Don’t island girls count?

I guess the cost of influence went up. It’s not enough anymore to just offer free candy from your beat-up van anymore, you need a private plane and to give away millions of dollars. At least, that’s the lesson I’m learning from the Jeffrey Epstein case, which has taken another lurch into the gutter despite the fact that he’s dead.

Jeffrey Epstein allegedly transported underage girls to his secluded homes in the US Virgin Islands and forced them into sex work from 2001 through 2018, according to a lawsuit filed by the Attorney General of the US Virgin Islands.

“Epstein created a network of companies and individuals who participated in and conspired with him in a pattern of criminal activity related to the sex trafficking, forced labor, sexual assault, child abuse, and sexual servitude of these young women and children,” according to the lawsuit filed by Attorney General Denise N. George.

The suit, filed Wednesday, alleges that Epstein used a system of private planes, helicopters, boats and vehicles to bring young women and girls to his island residence on Little St. James. There, the victims were “deceptively subjected to sexual servitude, forced to engage in sexual acts and coerced into commercial sexual activity and forced labor,” the lawsuit says.

The scheme led to the molestation and exploitation of “numerous” girls between 12 and 17 years old, the suit alleges.

The lawsuit says that flight logs and other sources established that the enterprise stretched from 2001 to 2019. As recently as 2018, the lawsuit says, air traffic controllers and other airport personnel reported seeing Epstein leave his plane with young girls who appeared to be between 11 and 18 years old.

Remember, he was convicted of doing similar things in Florida in 2008. Convicted. Yet there he was, trafficking in young girls with barely a hiccup from 2001 to 2018. In between raping children, he was visiting prestigious scientists and offering them big bucks to help polish his reputation, and they accepted. They knew! Lawrence Krauss and Seth Lloyd were all completely aware that the source of their money was filthy and tarnished, and they took it anyway, and tried to make excuses to others that Epstein was a good guy, a true patron of science, who was trying to help advance knowledge — Krauss tried that line on me at an atheist conference in 2010, and I didn’t fall for it.

That’s what pisses me off. These people all knew what was going on, even if now they’re trying desperately to pretend they were innocent and unaware. A guy who was convicted of pedophilia and sex trafficking shows up at your door, accompanied by a couple of “Victoria’s Secret models”, and offers you tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in free money, but shhhh, don’t tell the university administration, and somehow you’re so fucking stupid you don’t suspect something shady?

Come on.

Am I that much smarter than some of the best-known names in science, at the most prestigious universities in the world?

Or maybe I’m just a little more sensitive to the idea of raping children than they are.


  1. robro says

    Remember, he was convicted…Convicted.

    Yep, and let’s not forget…he plead guilty. He admitted it. True he’s friends helped him get the venue changed from the Feds to Florida, the charges reduced, and his punishment basically spending the night at the county jail (sometimes?) for a year. I think one of the MIT guys said he visited him “in prison” (sorry, not even) during this “unfortunate period.”

  2. A Sloth named Sparkles says

    Especially Lawrence Krauss. It’s not enough that that he’s a serial harasser, he’s linked to one like him, only richer & worse.

    Considering that Krauss is one of the leaders of New Atheists, one wonders how many other New Atheists & scientists like him (and Pinker) are not only linked to Epstein but even aware of his crimes? Often the cliche is that priests & popes sexually abuse children, as often cited by a lot of New Atheist heads, but being linked to Epstein is somehow chickens come home to roost.

    I don’t even want to bring up “two sides of same coin” cliche ‘cos it’s a lot more complicated.

    The only way to make sense with all of these is how desperate the (mostly male) science community would do anything to get research funding, even by relying on monsters such as Epstein. But that’s just not good enough explanation.

  3. ikanreed says

    I know this is a skeptic site. And this counts as a conspiracy theory.

    But Epstein didn’t kill himself. Zero chance.

  4. timmyson says

    What happens to a billionaire’s assets when they’re arrested? Are they somehow forfeited? Could the victim’s sue his estate for some sort of restitution?

