to expose powerful people we should expect the deflection/disinformation to kick into overdrive. The fact that elite pedophile rings are central fixation of many right-wing conspiracy theories also more or less guarantees that this is going to be disinformation magnet. So get ready for a potential maelstrom of disinformation and deflection, because Trump and Clinton and just two of Jeffrey Epstein’s many powerful friends:

    Vox.com

    Jeffrey Epstein’s connections to Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, explained
    Here’s what we know.

    By Andrew Prokop
    Jul 9, 2019, 11:40am EDT

    Jeffrey Epstein’s new indictment on sex trafficking charges is notable for many reasons: the scope of his alleged crimes, his wealth and influence, and the controversial non-prosecution agreement the Justice Department struck with him a decade earlier.

    But it’s also gotten a good deal of attention because of Epstein’s past ties to two particularly prominent people: former President Bill Clinton and current President Donald Trump.

    In the years before Epstein’s 2007 guilty plea to solicitation of prostitution with a minor, he was known for “collecting” friendships with many noteworthy or influential people — including Clinton and Trump, who were social acquaintances. Clinton took international trips on Epstein’s plane in the early years of his post-presidency, including a trip to several African countries with Kevin Spacey and Chris Tucker.

    Trump, meanwhile, reportedly attended Epstein-hosted events in New York and Florida, as Epstein patronized the Mar-a-Lago Club. In 2002, Trump even gave a remarkable on-the-record comment about Epstein to a New York magazine journalist, calling him “terrific” and adding that he “likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side.”

    So, at the very least, Trump and Clinton were friendly with someone who turned out to be a very bad guy.

    Yet the nature of some of the allegations against Epstein has led to speculation that there could be even more to the story. In particular, one Epstein accuser has claimed in court filings that in addition to sexually exploiting her himself, Epstein trafficked her to other wealthy and powerful men, with the apparent goal of obtaining blackmail material on those men. (Prosecutors have not at this point made this allegation themselves.)

    Clinton has not been accused of any specific sexual misconduct connected to Epstein. As for Trump: During the 2016 campaign, Trump was sued by an anonymous woman who claimed he raped her at an Epstein party when she was 13 years old. However, several journalists who dug into this allegation back then came away voicing caution or downright skepticism, and the accuser withdrew her lawsuit shortly before the election.

    So there hasn’t yet been corroboration of Epstein-related wrongdoing on Trump’s part by media outlets, or any accusation against Clinton at all. But the question of whether other influential figures will be implicated in Epstein’s crimes remains an open one. Julie Brown, a Miami Herald investigative reporter who has covered Epstein’s case intensively, said on MSNBC Sunday that “there are probably quite a few important people, powerful people, who are sweating it out right now.”

    Epstein’s connections to Trump

    By Trump’s own description, his social relationship with Epstein started several decades ago, in the late 1980s. Describing Epstein to Landon Thomas Jr. of New York magazine for a 2002 profile, Trump made a comment that, in retrospect, was frighteningly on-the-nose:

    “I’ve known Jeff for fifteen years. Terrific guy,” Trump booms from a speakerphone. “He’s a lot of fun to be with. It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it — Jeffrey enjoys his social life.”

    That is: Trump praised Epstein, dated their social relationship as beginning around 1987, said they shared a taste for “beautiful” women, and specifically noted that Epstein liked women “on the younger side.”

    Since Epstein’s legal troubles became known, Trump’s attorneys have tried to downplay his association with Epstein. (“He had no relationship with Mr. Epstein and had no knowledge whatsoever of his conduct,” Trump lawyer Alan Garten told Politico in 2017.)

    But even beyond Trump’s own words further up, there’s a good deal of evidence that the two were friendly social acquaintances at least through the early 2000s:

    * Media reports from the late 1990s and early 2000s frequently mention Trump attending Epstein-hosted social events.
    * Trump called Epstein twice in November 2004, according to message pads seized from Epstein’s Florida mansion by the government.
    * Several phone numbers for Trump, including an emergency contact and a number for Trump’s security, were among many notable people’s numbers listed in Epstein’s “black book” (which was later obtained by the government).
    * Epstein’s brother Mark testified that Epstein once took Trump on one of his planes to go from Florida to New York, saying he thought it happened in the late 1990s. Trump is not known to have taken any other flights on Epstein planes.
    * Epstein was a frequent visitor to Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club in Florida. (However, after Epstein’s plea deal with the government, the New York Post quoted an anonymous Mar-a-Lago source claiming Epstein had been banned from the resort for making sexual advances to a masseuse.)

    “I knew him like everybody in Palm Beach knew him,” President Trump said Tuesday. “I had a falling out with him a long time ago, I don’t think I’ve spoken to him for 15 years, I wasn’t a fan.”

    Trump’s name has also come up in legal wrangling around Epstein — albeit for very different reasons.

    The 2009 subpoena: In 2009, Brad Edwards, an attorney who has represented various Epstein victims, had Trump served with a subpoena for testimony in a case against Epstein.

    But Edwards is not alleging any wrongdoing from Trump; rather, the opposite. He said in a recent interview that he had served subpoenas on many connected people in 2009, and that Trump was “the only person who picked up the phone and said, ‘Let’s just talk. I’ll give you as much time as you want.’”

    Edwards added that Trump “was very helpful, in the information that he gave,” calling it “good information that checked out and that helped us.” And, he said, Trump “gave no indication whatsoever that he was involved in anything untoward whatsoever.”

    Virginia Roberts’s lawsuit: In 1999, 16-year-old Virginia Roberts worked as a spa attendant at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort. It was there, she says, that Epstein’s girlfriend Ghislaine Maxwell recruited her to give massages to Epstein at his house. But Roberts (who now goes by Virginia Giuffre) hasn’t accused Trump of any wrongdoing, and her previous status as a Mar-a-Lago employee is the only connection to Trump.

    The Katie Johnson lawsuit: This is the only accusation against Trump for Epstein-related wrongdoing. An anonymous woman sued Trump in 2016, claiming that in 1994, he violently raped her at an orgy hosted by Epstein. She said she was 13 years old at the time, and accused Epstein of raping her as well. She first filed suit in California under the name “Katie Johnson,” and when it was thrown out there for technical reasons, she filed it in New York under “Jane Doe.”

    But many journalists were wary about this claim. There was no corroborating evidence offered (except for affidavits from two anonymous people claiming to have been told of or witnessed it), and the suit appeared “to have been orchestrated by an eccentric anti-Trump campaigner with a record of making outlandish claims about celebrities,” the Guardian’s Jon Swaine wrote. Jezebel’s Anna Merlan tried for some time to get to the bottom of what was going on and concluded in June 2016, “The facts speak less to a scandal and more, perhaps, to an attempt at a smear.”

    Trump himself said, “The allegations are not only categorically false, but disgusting at the highest level and clearly framed to solicit media attention or, perhaps, are simply politically motivated.”

