The New York Post reported that Steven Hoffenberg, who was a business associate and longtime mentor of Jeffrey Epstein, was found dead Tuesday when Connecticut police conducted a welfare check at his residence.
Police had been called to Hoffengerg’s residence at the request of one of his friends, Maria Farmer.
Farmer, who was a survivor of sexual abuse from Epstein, said she remained in regular contact with Hoffenberg and said she called police out of concern after he didn’t answer his phone. Farmer praised the support Hoffenberg gave to survivors. “I want people to know how kind this gentleman was to survivors, while asking for nothing,” Farmer told The Rolling Stone.
Hoffenberg once served 18 years in prison for his role in a ponzi scheme. He was chairman of Towers Financial Corporation, who fronted themselves as a debt collection agency, but were later found out to be a ponzi scheme.
Hoffenberg alleged Epstein was responsible for the scam and said told NPR that “I’m the first one in the line to assist the victims.” Hoffenberg said he wanted to help victims get some of their money back and that “At 74, I’d like to go to the pearly gates assisting the victims.”
“He was my colleague daily, seven days a week,” he said of Epstein in a 2019 interview in Quartz.
Tower investors also alleged in an August 2018 lawsuit that Epstein “knowingly and intentionally utilized funds he fraudulently diverted and obtained from this massive Ponzi scheme for his own personal use to support a lavish lifestyle.”
Hoffenberg was found deceased on Tuesday. Police do not yet know how long he had been dead, nor have they identified the cause of death – though police did say that they could not locate any visible trauma.
“Every indication is that it is Mr. Hoffenberg,” a Derby Police Department spokesman said. “There’s nothing to suggest that it isn’t. We believe it’s him. We’re just waiting for dental records.”
The police also made a statement on Facebook where they said the body was “in a state where a visual identification could not be made.”
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: NEW YORK POST
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