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Jeffrey Epstein exploited ties with Victoria’s Secret boss Les Wexner to lure young models into sex work and t

When Alicia Arden was all of 26-years-old, she was approached by the disgraced Jeffrey Epstein with prospects of a flourishing modeling career with none other than iconic lingerie brand Victoria’s Secret.

That was a time when the deceased multi-millionaires name wasn’t associated with sexual assault and misconduct allegations, so, naturally, it was a dream come true for Arden.

Arden wasn’t the first, neither the last, among a string of young women who were lured in by Epstein into a depraved sex club with the promise of getting them work at the lingerie brand.

In a new tell-all interview with Daily Mail, Arden revealed her encounter with Epstein back in the day, which corroborates the ever-emerging stories of how Epstein also exploited his friendship with the brand‘s boss Les Wexner by luring women in to participate in his and Ghislaine Maxwell’s threesomes, all the while scamming money off Wexner.

Arden, who first met Epstein around 20 years ago, recalled, “I knocked on the door and went into the room. He was very nice in the beginning and looked at my portfolio. When you go on an audition for something like this, they want to see your body. I was in very little clothing—like a swimsuit-type bra with a top over it and underwear and a short little skirt so he could see my legs. He said he liked the photos and said he’d love to get a picture in the Victoria’s Secret catalog. He said, ‘You know, you look really good, your body looks really good. I think I just need to see it better.'”

Upon complying by moving closer, Epstein began ‘manhandling’ Arden. “He started to take off my top, then he moved down to my skirt and was trying to take that off, and was touching my hips and buttocks. I was pushing his hands off me, I was pushing them down and pushing them away, but he was bigger than me.”

Luckily for Arden, Epstein was distracted by a sudden phone call, which allowed her to flee from the meeting as she feared she would eventually get raped—a fear that led her to file a complaint of sexual battery at a nearby police station immediately, which went on to become one of the first recorded complaint of the kind against Epstein.

“I filed it because I thought he was doing it to other girls, and touching other girls, and I could have been raped myself,” she said, explaining: “He told me he worked for Victoria’s Secret, and he was misrepresenting the brand—I wanted to file that.”

Prince Andrew (L) with one of Epstein’s victims (M) and Epstein’s pimp, Ghislaine Maxwell (R) (Getty Images)

As it is now well-known, no action taken against Epstein, even though Arden’s case wasn’t one of a kind or an isolated incident.

With several women now coming forward about the pattern Epstein used to lure them in, it has also been revealed just why Epstein would use the ruse.

Turns out, he was extremely tight with the lingerie giant’s boss, the 82-year-old Wexner, whose friendship Epstein exploited to both lure young women into his sick world, as well as to build contacts and establish himself in the world of the rich and famous.

For instance, the seven-storey Manhattan house where Prince Andrew was infamously photographed in 2010, just shortly after Epstein was convicted of underage sex trafficking charges, belonged to Wexner.

Even Maxwell, Epstein’s pimp and the Prince’s close friend, would lure young girls into the trap by bragging of Epstein’s link with the lingerie overlord.

Wexner has insisted that he wasn’t aware of Epstein’s disturbing lifestyle and said that, when he found out, all ties were snapped immediately from his end. The mere association of the brand with the defamed financer was costing it a fortune. 

Epstein wasn’t even someone who directly worked for the company. He was Wexner’s money man—the two being introduced in the ’80s, back when Wexler was just looking to diversify his investments.

Having worked at Bear Stearns, Epstein was made in charge of managing Wexner’s fortune and offering financial advice. Soon, the professional relationship evolved to Epstein becoming Wexner’s ‘most loyal friend’ with ‘excellent judgment and unusually high standards’.

In 1991, Wexner handed Epstein power of attorney, which allowed Epstein to hire people, borrow money, deal property, and even sign cheques on Wexner’s behalf—a power he thoroughly misused for the next 16 years, including passing some of Wexner’s most extravagant belongings to himself.

This is the same wealth he used as a farce to attract young women like Arden, and later, British socialite Adela King, whom Maxwell had approached first in 1995.

“She told me to be at Claridge’s at 8pm and ask for a Mr Jeffrey Epstein’s suite. So I did — who wouldn’t, it was Victoria’s Secret,” King had shared on Instagram this summer. “Epstein opened the door to his suite, sat down on his sofa and looked through my portfolio and then instructed me to pose in a degrading way and said he’d be in touch.”

Of course, further correspondence never happened, but King soon learned what the duo’s ulterior motive was. I told friends at dinner about my encounter with her [Maxwell] and Epstein and they told me she recruited women for threesomes with them both. I was in shock how I’d been so stupid! But I believe that dinner saved me from something far worse.”

Les Wexner speaks onstage at the 2016 Fragrance Foundation Awards presented by Hearst Magazines – Show on June 7, 2016 in New York City.

In a lawsuit seeking damages against Epstein’s estate, another woman who remained unidentified, accused him of pulling the same trap on her when they met in 1999. “Epstein offered her a position modeling with Victoria’s Secret,’ the legal papers state. “He explained that he was friends with Les Wexner, the chief executive of Victoria’s Secret’s parent company.” While this woman claims she was forced to give sexual massages to Epstein at his New York and Palm Beach residences, she was able to escape after she was sexually assaulted by both Epstein and Maxwell.

A fourth woman, Maria Farmer, who once worked for Epstein, was also assaulted in one of Epstein’s houses in Ohio. Farmer was 26 at the time of the incident, and the assault happened in a mansion previously owned by Wexner. She also claims that the first time she heard the name Wexner, was when Epstein told her that Wexner loved him. “They asked me to come into a bedroom with them and then proceeded to sexually assault me against my will,” Farmer’s affidavit claims, adding that Wexner’s security staff didn’t allow her to leave for 12 hours.

As for Wexner, he has made it clear that following the first time Epstein was accused of sexually abusing underage girls in 2007, he severed all ties with the man. Wexner has even accused Epstein of misappropriating over $46 million of his personal fortune. In a letter to members of the Wexner Foundation, he wrote: “We discovered that he had misappropriated vast sums of money from me and my family. This was, frankly, a tremendous shock, even though it clearly pales in comparison to the unthinkable allegations against him now. I am embarrassed that, like so many others, I was deceived by Mr. Epstein. I know now that my trust in him was grossly misplaced and I deeply regret having ever crossed his path.”

Back in summer, lawyers at L Brands—the parent company of Victoria’s Secret—had hired a board “to conduct a thorough review” of Wexner’s relationship with Epstein.

A spokesperson for the company also previously said that “while Mr Epstein served as Mr Wexner’s personal money manager for a period that ended nearly 12 years ago, we do not believe he was ever employed by nor served as an authorized representative of the company.”

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