Disgraced financier and convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein reportedly wrote a final will just two days before killing himself in a New York jail, placing $578 million in assets into a trust, which could hinder efforts to collect damages by women he sexually abused.
Epstein named lawyers Darren K. Indyke and Richard D. Kahn the executors of his assets in the trust, which could shield them from his victims seeking damages.
The will was filed Aug. 15 with the court in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Epstein was in a federal jail cell in Manhattan awaiting trial on charges of conspiracy and and trafficking minors for sex when he allegedly hanged himself on Aug. 10. The medical examiner determined the death a suicide, though, conspiracy theories abound after such a high-profile case ends in such a manner.
A third person, Boris Nikolic, a biotech venture capitalist, was named as a backup executor in case one of the others couldn’t or wouldn’t serve. Nikolic said Monday he was “shocked” to be named in the will, according to Bloomberg.
“I was not consulted in these matters and I have no intent to fulfill these duties, whatsoever,” Nikolic said in an emailed statement.
Epstein owned a lot of real estate, including a ranch in New Mexico, a mansion in Manhattan and a private Caribbean island. The properties are held through various entities named in the will.
According to Epstein’s last will and testament, the total value of his estate is $577,672,654:
- Cash: $56,547,773
- Fixed Income Investments: $14,304,679
- Equities: $112,679,138
- Aviation Assets, Cars, Boats: $18,551,700
- Hedge Funds and Private Equity Investments: $194,986,301
- New York Mansion: $55,931,000
- New Mexico Ranch: $17,246,208
- Palm Beach Home: $12,380,209
- Paris Property: $8,672,823
- Great St. James Island: $22,498,600
- Little St. James Island: $63,874,223
The $578 million doesn’t include Epstein’s extensive art collection, which is subject to appraisal.
It is expected that Epstein’s estate will face a number of lawsuits by women who claim he abused them while they were children. Epstein pleaded guilty more than a decade ago to prostitution charges in Florida and soliciting an underage girl.
Attorney Bruce Steiner told Bloomberg it is suspicious that Epstein was able to complete the necessary steps to finalize so much paperwork.
“It would be hard to transfer it that quickly,” Steiner said. “If he didn’t transfer the assets into the trust before he died, then the victims can simply go after the executors of his estate. Then it doesn’t matter who the estate goes to.”
As for the executors, Indyke and Kahn, they are lawyers who are “investigating potential debts and claims of the estate and at this time they are unknown,” and will be paid $250,000 each, and no trustee is named in the will.