JPMorgan to pay $290 million to victims of the Epstein scandal

The proposed settlement would see JPMorgan Chase pay $290m to end the lawsuit. (Photo: /Mike Segar/Reuters/File)

JPMorgan Chase has agreed in principle to resolve a class-action lawsuit filed by a victim of Jeffrey Epstein, according to a joint statement issued by the bank and the woman's attorneys.

The settlement disclosed on Monday resolves one claim against JPMorgan in a woman's proposed class action alleging Epstein abused her.

In 2019, the billionaire financier was arrested on federal charges accusing him of paying underage girls hundreds of dollars in cash for massages and then molesting them at his Florida and New York residences. The 66-year-old was discovered deceased in prison on August 10 of that year. A medical examiner determined that he committed suicide.

"Any association with him [Epstein] was a mistake, and we regret it," stated JPMorgan. We would not have continued doing business with him if we believed he was using our bank to perpetrate heinous crimes in any way.

The proposed settlement would require the bank to pay $290 million to end the lawsuit, according to The New York Times, which cited David Boies, the plaintiffs' primary attorney.

In settling, JPMorgan Chase did not acknowledge wrongdoing. The Reuters news agency cited an anonymous source familiar with the situation who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

According to the lawsuits, from 1998 to 2013, JPMorgan provided Epstein with loans and routinely permitted him to withdraw large sums of cash despite being aware of his involvement in sex trafficking. Jane Doe, an anonymous victim, stated that she was sexually abused by Epstein from 2006 to 2013.

More Lawsuits

The largest bank in the United States is still being sued by the government of the US Virgin Islands, where Epstein allegedly exploited victims in his mansion and owned two adjacent islands.

JPMorgan is also pursuing legal action against its former executive Jes Staley, whom it accuses of concealing what he knew about Epstein.

Staley has stated that he regrets befriending Epstein but denies being aware of his alleged involvement in sex trafficking. Monday, his attorneys did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The proposed class-action lawsuit accused JPMorgan of ignoring internal warnings about Epstein's sexual abuse of girls and young women and choosing to retain him as a client.

Epstein was a client of JPMorgan from 1998 until he was dropped in 2013, despite his indictment on prostitution-related charges in 2006 and related guilty plea two years later.

Deutsche Bank, where Epstein was a client from 2013 to 2018, agreed last month to pay $75 million to resolve a similar lawsuit brought by women who allege Epstein trafficked them.

Sigrid McCawley, a lawyer for the woman known as Jane Doe 1, who sued JPMorgan, said in a statement that the settlements indicate that financial institutions play a significant role in detecting and preventing sex trafficking.

Since 2006, Jamie Dimon has served as JPMorgan's chief executive. The settlement partially resolves a rare public relations controversy.

Dimon testified under oath in May that he had scarcely heard of Epstein before the financier's arrest in July 2019 and did not recall discussing Epstein's accounts with other bank officials, including those with the authority to terminate Epstein as a client.

Staley was once a close ally of Dimon and a potential CEO successor.

Dimon stated that he asked Staley to depart JPMorgan in 2013 before Epstein's dismissal because he was not effectively managing the investment bank. Dimon stated that Epstein was not a factor in Staley's departure.

Former JPMorgan attorney Stephen Cutler requested the bank sever ties with Epstein, but other executives resisted, according to documents recently disclosed in the lawsuit.

Publish : 2023-06-13 11:16:00

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