JP Morgan Chase, Deutsche Bank sued by Jeffrey Epstein victims under NY adult survivor act

In this Friday, Oct. 7, 2016, file photo, a flag for Deutsche Bank flies outside the German bank's New York offices on Wall Street. (Photo: Mark Lennihan/AP)

On Thursday, Jeffrey Epstein's victims filed lawsuits against JP Morgan Chase and Deutsche Bank under a new New York statute that removes the statute of limitations for sexual abuse and assault lawsuits.

In a pair of lawsuits filed in Manhattan Federal Court by anonymous victims, the behemoth financial institutions were accused of directly enabling the crimes of the sexual predator Epstein.

The lawsuits were filed under New York's Adult Survivor Act, which began Thursday and suspends the normal statute of limitations for sex abuse and sex assault lawsuits for one year.

The lawsuits against JP Morgan Chase and Deutsche Bank allege that the financial institutions ignored numerous red flags and directly enabled the deceased billionaire's crimes from 1998 to 2013.

Jane Doe, identified as a ballet dancer recruited to Epstein's ring by another young woman, accuses JP Morgan of being an "essential ingredient" in Epstein's child sex trafficking ring in the JP Morgan lawsuit.

The lawsuit alleges that senior JP Morgan executives were "willing to turn a blind eye to Epstein's blatantly illegal operation" for years while he trafficked dozens of 14-year-old girls.

"With JP Morgan's surrender, Epstein was able to sexually abuse dozens of women and pay millions in hush money without fear of being discovered by law enforcement. The lawsuit states that Epstein utilized the assistance of a reputable institution, JP Morgan, to conceal his criminal activity.

"JP Morgan cared only about profit and was willing to violate banking laws and disregard multiple red flags of criminality to enable Epstein to satisfy his abusive sexual appetite at the expense of countless young, vulnerable women."

James "Jes" Staley, who ran JP Morgan's private banking division in 2000, is accused of being "the key to making possible Epstein's perverted fantasies of sexual abuse and sex trafficking of countless young women"

According to the lawsuit, Epstein relied on retail billionaire Les Wexner to fund his ventures before meeting Staley. Staley provided Epstein with a crucially complicit financial institution that ignored red flags.

According to the lawsuit, JP Morgan's complicity in Epstein's activities reached "the point of allowing him to pay hundreds of young females in wire transfers and to access hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash to pay hush money to his growing number of victims."

The lawsuit does not allege that Staley was aware of the sex trafficking. According to the report, he benefited from the relationship by gaining introductions to Epstein's ultra-wealthy friends, who became clients, "incentivizing JP Morgan to ignore the suspicious activity in Epstein's accounts."

With (Staley's) assistance, the number of victims of the Epstein sex trafficking operation began to increase exponentially in 2000.

Staley left JP Morgan in 2014 and later became the CEO of the British financial giant Barclay's. After United Kingdom authorities concluded their investigation into his role in Epstein's sex trafficking, he resigned in November 2021.

A spokesperson for JP Morgan and an attorney for Staley did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the litigation.

Jane Doe filed a separate lawsuit against Deutsche Bank on Wednesday night, alleging that she was trafficked and sexually abused by Epstein from 2003 to 2018.

Similar to the JP Morgan case, the suit against Deutsche Bank alleges that the financial giant ignored Epstein's activities.

Jane Doe 1 was coerced into a cult-like life controlled and manipulated by Epstein and others to be sexually abused and do Epstein's bidding, according to the lawsuit.

According to the lawsuit, Epstein's sex abuse and trafficking operation were "well-oiled" and he "had the ability to advance or destroy nearly anyone financially, reputationally, and otherwise."

"Medical and normal life necessities would be denied to victims, including Jane Doe 1, if they did not allow Epstein to sexually abuse them and did not perform commercial sex acts for Epstein," states one section.

"Epstein could deprive Jane Doe 1 and other victims of their basic needs, such as shelter or housing, if she or they refused to allow sexual abuse or to perform those acts, or if they disobeyed his harmful instructions,"

Brian Blackstone, a spokesperson for Deutsche, refuted the allegations. Blackstone stated, "We believe this claim lacks merit and will present our arguments in court."

Deutsche Bank agreed with New York regulators in July 2020 to pay a $150 million fine for its dealings with Epstein and its relationships with Russian oligarch-affiliated banks. The state Department of Financial Services described the fine as "the first regulatory action against a financial institution for its dealings with Jeffrey Epstein."

In August of 2019, Epstein committed suicide by hanging himself in his cell at the federal Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan. The city's medical examiner determined that his death was a suicide. The Metropolitan Correctional Center is no longer operational.

Another lawsuit filed in the state Supreme Court in Manhattan against NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital alleged that doctors and nurses at the Ivy League hospital turned a blind eye to convicted ex-gynecologist Robert Hadden for 20 years.

The lawsuit includes a claim against an unnamed hospital administrator who received a complaint about Hadden in 1993. Despite a promise to conduct an investigation, the hospital failed to act. In addition, the lawsuit alleges that a supervisor told a nurse who reported Hadden to "keep quiet."

Hadden, 62, is alleged to have sexually assaulted and molested over 200 former patients. On federal charges that he lured minors to his practice to perform sexually invasive and unnecessary procedures, he is currently free on $1 million bail.

Last month, New York-Presbyterian and Columbia University Irving Medical Center announced a settlement of $165 million with 147 of his victims. A separate $71 million settlement with 79 women was reached a year prior.

Many of Hadden's victims, such as Marissa Hoechstetter and Evelyn Yang, led the decades-long effort to pass the Adult Survivors Act.

Publish : 2022-11-25 08:46:00

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