- Jeffrey Epstein, the late sex criminal and wealthy investor, called on his business allies to help him connect with Microsoft Chairman and CEO Bill Gates.
- Epstein directed his associates to focus their efforts on connecting him with Gates, among other business leaders.
- Gates and Epstein eventually met in 2013 to discuss ways to boost philanthropic spending. The New Yorker reports that Gates gave a contribution to MIT with Epstein as his intermediary a year later.
Bill Gates once wanted nothing to do with Jeffrey Epstein, a wealthy financier and sex offender who already had several powerful connections. That changed in 2013, when Epstein unleashed an aggressive lobbying campaign to meet with Gates, the Microsoft co-founder and one of the richest, most influential people in the world.
Gates, according to people with direct knowledge of the matter, was inundated with outreach from people speaking on Epstein’s behalf, including business associates of Epstein’s. Gates ended up meeting with Epstein and other philanthropists in 2013 in New York to discuss “growing philanthropy” on a broader scale.
After the meeting, Gates met his family in Florida after flying on one of Epstein’s planes. Gates was still chairman of Microsoft when he attended the New York gathering.
The Gates episode is another example of Epstein’s tireless attempts to contact, influence and advise business titans and other leaders. Before he was convicted of a sex crime, Epstein was friends with President Bill Clinton and then-celebrity real estate magnate Donald Trump. L Brands founder Les Wexner, meanwhile, was one of Epstein’s few clients. Epstein died at the age of 66 in a jailhouse suicide last month, weeks after he was arrested on federal charges of child sex trafficking.
The efforts to get into Gates’ orbit happened after Epstein was sentenced in 2008 to 13 months in jail on a charge of soliciting an underage prostitute. He spent much of his jail time on work release.