Women from the U.S. Virgin Islands say they were sexually abused as a result of Epstein's perversion ring, which JPMorgan knowingly benefited from, the suit claims. They could soon receive monetary and other awards, should the legal filing succeed.
Manhattan District Judge Jed Rakoff issued a four-page ruling in response to motions filed by JPMorgan and Deutsche bank, another embroiled financial institution, to dismiss three separate lawsuits pertaining to the matter. Judge Rakoff decided that the U.S. Virgin Islands and the women can proceed with these lawsuits against the banks.
While dismissing several of the counts in each of the cases, Judge Rakoff allowed for other "explosive" counts, to quote CNBC, to remain and head toward trial. The reason for this will be explained "in due course," Judge Rakoff further promised.
(Related: Last fall, JPMorgan was caught canceling the checking accounts of religious non-profit groups, demanding a full list of their donors as a condition for reconsideration.)
Epstein, as you may recall, "committed suicide" in a Manhattan jail just prior to the launch of the Wuhan coronavirus (Covid-19) "pandemic" where he was awaiting trial on federal criminal child sex trafficking charges. Epstein was a JPMorgan client from 1998 through 2013.
In the final five years of his relationship with the financial institution, Epstein pleaded guilty in Florida to soliciting an underage prostitute. A lawyer for the U.S. Virgin Islands also says that JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon "knew in 2008 that his billionaire client was a sex trafficker," a claim that a JPMorgan attorney denies.
In 2013 after leaving JPMorgan, Epstein switched over to Deutsche Bank where he remained despite numerous employees reporting that at least 40 underage girls had filed sexual assault claims against him. At the time, the bank paid New York banking regulators a $150 million fine over the matter.
In a statement, Brad Edwards, the Edwards Pottinger attorney representing Epstein's abuse accusers, celebrated Judge Rakoff's ruling as "a monumental victory for the hundreds of survivors of Jeffrey Epstein's sex trafficking scheme and survivors of sexual abuse in general, all of whom can rest easier knowing no individual or institution is above accountability."
"Epstein's sex trafficking operation was impossible without the assistance of JPMorgan Chase, and later Deutsche Bank," Edwards further said. "And we assure the public that we will leave no stone unturned in our quest for justice for the many victims who deserved better from one of America's largest financial institutions."
It is Judge Rakoff's opinion, based on what has been presented to him as evidence, that JPMorgan "knowingly benefited from participating in a sex trafficking venture" led by none other than Epstein, who was one of the bank's big clients at the time.
Judge Rakoff also said the accusers can pursue claims that JPMorgan "negligently failed to exercise reasonable care to prevent physical harm" to Epstein's victims, as well as failed to exercise reasonable care in providing non-routine banking for Epstein.
One of the big accusations is that JPMorgan actually obstructed efforts to enforce the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, which could have brought Epstein's crimes to light a whole lot sooner, possibly resulting in the system getting him off the streets a whole lot earlier.
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