James E. Staley, the former top JPMorgan Chase executive who was closest to the disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein at the bank, relied on him for many years as almost something of a personal adviser, a document shows.
The two men discussed a wide variety of topics in emails, including a potential meeting between Chinese officials and executives of the nation’s largest bank, business deals that Mr. Staley was working on, a potential promotion for Mr. Staley and the fallout from the 2008 financial crisis, according to a document the bank prepared shortly after Mr. Epstein’s arrest in 2019 on federal sex-trafficking charges.
The document, reviewed by The New York Times and included as a sealed exhibit in a court filing, also revealed the personal nature of Mr. Staley’s relationship with Mr. Epstein. A number of times, Mr. Staley told Mr. Epstein he missed him, talked about mutual friends and about helping his daughter get into graduate school.
In one email, Mr. Staley bragged to Mr. Epstein about his New Year’s Eve 2011 plans: “I’m here in Brazil with three beautiful women. Have a happy new year.”
In another email exchange, according to the document, Mr. Staley wrote to Mr. Epstein in 2010: “Maybe they’re tracking u?? That was fun. Say hi to Snow White.” Mr. Epstein replied, “What character would you like next.” In 2009, Mr. Epstein sent Mr. Staley an email with a photo attachment “of a young woman wearing a revealing outfit in a modeling pose,” the document said.
Mr. Staley, better known as Jes, is a central figure in two civil lawsuits filed last year against JPMorgan over the bank’s nearly 15-year business relationship with Mr. Epstein. The lawsuits contend JPMorgan looked the other way at accusations that Mr. Epstein’s was trafficking teen girls and young men, and continued to even when he had to register as a sex offender after pleading guilty in 2008 to a charge of soliciting prostitution from a teenage girl.
Mr. Staley has repeatedly denied in court papers doing anything wrong or being aware that Mr. Epstein had sexually abused young women and teenage girls while the bank had him as a client. Mr. Staley’s lawyers did not respond to requests for comment. JPMorgan, which also said it was unaware of Mr. Epstein’s activities, this year sued Mr. Staley seeking to ensure that, if it was determined that he did engage in improper activity, he could be held liable for damages the bank might end up paying.
The 22-page document also summarizes other emails involving communications between Mr. Epstein and other employees of JPMorgan.
In some emails, Mr. Epstein mentioned all the rich and famous people he was meeting or talking to, including Prince Andrew. He talked about having connections to British politicians and Middle Eastern leaders. He also discussed an art transaction he said he helped Leon Black, the billionaire Wall Street investor, complete. Mr. Black was another close associate of Mr. Epstein’s for many years and paid him $158 million for tax and financial advice.