FACT CHECK: Does This Photo Show Chief Justice John Roberts With Ghislaine Maxwell?
An image shared on Facebook purportedly shows Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts with the late convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein’s associate Ghislaine Maxwell.
The image shows Maxwell with French modeling agent Jean-Luc Brunel.
In recent days, social media users have claimed the man pictured sitting on the couch with Maxwell is Roberts, the chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. Maxwell, a longtime associate and ex-girlfriend of Epstein, pleaded not guilty in July after being arrested earlier that month on charges of helping the deceased financier recruit and groom underage girls for sex, according to ABC News.
“Supreme Court Justice John Roberts hanging out with Ex-Jeffrey Epstein girlfriend Ghislaine Maxwell,” one Facebook user captioned the photo. (RELATED: Viral Image Claims To Show Donald Trump Embracing Jeffrey Epstein)
Through a reverse image search, Check Your Fact discovered Roberts does not appear in the photo. Uncropped versions of the picture have been published in outlets such as the Daily Mail and The Canadian, where the man is identified as Brunel, a French modeling agent. Other photos of Brunel can be seen in The Guardian, The Times and Yahoo! Finance.
Brunel, an associate of Epstein, was arrested this month in France at the Charles de Gaulle airport, CBS News reported. Paris prosecutor Remy Heitz said Brunel has been charged with sexual harassment and rape of minors over 15 years old, according to The New York Times.
The false claim that the photo shows Roberts spread on social media around the time attorney Lin Wood Jr. made several allegations about the chief justice on Twitter. Wood’s tweets, which included the unproven claim that the “John Roberts” in the flight logs for Epstein’s private jet is Roberts, came after the Supreme Court dismissed a lawsuit aiming to overturn presidential election results in several states, according to Newsweek.