A NY Times biz reporter solicited Epstein for charity donation
David Folkenflik of NPR writes about how former New York Times business reporter Landon Thomas had asked convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein for a donation to a Harlem charity, which Epstein made.
Folkenflik reports, “This account is based on interviews with five current and former New York Times staffers with knowledge of the episode. They spoke on condition they not be directly named; while the Times confirmed the contours of the incident, it declined to authorize its journalists to comment. Thomas also declined to comment for this story.
“But Thomas flagged a problem. He told his editors Epstein had been a great source for years and had become something of a friend as well. How close? Thomas had solicited a $30,000 contribution from Epstein for a Harlem cultural center, he told them.
“Thomas suggested Epstein was just a source of information, not someone he would report on or investigate. His editors were aghast. They rejected the distinction he was trying to make.
“And his editors benched him instantly from any professional contact with Epstein.
“‘Soliciting a donation to a personal charity is a clear violation of the policy that governs Times journalists’ relationships with their sources,’ said the Times Co.’s chief spokesperson, Eileen Murphy. ‘As soon as editors became aware of it, they took action.'”
Read more here.