Stephen Hawking “would not be part of an orgy,” a fellow scientist insisted to The Post in the wake of newly released court documents that mention an allegation the renowned physicist participated in an “underage” sex fest on Jeffrey Epstein’s Virgin Islands estate.
“He never mentioned, when we worked together, Epstein or any such things,” said cosmologist and theoretical physicist Laura Mersini-Houghton, who in 2015 organized a conference in Sweden on black holes with Hawking.
“Stephen was a very honorable man. … He was not the kind of man who would be a part of an orgy,” said the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill professor.
And he wouldn’t accept a free ride, either.
When a “very highly reputable family” offered to arrange and pay for the profoundly disabled Hawking’s travel to the conference, in exchange for him giving a lecture in their hometown, he turned them down, Mersini-Houghton recalled.
He also was “very respectful of his staff,” including the nurses who gave him 24/7 care, paying them a per diem out of his own money during the conference.
Hawking’s name emerged in connection with the Epstein case this week as thousands of pages of court documents were unsealed.
The scientist died in 2018 at age 76.
What we know about the Jeffrey Epstein list of 170 associates
- On Wednesday, documents were released naming 170 associates of accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein. The list included Michael Jackson, magician David Copperfield, Stephen Hawking, former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and former President Bill Clinton — who an Epstein victim said “likes them young, referring to girls.”
- Disgraced royal Prince Andrew, a known friend of Epstein, was named in the documents and was previously sued by Epstein accuser Virginia Giuffre, who accused Andrew of sexual misconduct toward her. According to one royal family expert, the Firm “will stand beside” the Duke of York “no matter what.”
- Epstein’s former attorney and friend Alan Dershowitz defended the late multimillionaire sex offender’s associates, saying: “None of us knew about his private life that he kept so secret.” Dershowitz, who is on the list, added that no one should be automatically convicted in the court of public opinion simply for showing up in court documents.
- Epstein’s brother, Mark Epstein, told The Post that the ex-business mogul said he could have upended the 2016 election over what he knew about both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton: “Here’s a direct quote: ‘If I said what I know about both candidates, they’d have to cancel the election.’ That’s what Jeffrey told me in 2016.”
- Only some of the 170 names and their relationships to Epstein have been released. The remainder of the documents will likely become public record throughout the next week.
Keep up with The Post’s live blog on the revelations about Epstein’s associates revealed in the newly released documents here.
In a 2015 email Epstein wrote to Ghislaine Maxwell, he offered a reward to anyone who could help disprove salacious allegations from accuser Virginia Giuffre — including that Hawking had been part of an “underage orgy” and that President Clinton had been to Epstein’s private island.
Hawking did attend a 2006 conference for scientists funded and reportedly hosted by Epstein, just five months before the financier was charged with soliciting prostitution in Florida.
Photos taken of Hawking in 2006, showing him at a barbecue on Epstein’s private Island, Little Saint James, emerged in a 2015 report in the Telegraph.
Hawking, a father of three, famously divorced his longtime wife Jane in 1995 after falling in love with one of his nurses.
Hawking’s son, Robert, declined to comment.