The Wall Street Journal reported that Gates met Mila Antonova around 2010, when the Russian bridge player was in her 20s. At the time, Gates was in his mid-50s, and he was married to Melinda French Gates. Gates reportedly had an affair with the young Russian woman.
In 2013, Epstein met Antonova and paid for her to attend software coding school.
"In 2017, Epstein emailed Gates and asked to be reimbursed for the cost of the course, according to the people familiar with the matter," the Wall Street Journal reported. "The email came after the convicted sex offender had struggled and failed to convince Gates to participate in a multibillion-dollar charitable fund that Epstein tried to establish with JPMorgan Chase."
The news outlet claims that Epstein appeared to threaten to reveal Gates' affair with Antonova if the Microsoft co-founder "didn’t keep up an association between the two men."
A spokesperson for Gates told the WSJ, "Mr. Gates met with Epstein solely for philanthropic purposes. Having failed repeatedly to draw Mr. Gates beyond these matters, Epstein tried unsuccessfully to leverage a past relationship to threaten Mr. Gates."
Antonova declined to comment on the Gates sex scandal.
She claimed that she didn't know who Jeffrey Epstein was when they met.
"I had no idea that he was a criminal or had any ulterior motive," the Russian bridge player said of Epstein. "I just thought he was a successful businessman and wanted to help. I am disgusted with Epstein and what he did."
Antonova allegedly met with Epstein in November 2013 at his townhouse to pitch a venture to promote the game of bridge.
Epstein did not fund the venture, but paid for her education.
“Epstein agreed to pay and he paid directly to the school. Nothing was exchanged. I don’t know why he did that,” Antonova said. “When I asked, he said something like, he was wealthy and wanted to help people when he could.”
In a 2010 YouTube video, Antonova talked about meeting Gates and playing against him in bridge.
Gates reportedly had more than a half dozen meetings scheduled with Epstein, beginning in 2011.
The New York Times reported in 2019:
In fact, beginning in 2011, Mr. Gates met with Mr. Epstein on numerous occasions — including at least three times at Mr. Epstein’s palatial Manhattan townhouse, and at least once staying late into the night, according to interviews with more than a dozen people familiar with the relationship, as well as documents reviewed by The New York Times.Employees of Mr. Gates’s foundation also paid multiple visits to Mr. Epstein’s mansion. And Mr. Epstein spoke with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and JPMorgan Chase about a proposed multibillion-dollar charitable fund — an arrangement that had the potential to generate enormous fees for Mr. Epstein.
In March 2013, Gates flew on Epstein’s Gulfstream plane from Teterboro Airport in New Jersey to Palm Beach, Florida, according to flight records.
A previous report from the Daily Beast claimed that Gates and his wife met with Epstein in 2013 while in New York City.
Melinda Gates was reportedly uncomfortable with the encounter with the convicted pedophile and furious over her husband's relationship with Epstein.
"Gates' friendship with Epstein — who for years was accused of molesting scores of underage girls — still haunts Melinda," the Daily Beast reported, citing friends of the couple.
Melinda Gates told "CBS Monrings" last year, "I did not like that [Bill] had meetings with Jeffrey Epstein. I made that clear to him. I also met Jeffrey Epstein exactly one time. I wanted to see who this man was, and I regretted it from the second I stepped in the door."
Melinda called Epstein "abhorrent, evil personified."
She added, "I had nightmares about it afterwards. That's why my heart breaks for these young women. That's how I felt, and I am an older woman. He was awful."
Melinda and Bill Gates announced they were getting divorced in May 2021, after 27 years of marriage.
In a January 2023 interview, Gates became frustrated when asked about his relationship with Epstein.
"I said that I'm— this is going way back in time, but yeah I will say for the over 100th time, yeah I shouldn't have had dinners with him," Gates said.
When the interviewer noted that Epstein was known for "sexually compromising people," Gates lashed out, "No, I mean. No. I had dinner with him and that's all."
Epstein pleaded guilty to felony soliciting and procuring a minor for prostitution in 2008.
Epstein died from an alleged suicide on Aug. 10, 2019, at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in New York City while awaiting his sex trafficking trial.
The Wall Street Journal reported in April that Epstein met with a CIA director, leftist Noam Chomsky, Obama's White House counsel, and a Rothschild.