  5. says

    I honestly think it’s that last thing. Some people really are so monstrous as to think raping children is not that big a deal. Some even try to couch it in a complimentary fashion- “She was actually more mature than many of the adults I know!” But I just can’t escape thinking many of these men were not just ignorant but actually complicit. There’s no way Jeffrey Epstein set up all these companies and private planes and whatever totally on his own. He certainly wasn’t trafficking children only to random nobodies with no influence. There had better be other heads to roll after this scandal and not just Epstein and his immediate associates. There’s no way he wasn’t trading sex favors with some really powerful people. Some of them need to be taken down for all this to be worth it.

  6. says

    There is a non-zero chance that Epstein killed himself. It is possible that he did.
    It’s also possible that I’m hallucinating this conversation. Lots of things are possible.

    Now, if we’re discussing what’s likely, then things change. A guy with that much dirt on so many important people decides to just call it quits? He got away with it last time, why on earth would he give up now? It stinks.

  7. nomdeplume says

    @3 @6 My comment was going to be to ask whether this new information made it more or less likely that he killed himself. It could be seen either way.

  8. unclefrogy says

    that he was rich enough to have numerous lackeys to do his dirty work is obvious. That he had numerous filthy rich and influential friends is also obvious. The victim list is long and twisted and i am sure that all those are not limited to those he “f****d” either there are others who were forced and extorted into breaking numerous laws as well. Being so connected to others who also engaged in his activities left him vulnerable to extreme risk. those who also engaged and participated in the whole enterprise obviously do not adhere to “normal morality nor accepted law” or practices. He is dead now but will it all come out? probably not all but more maybe. modern communications and transportation allowed his enterprise to grow to a very large physical size. I do not take this to be any kind of ending like that of “Taken” nor one like the ending of “Don Giovanni” though I would say that some of what has happened could be seen in that way with poetic license. was someone just cleaning a nasty mess or did he finally just run from the darkness inside and loathing that drove him ?
    uncle frogy

  9. robro says

    timmyson @ #4 — Normally what happens to any person’s assets when they die depends on the state of their affairs. If they have a will and/or trust, then the assets go to the designated parties. If there is no will or trust, then the estate goes to probate court, in which case lot of the assets will end with the government. Any heirs that can claim some right to inherit would receive some of the remainder. As far as I know, Epstein had no heirs. As rich as he was, he probably had a will and trust, so his assets will go to who he designated. However, his victims can sue his estate, I believe. I think that has already happened. If so, everything goes on ice until the courts decide on that.

  10. chrislawson says


    What LykeX said. I am probably one of the regular commenters here most open to the possibility that Epstein’s death was arranged. But when you say there is a ‘zero’ probability of him having killed himself, that makes it hard to reconcile your claim to be a skeptic.

    My personal feeling is that if there was a plan to get rid of Epstein (and I only have suspicions, not evidence), the smart way to do it would not be to send some goon in to murder him in a manner the coroner would be unable to distinguish from suicide, but to give Epstein access to suicide materials and leave him unsupervised. As others have pointed out, we already know of the generalised conspiracy in American prisons to abuse inmates for profit, and that hundreds of prisoners attempt suicide every year in prison, and that the vast bulk of this goes unreported (local and county jails don’t feed data into the federal system). We don’t need to posit a separate conspiracy specific to Epstein to explain what happened.

    Rommel committed suicide as part of a conspiracy to kill him (he was too famous and well-regarded in Germany to simply execute, so the Nazis told him to shoot himself to spare his family; Rommel, knowing the way Nazis rolled, took the offer). This was in turn because of Rommel’s involvement in a failed conspiracy to kill Hitler. Even in a nested tangle of historically-documented conspiracies to murder, Rommel still died by his own hand.

  11. Pierce R. Butler says

    From the linked article:

    … the Attorney General’s lawsuit alleges 22 counts, including aggravated rape, child abuse and neglect, human trafficking, forced labor and prostitution.

    The lawsuit targets Epstein’s estate, several LLCs and corporations controlled by Epstein, and unnamed John and Jane Does whose identities or involvement with Epstein is currently unknown. The Attorney General is asking to dissolve the Epstein enterprise and for punitive damages as well as a jury trial.