L Brands founder Les Wexner and his legal team have been providing documents to federal investigators that they believe show Jeffrey Epstein misappropriated funds while the child predator was Wexner’s money manager.
Wexner believes the evidence demonstrates “all sorts of irregularities and theft,” one person with direct knowledge of the matter said.
“There were things that were completely wrong and transactions that weren’t appropriate,” this person added. The person would not divulge details beyond that description.
Federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York have accused Epstein of trafficking and sexually abusing dozens of underage girls at his homes in Manhattan and Palm Beach, Florida.
L Brand’s stock was down 2.5% on Monday.
Wexner’s cooperation with authorities started before Epstein’s apparent suicide on Saturday in his jail cell at the Metropolitan Correction Center in New York. Despite his death, prosecutors said they would continue their investigation and called on more alleged victims to come forward.
Attorney General William Barr has called on the FBI and the Justice Department’s inspector general to evaluate the circumstances of Epstein’s death.
Epstein was once friends with President Donald Trump and former president Bill Clinton.
The New York Times reported on Sunday that Epstein’s finances could become a focal point of the remaining investigation. The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday that the Wexner family has been cooperating with the government’s investigation in recent weeks by providing information related to Epstein’s role as their financial advisor.
A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office declined to confirm or comment, citing department policy on ongoing investigations.
Representatives close to Wexner, who is chairman and CEO of L Brands, did not deny the efforts to give over evidence against Epstein. A spokesman for Wexner declined to comment, and an L Brands spokeswoman did not return a request for comment. Wexner’s attorney and a legal representative for Epstein did not return repeated requests for comment.
Since Epstein’s arrest last month in New Jersey, Wexner and his company have been trying to publicly distance themselves from someone whom Wexner had once given power of attorney.
In a letter released to members of his charitable foundation, Wexner gave a general synopsis of how he walked away from Epstein in 2007 after the child predator was initially placed under investigation in Florida for similar allegations. Epstein was sentenced to 13 months behind bars in that case but spent much of his time out on work release.
“By early fall 2007, it was agreed that he should step back from the management of our personal finances. In that process, we discovered that he had misappropriated vast sums of money from me and my family,” Wexner said in the letter. “This was, frankly, a tremendous shock, even though it clearly pales in comparison to the unthinkable allegations against him now.”
Wexner later noted that they were able to recover some of the money Epstein allegedly stole from Wexner’s family charity, saying that Epstein refunded part of the sum to the YLK Charitable Fund. Epstein’s repayment came in the form of a $46 million contribution in Apple stock and other assets shortly before he went to jail in 2008.
A representative for Wexner’s foundation declined to comment.
Wexner signed over power of attorney to Epstein in the summer of 1991, a legal document shows. Soon after Epstein was brought on board, The New York Times reported, Wexner started to distance himself from many of his associates within his inner circle. Epstein reportedly used his position as Wexner’s money manager to act as a talent recruiter for Victoria’s Secret, an L Brands company. While pitching himself as a recruiter, he would lure women into his hotel room and attempt to assault them, the Times reported.
L Brands also owns fragrance company Bath & Body Works and clothing line PINK.
Wexner’s business has started an internal review of their own and has hired outside counsel to review their prior relationship with Epstein.