Bill Gates says Epstein meetings were a huge mistake: Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates has admitted he made “a big mistake” in spending time with sex offender and infamous financier Jeffrey Epstein.
Mr. Gates told CNN that there were “many feasts” about a philanthropic project that did not emerge and should not give him “credibility”.
Epstein was hanged in prison in 2019 awaiting a sex trafficking trial.
Mr. Gates discussed his divorce with Melinda French Gates, calling it a “source of great personal tragedy.”
The 65-year-old, who announced his resignation from the Microsoft board in March last year, said his ex-wife Bill & Melinda were “going to try” to work together at the Gates Foundation.
Mr. Gates was also asked if he regretted the allegations that he had misbehaved in the office – some Microsoft employees accused him of harassment.
He did not specifically respond, “Surely everyone [will have remorse] but it’s time to reflect, and at this point, I need to move on.”
Mr. Gates’ representatives cut off his relationship with Epstein, saying there was no business partnership or personal friendship.
He echoed this in a CNN interview: “I had several dinners with him, you know, what he said about getting billions in global health donations through contacts may have emerged.
“When it seemed like it wasn’t the real thing, that relationship ended.”
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He did not give a timeline for the meetings, although US media said they were between 2011 and 2014.
Prior to Epstein’s arrest on federal charges of sex trafficking minors in 2019, he was jailed in 2008 after being convicted of other sexual offenses.
Mr. Gates said: “Spending time with him, giving him the credibility that is there is a very big mistake.”
The US media said Melinda was angry at her relationship with French Gates Epstein and wanted it to end.
Speaking of his ex-wife, Bill Gates said that she was a great person and that the partnership we are ending with is the source of much personal misery.
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The couple announced their separation in May after 27 years of marriage.
Shortly afterward, it was revealed that Microsoft was investigating a complaint in 2000 that it had “attempted to initiate an intimate relationship” with a female employee. The investigation ended after Mr. Gates left the board, but Microsoft said it had not linked the two.
Some former employees have accused Mr. Gates of being “extremely angry” with the catchphrase “This is the stupidest ‘detailed] idea I have ever heard”.
Maria Clavey, a former board member, said “a person like Bill Gates thinks the rules of conduct do not apply to him.”
His representatives also downplayed those comments.
Mr. Gates said in his CNN interview: “My work is very important to me. In the family, we heal as much as possible and learn from what happened.”