Harvard Professor Sues New York Times Over Epstein Article

Harvard University professor Lawrence Lessig filed a lawsuit against the New York Times, alleging defamation against him in an article about convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Although Epstein, 66, died in prison in August 2019, the fallout from his associations has continued to the present day. A number of news organizations have reported on those associated with Epstein, including The Epoch Times.

Lessig took issue with a New York Times article that claimed he said taking money from Epstein was fine if it was taken in secret.

The situation concerned the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Joi Ito, the head of the school’s Media Lab. Ito tried hiding the lab’s financial relationship with Epstein. He resigned on Sept. 7.

The next day, Lessig wrote about the situation in a blog post. A friend of Ito’s, Lessig said that he thought years ago, when Ito told him about Epstein’s proposed donations, that he supported his friend. “The truth is that—as I thought about it then—if Joi believed as he did after real diligence, I didn’t believe he was wrong to take Epstein’s money anonymously,” Lessig wrote.

He said that universities are funded in part by criminals, some of whom use wealth derived from their crime—which he claimed included Epstein. He also wrote, “I think that universities should not be the launderers of reputation. I think that they should not accept blood money.”