JPMorgan sues former executive Jes Staley over his ties to accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein

JPMorgan Chase & Co. is suing Jes Staley to hold the former executive responsible for any damages stemming from lawsuits accusing the bank of facilitating Jeffrey Epstein’s sex-trafficking.

The bank on Wednesday filed a third-party complaint against Staley in Manhattan federal court, arguing he should be held liable if allegations about his relationship with Epstein are shown to be true. 

JPMorgan also brought separate claims against Staley for breaching his duty to the bank. Because of his “faithless service,” the bank said it was entitled to recover all compensation paid to Staley between 2006 and 2013.

Staley’s lawyer didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. Staley has previously denied involvement in Epstein’s sex-trafficking.

The close ties between Staley, once JPMorgan’s private banking chief, and Epstein have been at the core of two suits claiming the bank knew or should have known about Epstein’s crimes and kept him on as a client anyway. But Staley himself was not named as a defendant in either suit.

JPMorgan stressed in its filing that it was still denying the claims in a proposed class action by Epstein victims and a separate suit by the US Virgin Islands. The bank has moved to dismiss both suits and is set to argue its motions on Monday. 

In its filing, JPMorgan said Staley failed to report his conduct with Epstein and misleadingly vouched for Epstein’s good character.

Staley had a duty of loyalty and “was required to act in good faith” in the financial institutions best interests, the bank said. “Instead, if the allegations of Doe and the USVI are true, Staley repeatedly abandoned the interests of JPMC and served his own and Epstein’s interests.”

Staley worked at the bank in various positions between 1979 and 2013, before joining Barclays Plc as chief executive in 2015. He stepped down as Barclays CEO in 2021 due to his Epstein ties.

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