For a man who’s been dead for five years, Jeffrey Epstein is getting a lively amount of press this week.  

The disgraced financier and convicted pedophile, friend to Prince Andrew, Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, is hitting headlines once again as the sordid sequel to his grubby life and untimely (if you're a fan of justice) death plays out in the news pages and gossip columns.  

There’s talk of parties at ‘Epstein island’, the regurgitating of the numerous allegations against him and others and of a fulsome list of well-kent names connected to the court cases and investigations into his shadowy web of shady dealings.  

How has this scandal managed to rise from the grave again? Let's recap. Jeffrey Epstein was a millionaire known for associating with celebrities, politicians, billionaires and academic stars who fell foul of the law when he was arrested in Palm Beach, Florida, in 2005. 

Epstein was accused of paying a 14-year-old girl for sex, and dozens of other underage girls came forward to describe similar sexual abuse. 

Prosecutors ultimately allowed the financier to plead guilty in 2008 to a charge involving a single victim. He served 13 months in a jail work-release programme. 

Some famous acquaintances abandoned Epstein after his conviction but many did not. Epstein continued to mingle with the rich and famous for another decade, often through philanthropic work. 

Reporting by the Miami Herald renewed interest in the scandal, and federal prosecutors in New York charged Epstein in 2019 with sex trafficking. He killed himself in prison while awaiting trial. 

The US attorney in Manhattan then prosecuted Epstein’s former girlfriend, Ghislaine Maxwell, for helping recruit his underage victims. She was convicted in 2021 and is serving a 20-year prison term. 

The Herald: Virginia Giuffre

But that’s not where the story ends. Documents have now been unsealed which were part of a lawsuit filed against Maxwell in 2015 by one of Epstein’s victims, Virginia Giuffre.  

She is one of the dozens of women who sued Epstein, saying he had abused them at his homes in Florida, New York, the US Virgin Islands and New Mexico. 

Ms Giuffre said that in the summer she turned 17, she was lured away from a job as a spa attendant at Mr Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club to become a “masseuse” for Epstein – a job that involved performing sexual acts. 

Ms Giuffre also claimed she was pressured into having sex with men in Epstein’s social orbit, most famously with the Duke of York. All of those men said her accounts were fabricated. 

Andrew quit as a working royal in 2019 over his friendship with convicted sex offender Epstein and in the wake of his disastrous appearance on Panorama. 

He was later stripped by his mother Queen Elizabeth II of his honorary military roles, and gave up his HRH style. 

The duke paid millions to Ms Giuffre to settle a civil sexual assault case out of court with no admission of guilt. 

READ MORE: Prince Andrew named in Jeffrey Epstein court documents

Ms Giuffre claimed she was trafficked by Epstein to have sex with Andrew three times when she was 17 and a minor under US law at Maxwell’s London home, in Epstein’s New York home and during an orgy on Epstein at Caribbean island. 

She settled a lawsuit against the duke in 2022. That same year, Ms Giuffre withdrew an accusation she had made against Epstein’s former attorney, the law professor Alan Dershowitz, saying she “may have made a mistake” in identifying him as an abuser. 

Ms Giuffre’s lawsuit against Maxwell was settled in 2017, but the Miami Herald went to court to access court papers initially filed under seal, including transcripts of interviews the lawyers carried out with potential witnesses. 

About 2,000 pages were unsealed by a court in 2019. Additional documents were released in 2020, 2021 and 2022. 

The Herald: The infamous photo od Prince Andrew, Ghislaine Maxwell and Virginia Guiffre 

This new batch of records had remained sealed because of concerns about the privacy rights of Epstein’s victims and other people whose names had come up during the legal battle but were not complicit in his crimes. 

US District Judge Loretta Preska, who evaluated the documents to decide what should be unsealed, said that she was releasing the records because much of the information within them is already public. 

The people named in the records include many of Epstein’s accusers, members of his staff who told their stories to tabloid newspapers, people who served as witnesses at Maxwell’s trial, people who were mentioned in passing during depositions but are not accused of any wrongdoing, and people who investigated Epstein, including prosecutors, a journalist and a detective. 

There are also names of public figures known to have associated with Epstein over the years, but whose relationships with him have already been well-documented elsewhere, the judge said. 

One of them is Jean-Luc Brunel, a French modelling agent close to Epstein who was awaiting trial on charges that he raped underage girls when he killed himself in a Paris jail in 2022. Ms Giuffre was among the women who had accused Brunel of sexual abuse. 

Mr Clinton and Mr Trump both factor in the court file, partly because Ms Giuffre was questioned by Maxwell’s lawyers about inaccuracies in newspaper stories about her time with Epstein. 

One story quoted her as saying she had travelled in a helicopter with Mr Clinton and flirted with Mr Trump. Ms Giuffre said neither of those things actually happened. She has not accused either former president of wrongdoing. 

The judge said a handful of names should remain blacked out in the documents because they would identify people who were sexually abused. 

It's early days, and so far the revelations have been coming in dribs and drabs, none of them matching hype before the release.  

The most bombshell of the new claims is Ms Giuffre claim that she was sex-trafficked to “two of the world’s most respected politicians”. 

In an email exchange with journalist Sharon Churcher in May 2011, Ms Giuffre spoke of her concerns about working with Vanity Fair after former US president Bill Clinton had allegedly “threatened them not to write sex-trafficking articles” about Epstein. 

The Herald:

In a follow up email, Ms Churcher said it would be a “gamble” for Ms Giuffre to give the magazine a statement about how she had no more to say about how she was “sex-trafficked to PA and other men including two of the world’s most respected politicians”. 

The names of the two politicians in the email remain redacted. 

In another email with the Epstein victim, Ms Churcher appeared to suggest to Ms Giuffre how to support to the FBI her allegation that she was “given” to Andrew. 

One person who appears to be in the clear so far is Donald Trump – who described Epstein as a “terrific guy” before his conviction.  

The only reference to the former President comes from another of Epstein’s accusers, called Johanna Sjoberg, who said when their plane could not land in New York and would need to stop in Atlantic City, Epstein said he would call up Trump and drop by to see him, she said. 

READ MORE: King insists 'no way back' for Prince Andrew

Ms Sjoberg is asked whether she ever gave Mr Trump a massage and she said she did not, and no other wrongdoing is alleged.  

In other documents, Ms Sjoberg does describes meeting Prince Andrew at Epstein's home in New York in 2001. 

Her statement, which had previously been partly revealed, describes an encounter in which she claims Prince Andrew touched her breast. 

The incident, bizarrely involving a Spitting Image puppet of the Prince, has never been raised in public before.  

Yet with more documents to come, it’s clear that the specter of Jeffey Epstein is far from banished yet.