A damning profile of Alan Dershowitz in the New Yorker documents the ways in which the former Harvard Law professor has for decades smeared women who accuse men of sexual assault -- including the dozens of women who say they were abused by billionaire Jeffrey Epstein when they were underage.
In particular, the profile shows how Dershowitz regularly accuses alleged women victims of being drug addicts, such as when he got Claus Von Bülow's attempted murder conviction overturned by arguing that he wasn't the one who put his wife in a coma when he injected her with insulin. Rather, Dershowitz argued, his wife put herself in a coma through her addiction to alcohol and pills.
Dershowitz would once again smear accusers as drug addicts when he defended Epstein, who last decade was investigated for running a sex trafficking ring involving underage girls.
In his defense of Epstein, the New Yorker reports, "Dershowitz presented a selection of posts from MySpace, in which the girls recounted experiences with alcohol or marijuana," which he said were indications that they were "not to be believed."
One of Epstein's accusers, a woman named Virginia Roberts Giuffre, went so far as to claim that Epstein had instructed her to have sex with Dershowitz himself when she was under 18 years old. Dershowitz responded by attacking her character and declared that Giuffre was a "serial liar," a "prostitute," and a "bad mother."
A lawsuit surrounding the accusations against Dershowitz eventually ended in a settlement in 2016.
"The press reported that the agreement included a financial arrangement, implying that Giuffre’s team had paid," the New Yorker writes. "In fact, Dershowitz’s insurance company had paid Giuffre’s lawyers. (In negotiations, the parties had discussed a figure of nearly a million dollars, with fifty thousand going to Dershowitz, which would allow him to claim a payment. The final amount has not been disclosed.)"