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Alan Dershowitz posts 31-minute defence video after Epstein documents unsealed

Dershowitz issued a 31-minute response titled ‘The Epstein list and guilty by association’ following the unsealing of 40 Epstein-linked legal filings on Wednesday

Andrea Blanco,Rachel Sharp
Saturday 06 January 2024 19:24 GMT
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Dershowitz reacts to unsealing of Epstein documents

Former Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz issued an explosive response maintaining his innocence after a tranche of documents relating to his former client Jeffrey Epstein raised allegations that he took part in the late paedophile’s sex trafficking ring.

The highly anticipated release of sealed documents in the now-settled litigation between Epstein victim Virginia Giuffre against Ghislaine Maxwell renewed debate about the ties that high-profile figures — including former US presidents Bill Clinton and Donald Trump, and Prince Andrew — had with the disgraced financier and convicted paedophile.

Although some of those names had already been linked to Epstein through previously released legal filings and the account of survivors of Epstein’s abuse, the filings unveiled on Wednesday shed light on the extent of the rampant abuse that took place at his homes and his secluded private island in the Virgin Islands, Little St James.

At the centre of some of the most serious allegations was Epstein’s former attorney Mr Dershowitz, who had claimed earlier this week while appearing on NewsNation that he wanted every last document and “piece of paper” to be publicly released – asserting that it would prove that he “did nothing wrong”.

However, the newly released documents contained allegations that Mr Dershowitz forced a minor girl, named in court documents as Jane Doe 3, to have sex with him on several occasions. The filings by attorneys for Jane Doe 1 and Jane Doe 2, in which Mr Dershowitz is named a total of 137 times, also allege that he witnessed other girls being abused. Mr Dershowitz previously denied allegations in 2015 that he had sex with an underage girl.

“Epstein required Jane Doe #3 to have sexual relations with Dershowitz on numerous occasions while she was a minor, not only in Florida but also on private planes, in New York, New Mexico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands,” an excerpt of the filings by the plaintiff’s attorneys read.

In a response just hours after the filings were unsealed, Mr Dershowitz again denied those allegations on Wednesday night.

“Of course I’m on that list, I was his lawyer. I flew on his plane,” Mr Dershowitz said during a YouTube livestream that he titled “The Epstein list and guilt by association.” “I had an innocent relationship with a man who I didn’t know, nobody suspected, had done anything wrong.”

Mr Dershowitz glossed over his role in helping secure Epstein’s 2008 secret “sweetheart” plea deal on charges of procuring a child for prostitution and soliciting prostitution, which landed Epstein in a private wing of the Palm Beach County Stockade for just 13 months. Three months into his sentence, Epstein was allowed to leave the jail through a “work-release program.”

The plea deal, which was concealed from the victims, also granted that the names of some of Epstein’s co-conspirators be sealed and allowed him to fly to and from his home in New York and Little St James, investigation efforts by The Miami Herald first brought to light in 2018.

Elsewhere in his 31-minute response on Wednesday, Mr Dershowitz said that Epstein had lent his Florida home to him and his family, noting that he “would have never allowed” his grandchildren to stay at the house if he knew about Epstein’s crimes.

“That eventually turned out to be the location for so many questionable and illegal activities,” he said. “And yes, I was on the island. Once my wife, my daughter and I were on vacation in the Caribbean and he had just bought the island ... He asked us to come and say hello ... No young people on the island, no Lolita Express or anything.”

Mr Dershowitz also claimed that contrary to public belief, Epstein had “hated” the plea deal and thought Mr Dershowitz had done a “terrible job.” Mr Dershowitz then said that following Epstein’s conviction, he only took “legal calls” from the paedophile.

“...If you accuse somebody falsely in the media you can be sued for defamation,” Mr Dershowitz argued. “But if you make your accusation in court papers there’s what’s called immunity. You can’t be sued ... If it includes accusations people will assume those accusations must be true, but there is little reason to believe that.”

Following accusations by Ms Giuffre that she had been trafficked to have sex with Mr Dershowitz, contentious legal battles between the pair rumbled on for the next three years. In November 2022, Ms Giuffre admitted that she may have made a mistake in identifying Mr Dershowitz as one of her abusers. Lawsuits were then dismissed on both sides.

Flight logs have previously revealed that Mr Dershowitz flew on Epstein’s private jet – nicknamed the “Lolita Express” – multiple times between 1998 and 2005. In 2015, he admitted that he had once received a massage at Epstein’s home.

Since then, he has repeatedly defended the massage, saying that there was nothing untoward about the encounter – telling The Hill TV’s Rising show that it was carried out by a middle-aged woman named Olga.

Epstein killed himself in a Manhattan jail cell while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges in 2019.

Maxwell was convicted of child sex trafficking in 2021 and was sentenced to 20 years in prison.

More documents stemming from the Giuffre v Maxwell 2017 lawsuit are expected to be released in the coming days.

The Independent has reached out to Mr Dershowitz for comment.

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