Emails between Jeffrey Epstein and former JPMorgan executive Jes Staley have been revealed – including one in which the banking boss was asked if he “needed anything”.
The exchanges between Epstein and Mr Staley were filed on Wednesday by the government of the US Virgin Islands in its lawsuit claiming that JP Morgan facilitated Epstein’s sex trafficking ring by handling his payments to recruiters and victims. According to court documents, JPMorgan serviced approximately 55 Epstein accounts between 1998 and 2013 – years after the paedophile was first arrested in Florida for soliciting minors.
Mr Staley, then head of private bank at JPMorgan, exchanged more than 1,000 emails from his work account with Epstein between 2008 and 2012. The state argues in its most recent filing that at least one of those exchanges pertained to Epstein procuring young women to Mr Staley while the latter was visiting London.
In one of the emails, Epstein asked Mr Staley if he “needed anything” while in England’s capital, to which Mr Staley allegedly answered yes. Mr Staley later responded “that was fun,” and, “Say hi to Snow White,” prosecutors said in the documents.
When Epstein asked, “[W]hat character would you like next?”, Mr Staley reportedly answered: “Beauty and the Beast.” The Virgin Islands government alleges that the men used the names of Disney princesses as code for the women that Epstein trafficked — with Epstein also emailing Mr Staley “photos of young women in seductive poses.”
The date stamps on the emails allegedly matched Epstein’s payments to the same young woman from his JPMorgan account, the filing states.
Mr Staley, who has denied the allegations, also discussed visits to Epstein’s secluded private island Little St James in those emails.
In a 2009 email, Mr Staley reportedly told Epstein that Little St James was “an amazing place.” At the time, Epstein was on home arrest for soliciting minors in Florida.
“Presently, I’m in the hot tub with a glass of white wine,” the email by Mr Staley allegedly read. “Next time, we’re here together. I owe you much. And I deeply appreciate our friendship. I have few so profound.”
The pair allegedly went on to meet in New York City, where Epstein was allowed to travel to meet with his legal team, Bloomberg reported.
Mr Staley’s name and several of his phone numbers appear in Epstein’s 92-page “black book” of contacts, according to Vanity Fair. Mr Staley admitted that he continued his relationship with the disgraced financier for seven years after Epstein was convicted of procuring a child for prostitution in 2008.
The former JP Morgan boss previously said his last contact with Epstein was in “middle to late” 2015.
The Virgin Islands government is not suing Mr Staley, but claims that his employer at the time “profited handsomely from the hundreds of millions of dollars in assets in those accounts”. Elsewhere in the suit, prosecutors argue that JPMorgan did not meet federal requirements when it failed to file suspicious activity reports against Epstein with the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network.
Separately, victims of Epstein are also suing JPMorgan for Mr Staley’s alleged role in Epstein’s sex trafficking, according to Bloomberg.
JPMorgan has denied having knowledge of any misconduct by Epstein and Mr Staley, who stepped down from the company in 2013. The bank has also argued that it can’t be held liable for Mr Staley’s alleged awareness of Epstein’s crimes.
When reached out to by The Independent, the bank referred to its legal filing on 1 February.
“ ... USVI had access at the time to the same information, allegations, and rumors about Epstein on which it alleges JPMC should have acted,” the statement read. “Indeed, as a law-enforcement agency, USVI had access to much more, along with the investigative advantage of physical proximity to Epstein’s crimes.”
Mr Staley became Barclays CEO in 2015 and resigned in 2021 after the company received the findings of a probe by UK financial regulators suggesting he played down his role in Epstein’s affairs while he ran JP Morgan’s private bank.
When news of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) investigation broke in February 2020, Mr Staley said that he “deeply regrets” his connection to Epstein.
“It has been very well known I had a professional relationship with Jeffrey Epstein,” Mr Staley told reporters, per Reuters. “It goes back to 2000 when I was asked to run the JP Morgan private bank and he was already a client when I joined the private bank.
“The relationship was maintained during my time at JP Morgan but as I left JP Morgan the relationship tapered off quite significantly. Obviously, I thought I knew him well and I didn’t. For sure, with hindsight with what we know now, I deeply regret having any relationship with Jeffrey.”
The Independent has reached out to Mr Staley’s attorney for comment.
Epstein, who once counted the likes of Prince Andrew and Bill Gates among his friends and associates, was found dead in a jail cell in 2019 while he was awaiting charges of sex-trafficking, allegations he denied. He had earlier served a year in jail after a plea deal in Florida over sex offences.
His partner, Ghislaine Maxwell, was convicted in 2021 of sex trafficking and conspiracy for helping him procure girls, and sentenced to 20 years in prison.
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