No, Jimmy Kimmel is not mentioned in the newly released Epstein court papers

By: Siri Christiansen
January 5 2024

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No, Jimmy Kimmel is not mentioned in the newly released Epstein court papers

A viral X post is claiming to show an excerpt about Jimmy Kimmel in the newly released Epstein court documents.


The Verdict Fake

A fake deposition transcript is being used to claim that talk show host Jimmy Kimmel was on Epstein’s client list.

Claim ID 21e20c62

The claim

Court documents relating to the convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein were made public on January 3, 2024, revealing the identities of several previously anonymized persons connected to Epstein or the case. 

Shortly after the court documents were made public, a falsified image appeared on social media claiming that talk show host Jimmy Kimmel had been mentioned in the papers.

The image looks like a screenshot from a deposition, where the interviewee says that they met Kimmel twice at Epstein’s house in Palm Beach. The interviewee says that they gave him a massage both times and that they had sex with Kimmel on one occasion, at his request.

The image has gone viral across platforms, with one of the earliest X posts gaining over 877k views within roughly seven hours after being posted. It also appeared in a TikTok video released approximately at the same time and has since reached 76k views at the time of writing, where the creator points at Kimmel’s name and says "Well, he lied."

What we found

The interview excerpt is fabricated and cannot be found in the publicly released court documents.

The publicly available documents have been shared in full by credible news organizations such as The Guardian as a searchable PDF file. Logically Facts conducted word searches of “Jimmy,” “Kimmel,” “Jimmy Kimmel,” and found no search results. We also searched for “Page 1375,” which appears in the upper right corner of the viral image, and found no results. Kimmel has not been named in any documentation relating to Epstein.

Additionally, Logically Facts manually looked through the 943-page-long document and found that the text formatting of the viral image does not match any of the depositions found in the court papers. 

Two of the depositions do closely match the text formatting in the viral image, but there are a few signs to tell them apart. The spacing is smaller in the viral image, for example, than in the real depositions. Additionally, the first row of the viral image, marked 1, is not formatted the same way as the real depositions. 

In one deposition, row 1 always features the name of the interviewee, not a question, as it does in the viral image.

Comparison between viral image and real deposition. Source: X/The Guardian (annotated by Logically Facts)

Another similar-looking deposition does not include this particular feature. However, it is still distinctly different from the viral image as all questions start with the capital letter Q. This is not included in the first row of the viral image. 

Comparison between viral image and real deposition. Source: X/The Guardian (annotated by Logically Facts)

More context 

Falsified “evidence” connecting celebrities and politicians to Epstein’s alleged sex trafficking ring has been circulating the web for years, often by QAnon conspiracy theorists in an attempt to prove the existence of a secret pedophile cabal. 

Such speculations have been pushed by the same X account that made the Jimmy Kimmel image go viral. The account has also shared vaccine misinformation, climate misinformation, and misinformation surrounding the 2020 U.S. presidential election.

The idea that Jimmy Kimmel would appear in the Epstein files was raised the day before the documents' release by the U.S. quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who has previously been criticized for spreading vaccine misinformation and suggesting that last year's UFO spottings were a government distraction from the Epstein client list. Rodgers has also had a long-running feud with Kimmel, who has frequently ridiculed Rodger’s beliefs on his talk show.

Discussing the highly anticipated release of the Epstein court documents on Pat McAfee’s popular sports talk show on January 2, Rodgers said: “There’s a lot of people, including Jimmy Kimmel are really hoping that doesn't come out.” A clip of this comment was quickly widely shared on social media.

Kimmel responded to Rodgers in an X post on January 3, where he denied any interaction with Epstein, said his family had been put in danger due to the accusation, and called Rodgers a "soft-brained wacko."

More documents are expected to be unsealed and released in the future. 

The verdict

The viral image is fabricated. The interview excerpt does not show up in the unsealed Epstein court documents released January 3, 2024, and the formatting of the text in the image doesn’t match the real depositions. Therefore, we have marked this claim as fake. 

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Global Fact-Checks Completed

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