    All that was before the Access Hollywood tape and before many women had spoken out publicly to accuse Trump of sexual assault. But even after that, the anonymity of “Katie Johnson” and the sketchiness of her associates kept mainstream US journalists wary about this accusation. She ended up withdrawing her lawsuit days before the 2016 election; her attorney Lisa Bloom said it was because she was getting death threats.

    Epstein’s connections to Clinton

    Soon after Bill Clinton concluded his presidency in 2001, he entered a new stage of his career, in which he’d travel the world, launch philanthropic initiatives, hang out with rich people and celebrities, and make money.

    “What attracted Clinton to Epstein was quite simple: He had a plane,” Landon Thomas Jr. wrote in that 2002 New York magazine profile. Clinton’s aide Doug Band made the introduction, and that September, Epstein and Clinton were off on a tour of five African countries, alongside actors Kevin Spacey and Chris Tucker. Per Clinton’s team, the trip was about “democratization, empowering the poor, citizen service, and combating HIV/AIDS.” (It was that trip that first elevated Epstein to some media notoriety, as journalists began to dig into Clinton’s new friend.)

    That wasn’t the only trip. According to Clinton spokesperson Angel Ureña, in a new statement this week, there was one more to Africa, one to Europe, and one to Asia — but, he says, Clinton and Epstein haven’t spoken in “well over a decade.”

    Virginia Giuffre has said in an affidavit that Clinton was also present on Little St. James Island, Epstein’s private island in the US Virgin Islands. But so far, there has been no corroboration for this claim, and Ureña says Clinton has has never been there.

    Clinton has been accused of sexual misconduct in the past, including by Juanita Broaddrick, who says he raped her in 1978 (Clinton has denied this). But there have been no accusations of sexual misconduct against Clinton related to Epstein. Even Giuffre, who said she recalled Clinton visiting Epstein’s island, said she had not had sexual relations with Clinton or seen him have sexual relations with anyone.

    Are prosecutors going beyond Epstein?

    The undercurrent of all this is the widespread speculation, and the occasional specific claim, that in addition to sexually abusing these girls, Epstein also trafficked them to the wealthy and powerful friends he was frequently hanging out with at the time.

    Giuffre said in her 2015 affidavit that this is exactly what happened to her. “Epstein also trafficked me for sexual purposes to many other powerful men, including politicians and powerful business executives,” she said. “Epstein required me to describe the sexual events that I had with these men presumably so he could potentially blackmail them.”

    She named two names: Prince Andrew of the British royal family (there is a photograph of her with him) and law professor Alan Dershowitz. Buckingham Palace has denied her accusation about the prince, and Dershowitz has called her a liar who “is going to end up in prison.” (Dershowitz has also been Epstein’s defense attorney.)

    “Epstein specifically told me that the reason for him doing this was so that they would ‘owe him,’ they would ‘be in his pocket,’ and he would ‘have something on them,’” Giuffre said in the affidavit.

    Prosecutors have not made any such accusation either, focusing instead on Epstein’s own sexual conduct. The investigation is likely still in flux — more victims may come forward, and evidence has been seized from Epstein’s Manhattan mansion. For now, though, this case is one against Epstein himself.

    ———-

    “Jeffrey Epstein’s connections to Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, explained” by Andrew Prokop; Vox.com; 07/09/2019

    Yet the nature of some of the allegations against Epstein has led to speculation that there could be even more to the story. In particular, one Epstein accuser has claimed in court filings that in addition to sexually exploiting her himself, Epstein trafficked her to other wealthy and powerful men, with the apparent goal of obtaining blackmail material on those men. (Prosecutors have not at this point made this allegation themselves.)”

    Where there other powerful men involved in Jeffrey Epstein’s teenage orgies? That the question that’s undoubted going to make this a story watched by powerful people around the world. Because all it takes is a quick look through Epstein’s “black book” to get a sense of how widely connected he was. But in Trump’s case, those questions are compounded by the fact that Trump specifically referred to Epstein’s preference for women “on the younger side” in that now notorious 2002 interview, along with the fact that Epstein frequented Mar-a-Lago and Virginia Roberts was working there when Epstein recruited her:


    Epstein’s connections to Trump

    By Trump’s own description, his social relationship with Epstein started several decades ago, in the late 1980s. Describing Epstein to Landon Thomas Jr. of New York magazine for a 2002 profile, Trump made a comment that, in retrospect, was frighteningly on-the-nose:

    “I’ve known Jeff for fifteen years. Terrific guy,” Trump booms from a speakerphone. “He’s a lot of fun to be with. It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it — Jeffrey enjoys his social life.”

    That is: Trump praised Epstein, dated their social relationship as beginning around 1987, said they shared a taste for “beautiful” women, and specifically noted that Epstein liked women “on the younger side.”

    Since Epstein’s legal troubles became known, Trump’s attorneys have tried to downplay his association with Epstein. (“He had no relationship with Mr. Epstein and had no knowledge whatsoever of his conduct,” Trump lawyer Alan Garten told Politico in 2017.)

    But even beyond Trump’s own words further up, there’s a good deal of evidence that the two were friendly social acquaintances at least through the early 2000s:

    Virginia Roberts’s lawsuit: In 1999, 16-year-old Virginia Roberts worked as a spa attendant at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort. It was there, she says, that Epstein’s girlfriend Ghislaine Maxwell recruited her to give massages to Epstein at his house. But Roberts (who now goes by Virginia Giuffre) hasn’t accused Trump of any wrongdoing, and her previous status as a Mar-a-Lago employee is the only connection to Trump.

    And then there’s the accusations by “Katie Johnson”, who claims Trump violently raped her when she was 13. The journalists who looked into this story were wary of it at the time it emerged, but as the article notes, that was also before the Access Hollywood tape and the parade of women accusing Trump of sexual harassment. So a review of the plausibility of “Katie Johnson’s” story might end with a different conclusion today:


    The Katie Johnson lawsuit: This is the only accusation against Trump for Epstein-related wrongdoing. An anonymous woman sued Trump in 2016, claiming that in 1994, he violently raped her at an orgy hosted by Epstein. She said she was 13 years old at the time, and accused Epstein of raping her as well. She first filed suit in California under the name “Katie Johnson,” and when it was thrown out there for technical reasons, she filed it in New York under “Jane Doe.”

    But many journalists were wary about this claim. There was no corroborating evidence offered (except for affidavits from two anonymous people claiming to have been told of or witnessed it), and the suit appeared “to have been orchestrated by an eccentric anti-Trump campaigner with a record of making outlandish claims about celebrities,” the Guardian’s Jon Swaine wrote. Jezebel’s Anna Merlan tried for some time to get to the bottom of what was going on and concluded in June 2016, “The facts speak less to a scandal and more, perhaps, to an attempt at a smear.”

