Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates has been in some hot water with the media recently. The philanthropist came under fire earlier this year when an exposé revealed that he had an affair with a Microsoft employee in 2000 and that Gates resigned from the board of directors when the matter was being internally investigated in 2020. He also finalized his divorce with Melinda French Gates just a couple of days ago. Now, the former executive is under the spotlight once again following his comments on his past meetings with disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein.
In an interview with CNN's Anderson Cooper, Bill Gates emphasized that he regretted spending time with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, who was also accused of child sex trafficking in 2019. Gates stated that:
It was a huge mistake to spend time with him, to give him the credibility of being there. I had several dinners with him, you know, hoping that what he said about getting billions of philanthropy for global health through contacts that he had might emerge. When it looked like that wasn't a real thing, that relationship ended.
While Gates' statements don't cast him in a particularly bad light, the meetings between him and Epstein reportedly took place between 2011 and 2014. Epstein had already pleaded guilty to some sex offenses back in 2008 and had also served 13 months in prison. Given the fact that the disgraced financial manager died in somewhat mysterious circumstances in 2019 while the investigation was still active does no favors to anyone associated with him, including Gates. His death in prison was ruled as suicide by hanging.
In the CNN interview, Gates emphasized that his relations with Epstein have no link to his divorce with Melinda French Gates. "It's a time of reflection, and at this point, I need to go forward. Within the family, we'll heal the best that we can", says Gates.