Conspiracy theorists are spreading fake documents that purport to tie comedian Jimmy Kimmel to deceased pedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
Following the long-awaited release of hundreds of court documents related to Epstein and his associates on Wednesday, social media sites have been flooded with fabrications from right-wing accounts.
The forgery in question alleges to show the text of a deposition between a lawyer and a victim of Epstein. When asked by the lawyer whether they had ever come across Kimmel, the victim stated that they had not only met the comedian but engaged in sexual intercourse with him as well.
The circulation of the fake image comes less than two days after Kimmel threatened a lawsuit against NFL star Aaron Rodgers, who insinuated in an interview on Tuesday that the comedian might appear on the list of Epstein’s associates.
Kimmel has long been a target of right-wing conspiracy theorists for his opposition to former President Donald Trump. Fabricated flight logs that falsely claim Kimmel traveled on Epstein’s private jet have also circulated online for years.
In response to Rodgers, Kimmel pointed out that he had no ties to Epstein before calling the quarterback and his fellow conspiracy theorists “soft-brained wackos.”
“Dear Aasshole: for the record, I’ve not met, flown with, visited, or had any contact whatsoever with Epstein, nor will you find my name on any ‘list’ other than the clearly-phony nonsense that soft-brained wackos like yourself can’t seem to distinguish from reality,” he wrote. “Your reckless words put my family in danger. Keep it up and we will debate the facts further in court.”
Pat McAfee, the host of the ESPN show that interviewed Rodgers, responded on Wednesday by apologizing for the controversy.
“Some things obviously people get very pissed off about, especially when they’re that serious allegations,” McAfee said. “So we apologize for being a part of it. I can’t wait to hear what Aaron [Rodgers] has to say about it. Hopefully those two will just be able to settle this, you know, not work wise but be able to chit chat and move along.”
Although misinformation has been rampant, the newly-released court documents have led to some new revelations. During a deposition, alleged victim Johanna Sjoberg said Epstein told her that former President Bill Clinton “likes them young, referring to girls.”