Astrid Stawiarz/Stringer and Patrick McMullan/Getty Images
- Les Wexner, the CEO of Victoria’s Secret parent company L Brands, has come under intense scrutiny for his relationship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
- Epstein was arrested and charged with sex trafficking of minors earlier this month, The Daily Beast reported.
- Epstein was Wexner’s financial advisor, but their relationship often went beyond the parameters of professional colleagues, a Wall Street Journal report said. A 2002 lawsuit described the two as "close personal friends."
- From their reported first meeting in the late 1980s to Wexner’s decision to cut ties between the two, here is a timeline of the complicated relationship between Wexner and Epstein.
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It’s hard to talk about Jeffrey Epstein without mentioning Les Wexner.
Wexner is the CEO and founder of L Brands, the parent company to Victoria’s Secret. Epstein, who was arrested and charged with sex trafficking in July, was once the billionaire CEO’s financial advisor. Wexner was one of Epstein’s only known clients.
The two men maintained a decades-long relationship, in which Wexner reportedly handed over an unusual amount of money and power to his financier. Epstein is said to have received millions of dollars from Wexner, and a private plane and two mansions that had previously been owned by Wexner or his companies fell into Epstein’s hands.
Epstein was even involved in the process of selecting models for Victoria’s Secret, the Wall Street Journal reported.
With the charges against Epstein coming to light, Wexner’s relationship with his former financier is being questioned. The two were described as "close personal friends" in a 2002 lawsuit, but Wexner has claimed recently that he regrets any association with the convicted sex offender and cut off contact over a decade ago.
The relationship between Epstein and Wexner is long and convoluted. In an effort to make sense of it all, we traced the relationship using reports about their first introduction in the late 1980s to the present day:
It began in the late 1980s. Les Wexner had spent years building up his chain of stores called The Limited, which he started in 1963. In 1982 Wexner bought a small chain of San Francisco lingerie shops called Victoria’s Secret for $1 million.
Source: The Telegraph
Victoria’s Secret grew as Wexner formed the chain into what it is today. By the early 1990s Victoria’s Secret was soaring, and sales exceeded $1 billion. It was around this time that Wexner met Jeffrey Epstein.
Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for Fragrance Foundation
With his massive success in Victoria’s Secret, Wexner wanted to expand his business ventures outside of retail. Robert Meister, an insurance executive, reportedly introduced Wexner to Epstein in the mid-to-late 1980s. Thus began a decades-long relationship.
AP Photo/Matt Sullivan
Source: The New York Times
- Victoria’s Secret reportedly continued to work with a modeling agency after it was accused of supplying underage girls to Jeffrey Epstein
- How Victoria’s Secret head Les Wexner went from small-town Ohio shopkeeper to facing scrutiny for his ties to convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein
- Jeffrey Epstein reportedly lived the life of a billionaire thanks to hand-me-downs from Victoria’s Secret head Les Wexner