NEW YORK (AP) — Deutsche Bank and JPMorgan Chase are asking a federal court to throw out lawsuits that say big banks should have seen evidence of sex trafficking by Jeffrey Epstein, the high-flying financier who committed suicide in prison. while facing criminal charges.
The banks said in filings late Friday that they did not commit any negligent act that would cause harm to the women who filed the lawsuits and that the lawsuits did not show that they profited from Epstein’s sex trafficking.
The filings in federal district court in New York came about a month after two women, both identified as Jane Doe, sued banks and the government in the US Virgin Islands, where Epstein had a home. on a small island of his own.
The lawsuits, seeking class action status to represent other Epstein victims, claim the banks knowingly profited from Epstein’s sex trafficking and “chose profits over following the law” to win millions of dollars from the financier. .
They suggested that banks should have turned away from Epstein after his 2006 Florida arrest (he ultimately pleaded guilty to state charges of soliciting prostitution) and the fallout from a federal investigation and news coverage.
“Without the involvement of the financial institution, Epstein’s sex trafficking scheme could not have existed or prospered,” the lawsuits state.
JPMorgan Chase said Friday that Jane Doe in her case “is entitled to justice… But this lawsuit against JPMC is directed at the wrong party, has no legal basis and should be dismissed.”
Deutsche Bank said it provided “routine banking services” to Epstein from 2013 to 2018, and the lawsuit “does not come close to adequately alleging that Deutsche Bank … was part of Epstein’s criminal sex trafficking ring.”