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ABC News and anchor Amy Robach issued statements Tuesday distancing themselves from footage of the anchor saying on a hot mic that the network had stonewalled her reporting of Jeffrey Epstein for three years.
“I was upset that an important interview I had conducted with Virginia Roberts didn’t air because we could not obtain sufficient corroborating evidence to meet ABC’s editorial standards about her allegations,” Robach said in response to footage released Tuesday morning by a conservative activist group, Project Veritas, of her speaking on a hot mic in late August.
Robach also said nobody at ABC had told her to stop reporting on Epstein. “We have continued to aggressively pursue this important story,” she said. ABC News also issued statements alongside Robach saying it plans to leverage its reporting on Epstein to produce a two-hour documentary and a six-part podcast set to release in early 2020.
But Robach’s statement made no mention of her hot mic comments alluding to the strength of her reporting on Epstein accuser Virginia Roberts Giuffre in 2015, nor did it mention her comments about the fear that her reporting would cause ABC would lose access to people close to Epstein. Robach’s statement also did not address her hot mic comment that she “100%” believes Epstein was killed.
“She told me everything,” the leaked footage shows Robach saying of an interview she conducted with Giuffre in 2015. “She had pictures, she had everything. She was in hiding for 12 years. We convinced her to come out. We convinced her to talk to us. It was unbelievable what we had — Clinton, we had everything.”
Robach added that she had interviewed other women backing up claims made by Giuffre, who said Epstein farmed her out for sex to Britain’s Prince Andrew and others, but the anchor said she was told it was a “stupid story” because “no one knows who” Epstein was. The anchor also said the royal family threatened the network in “a million different ways” after it caught wind of Robach’s reporting.
“We were so afraid we wouldn’t be able to interview [Kate Middleton] and [Prince Wlliam] that we, that also quashed the story,” Robach was filmed saying.
Here’s ABC’s response to a Project Veritas video of Amy Robach expressing frustration that her Jeffrey Epstein piece didn’t run.
Robach: “I was caught in a private moment of frustration. … In the years since no one ever told me or the team to stop reporting on Jeffrey Epstein” pic.twitter.com/airx3Tjy4o
— Jeremy Barr (@jeremymbarr) November 5, 2019
Epstein, who was arrested and charged with federal sex-trafficking charges, was found dead in his jail cell in August.
Epstein’s death was ruled a suicide, but several oddities surrounding his death fueled rampant speculation that he was murdered.
Two guards tasked with guarding Epstein’s unit had fallen asleep and failed to check on him for about three hours on the night of his death, The New York Times reported. The guards then allegedly falsified records in an attempt to cover up their mistake.
Further, two security cameras outside of Epstein’s cell malfunctioned on the night of his death.