The U.S. Virgin Islands issued a subpoena to Tesla CEO Elon Musk on Monday, requesting documents for the government’s litigation against JPMorgan Chase regarding sex trafficking by the bank’s late longtime client Jeffrey Epstein.
According to this document, there is cause to believe that Epstein “may have referred or attempted to refer” Musk to JPMorgan as a client, and the Virgin Islands have attempted unsuccessfully to serve Musk with the subpoena issued on April 28.
In its filing, the U.S. territory asked Manhattan federal judge Jed Rakoff for permission to serve Musk’s subpoena on Tesla’s registered agent.
Musk is required to produce any documents that demonstrate interactions between him, JPMorgan, and Epstein, as well as “all Documents reflecting or regarding Epstein’s involvement in human trafficking and/or his procurement of girls or women for consensual sex.”
The Virgin Islands are suing JPMorgan for allegedly assisting Epstein in sending young women to his own island, where he and others would exploit them.
JPMorgan refutes the government’s allegations in a separate ongoing civil action filed in Manhattan federal court by a woman who claims Epstein sexually assaulted her. Jamie Dimon, the CEO of JPMorgan, will be deposed in connection with both lawsuits beginning on May 26.
The Virgin Islands stated in a court filing on May 4 that the government had sent a similar demand for documents on Google co-founder Larry Page and was unable to contact him.
In addition, Page’s fellow Google co-founder Sergey Brin, ex-Disney executive Michael Ovitz, executive chairman of Hyatt Hotels Thomas Pritzker, and billionaire real estate magnate Mort Zuckerman have already been served subpoenas.
According to the Virgin Islands’ Monday filing, Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, Inc., is a high-net-worth individual to whom Epstein may have referred or attempted to refer JPMorgan. Musk operates not only Tesla but also SpaceX and Twitter.
The government claimed it had contacted one of Musk’s attorneys and engaged an investigation firm in an attempt to locate Musk’s address.
In prior federal cases, this attorney allegedly waived the requirement that he be personally served with legal documents.
“The Government contacted Mr. Musk’s counsel via email to ask if he would be authorized to accept service on Mr. Musk’s behalf in this matter but did not receive a response confirming or denying his authority,” the filing said.
Musk did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.
Musk did respond to the tweet sent by @unusual_whales in response to the CNBC article on Monday night.
“This is idiotic on so many levels,” Musk wrote in his Twitter reply. “1. That cretin never advised me on anything whatsoever. 2. The notion that I would need or listen to financial advice from a dumb crook is absurd.”
“3. JPM let Tesla down ten years ago, despite having Tesla’s global commercial banking business, which we then withdrew,” Musk wrote. “I have never forgiven them.”
The subpoena was served to Musk on April 28. The document suggests that Epstein, a convicted sex offender, might have introduced Musk, one of the world's wealthiest individuals, to JPMorgan, per CNBC.
— unusual_whales (@unusual_whales) May 15, 2023
In 2018, after Musk’s remarks about taking the company private prompted an SEC investigation, Epstein revealed to James Stewart of The New York Times that he had been counseling Musk.
A Tesla spokesperson told the Times, “It is incorrect to say that Epstein ever advised Elon on anything.” Tesla has since vehemently refuted the claim. During their conversation, Epstein told Stewart that “everyone at Tesla would deny talking to him or being his friend,” as reported in the story.
Epstein, a friend of Trump, Clinton, and Prince Andrew of Great Britain, was a customer of the bank from 1998 to 2013. In 2008, a Florida court found him guilty of procuring sexual activity from a minor.
In August 2019, one month after being accused of child sex trafficking, Epstein committed suicide in a Manhattan prison.