Jean Luc Brunel's Death Buys More Silence
With a Third Key Player in Epstein's Orbit Dead, Ghislaine Maxwell is the Last One Standing
Early Saturday morning, on a couch tucked into a quaint corner of my best friend’s Manhattan apartment, I woke to a text from Leslie informing me that Jean-Luc Brunel was found dead overnight.
“Fuck dude, hanging in his cell” she wrote.
I sat up in shock, immediately scouring news online, uncovering details of a suicide eerily similar to Epstein’s. Down to the shredded bed sheets and broken cell cameras leaving us no trace of the last hours leading up to his death.
The timing of it, almost like a permanent surrender in the wake of Virginia Giuffre’s recent legal win. With her lawsuits against Brunel, still lingering in the shadows.
My suspicions peaked immediately. Understandably, considering the outrageous amount of coincidences we’ve been forced to digest up to this point, throughout a 20 year investigation where the more you learn, the deeper you dive, the more mysteries you’re forced to contend with. Anyone remotely familiar with the case though knows the death of Jean-Luc means shutting the door on yet another vital witness who possessed valuable insight into the inner workings of Maxwell and Epstein’s elaborate crime ring.
Brunel himself had been in jail, placed under formal investigation since 2020, accused of sexual harassment and the rape of girls aged between 15 and 18 in France. His name had been raised multiple times throughout the trial - specifically in reference to the three 12 yr old sisters he purchased as a birthday gift to Epstein on a flight Virginia Giuffre detailed in a 2016 deposition.
She said that the French girls, believed to be triplets, were a gift from Epstein's longtime acquaintance and frequent guest Jean-Luc Brunel.
'Jeffrey bragged after he met them that they were 12-year-olds and flown over from France because they're really poor over there, and their parents needed the money or whatever the case is and they were absolutely free to stay and flew out,' Giuffre said.
She said she saw the three girls with her own eyes and that Epstein had repeatedly described to her how the girls had massaged him and performed oral sex on him. And were flown back to France the next day.
“He went on to tell me how Brunel bought them in Paris from their parents, offering them the usual sums of money, visas, and modeling career prospects.”
“Laughing the whole way through, Jeffrey thought it was absolutely brilliant how easily money seduced all walks of life, nothing or no one that couldn't be bought.”
Jean-Luc pictured with an unnamed 15 yr old girl in Paris
Brunel’s role as Epstein’s lead business associate was instrumental in keeping the ring expanding and evolving. As third in line to Ghislaine, he was responsible for extending Maxwell’s initial design, fishing for local high girls (teenage victims that typically graduated to co-conspirators) into a polished, worldwide operation using a well respected modeling agency (first his own, then the one funded by Epstein) as a direct pipeline, offering up struggling models as sex slaves to clients on a global scale.
So that everywhere Epstein and his friends traveled, there were throngs of young women at their whim. Lured by extensive connections and the promise of a big break in an industry they were brand new to.
In one model’s diary, documenting her experience in France during the early 90s, she wrote in reference to her run in with Brunel “the casting couch is very real.”
With a career that spanned more than 40 years, Brunel had a reputation for pulling in heavy weight talents, discovering some of the biggest names in modeling, including Milla Jovovich, Sharon Stone, Monica Bellucci, Christy Turlington, Emma Heming and Angie Everhart.
He also had a reputation as a reckless “coke head” prone to drugging girls by lacing drinks at parties. Often spotted carousing around Paris nightclubs alongside Hollywood elites like Leonardo DiCaprio, Jack Nicholson, Roman Polanski and Francis Ford Coppola.
As one young man remarked in a reddit thread I stumbled upon, regarding Brunel’s reputation:
“My ex gf was a fashion model in the nineties with one of the biggest NY agencies. She worked constantly until she turned down an ‘opportunity’ to go to dinner with a Hollywood star who was at least forty years older than her (The Joker)
Celebs would go through the agency lookbook and choose a girl as if it were some kind of catalog. I’m sure it still goes on.”
As Giuffre stated “These were what seemed like really nice people with not so nice intentions setting an impression of how the dignified wealth play and behind closed doors they had as much civilized manners as a barbaric chimpanzee in heat.”
“Giving a girl a step up in finances by teaching them their only worth is what lay between their legs, us girls all were the same in the end, regardless of what country we come from, what language we spoke or our cultural differences, we were all being used for one thing alone, our youthful looks and beautiful bodies.”
The stories I came across, personal accounts of incidents involving Brunel, shared in obscure articles and comment threads revealed exactly how prolific his preying of underage girls had been, advanced and protected by an army of industry enablers.
As evidence by another online woman’s account:
“I remember my Ukrainian teacher in Saudi Arabia, she told us that she once worked with Jean-Luc Brunel as an 18 year old model in late 90s. She told us why we shouldn’t or consider to be in the modeling industry because of men like Brunel. She gave us a 20 minute biography description of her life as a model she started at the age of 16 and quit modeling at the age of 20. I remember her telling us that when she was at the age 18, there was a Givenchy runway show after they finished their part, Brunel would take many models to an afterparty filled with old wealthy men and they would chose approximately 4 to five girls for each. The moment she knew she wanted to quit working with Brunel when she saw her fellow friend being drugged and escorted to the hotel suite with 2 old men. I remember her comparing the modeling industry as human trafficking. She quit modeling and proceeded her life to study at a university and later-on married a Jordanian man and worked in Saudi Arabia as an international teacher. If only i had something to contact with her, I would’ve got more information about Jean-Luc Brunel.”
Oddly enough, my recent visit to New York was originally intended as a work trip. Specifically planned to interview a victim of Epstein’s I’d been in communication with on IG for a couple months. A model, now in her late 20s, who had recently moved back to the East Coast from LA. Her story reaching back to 2013, exposing a grim glimpse into how the trafficking operated at the tail end of Epstein's & Brunel’s reign.
Involving real estate all around New York City. Apartment buildings housing models signed to his agency, set up to accommodate lunch time appointments for high profile business men, brokers, bankers, politicians, and celebrities. The city’s wealthiest men, prone to dropping by at any hour of the day to have sex with these young women whom, she claims, were often times drugged and held against their will.
Girls were recruited as models from around the world and brought to the US to live in the building owned by MC2, the modeling company run by Epstein and Jean-Luc Brunel, financed by Epstein beginning in 2003.
Epstein “was the one who said who stays in what apartment,” Maritza Vasquez stated, a bookkeeper for MC2, in a 2010 deposition made public last year.