MIT Research Lab Director Tied to Jeffrey Epstein Resigns From University, NYT Board

The Latest on Jeffery Epstein’s ties to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (all times local):

8:55 p.m.

Journalist Nicholas Thompson, left, speaks to then director of the MIT Media Lab Joi Ito on stage during The New Yorker Festival at One World Trade Center on Oct. 3, 2015 in New York City. (Credit: Anna Webber/Getty Images for The New Yorker)

Journalist Nicholas Thompson, left, speaks to then director of the MIT Media Lab Joi Ito on stage during The New Yorker Festival at One World Trade Center on Oct. 3, 2015 in New York City. (Credit: Anna Webber/Getty Images for The New Yorker)

The director of a Massachusetts Institute of Technology research lab who resigned from the university over his ties to Jeffrey Epstein has also resigned from the boards of The New York Times Co. and of two foundations.

Times publisher A.G. Sulzberger and the company’s president, Mark Thompson, said in a companywide email Saturday that former Media Lab director Joi Ito has resigned from the board “effective immediately.”

The MacArthur Foundation and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation announced Ito’s resignation from their boards, as well.

The New Yorker reported Friday that Media Lab had a more extensive fundraising relationship with Epstein than it previously acknowledged and tried to conceal the extent of the relationship.

Epstein killed himself in jail in New York on Aug. 10 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges.

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4:30 p.m.

The president of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has ordered an independent investigation after a report about ties between Jeffrey Epstein and a prestigious research lab at the school.

MIT President L. Rafael Reif wrote in a letter to the university community Saturday that the report by The New Yorker about the Media Lab’s ties to Epstein contained “deeply disturbing allegations.”

Reif confirmed that the director of the Media Lab, Joi Ito, has resigned and that the school will hire a prominent law firm to investigate. The New York Times first reported that Ito emailed MIT’s provost saying he was stepping down.

The New Yorker reported Friday that the Media Lab had a more extensive fundraising relationship with Epstein than it previously acknowledged and tried to conceal the extent of the relationship.

Epstein killed himself in jail Aug. 10 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges.

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3:45 p.m.

The director of a prestigious research lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has resigned following uproar over his financial ties with Jeffrey Epstein.

The New York Times reports Saturday that Joi Ito sent an email to the Cambridge university’s provost saying he’s stepping down. Ito shared the email with the newspaper.

Ito’s resignation comes after The New Yorker reported Friday that Media Lab had a more extensive fundraising relationship with Epstein than it previously acknowledged and tried to conceal the extent of the relationship.

MIT’s president said the university took about $800,000 from Epstein over 20 years. The New Yorker reports Epstein arranged $7.5 million in donations.

Epstein killed himself in jail Aug. 10 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges.

Emails seeking comment were sent to MIT, Media Lab and Ito.

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