The Jeffrey Epstein trafficking ring saga keeps shining light on the behavior of the rich and powerful worldwide.
Public records just released reveal that embattled billionaire financier Leon Black has reached a settlement early this year with the US Virgin Islands territory government to avoid being dragged into the Vortex of the lawsuits raging in Federal Court.
“Private equity billionaire Leon Black agreed in January to pay $62.5m to the US Virgin Islands to be released from potential claims related to the territory’s investigation of the Jeffrey Epstein sex-trafficking ring.”
Black had a close relationship with Epstein for decades, socializing together and sharing deep financial ties as the late sex offender gave him tax advice, help with buying artwork, and many other professional services.
“The billionaire reportedly paid Mr. Epstein $158m for financial planning. The pair cut business ties in 2018 because of a ‘fee dispute’, representatives for Mr. Black have previously said.
In 2021, Mr. Black stepped down from Apollo Global Management, the private equity firm he co-founded. Following his resignation, the firm hired the law firm Dechert to investigate his ties to Epstein. Dechert cleared Mr. Black of wrongdoing but noted that payments to Epstein ‘far exceeded any amounts’ to his other professional advisors.”
This settlement with Leon Black is another part of the US Virgin Islands’ larger probe of the Epstein sex trafficking ring.
“The settlement said its contents should not be construed as an “admission of liability”
The agreement was reached in January and produced by the Virgin Islands government as a result of a public records request by the [New York] Times.”
Black and the USVI settled claims through private mediation that same month.
“As publicly reported, Mr. Black engaged and made payments to Jeffrey Epstein for legitimate financial advisory services, which based on everything now known, he very much regrets,” a spokesperson for Black wrote in an email to Forbes, adding, “There is no suggestion in the USVI settlement that Mr. Black was aware of or participated in any misconduct.”
The fallout continues to hurt the billionaire over his relationship with Epstein. Besides losing his CEO position in the firm he founded, he also saw other old allegations emerge.
Ex-model Guzel Ganieva, whom he reportedly had dated for years, accused Black of rape. He sued her for defamation but failed, and Ganieva also filed a separate lawsuit accusing Black of defaming her.
“That suit [from Ganieva] was dismissed by a New York state judge in May, when the judge ruled that Ganieva’s claims could not be pursued after she accepted $9.5 million in payments linked to a nondisclosure agreement that covered their six-year relationship.”