    Trump himself said, “The allegations are not only categorically false, but disgusting at the highest level and clearly framed to solicit media attention or, perhaps, are simply politically motivated.”

    All that was before the Access Hollywood tape and before many women had spoken out publicly to accuse Trump of sexual assault. But even after that, the anonymity of “Katie Johnson” and the sketchiness of her associates kept mainstream US journalists wary about this accusation. She ended up withdrawing her lawsuit days before the 2016 election; her attorney Lisa Bloom said it was because she was getting death threats.

    So those are some of the direct Trump connections to this story. There’s the other massive indirect connection through the fact that Trump’s Labor Secretary, Alex Acosta, was the federal attorney would negotiated Epstein’s 2008 sweetheart deal that allowed him to avoid federal prosecution. A deal that the Department of Justice launched a probe of back in February. Trump himself just today announce that he will be looking “very closely” at Acosta’s handling of the case.

    But there’s another person who is going to be looking even more closely at this case and this person also has a bizarre connection to the Epstein case: Attorney General Bill Barr. As former FBI Assistant Director Frank Figliuzzi pointed out on Twitter over the weekend, Bill Barr’s father actually hired Epstein to teach at the elite private Dalton school. What makes this hiring curious is that Epstein had no college degree. So Barr’s father hired a man with no college degree to teach at an elite private school:

    Raw Story

    Bill Barr could interfere with Trump pal Jeffrey Epstein’s prosecution: ex-FBI official

    By Tom Boggion
    on July 7, 2019

    In a series of tweets on Saturday night and Sunday morning, former FBI Assistant Director Frank Figliuzzi admitted that Attorney General William Barr could run interference for the president with the U.S. Attorney’s office in New York’s prosecution of alleged child trafficker Jeffrey Epstein.

    After linking to a report on Epstein’s arrest, commenters noted the millionaire’s relationship to President Donald Trump and the ex-FBI man said Barr — as the head of the Justice Department — could insert himself into the case but it would be highly obvious if he tried to interfere.

    First writing, “Watch for the current Secretary of Labor; Watch for why this is being handled by the Public Corruption section at SDNY, ” Figliuzzi, added, “Yes, AG Barr oversees the US Attorney’s Office in NY, so it’s possible he could attempt to interfere, though it would be obvious. Also, many years ago, Barr’s father hired Epstein to teach at the private Dalton school, with no college degree. So there’s that…”

    ———-

    “Bill Barr could interfere with Trump pal Jeffrey Epstein’s prosecution: ex-FBI official” by Tom Boggion; Raw Story; 07/07/2019

    “First writing, “Watch for the current Secretary of Labor; Watch for why this is being handled by the Public Corruption section at SDNY, ” Figliuzzi, added, “Yes, AG Barr oversees the US Attorney’s Office in NY, so it’s possible he could attempt to interfere, though it would be obvious. Also, many years ago, Barr’s father hired Epstein to teach at the private Dalton school, with no college degree. So there’s that…””

    It’s an odd connection, but given the circumstances of the charges against Epstein it’s potentially more than just odd. And as Fibliuzzi points out, Barr is going to be in a circumstance to run interference on this case if he chooses to do so.

    But there’s another Barr connection to this case that has actually led to Barr recusing himself from one aspect of this case: Barr used to work for the law firm, Kirkland & Ellis, that represented Epstein in the earlier prosecution of him (the prosecution that Alex Acosta ended with a sweetheart deal). And as the following article notes, this has indeed resulted in Barr recusing himself. But he’s only recusing himself from any reviews of that earlier sweetheart deal Acosta negotiated. Barr is NOT recusing himself from the new investigation that was just opened. As Walter Shaub Jr., the former the head of the federal Office of Government Ethics and a virulent Trump critic, pointed out, technically Barr doesn’t have to recuse himself from the new investigation because Epstein is currently be represented by a different law firm. Shaub notes that it would still be prudent for Barr to recuse himself, but he doesn’t actually have to do it:

    Raw Story

    ‘Huh?’ Legal experts stunned after Bill Barr decides not to recuse himself from current Jeffrey Epstein case

    By Eric W. Dolan
    on July 9, 2019

    U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr does not plan to recuse himself from the current investigation into multi-millionaire and convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, according to sources who spoke to CNN and Fox News.

    A Department of Justice official told CNN on Tuesday that “Bill Barr has consulted with career ethics officials at DOJ and he will not recuse from current Epstein case.”

    Barr, however, has recused himself “from any review of the earlier case in Florida,” in which Epstein received a controversial plea deal.

    A DOJ official says Bill Barr has consulted with career ethics officials at DOJ and he will not recuse from current Epstein case in NY, per @evanperez But he will remain recused from any review of the earlier case in Florida bc of his ties with firm Kirkland and Ellis— Manu Raju (@mkraju) July 9, 2019

    NEW: DOJ official says that AG Barr will remain recused from any review of the 2008 #Epstein case due to past legal work, but after consulting with ethics officials, he will NOT recuse from the current #Epstein case led at #SDNY— Brooke Singman (@brookefoxnews) July 9, 2019

    On Monday, Barr was quoted as saying: “I’m recused from that matter because one of the law firms that represented Epstein long ago was a firm I subsequently joined for a period of time.”

    CNN legal analyst Elie Honig said Barr’s decision not to recuse himself from the current case was “trouble.”

    “I have zero confidence Barr will let this case play out in its natural course if it should start to implicate or do collateral damage to powerful, politically-connected people,” he tweeted.

    This is trouble. I have zero confidence Barr will let this case play out in its natural course if it should start to implicate or do collateral damage to powerful, politically-connected people. https://t.co/6ZuFfwKNTo— Elie Honig (@eliehonig) July 9, 2019

    But Walter Shaub Jr., the former the head of the federal Office of Government Ethics, said that it was not necessary for Barr to recuse himself from the current case.

    Barr’s former firm, Kirkland & Ellis, is a representative of a party in the earlier case under review. That necessitates recusal. But Epstein’s represented by Marc Fernich & Martin Weinberg in the current case, and they’re not with K&E. So recusal is not required in the new one.

    — Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) July 9, 2019

    I’m only sharing what the rationale of the DOJ ethics officials would have been. I don’t trust Barr further than I can throw his house and would like to see him recused from anything even remotely in Trump’s personal orbit. But such a recuse would be prudential and not mandatory.

    — Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) July 9, 2019

    ———-

    “‘Huh?’ Legal experts stunned after Bill Barr decides not to recuse himself from current Jeffrey Epstein case” by Eric W. Dolan; Raw Story; 07/09/2019

    “I’m only sharing what the rationale of the DOJ ethics officials would have been. I don’t trust Barr further than I can throw his house and would like to see him recused from anything even remotely in Trump’s personal orbit. But such a recuse would be prudential and not mandatory.”

