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Unsealed: Both Trump's and Clinton's Names Appear in New Epstein Court Docs

Some have claimed former U.S. President Donald Trump was not included in recently unsealed court documents.

Published Jan 6, 2024

 (Twitter / Getty Images)
Image Via Twitter / Getty Images

On Dec. 18, 2023, a New York state judge ordered a large cache of documents related to a lawsuit between Ghislaine Maxwell, associate of the late, convicted child sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, and victim Virginia Giuffre to be unsealed within two weeks. The order contained a list anonymous John and Jane Does whose real names would be included, unredacted, in the forthcoming documents.

Social media users dubbed the list of names in the judge's order as the "Epstein list." In the two weeks before the documents were unsealed, speculation about whose names would be released caused an internet frenzy, with much of the most politicized discussion concerning former U.S. presidents Donald Trump and Bill Clinton.

The documents released on Jan. 3, 2024, nearly 1,000 pages in all, were primarily transcripts of witnesses deposed to corroborate Giuffre's testimony. The source of many of the most significant unsealed names originate from the deposition of another victim, Johanna Sjoberg. As described by The Telegraph:

Ms Sjoberg’s testimony was given in 2015 for a defamation case brought by Ms Giuffre against Maxwell. It appeared to support Ms Giuffre’s accounts after she made claims against Maxwell, Epstein and the Duke of York. The lawsuit was settled in 2016, but it was not until December last year that a judge ruled that many of the documents related to the suit should be unsealed.

Following this release of documents, the claim that Clinton, but not Trump, appeared on the list was widely shared in pro-Trump circles. In a tweet directed at liberals, for example, Juanita Broderick, who accused Clinton of raping her in 1978, posted, "Guess whose name isn't on the list?" alongside a picture of Trump on the social media platform X:

If "list" refers to the table of names included with the Dec. 18, 2023, order describing the individuals whose identities would appear in a forthcoming collection of sealed documents, the suggestion that Trump was not included is false. In fact, both Clinton and Trump were referenced in the documents that were unsealed, and as such both are literally on this Epstein list.

The former presidents are both mentioned in Sjoberg's deposition. Trump's name came up amid questioning about a 2002 incident in which Epstein visited a Trump casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey, after bad weather prevented his private plane from landing in New York. References to Trump appear on three pages of the deposition transcript. Below, an attorney for Giuffre questioned Sjoberg:

(Document 1320-12, Page 19)

In a second and third instance, a lawyer for Maxwell asked questions about the same incident:

(Document 1320-12, Page 79)

(Document 1320-12, Page 113)

Clinton also appears in two instances in the Sjoberg transcript, and is referenced as part of a line of questioning concerning allegations made by Giuffre that Clinton attended a dinner party on Epstein's private island shortly after leaving office. This was an allegation that Maxwell's attorneys have attempted to paint as evidence of a lie by Giuffre.

The first Clinton reference, in response to questions from an attorney for Giuffre, describes something Epstein reportedly told Sjoberg — that "Clinton likes them young, referring to girls."

(Document 1320-12, Page 30)

The second instance stems from questions asked by Maxwell's attorney about an assertion, made by Giuffre, that Clinton arrived on the island in a helicopter flown by Maxwell:

(Document 1320-12, Pages 109-110)

Clinton also makes appearances in other exhibits included in the Jan. 3 documents, including in an email to Maxwell in which Epstein offers a reward to any of Giuffre's friends or acquaintances who could disprove Giuffre's claims, noting the "Clinton dinner" as one example and an alleged underage orgy attended by physicist Stephen Hawking as another:

(Document 1320-14, Page 2)

In both cases, the fact that Clinton and Trump appear in this transcript or in other recently unsealed documents is not evidence of their complicity in Epstein's sex crimes with minors, just evidence that they were mentioned in documents that were once under seal. Neither Giuffre nor Sjoberg accused Clinton or Trump of any illegal activity in these documents.

Adding some confusion to claims about various politicians' presence in these files is the fact that another document is sometimes referred to as the "Epstein list" — Epstein's black book. That document, a collection of contact information maintained by Epstein's butler, was published in full by Gawker in 2015. Information for both Trump and Clinton were included in this list, as well.

Indeed, past connections between Epstein and both former presidents are well known. While it is true that Trump, like Clinton, appears in the newly released documents, it is not true these revelations provide any evidence of complicity in any Epstein-related sex crime.

Epstein, a millionaire financier, committed suicide while awaiting trial on sex-trafficking charges in 2019 (he was previously convicted of another sex crime). Maxwell, a former British socialite, is serving a 20-year prison sentence for sex trafficking.

Sources

Dasgupta, Shirsho. “Epstein Befriended a Slew of Scientists. New Records Contain ‘Orgy’ Allegation against One.” The Miami Herald, 5 Jan. 2024, https://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/crime/article283847883.html.

DocumentCloud. https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/24253239-1324-epstein-documents-943-pages. Accessed 5 Jan. 2024.

---. https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/24235006-epstein-order. Accessed 5 Jan. 2024.

FitzSimons, Amanda. “She Doesn’t Believe All Women.” The Atlantic, 10 Sept. 2019. The Atlantic, https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2019/10/she-doesnt-believe-all-women/596632/.

“The Woman Whose Testimony Dominates the Epstein Files.” Yahoo News, 4 Jan. 2024, https://news.yahoo.com/woman-whose-testimony-dominates-epstein-183957952.html.
 

Alex Kasprak is an investigative journalist and science writer reporting on scientific misinformation, online fraud, and financial crime.