6 Aug 2021

Epstein meetings a huge mistake, says Bill Gates

7:10 am on 6 August 2021

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates has admitted he made "a huge mistake" in spending time with sex offender and disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein.

Bill Gates delivers a speech at the fundraising day at the Sixth World Fund Conference in Lyon, France, on October 10, 2019.

Bill Gates. Photo: Nicolas Liponne / NurPhoto via AFP

Gates told CNN he had "several dinners" about a philanthropy project that did not emerge, and should not have given him "credibility".

Epstein hanged himself in jail in 2019 while awaiting a sex-trafficking trial.

Gates also discussed his divorce with Melinda French Gates, calling it "a source of great personal sadness".

The 65 year old, who announced in March last year he was stepping down from the Microsoft board, said he and his ex-wife were "going to try and continue" working together on the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Gates was also asked whether he had regrets following allegations of workplace misbehaviour - some Microsoft employees have accused him of bullying.

He did not respond specifically, saying: "Certainly everyone does [have regrets] but it's a time of reflection, and at this point, I need to go forward."