    That was Walter Shaub’s take: he doesn’t trust Barr at all and a recusal would have been prudent, but it wasn’t mandatory. The Trump administration doesn’t do prudent.

    So that’s all part of what makes this story so potentially explosive. Just given all the publicly available facts it seems very plausible that a new and more vigorous Epstein investigation could uncover all sorts of new evidence that leads back to Trump. At the same time, the publicly available facts include the fact that the Attorney General is refusing to recuse himself and potentially has his own personal stake in the investigation, suggesting that any new facts uncovered in this new investigation probably aren’t going to become public facts. At least not if they involve Trump. Any new damning Clinton-related facts will presumably be widely touted.

    And in related news, the recent rape accusations against Trump by E. Jean Carroll are still largely being ignored by the media.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | July 9, 2019, 3:35 pm
  13. The reopening of the investigation of Jeffrey Epstein raises a number of potentially explosive questions, most notably the question of who among Epstein’s powerful friends was involved with Epstein’s underage sex trafficking network. But as Josh Marshall notes in the following article, there’s another large mystery looming over this case: How did Epstein become a billionaire? Because it turns out that no one has any idea where his billions actually came come:

    Talking Points Memo
    Editor’s Blog

    The Other Epstein Issue

    By Josh Marshall
    July 10, 2019 12:29 pm

    We know the outlines of charges that Jeffrey Epstein for years had procurers recruiting underaged girls for sex. We know the suspicions that various wealthy and powerful men in his vast social circle may have been part of this organized system of statutory rape. But there’s another part of this emerging story I want to focus your attention on – one which is distinct but may not at all be separate.

    No one seems to have a clear idea of where Jeffrey Epstein’s money comes from.

    The public story, such as it is, is that Epstein is some kind of hedge fund manager or he manages capital for people whose wealth is measured in the billions. But it’s not clear that that is really true. Hedge funds are notoriously opaque. When you operate at that scale there are next to no disclosure requirements, only qualified investors can participate, and if you’re really doing business with billionaires only that is a tiny, tiny community of people. He’s supposedly one of those college dropout math geniuses who sees the trading and metrics patterns no one else can and uses that skill to make millions and billions for his investors and later himself. (Epstein’s first job after dropping out of college was being hired to teach math at New York’s elite Dalton School – bizarrely, hired by Bill Barr’s dad, the then-headmaster.) But while there may not be much SEC disclosure, if you operate with that amount of capital it’s hard not to leave some footprint, which will likely be visible to others who play in those spaces. To be more concrete, if you’re making an investment move with hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars that’s going to leave a footprint that people will see even if there’s no official or public disclosure.

    The simple fact is that none of the hedge fund types and private wealth managers who cater to that scale of wealth have any clear idea where Epstein’s wealth comes from and they don’t seem to think he’s really in the business they’re in. This is the gist of numerous articles on the man. But this part of the story has always or until recently been treated as part of his air of mystery rather than a key question to be answered in a broader story of criminal activity.

    Recently Vicky Ward has revisited reporting she did on Epstein in Vanity Fair back in 2003. The focus of the follow up reporting has been how she found out about the abuse and assault of underaged girls and how and why Vanity Fair cut that part of the story. But the original focus of the reporting was on Epstein as a financial wizard. That part of the story is a secondary but still important part of these follow up articles. I’d recommend reading Ward’s piece in full. But the gist is that the more she poked into his story the financial part of it just didn’t add up. She didn’t really figure out what he did or where he got his money. But the public story seemed to be layer upon layer of obfuscation and fronts.

    From one perspective, who cares? The point is his abuse of perhaps dozens or more girls and young women. Precisely how he made his money doesn’t matter. But the scale of the money is apparently so vast, its origins so intensely hidden and the pervasiveness of his political connections so grand that I don’t think we can be sure they’re not related in some way. The amount of wealth and the obscurity of its origin are just too great to be the product of mere discretion.

    Some have speculated that far from being a hedge funder he ran some sort of procurement ring for billionaires. But that doesn’t really explain the full scale of the wealth. You could make a lot of money doing this but not billions or even hundreds of millions of dollars. Nor is there a shortage of ways for extremely wealthy people to purchase sex or satisfy any variety of boutique kinks or perversions. It just doesn’t add up as an explanation.

    Maybe the wealth is a sham? Maybe he’s a Trump-like figure living a conspicuously luxurious life but it’s all strung together with bailing wire and debt and sharp dealing? Maybe. The problem with that theory is that Epstein appears to have been responsible for quite a lot of philanthropy – donating big money to elite universities, funding science projects, all sorts of stuff. Perhaps this part of the equation is also overstated and is less than it appears. But at least on its face Epstein seems to have accounted for an amount of giving that even on its own required vast wealth or access to vast wealth.

    Maybe it’s a Madoff type situation? A Ponzi scheme? Possibly and maybe no one would won’t to come forward now as one of his financial victims given his notoriety. But as we saw with Madoff scams on that magnitude leave a swathe of collateral damage that’s hard to hide.

    I don’t want to get too far speculating because it’s just that: speculation. I haven’t read up enough on this part of the story to know all the details. But even my incomplete reading suggests that once you’ve read all of it it all adds up to no one really knows where his money comes from. But I think it’s highly likely that the answer to this mystery of where his money came from will play a central part of the story itself, related in some deep way to the alleged sexual criminality now coming to light.
    95

    ———-

    “The Other Epstein Issue” by Josh Marshall, Talking Points Memo, 07/10/2019

    “The simple fact is that none of the hedge fund types and private wealth managers who cater to that scale of wealth have any clear idea where Epstein’s wealth comes from and they don’t seem to think he’s really in the business they’re in. This is the gist of numerous articles on the man. But this part of the story has always or until recently been treated as part of his air of mystery rather than a key question to be answered in a broader story of criminal activity.”

    So no one actually knows how he became a billionaire. But there are hints. And one of those hints came from Alex Acosta, Trump’s Labor Secretary who was the federal prosecutor who cut the extremely lenient 2008 deal with Epstein. According to reporter Vicky Ward, who has reported on Epstein for year, she was told that the issue of the Epstein case came up when Acosta was being vetted by the Trump administration for the Labor Secretary position. Acosta allegedly told the Trump administration that he’d had just one meeting about the Epstein case and he was told to “back off” Epstein because Epstein “belonged to intelligence”:

    Talking Points Memo
    Editor’s Blog

    “I Was Told Epstein ‘Belonged to Intelligence’ And to Leave It Alone.”

    By Josh Marshall
    July 10, 2019 1:25 pm

    In my earlier post I mentioned the reporting of Vicky Ward who did a lengthy piece on Epstein for Vanity Fair in 2003 and is now revisiting the story in The Daily Beast. (Ward had a detailed version of the underaged girls part of the story but Vanity Fair cut that from the 2003 story.) I wanted to flag your attention to a passage in her latest piece at The Daily Beast which reports that Acosta told Trump transition officials that he’d been told to back off the Epstein case at the time and that that was why he gave Epstein such a generous deal.

