Jeffrey Epstein’s former bodyguard seemed “quite nervous” to speak to a reporter about his late boss and even warned him to “just be careful” in asking questions.
Former UFC fighter Igor Zinoviev was reached by New York Magazine’s M.L. Nestel and spoke about the late billionaire and accused sex trafficker who died of an apparent suicide last weekend while awaiting trial in New York’s Metropolitan Correctional Center.
Zinoviev, who also drove Epstein around in Palm Beach, Florida and assisted with some fitness training when he was employed by the convicted sex offender, implied that there was more behind the suicide.
Nestel spoke with the Russian MMA fighter by phone on Monday, and tried to clarify some of his remarks from an earlier interview four years ago before turning to the topic of Epstein’s death.
Jeffrey Epstein’s bodyguard, Igor Zinoviev, on his former boss’s suicide: “Somebody helped him to do that” https://t.co/pFwIg6ZYOO
— New York Magazine (@NYMag) August 14, 2019
From the transcript provided by Nestel:
Hold on. When did you find out he died?
Saturday or Sunday or whenever.
What did you think when you found that out?
What did I think?
Are you sure you want to hear what I am going to think?
Somebody helped him to do that.
You think somebody helped him kill himself?
When asked why he believed that, the former bodyguard replied, “that’s going a little too deep.”
Zinoviev denied that Epstein had ever paid him off to be silent and admitted that he didn’t have any emotional reaction to the death of his former employer.
“I’m not sad. I mean, I didn’t have anything against him, like a bad thing, you know? I don’t care about his life completely. I don’t give a, let’s say, like, crap about how he die, how he live, or how he’s managed,” he said.
But when confronted about some of his past comments, Zinoviev appeared to grow uneasy.
“Listen, don’t put yourself in trouble. Seriously,” he told the reporter.
— Charlie Warzel (@cwarzel) August 15, 2019
When asked if he was worried about local police, the mysterious answer was that he was “not going to offer that over the phone right now.”
After some more back and forth, Zinoviev warned Nestel to “just be careful.”
“I’m not kidding,” he added.
— henno (@jrhennessy) August 14, 2019
“Don’t do any kind of that stuff. Just don’t play it. Seriously,” he said when Nestel asked him for an email address.
“Can you tell me why?” the reporter asked.
“I can’t. I can’t,” was the reply.
“Have you been talking to anyone in the government, the FBI? Have they come to you?” Nestel attempted to get in one more question.
He reported that there was a “long pause” before Zinoviev responded.
“Um. Great talking to you. Seriously. We talk later,” he said.
Autopsy results seem to have raised even more questions in Epstein’s death as multiple breaks were reportedly found in his neck bones.
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) August 15, 2019
The cause of death is still pending per the office of New York City’s chief medical examiner, but it seems the story of Epstein and those around him continues to get stranger each day.
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