Barak says attorneys working to dissolve limited partnership with Jeffrey Epstein

Ehud Barak speaking during a launch event for the Reporty App in Tel Aviv, March 16, 2016. (Flash90)

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Former Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak said his attorneys are working to dissolve a limited partnership company that he formed with Jeffrey Epstein, the billionaire who was convicted in 2008 of soliciting a teenage girl to prostitution.

Barak formed the Israeli Democratic Party last month to run in the September 2019 elections, with the express purpose of defeating Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Epstein was indicted last week in connection with allegations that he was involved in sex trafficking dozens of minors in New York and Florida between 2002 and 2005.

Barak said in a statement posted on Facebook that as soon as he heard about the new indictment he instructed his attorneys to look into removing the company tied to Epstein from the limited partnership.

Epstein financed much of an investment of several million dollars formally made by Barak in the company Reporty Homeland Security, according to Haaretz. It’s now called Carbyne. It develops call-handling and identification capabilities for emergency response services.

Barak defended his decision to enter a business relationship with Epstein  though other former partners kept their distance.

“He’d served his sentence for soliciting prostitution — the indictment didn’t say she was a minor,” he said on Saturday on Channel 12’s “Meet the Press.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has challenged Barak to explain why he was paid over $2 million by the Wexner Foundation in 2004 for what was described as a research program when Epstein was among the foundation’s trustees. Barak was not serving in office at the time. The Jewish philanthropist Leslie Wexner and Epstein were close friends and business associates at the time.