Former US president Bill Clinton has been drawn into the scandal surrounding Virginia Roberts’ allegations she was instructed to have sex with Prince Andrew by American financier Jeffrey Epstein.
Court documents show Clinton was one of many high-profile friends of Epstein to visit his private island and fly on his jet, and that Epstein’s phone directory showed he had 21 phone numbers for Clinton or his aides.
The documents suggest no wrong-doing on Clinton’s behalf, but they have set off speculation – particularly on the part of conservative online media – about the potential impact of the scandal on Hillary Clinton’s presumed run for the White House.”Bubba and the Palm Beach Pedophile” screams a headline on the Drudge Report, the conservative blog made famous by its Monica Lewinsky scandal revelations, in a headline today.
“The [flight logs] clearly show that Clinton frequently flew with Epstein aboard his plane, then suddenly stopped – raising the suspicion that the friendship abruptly ended, perhaps because of events related to Epstein’s sexual abuse of children,” says a statement of facts lodged by Roberts’ lawyer in a civil case.
“This information certainly leads one to believe that Clinton might well be a source of relevant information and efforts to obtain discovery from him were reasonably calculated to lead to admissible evidence,” it went on.
In an interview with the Daily Mail in 2011, Roberts, who was 17 when she met Epstein and claims she became his “sex slave”, describes meeting Clinton while with Epstein, but says she was never “lent out” to him, as she says she was to Prince Andrew.
The explosive new allegations of abuse of Virginia Roberts by Prince Andrew begins with another broader, older, scandal – that the billionaire American financier Jeffrey Epstein procured young women and girls to have sex with and to “loan” to his powerful friends.
It is alleged Epstein hoped to ingratiate himself with them, and even to gather potential blackmail material.
In 2008 Epstein pleaded guilty to one count of solicitation of prostitution and served 13 months of an 18-month sentence after prosecutors in Florida dropped other charges in a plea deal.