    Here’s the passage …

    Epstein’s name, I was told, had been raised by the Trump transition team when Alexander Acosta, the former U.S. attorney in Miami who’d infamously cut Epstein a non-prosecution plea deal back in 2007, was being interviewed for the job of labor secretary. The plea deal put a hard stop to a separate federal investigation of alleged sex crimes with minors and trafficking.

    “Is the Epstein case going to cause a problem [for confirmation hearings]?” Acosta had been asked. Acosta had explained, breezily, apparently, that back in the day he’d had just one meeting on the Epstein case. He’d cut the non-prosecution deal with one of Epstein’s attorneys because he had “been told” to back off, that Epstein was above his pay grade. “I was told Epstein ‘belonged to intelligence’ and to leave it alone,” he told his interviewers in the Trump transition, who evidently thought that was a sufficient answer and went ahead and hired Acosta. (The Labor Department had no comment when asked about this.)

    It’s quite hard to know what to make of this claim. As one of my colleagues just pointed out to me the dialog itself seems more out of Hollywood that something you’d hear from a former US Attorney. On it’s face this sounds like second or third hand information, which puts some question over its reliability and may explain the movie script dialog. More importantly, Acosta is hardly a reliable fact witness in this case. He has every reason to deflect responsibility for the deal he made with Epstein. Finally, it seems highly improbable that Epstein “belonged to intelligence”.

    What does seem plausible though is that Epstein had many very high profile defenders and that this somehow translated into message to back off or to make the situation go away with as little publicity and pressure on Epstein as possible. We can blame Acosta for the deal he cut. But that doesn’t explain why he did. Getting told to back off or hearing directly from a bunch of Epstein’s high roller friends sounds like a logical supposition.

    ———-

    ““I Was Told Epstein ‘Belonged to Intelligence’ And to Leave It Alone.”” by Josh Marshall, Talking Points Memo, 07/10/2019

    ““Is the Epstein case going to cause a problem [for confirmation hearings]?” Acosta had been asked. Acosta had explained, breezily, apparently, that back in the day he’d had just one meeting on the Epstein case. He’d cut the non-prosecution deal with one of Epstein’s attorneys because he had “been told” to back off, that Epstein was above his pay grade. “I was told Epstein ‘belonged to intelligence’ and to leave it alone,” he told his interviewers in the Trump transition, who evidently thought that was a sufficient answer and went ahead and hired Acosta. (The Labor Department had no comment when asked about this.)”

    “I was told Epstein ‘belonged to intelligence’ and to leave it alone.” That was what Acosta allegedly told the Trump transition team and they found that to be an adequate answer. But is it a plausible answer? As Marshall points out, this recounting of Acosta’s vetting sounds like second or third hand information, so we don’t actually know that this is what happened. And even if Acosta did make this claim to the transition officials we shouldn’t necessarily take that at face value. What we do know is that Epstein had an abundance of powerful friends who no doubt wanted to see the case quietly go away:


    It’s quite hard to know what to make of this claim. As one of my colleagues just pointed out to me the dialog itself seems more out of Hollywood that something you’d hear from a former US Attorney. On it’s face this sounds like second or third hand information, which puts some question over its reliability and may explain the movie script dialog. More importantly, Acosta is hardly a reliable fact witness in this case. He has every reason to deflect responsibility for the deal he made with Epstein. Finally, it seems highly improbable that Epstein “belonged to intelligence”.

    What does seem plausible though is that Epstein had many very high profile defenders and that this somehow translated into message to back off or to make the situation go away with as little publicity and pressure on Epstein as possible. We can blame Acosta for the deal he cut. But that doesn’t explain why he did. Getting told to back off or hearing directly from a bunch of Epstein’s high roller friends sounds like a logical supposition.

    Also note that Acosta just held a press conference about his work on the Epstein case and he was directly questioned about his alleged claims that he was told to “back off” Epstein because he “belonged to intelligence”. Acosta’s answer was simply “I can’t address it directly because of out guidelines”. So he clearly dodged that question but it’s not obvious why exactly he dodged the question.

    Next, here a piece that covers some of the various scenarios for how Epstein got his wealth. One scenario is a Ponzi scheme. Back in 2009, Business Insider noted multiple red flags pointing towards a Bernie Madoff-style scheme. One of his early employers in finance, Steve Hoffenberg, was convicted of running one of the largest Ponzi schemes in U.S. history. Adding to this speculation is the fact that Epstein was in jail during the 2008 financial crisis and yet this somehow didn’t destroy his financial empire during this hyper-volatile time.

    As one of the lawyers for Epstein’s victims during the 2008 trial notes, they were never able to ever got solid documentation of how much Epstein was actually worth. The only known client for his financial management business was Lex Wexner, the founder of Victoria’s Secret. Vicky Ward suggested that Wexner may be the real source of Epstein’s wealth. Adding to that speculation is the fact that Epstein purchase, or received, his Manhattan townhouse from Wexner in 1998, but there were no property records on the transfer until 2011 when the company Wexner used to the buy the place transferred it to an Epstein-owned company for $0. Epstein signed the document for both sides.

    Another possible source of Epstein’s wealth is blackmail. Specifically, using the underage girls to blackmail wealth associates and force them to invest their money through Epstein. This theory was backed by a 2015 court filing by one of Epstein’s alleged victims where she states that “Based on my knowledge of Epstein and his organization, as well as discussions with the FBI, it is my belief that federal prosecutors likely possess videotapes and photographic images of me as an underage girl having sex with Epstein and some of his powerful friends.” She also claimed that Epstein “debriefed her” after she was forced into sexual encounters so that he could possess “intimate and potentially embarrassing information” to blackmail friends into parking their money with him. Related to this is the possibility is he was involved with an offshore money-laundering/tax dodging scheme. And, finally, there’s the intelligence angle.

    So the available evidence points towards a number of different, potentially overlapping, explanations for how Epstein got his immense wealth. All awful explanations:

    New York Magazine

    How Jeffrey Epstein Made His Money: Four Wild Theories

    By Matt Stieb
    07/09/2019 7:23 P.M.

    Billionaire is a word that’s often thrown around when discussing Jeffrey Epstein, but unlike some of his other common modifiers — convicted sex offender, pedophile — there’s scant proof as to his financial bona fides. The bulk of Epstein’s wealth is believed to come from his money-management firm for ten-figure investors, although his only known client is Victoria’s Secret founder Les Wexner, who reportedly ditched Epstein over a decade ago.

