Right-wing firebrand Steve Bannon recorded hours of interviews with sex predator Jeffrey Epstein, ostensibly to help prep him for a 60 Minutes interview that was never filmed, according to author Michael Wolff.
The surprising incident in early 2019, months before Epstein’s arrest on sex trafficking charges, is recounted in Wolff’s upcoming book, Too Famous, according to the New York Times.
Relying on transcripts of what Epstein appears to think are practice interviews, Wolff writes that Bannon both interviewed and coached Bannon, advising him to look at the camera occasionally and warning him not to share his racist theories about how black people learn.
In the interviews at Epstein’s New York mansion, Bannon frequently advised Epstein to stick to his main message, namely that he is not a pedophile, according to Wolff.
Steve Bannon (left) recorded hours of interviews with sex predator Jeffrey Epstein (right) in early 2019, according to author Michael Wolff
Author Michael Wolff (above) revealed the previously unknown incident, relying on transcripts of what Epstein appears to think are practice interviews
Towards the end of the interviews, Bannon praised Epstein, Wolff writes, telling him: ‘You’re engaging, you’re not threatening, you’re natural, you’re friendly, you don’t look at all creepy, you’re a sympathetic figure.’
Wolff’s new book is due out in October
Bannon, the former chief strategist for Donald Trump who was pardoned for fraud charges, denied that he had ever media-trained Epstein, but confirmed that the interviews took place.
Bannon told the Times that he recorded more than 15 hours of interviews with Epstein for a previously unannounced documentary showing how Epstein’s ‘perversions and depravity toward young women were part of a life that was systematically supported, encouraged and rewarded by a global establishment that dined off his money and his influence.’
A former Hollywood producer, Bannon has made 15 prior documentaries, but his work on the purported Epstein film has not been previously revealed.
Bannon did confirm to the Times that he encouraged Epstein to speak to 60 Minutes, though that interview apparently never occurred.
Bannon was a close Trump advisor until leaving the White House in 2017. There has been speculation that he courted Epstein as a political financier before the predator’s arrest
The author of the explosive Trump White House exposé Fire And Fury, for which Bannon was a key source, Wolff is well-known for obtaining access to prominent figures, but has been accused of poorly explaining the sources for his dramatized narratives.
A prominent right-wing figure, Bannon spent his time after leaving the White House in 2017 meeting with populist hardliners around the world.
There have been confirmed sightings of Bannon visiting Epstein’s mansion, lending credence to Wolff’s account.
In August 2018, the New York Post reported that Bannon was spotted entering Epstein’s massive townhouse on East 71st Street early one morning.
The paper cited sources who speculated that Bannon was trying to raise funds from Epstein for his right-wing political projects.
In August 2018, Bannon was spotted entering Epstein’s massive townhouse on East 71st Street early one morning. The mansion is seen above in a file photo
Bannon pleaded not guilty to charges of fraud and money laundering in connection with his We Build the Wall campaign. Trump pardoned him before the case went to trial.
Epstein was known to be a generous political donor, but mostly gave to Democrats. The sex predator’s social circle spanned the political spectrum through, from Trump to Bill Clinton.
In July 2019, several months after the filmed interviews with Bannon, Epstein was arrested on federal charges of sex trafficking dozens of girls as young as 14.
He died behind bars the following month in what was ruled a suicide.