NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – There are shocking new developments involving Jeffrey Epstein’s ties to fundraising efforts at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
The director of the university’s Media Lab – Joi Ito – has resigned amid reported ties to the disgraced financier.
The news comes just hours after The New Yorker published new details on MIT’s ties to the now-dead Epstein.
Ito has also resigned from the boards of The New York Times Co. and of two foundations.
Times publisher A.G. Sulzberger and the company’s president, Mark Thompson, said in a company-wide email Saturday that the former Media Lab director has resigned from the board “effective immediately.”
Epstein killed himself inside a New York jail cell on Aug. 10 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges. Federal prosecutors in New York had charged the 66-year-old with sex trafficking and conspiracy, alleging he sexually abused numerous underage girls over several years in the early 2000’s.
The article claims Epstein secured donations totaling $7.5 million for the Media Lab and that officials worked to conceal the paper trail.
MIT previously admitted to only $800,000 in donations from the 66-year-old, who plead guilty in 2008 to soliciting a minor for prostitution.
MIT’s president, L. Rafael Reif, released the following statement after The New Yorker’s report:
“Last night, The New Yorker published an article that contains deeply disturbing allegations about the engagement between individuals at the Media Lab and Jeffrey Epstein.
Because the accusations in the story are extremely serious, they demand an immediate, thorough and independent investigation.
The acceptance of the Epstein gifts involved a mistake of judgment. We are actively assessing how best to improve our policies, processes and procedures to fully reflect MIT’s values and prevent such mistakes in the future.”
Although the official criminal case against Epstein was dismissed following his apparent suicide, authorities added that the 66-year-old’s alleged accomplices could still face charges.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Maurene Comey said last month that the indictment’s dismissal “in no way prohibits or inhibits the government’s ongoing investigation into other potential co-conspirators, nor does it prevent the bringing of a new case in the future or the prosecution of new defendants.”
She said it also doesn’t stop the government from pursuing any assets used to carry out the crimes.
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)