As previously reported, billionaire investor Jeffrey Epstein was arrested earlier this month and charged with allegedly sex trafficking minors in New York and Florida between 2002 and 2005. As multiple outlets are revealing Epstein’s high-powered friends and associates, there appears to be a link to Les Wexner, CEO of L Brands, the parent company of Victoria’s Secret. Now, the New York Times is reporting Epstein used to pose as a recruiter for the lingerie brand’s catalog.
Per the Times, by the mid ’90s Esptein had "sweeping powers over [Wexner’s] finances, philanthropy and private life," and used his proximity to Wexner to gain access to aspiring models. In 1996, model Maria Farmer alleges Epstein sexually assaulted her in Wexner’s Ohio mansion. She claims she called the police but was not allowed to leave for 12 hours. Not even a year after the incident with Farmer, Epstein allegedly attacked another model, Alicia Arden, in his Santa Monica hotel room. She filed a police report a week later. “Why would someone that powerful and successful [Wexner] befriend someone like Jeffrey Epstein?” Arden asks the NYT. “I don’t get it.”
A spokesperson for L Brands told the Times in a statement: “While Mr. Epstein served as Mr. Wexner’s personal money manager for a period that ended nearly 12 years ago, we do not believe he was ever employed by nor served as an authorized representative of the company."
Epstein, 66, was arrested in New Jersey on July 6 for allegedly sexually abusing dozens of minors at his Upper East Side mansion, as well his mansion in Palm Beach, Florida, between 2002 and 2005.
More and more, it looks like a good thing Victoria’s Secret won’t air its fashion show on TV anymore.
If you have experienced sexual violence and are in need of crisis support, please call the RAINN Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).
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Source: Refinery29 – Channing Hargrove