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The Scene Melinda Gates Wanted a Divorce Since 2019, Partly Due to Bill’s Ties to Jeffrey Epstein

Melinda Gates Wanted a Divorce Since 2019, Partly Due to Bill’s Ties to Jeffrey Epstein

Melinda Gates and Bill Gates speak during "One World: Together At Home" presented by Global Citizen on April, 18, 2020. Photo: Getty Images/Getty Images for Global Citizen
Melinda Gates and Bill Gates speak during "One World: Together At Home" presented by Global Citizen on April, 18, 2020. Photo: Getty Images/Getty Images for Global Citizen
By Camillia Dass
By Camillia Dass
May 10, 2021
The couple had only announced their divorce on their social media accounts on May 3

More details are slowly emerging after Bill and Melinda Gates announced that they would be ending their marriage after 27 years in a surprise announcement made last week.

Today, it was revealed that Melinda Gates had actually begun meeting with divorce lawyers from 2019 partly over concerns she had about Bill's dealings with Jeffrey Epstein who is a convicted sex offender.

Related: Billionaire Couple Bill and Melinda Gates to Divorce After 27 Years of Marriage

According to the Wall Street Journal, Melinda had begun meeting with attorneys from several firms as early as October 2019. Her meetings partly stemmed from her unease about Bill's ties to Epstein which began approximately around 2013. 

Related: Melinda Gates Is Now a Billionaire After Surprise Divorce From Bill Gates This Week

It was reported that Bill Gates had met up with Epstein a number of times and had even stayed late at his townhouse in New York. The meeting was said to be about philanthropy.

Epstein died in jail in August 2019 while awaiting trial on charges that he had trafficked underage girls for sex. 

The divorce between Melinda and Bill was apparently negotiated during the pandemic where legal teams worked to divide the couple's wealth. The Bloomberg Billionaires Index puts the couple's fortune at US$145 billion with Bill Gates being the fourth richest person in the world.

Melinda Gates, on the other hand, has recently become a billionaire as a result of the divorce. 

Related: Who are the Richest Billionaires in Singapore Who Made the 2021 Annual Forbes List?

President Barack Obama presents Bill Gates and Melinda Gates with the 2016 Presidential Medal Of Freedom at the White House on November 22, 2016. Photo: Leigh Vogel/WireImage
President Barack Obama presents Bill Gates and Melinda Gates with the 2016 Presidential Medal Of Freedom at the White House on November 22, 2016. Photo: Leigh Vogel/WireImage

On May 3, the day the couple announced their divorce, Bill's investment vehicle, Cascade Investment, transferred US$1.8 billion in securities to Melinda. This transfer made Melinda worth a minimum of at least US$1.8 billion.

Despite their divorce, the couple has vowed to remain co-chairs of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, a philanthropic organisation that the pair founded in 2000. They also maintain that they plan to give away most of their wealth.

Related: 7 Interesting Bill Gates Facts You Probably Did Not Know

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The Scene bill gates melinda gates microsoft divorce jeffrey epstein billionaire bill and melinda gates divorce epstein

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