    After sex-trafficking charges were handed down on Monday, executive-suite financiers discussed how absent Epstein was from the field: “He’s supposed to run an enormous FX [foreign-exchange] trading firm,” said Enrique Diaz-Alvarez, chief risk officer at Ebury. “But I never once heard of him or his firm or anyone who worked or traded with him.” And as Forbes wrote in a 2010 blog post with a very direct title — “Sex Offender Jeffrey Epstein Is Not a Billionaire” — his money-management firm based in the U.S. Virgin Islands “generates no public records, nor has his client list ever been released.”

    As we wait for more information to emerge in the investigation’s coming months, speculation is pouring out on how Epstein made his wealth. To make up for the lack of public information on his revenue stream, people are turning to unverified theories on how Epstein maintained such a sterling financial reputation in addition to his millions. But first we’ll start with the knowns.

    Epstein’s mysterious career

    According to a 2002 profile in New York — the one with the Trump quoteEpstein dropped out of Cooper Union and NYU’s Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences before finding a job teaching calculus and physics at the Dalton School in the mid-1970s. Epstein was hired at the prestigious Manhattan college-prep institution by the father of Attorney General William Barr, and his students included the son of Bear Stearns chairman Alan Greenberg. In 1976, Epstein joined Bear as a floor trader’s assistant, making partner in a mere four years. By 1981, he was out, setting up the J. Epstein & Co. money-management business the next year. New York described his business strategy in 2002:

    He would take total control of the billion dollars, charge a flat fee, and assume power of attorney to do whatever he thought was necessary to advance his client’s financial cause. And he remained true to the $1 billion entry fee. According to people who know him, if you were worth $700 million and felt the need for the services of Epstein and Co., you would receive a not-so-polite no-thank-you from Epstein.

    In Vicky Ward’s recent process piece on her reporting of an Epstein profile for Vanity Fair in 2003, she lays out some of her thoughts on the matter of a possible benefactor. In addition to a claim from a Ponzi schemer that Epstein was kicked out of Bear Stearns in 1981 for “getting into trouble,” Ward suggests that Wexner may have helped bankroll the financier. Ward writes: “While Epstein’s friends speculated that retailer Les Wexner was the real source of Epstein’s wealth, Wexner (who called him ‘my friend Jeffrey’) never commented on this, though he did send me an email praising Epstein’s ‘ability to see patterns in politics and financial markets.’”

    No one knows how much he’s worth

    According to his lawyers, around the time of his notorious plea deal in Florida in 2008, Epstein’s net worth was over nine figures. The figure was “a bone of contention with Epstein’s lawyers,” Spencer Kuvin, an attorney representing three of Epstein’s alleged victims, told the Palm Beach Post in 2008. “In the litigation itself we were never able to get him to produce verified financial information. The ‘nine figures’ came by negotiation. It kept going up and up and up. They started at zero — they wouldn’t tell us at all.”

    As Bloomberg states, “Today, so little is known about Epstein’s current business or clients that the only things that can be valued with any certainty are his properties.” According to a document submitted in advance of Epstein’s bail hearing, his Manhattan townhouse is estimated to be worth around $77 million. Then there are the properties in New Mexico, Paris, the U.S. Virgin Islands, his private jet, a fleet of 15 cars, and a Palm Beach compound estimated at $12 million.

    But even the real-estate holdings have an air of mystery to them. Epstein purchased, or received, the Manhattan townhouse from Wexner around 1998. But there were no property records on the mansion’s transfer until 2011, when the company Wexner used to buy the place transferred it to an Epstein-owned company for $0. Epstein signed the document for both sides.

    Financial Conspiracy Theory #1: Ponzi scheme

    A Ponzi scheme has been floated as a possible source of Epstein’s wealth since as early as 2009, when Business Insider noted that multiple red flags pointed to a possible Madoff-like fraud. The secrecy of his client list; the “administrative” nature of all 150 of his employees in 2002; the absolute control over investors’ money, and the $1 billion basement investment required — all signs could point to Ponzi, although there’s no concrete evidence. In the story, finance writer John Carney raised a vital question, considering Epstein’s (limited) time in jail during the 2008 financial crisis: “How could Epstein’s one-man show not fall apart while he was in jail during one of the most volatile years in history?”

    In addition, one of his early employers in finance, Steve Hoffenberg, was convicted of running one of the largest pre-Madoff Ponzi schemes in U.S. history. According to journalist Vicky Ward, Hoffenberg brought on Epstein in 1981 after he left Bear Stearns. “He has a way of getting under your skin,” he told Ward. Hoffenberg paid Epstein $25,000 per month for his work as a consultant for Towers Financial, though Epstein had left well before Hoffenberg pleaded guilty in 1994 to defrauding investors to the tune of $450 million. For years, it appeared Epstein had no exposure in the Towers Financial case, until 2018, when shareholders filed a putative class action suit against him for his alleged role in the Ponzi scheme. In a separate New York state case in 2018, Hoffenberg reportedly detailed Epstein’s alleged involvement in the scam.

    Theory #2: Blackmail

    As the Intercept D.C. bureau chief Ryan Grim noted, a piece of evidence detailed in the SDNY’s detention memo could hold a great deal of blackmail potential:

    CD's in Epstein's safe labeled: "Young [Name] + [Name]"That looks an awful lot like they found the blackmail tapes https://t.co/4tR9Mya7lL— Ryan Grim (@ryangrim) July 8, 2019

    And in a 2015 court filing, alleged Epstein victim Virginia Roberts Giuffre claims that U.S. authorities were in possession of footage of her having sex with members of Epstein’s elite friend group. “Based on my knowledge of Epstein and his organization, as well as discussions with the FBI, it is my belief that federal prosecutors likely possess videotapes and photographic images of me as an underage girl having sex with Epstein and some of his powerful friends,” she said. Giuffre claimed that Epstein “debriefed her” after she was forced into sexual encounters so that he could possess “intimate and potentially embarrassing information” to blackmail friends into parking their money with him.

    Theory #3: Epstein “Belonged to Intelligence”

    One of the more mysterious quotes of this whole conspiracy-adjacent mess comes from Alexander Acosta, the current Labor secretary, who arranged for Epstein to get off with just a wrist-slap in 2007, when he was a U.S. attorney. According to Vicky Ward, when Acosta was being interviewed for the Labor secretary job, he was asked if his involvement in the Epstein case would be a problem during his confirmation hearings.

    Acosta had explained, breezily, apparently, that back in the day he’d had just one meeting on the Epstein case. He’d cut the non-prosecution deal with one of Epstein’s attorneys because he had “been told” to back off, that Epstein was above his pay grade. “I was told Epstein ‘belonged to intelligence’ and to leave it alone,” he told his interviewers …

    Whether that’s the American intelligence community, the greater point-one-percent brain trust, or just a garbage excuse, the answer was good enough for the Trump administration to go forward with Acosta’s nomination.

