Billionaire Stephen DeKoff Buys Jeffrey Epstein’s Private Islands


Little St. James Island, one of the properties of financier Jeffrey Epstein, is seen in an aerial view near Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands, on July 21, 2019.

Marco Bello | reuters

An investment firm led by billionaire Stephen DeKoff has bought two private islands U.S. Virgin Islands previously owned by the late notorious sex offender jeffrey epsteinDekoff confirmed to CNBC on Wednesday.

forbes Dekoff, founder of the private equity firm, first reported Black Diamond Capital Managementbought both islands for $60 million, less than half of their initial asking price.

One of the islands was used by Epstein Sexual Exploitation Youth women For years, according to court filings.

“Mr. Dekoff plans to develop a state-of-the-art, five-star, world-class luxury 25-room resort that will help boost tourism, create jobs and spur economic development in the area, while respecting and preserving its important environment of the islands,” according to a Press release about sales.

SD Investments, which is led by DeKauf, announced the purchase.

“A significant portion of the sale proceeds are being paid to the government of the US Virgin Islands under a previously announced settlement agreement between the government and the estate of Mr. Epstein,” the release said.

In November, Epstein’s estate and related entities agreed to pay more than $105 million to the government of the Virgin Islands to settle sex trafficking and child abuse claims. That deal required the estate to pay half of the proceeds of the sale of the islands of Little St. James and Great St. James to the Virgin Islands, and an additional $450,000 in damages to Great St. James, where Epstein had lived. Its remains were destroyed. Structures that were said to have been built to make room for hundreds of years of development.

During a brief phone interview with CNBC, Dekoff confirmed that he had purchased the islands.

“No comment,” he said when asked about his plans for it.

Dekoff hung up the phone again.

Little St. James covers more than 70 acres, and Great St. James is more than twice the size of its neighbor.

The purchase was reported on the same day that CNBC revealed that attorneys for the US Virgin Islands and Epstein accusers JP Morgan will oust Jamie Dimon as CEO Starting 26 May.

USVI and unnamed woman accuse JPMorgan of profiting from sex trafficking of young women at Epstein’s Virgin Islands property in civil federal lawsuit. Epstein had been a client of JPMorgan Chase for years, and had millions of dollars in deposits there.

The bank denies the allegations in the lawsuit. But it kept Epstein as a client until 2013, five years after he accused an underage girl of soliciting sex for money in a Florida state court.

Several women have said they were raped or sexually assaulted in Little St. James, where Epstein had a mansion. They included Virginia Giuffre, who has alleged that she was sexually abused there and elsewhere. prince andrewYounger brother of King Charles of Great Britain.

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Andrew has denied her claim, but agreed to a confidential settlement with Giuffre in February 2022 to end a civil lawsuit against him in US District Court in Manhattan.

The USVI lawsuit against JP Morgan states that Epstein “was a resident of the Virgin Islands and maintained a residence on Little St. James, which he acquired in 1998, and in 2016 he also purchased Great St. James.” “

The islands were collectively worth $86 million following Epstein’s death in August 2019, when his former friend Donald Trump And Bill Clinton committed suicide in a Manhattan jail a month after being arrested on federal child sex trafficking charges.

“Epstein Enterprises acquired Little St. James in the Virgin Islands in 1998 as the perfect haven for the trafficking of young women and underage girls for sexual slavery, child abuse and sexual assault,” the suit says.

“Little St. James is a secluded, private island about two miles from St. Thomas with no other residents,” the suit said. “It can only be visited by private boat or helicopter … Epstein had easy access by his private helicopter to Little St. James from St. Thomas’ private airfield only 10 minutes away, but the women and children who They smuggled them out, abused them, and held that they were not able to sail there without their permission and assistance, as it was too far and dangerous to swim to St. Thomas.”

The lawsuit states that in 2016, Epstein used a straw buyer to conceal Epstein’s identity and purchased Great St. James, the closest island to Little St. James.

“By then, Epstein was a convicted sex offender,” the suit says. “Epstein Enterprises purchased the island for more than $20 million because its participants wanted to ensure that the island did not become a base from which others could observe their activities or visitors.”

It states: “By obtaining ownership and control of Great St. James to the exclusion of others, Epstein Enterprises created additional barriers to prevent those involuntarily held at Little St. James from escaping or receiving assistance from others “

Epstein’s former paramour and longtime procurer Ghislaine Maxwell was sentenced last June to 20 years in prison for recruiting and grooming teenage girls for sexual abuse by Epstein.

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