SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE)- Former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson is speaking out, trying to distance himself from Jeffrey Epstein.
The Albuquerque Journal reports this as a Richardson says he recalls one visit to Epstein’s Zorro Ranch. The former governor is listed as one of the many well-known people in Epstein’s court records.
Epstein is said to have donated $50,000 to each of Richardson’s two gubernatorial campaigns in 2002 and 2006. Richardson says he later re-gifted the 2006 donation to charity.
Richardson’s spokesman clarifies the meeting happened years before accusations against Epstein came out.
Director of media relations for Richardson, Maddy Mahony told the Journal that to describe Epstein as a friend of Richardson would be inaccurate as the two didn’t know each other well.
Mahony says that to the former governor’s his best recollection, Richardson only visited Zorro Ranch once in 2002 while running for governor and that his wife, Barbara Richardson accompanied him. Others at the visit were said to include a person understood to be an assistant to Epstein as well as an individual Richardson recalls as an “award-winning scientist”.
Bill Richardson was also brought up in a legal battle between Jeffrey Epstein and Florida lawyer Bradley Edwards. Edwards represents Epstein’s alleged victims in civil litigation and in 2016, Edward’s attorney filed a witness list including the names of Richardson, David Copperfield, and now-president Donald Trump.
The Journal reports that years before, an Edwards affidavit stated Epstein had made accusations that Edwards was trying to bring individuals, such as Richardson, into the case without legitimate reasons. However, the affidavit states that Richardson was identified as a possible witness as Epstein’s pilot testified that the former governor joined Epstein at his New Mexico ranch.