    Theory #4: Offshore Tax Schemes / Money Laundering

    Because Epstein’s wealth is held offshore and is shrouded in mystery, some speculate that he may have made his money in tax schemes or money laundering. According to a well-developed, if factually void, pan-conspiracist take from finance Twitter’s Quantian, Epstein could have blackmailed his social circle into investing with him, then dumped the cash in an offshore account to avoid taxes. Or, similar to the Ponzi scheme conspiracy — and, again, without basis in fact — there is so little paperwork on the funds that the whole thing could just be a rig for money laundering.

    ———-

    “How Jeffrey Epstein Made His Money: Four Wild Theories” by Matt Stieb, New York Magazine, 07/09/2019

    “After sex-trafficking charges were handed down on Monday, executive-suite financiers discussed how absent Epstein was from the field: “He’s supposed to run an enormous FX [foreign-exchange] trading firm,” said Enrique Diaz-Alvarez, chief risk officer at Ebury. “But I never once heard of him or his firm or anyone who worked or traded with him.” And as Forbes wrote in a 2010 blog post with a very direct title — “Sex Offender Jeffrey Epstein Is Not a Billionaire” — his money-management firm based in the U.S. Virgin Islands “generates no public records, nor has his client list ever been released.”

    Epstein’s firm generated no public records and never released a client list. It’s mysterious. Blackmail? A Ponzi Scheme? Offshore tax evasion and money-laundering? An intelligence front? All of these above?

    Or was his only known client, Lex Wexner, the real source of his wealth? They definitely had some sort of unusual business relationship:


    In Vicky Ward’s recent process piece on her reporting of an Epstein profile for Vanity Fair in 2003, she lays out some of her thoughts on the matter of a possible benefactor. In addition to a claim from a Ponzi schemer that Epstein was kicked out of Bear Stearns in 1981 for “getting into trouble,” Ward suggests that Wexner may have helped bankroll the financier. Ward writes: “While Epstein’s friends speculated that retailer Les Wexner was the real source of Epstein’s wealth, Wexner (who called him ‘my friend Jeffrey’) never commented on this, though he did send me an email praising Epstein’s ‘ability to see patterns in politics and financial markets.’”

    But even the real-estate holdings have an air of mystery to them. Epstein purchased, or received, the Manhattan townhouse from Wexner around 1998. But there were no property records on the mansion’s transfer until 2011, when the company Wexner used to buy the place transferred it to an Epstein-owned company for $0. Epstein signed the document for both sides.

    Also note that Wexner has long been a GOP mega-donor. He and his wife donated almost $2 million to the GOP between 2013 and 2018, including $500k to Jeb Bush in 2016. But Wexner became a ‘Never-Trump’ mega-donor and officially left the Republican Party last September. And that’s one of the potentially interesting twists in all this: The Trump administration probably really hates Wexner at this point. Wexner literally stopped being a GOP mega-donor specifically because he hated Trump so much. So while it remains to be seen how much we’re really going to learn about Epstein’s background, don’t be super surprised if very very little is released about how Epstein became a billionaire except for information tying Epstein to Wexner.

    And regarding the possibility that Epstein could have been running a child sex trafficking ring as part of an intelligence front, this is also probably a good time to recall the strange case of George Nader, the Middle East’s man of mystery who figures so prominently in the various #TrumpRussia threads. Recall how Nader clearly worked with the US government on sensitive matters going back to the 80s and was repeatedly caught with child pornography and yet kept getting lenient sentences (including a light sentence by the Czech government). But back in June, Nader suddenly faced new child porn charges over a discovery investigators made last year. So as with Epstein, Nader was someone with a track record for getting lenient treatment for child sex crimes but is now facing new investigations. Now, there’s never been anything to indicate that Nader was somehow incorporating child porn into his sensitive government work, as would be the case for Epstein if he was running some sort of blackmail ring for intelligence purposes. But at a minimum, Nader’s story demonstrates the capacity for an official tolerance of such activities by people deemed to be doing important sensitive work. So George Nader represents another particularly disturbing data point suggesting that Epstein may indeed have been involved in intelligence work. The parallels are hard to ignore.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | July 10, 2019, 2:51 pm
  14. Here’s an interesting new twist on the mystery of Jeffrey Epstein and the questions of why he was given a sweetheart plea deal back in 2008. First, recall that Alex Acosta reportedly told the Trump administration officials who were vetting him for the Labor Secretary position that he gave Epstein that plea deal because he was told that Epstein “belonged to intelligence.” Keep in mind that even if Epstein ‘belonged to intelligence’ and that was the basis for his lenient treatment, that doesn’t necessarily mean he belonged to US intelligence. He could have been working with an allied intelligence agency, with Israel or the UK being obvious possibilities given Epstein’s associations. And now we just learned a new detail about Epstein’s background: When authorities recently raided Epstein’s mansion they found a safe containing cash, diamonds, and an expired fake foreign-issued passport from the 80’s. The passport had Epstein’s picture but a fake name. And it lists Saudi Arabia as Epstein’s place of residence:

    Law & Crime

    Prosecutors Reveal Jeffrey Epstein Had Fake Passport That Listed Residence as Saudi Arabia

    by Matt Naham | 11:43 am, July 15th, 2019

    Federal prosecutors continue to reveal more and more information about what was locked away in a safe at accused child sex-trafficker Jeffrey Epstein’s Upper East Side mansion. Prosecutors said they were “made aware” on Monday that Epstein’s safe contained cash, diamonds and an expired passport.

    The government mentioned this while making its case that Epstein should not be let out of jail ahead of trial, arguing that he is about as big of a flight risk as there is.

    Although the passport was issued in the ’80s and is currently expired, other details about it raised some eyebrows. For one, the passport has a photo that appears to be of Epstein, but it has a different name on it. Secondly, it was a foreign-issued passport and listed his residence as Saudi Arabia.

    SDNY says they learned today that Epstein had in a locked safe a foreign passport issued in the 1980s, expired, with a photo that appears to be Epstein and a name that is not his. It also gives his place of residence as Saudi Arabia.

    — erica orden (@eorden) July 15, 2019

    Epstein was also said to have “piles of cash” in that safe.

    NEW: As part of the raid at Epstein’s NYC mansion authorities found in a locked safe “piles of cash, dozens of diamonds” and a foreign passport, issued in the 1980s. It is expired, lists his residence Saudi Arabia, and has a photo that appears to be him. https://t.co/InC6iiaqS3

    — Pervaiz Shallwani (@Pervaizistan) July 15, 2019

    It’s not clear if this was the same safe (or if there are other safes) that authorities said contained thousands of lewd images of young girls. The images were found during a raid that occurred as Epstein was arrested at Teterboro Airport on July 6. Authorities said they found “at least hundreds–and perhaps thousands–of sexually suggestive photographs of fully-or partially nude females.” Prosecutors said some of the images appeared to be of underage girls. “[A]t least one girl, who according to her counsel, was underage at the time the relevant photographs were taken,” they said.

