Kevin Rudd has revealed he was “blindsided” and “deeply disturbed” to learn that paedophile Jeffrey Epstein donated $650,000 to the international think-tank that he has been a member of for six years.
The former prime minister said on Thursday night he has “no recollection whatsoever” of ever meeting the convicted sex offender who was found dead in a Manhattan jail cell in 2019.
The revelations have only come to light now after Norwegian journalists probed financial links between Epstein and veteran diplomat Terje Rød-Larsen – who is President of the Peace Institute and a personal friend of Mr Rudd.
In an 891-word statement obtained by news.com.au, Mr Rudd revealed that he had first learned of the links last year. He joined the IPA board in 2014 and has been chairman since 2018.
“I first learned of contributions from Epstein’s foundations to the IPI in November 2019 through reporting by the Norwegian press. I was blindsided by this,” Mr Rudd said.
“On 14 October, again through the Norwegian press, the Board learned that there was a personal loan agreement between Epstein and Terje Rod-Larsen that existed in 2013.”