One of the shocks that came out of the investigation of Jeffrey Epstein, the pedophile who committed suicide while in jail over the weekend is the extent of his connections to high-ranking politicians and business executives – his tentacles reaching out to Tesla headquarters in Silicon Valley, according to the New York Times.
According to columnist James Stewart, Epstein advised him last year, during a visit to the financier-cum-pedophile’s New York City mansion that he was assisting Elon Musk in his efforts to find a new chairman for Tesla. The South African-born executive was forced to relinquish that post as part of an agreement with the Securities and Exchange Commission about his claims Tesla was going private with the help of funding from Saudi Arabia.
Epstein had a wide presence among powerbrokers, among other things calling President Donald Trump and former President Bill Clinton friends at various times. But there were also a number of mysteries about the now-deceased financier, including the actual sources of his claimed wealth.
Epstein committed suicide during the weekend while being held in a Manhattan prison awaiting trial on charges of sex trafficking. A decade ago, he had received what many now call a “sweetheart deal” in a prior case involving numerous underage women.
The agreement, which limited his jail time and even allowed him to leave his cell to work during the week, has come under sharp fire and last month resulted in the resignation of U.S. Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta, who supervised the plea agreement.
Exactly what Epstein did has remained something of a mystery, though he did manage funds for a number of high-rollers, including Les Wexner, the founder and CEO of L Brands, which includes Victoria’s Secret. And it was widely believed Epstein served, in various forms, as an adviser to other high-profile figures.
Times columnist Stewart wrote on Monday that he contacted Epstein last year after he had “heard a rumor that he was advising Tesla’s embattled chief executive, Musk.
Musk was trying to resolve the crisis touched off by his August 2018 tweet claiming that Tesla would go private, for $420 a share. He subsequently indicated the move was backed by a Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund. The SEC investigated the claims and sued Musk and Tesla. The executive then agreed to relinquish the chairman’s post while being allowed to remain the automaker’s CEO.
“I’d heard that Mr. Epstein was compiling a list of candidates at Mr. Musk’s behest — and that Mr. Epstein had an email from Mr. Musk authorizing the search for a new chairman,” Stewart wrote.
Last November, the automaker tapped Robyn Denholm, an Australian telecomm executive, to serve as its new CEO.
And “Mr. Musk and Tesla vehemently deny this” happened with any involvement or assistance from Epstein, Stewart said in his column, adding that, “it seemed clear Mr. Epstein had embellished his role in the Tesla situation to enhance his own importance and gain attention.”
The investigation into Epstein’s alleged sex trafficking is expected to continue even after this suicide. It may eventually reveal more of the details about the sources of his wealth – as well as connections that could be linked to his various criminal acts.