New documents in the Jeffrey Epstein case detail how girls were recruited to his home

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A second set of unsealed court documents containing the names of alleged victims, employees and former associates of Jeffrey Epstein, the deceased convicted sex offender, was released on Jan. 4.

This set, following the first batch released the previous day, sheds light on how teenage girls were allegedly recruited to go to Epstein’s home in Palm Beach, Florida, and what was expected of them once inside.

The 327 pages released on Thursday include a deposition from one woman who outlined how the girls were convinced to go to the home and then bring additional friends for monetary payment.

The girls were often expected to give “massages” — which typically involved some kind of sexual element — but other times, just were paid for being at the home, she said. The woman also said that she’d been 16 or 17 at the time and had no massage experience when she first visited the Florida home.

“Jeffrey took my clothes off without my consent the first time I met him,” the woman said, according to a transcript. The woman’s name has been redacted.

Thursday’s batch of court documents also featured a deposition of former Palm Beach Police Det. Joseph Recarey, who has since died.

He said in 2016 that Ghislaine Maxwell, Epstein’s associate who is now serving 20 years in prison, was involved in seeking girls to give massages and work at Epstein’s home.

Recarey, who was the lead detective in charge of the original Palm Beach investigation into Epstein, said he interviewed around 33 women total. Only two had massage experience, and most were under the age of 18 when they started working for Epstein.

The court documents being released in batches were part of a defamation lawsuit first filed in 2015 against Maxwell by Epstein accuser Virginia Giuffre. The lawsuit was settled out of court in 2017.

U.S. District Court executive Ed Friedland confirmed to NBC News the documents and names will be released on a rolling basis, as there are dozens of documents. The names of anonymous parties who have objected to the release of the documents will be held until a later date, Friedland said.

Often mistakenly referred to as “Epstein’s list,” here’s what to know about the documents, which are expected to include more than 150 names with ties to Epstein.

This disgraced financier died by suicide in 2019 in federal jail in downtown Manhattan, where he was waiting to be tried on federal sex trafficking charges.

Why are the documents being released now?

A New York judge in December ordered for dozens of court documents to be unsealed from a civil lawsuit filed against Maxwell in 2015.

After the suit was settled in 2017, the Miami Herald went to court seeking the release of sealed court documents related to the case.

Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell  (Joe Schildhorn/Patrick McMullan / Getty Images)
Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell (Joe Schildhorn/Patrick McMullan / Getty Images)

On Dec. 18, U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska ordered for materials including previously redacted records, such as deposition transcripts, to be released after Jan. 1, according to court documents.

So what is "Epstein's list" — and will there be client names on it?

On social media, some have referred to the court document releases as a "list" of Epstein's possible clients — a characterization that is not accurate.

More than 150 names of Epstein's associates, alleged victims, employees and others are expected to be among the documents to be released. Some of the people who were named only have a passing connection to Epstein and the scandal.

Preska said in the order that most of the names were already known through other public filings, testimony during Maxwell's criminal trial or other ways. A number of the names are associated with behavior that is "not salacious," Preska said.

The names of minor victims who have not testified in the case or whose identities have not been previously made public will not be released, according to Preska.

Where do the names come from?

The names appear in court documents from the lawsuit Virginia Giuffre filed against Maxwell in 2015.

Giuffre accused Epstein of sexually abusing her, and also alleged that Maxwell and Epstein facilitated the sexual abuse between her and other men from 2000 to 2002.

Maxwell accused Giuffre of lying about the allegations, leading Giuffre to file the defamation lawsuit in 2015. The lawsuit was settled in 2017, and the terms of the settlement were not disclosed.

Sigrid McCawley, Giuffre's attorney, said her client supports the documents being made public, adding that they only begin to scratch the surface of Epstein's scheme.

"We learn more each time about how the sophisticated trafficking operation happened for so many decades, and how many people were involved," McCawley said on TODAY on Jan. 4. "It was vast, it was significant. And it harmed literally hundreds of young women."

Who is named in the recently released documents?

Many of the most high-profile names in the first batch of documents released on Jan. 3 and 4, have previously been released.

A transcript of Giuffre's deposition was included in the documents, in which she said she was being instructed to have sex with Prince Andrew, another unidentified prince and an unnamed owner of a large hotel chain.

Prince Andrew did not immediately respond to NBC News' request for comment on Jan. 3. The royal has previously denied the allegations. In 2022, Giuffre settled a high-profile lawsuit out of court against Prince Andrew.

The London Metropolitan Police said in a statement on Jan. 5 to NBC News it was aware of the court documents related to Prince Andrew.

“As with any matter, should new and relevant information be brought to our attention we will assess it,” a spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police said. “No investigation has been launched.”

Former President Bill Clinton was also named in the documents, which has previously been reported. In 2019, flight records made public showed he'd traveled on Epstein’s planes numerous times.

Another Epstein accuser, Johanna Sjoberg, said in a 2016 deposition released on Jan. 3 that Epstein had once told her that "Clinton likes them young, referring to girls."

Clinton is not accused of wrongdoing and there is no mention of wrongdoing in that document. Sjoberg went on to say she'd never met the former president and never seen him on Epstein’s island.

A spokesperson for Clinton said in 2019 that the former president had not spoken to Epstein in over a decade and was unaware of any criminal activity at that time. Angel Ureña, a spokesperson for Clinton, referred NBC News to the 2019 statement when asked for comment about the release of the documents.

Former President Donald Trump is also mentioned in the documents, but isn't accused of any wrongdoing. Sjoberg referenced Trump in the 2016 deposition, recalling when Epstein’s plane would have to land in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

“Jeffrey said, Great, we’ll call up Trump” and go to a casino, Sjoberg said in the deposition. She also said she never gave Trump a massage.

In July 2019, video footage of Epstein and Trump partying together at Trump’s Florida mansion in the early 1990s was published from the NBC archives.

Trump did not immediately respond to NBC News' request for comment on Jan. 3, but has previously said he hadn’t been in touch with Epstein for 15 years before his death.

Sjoberg said she'd also met late singer Michael Jackson at Epstein's home in Palm Beach but did not massage him.

She also said she met magician David Copperfield at a dinner at Epstein’s. She recounted how there was another woman at dinner who looked very young and wondered if it was possible she was in high school.

Sjoberg said Copperfield did magic tricks at the dinner and briefly mentioned he had "questioned me if I was aware that girls were getting paid to find other girls" before the line of questioning moved on.

Copperfield did not immediately respond to a request for comment from

Where is Ghislaine Maxwell now?

Maxwell is serving her 20-year prison sentence after she was convicted in 2021 of five federal sex trafficking charges. She's currently serving her sentence at the Federal Correctional Institution in Tallahassee, Florida, according to the Bureau of Prisons.

CORRECTION (Jan. 5, 2024 9:50 a.m.): An earlier version of this story misstated the location of Epstein's Florida home. The home was located in Palm Beach, Florida, not Palm Springs, Florida. It was demolished in 2021.

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