    Prosecutors have admitted that they have no idea how Epstein made his fortune, but said Friday that an unnamed financial institution’s records showed Epstein is worth more than $500 million. They argued that if Epstein is let out ahead of trial he would be in the wind posthaste.

    “[T]here would be little to stop the defendant from fleeing, transferring his unknown assets abroad, and then continuing to do whatever it is he does to earn his vast wealth from a computer terminal beyond the reach of extradition,” prosecutors said.

    ———-

    “Prosecutors Reveal Jeffrey Epstein Had Fake Passport That Listed Residence as Saudi Arabia” by Matt Naham; Law & Crime; 07/15/2019

    “Although the passport was issued in the ’80s and is currently expired, other details about it raised some eyebrows. For one, the passport has a photo that appears to be of Epstein, but it has a different name on it. Secondly, it was a foreign-issued passport and listed his residence as Saudi Arabia.

    So was there a Saudi connection to Epstein’s child sex trafficking ring? Recall the evidence suggesting that the disappearance of Polly Klaas was part of an elite Saudi child-sex trafficking ring that specialized in providing underage white Western girls for Saudi elites. Was Epstein’s operation involved with something like that? To put it another way, would a fake passport that gives a fake name and lists Saudi Arabia as his place of residence be helpful for getting out of a difficult situation if the Saudi government wasn’t in on the scam to back it up if need be?

    Keep in mind that, thus far, the reports about Epstein’s associates serviced by his underage victims haven’t included references to a large number of Saudis or trips to Saudi Arabia. But given the nature of that initial sweetheart plea deal and Acosta’s reference to Epstein “belonging to intelligence”, it’s possible that such evidence would have been kept from the public so far.

    And note that, while the question of how Epstein made his fortune remains largely a mystery, at least one unnamed financial institution has confirmed that Epstein is currently worth more than $500 million. So he’s managed to maintain quite a fortune in the decade following his initial 2008 plea deal:


    Prosecutors have admitted that they have no idea how Epstein made his fortune, but said Friday that an unnamed financial institution’s records showed Epstein is worth more than $500 million. They argued that if Epstein is let out ahead of trial he would be in the wind posthaste.

    “[T]here would be little to stop the defendant from fleeing, transferring his unknown assets abroad, and then continuing to do whatever it is he does to earn his vast wealth from a computer terminal beyond the reach of extradition,” prosecutors said.

    Also note that while the identity of this unnamed financial institution that confirmed Epstein’s wealth remains a mystery, we have learned about one institution in particular that would be well placed to know such things: It turns out Deutsche Bank recently severed its relationship with Epstein:

    Bloomberg

    Deutsche Bank Ended Its Relationship With Jeffrey Epstein This Year

    By Tom Metcalf and Matt Robinson
    July 10, 2019, 4:27 PM CDT
    Updated on July 11, 2019, 6:28 AM CDT

    Deutsche Bank AG severed business ties with Jeffrey Epstein earlier this year, just as federal authorities were preparing to charge the disgraced financier with operating a sex-trafficking ring of underage girls out of his opulent homes in Manhattan and Palm Beach.

    The German bank, itself a subject of unrelated government investigations, closed Epstein’s accounts over several months, according to a person familiar with the situation, who asked not to be identified discussing private matters.

    It’s unclear how much money was involved or how long Epstein was a customer of Deutsche Bank, which maintained the accounts long after he was convicted of sex crimes more than a decade ago. A company spokesman in New York declined to comment.

    The revelation of the closed accounts adds to the mystery surrounding Epstein’s supposed fortune. Despite his lavish lifestyle and rich acquaintances, the extent of his wealth — and how he acquired it — remains unclear. He left Bear Stearns in 1981 to set up his own firm after a swift rise at the investment bank. While he reportedly managed money for billionaires for decades, his trades, if any, have attracted little attention from most market players despite an outsize lifestyle featuring private jets and luxury homes. He was arrested on the weekend after returning from Paris on his Gulfstream G550.

    Still, some details about his business dealings have emerged.

    Epstein served as a director to Leon Black’s family foundation from 2001. He resigned in July 2007 at the family’s request and has not been affiliated with or performed any duties for the Foundation since that date,” a spokeswoman for the private equity executive’s foundation said in an emailed statement. His name mistakenly appeared on disclosure forms filed with the federal government from 2008 to 2012, she said.

    His Financial Trust Co. had a $121 million investment in hedge fund firm DB Zwirn & Co., which shut down in 2008. Financial Trust also was also a major investor in Bear Stearns’s High-Grade Structured Credit Strategies Enhanced Leverage Fund, whose collapse helped ignite the global financial crisis.

    So little is known about Epstein’s current business or clients that the only things that can be valued with any certainty are his properties. The Manhattan mansion is estimated to be worth at least $77 million, according to a federal document submitted in advance of his bail hearing.

    ———-

    “Deutsche Bank Ended Its Relationship With Jeffrey Epstein This Year by Tom Metcalf and Matt Robinson; Bloomberg; 07/10/2019

    “The German bank, itself a subject of unrelated government investigations, closed Epstein’s accounts over several months, according to a person familiar with the situation, who asked not to be identified discussing private matters.”

    Yep, just a few months ago, Deutsche Bank decides to end its relationship with Epstein. Keep in mind that the renewed scrutiny over Alex Acosta’s sweetheart plea deal with Epstein started back in November, so the bank was presumably reacting to those reports and the expectation that more bad press was coming for Epstein.

    And note that this was Deutsche Bank’s notoriously corrupt private-banking unit that was working with Epstein. Recall that Deutsche Bank’s private banking unit was reportedly so scandalous lax in its enforcement of laws regarding money-laundering that a number of employees have becoming whistle-blowers. So learning that the most corrupt unit in Deutsche Bank was working with Epstein until only recently does add some clarity to the situation in the sense that it makes it more clear that there was something very shady likely going on with his finances in recent years too. There was already the mystery of how he made his fortune and now there’s a mystery of what he did with the money after he made it. Two mysteries that could be very intertwined if he was essentially offering money-laundering/tax evasion services for his clients as has been speculated.

    So as we can see, this is one of those stories where, the more we learn, the more we learn about a coverup and the larger that coverup appears to get. It’s the kind of story that unfortunately means we probably won’t ever really learn what was going on. Especially if it involved a sweetheart deal for an intelligence-protected Saudi-connected underage sex trafficking ring.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | July 15, 2019, 12:45 pm
  15. @Pterrafractyl–

    Saudi Arabia!

    Interesting.

    Maybe he was involved with, or adjacent to, some of the things mentioned at the conclusion of FTR 31001.

    http://spitfirelist.com/for-the-record/ftr-1001-further-reflections-on-weaponized-feminism-and-the-metoo-movement/

    Best,

    Dave

    Posted by Dave Emory | July 15, 2019, 5:30 pm

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