As details of the Jeffrey Epstein scandal continue oozing into public view, a new report shines light on yet another property of the wealthy financier’s that put him in close proximity to young girls.
The Daily Beast reported on Friday that Epstein “was a donor to the revered Interlochen Center for the Arts, a fine-arts boarding school and camp, and had bankrolled the ‘Jeffrey Epstein Scholarship Lodge’ on its campus.”
The lodge, located near the junior girls’ camp, was constructed in the 1990s, and Epstein reportedly stayed there on at least two occasions, as part of the arrangement included his privilege of staying up to two weeks per year.
As a major donor to Interlochen, Epstein also hosted events for alumni at his New York townhouse, which was raided by federal authorities over the weekend.
Though Interlochen said they never received complaints about Epstein acting inappropriately toward students — and assured that he would not have been granted access to alone time with the children there — one mother claims Epstein did in fact attempt to groom her 13-year-old daughter at Interlochen in 1994.
Fary Bjorlin, the mother of soap-opera actress Nadia Bjorlin, told The Daily Mail in 2011 that Epstein’s business partner and friend, Ghislaine Maxwell, tried to convince Fary to allow her daughter to be mentored by the wealthy New Yorker.
“She was at school at the famed Interlochen Music Center in Michigan when she met Epstein,” Fary said. “My daughter was a singer. She was a baby. She was a skinny little girl, not mature for her age. She was 13, but everyone thought she was 9 or 10.”
“Epstein was a big donor and he heard about Nadia and that her father had died, so she was vulnerable, and he contacted her. He said, ‘Here’s my number.’”
The mother’s instincts kicked in quickly, leading her to mistrust Epstein’s motives. “What sort of a man approaches a young girl and asks to meet her?” she said.
“Ghislaine didn’t want me to meet Epstein, but I did anyway, and asked what he wanted with Nadia,” Fary told The Daily Mail. “He said he wanted to help her singing career. He said, ‘I’d like to be like a godfather.’ It felt creepy.”
Officials from Interlochen said they have no knowledge of Fary’s claims, though they confirmed that Nadia Bjorlin is an alumna of the institution. “As stated, we have no record of any complaint raised against Mr. Epstein at Interlochen,” they added.