Les Wexner, chief executive of Victoria’s Secret’s parent company and a former business associate of Jeffrey Epstein, said on Tuesday that he is “embarrassed” he was ever closely associated with the convicted pedophile. “Being taken advantage of by someone who is... so depraved is something I’m embarrassed I’m even close to,” Wexner said at an investor meeting for his company L Brands. “In the present, everyone has to feel enormous regret for the advantage that was taken of so many young women.” Wexner, 82, said he was first introduced to Epstein in the 1980s through friends who vouched for the budding financial manager.
The CEO grew to trust Epstein to such a degree that, in addition to control over his wealth, he also gave Epstein the power of attorney. Wexner has now claimed that Epstein “misappropriated” more than $46 million worth of his investments. “We are all betrayed by friends,” Wexner said. “At the end the day, people have secret lives because ... they’re so good at hiding those secrets.” Wexner is not the only high-powered individual wooed by the former financier. Epstein also gained the trust of Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s prestigious Media Lab director, Microsoft founder Bill Gates, as well as former President Bill Clinton, among others.