ABC's Amy Robach Says She Made Jeffrey Epstein Comments in "Private Moment of Frustration"

Amy Robach in 2016 - H Getty 2018
Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images

The '20/20' co-anchor explained comments she made in a video that was published by Project Veritas.

ABC News anchor Amy Robach and her network have responded to a video published Tuesday by the conservative group Project Veritas.

In the video, Robach is shown expressing frustration that the network did not publish a 2015 interview she had conducted with Virginia Giuffre, who has accused the late Jeffrey Epstein and Prince Andrew of sexual misconduct.

"I’ve had this story for three years. I've had this interview with Virginia Roberts," she says in the video. "We would not put it on the air. First of all, I was told, ‘Who’s Jeffrey Epstein? No one knows who that is. This is a stupid story.' Then the palace found out that we had her whole allegations about Prince Andrew and threatened us a million different ways. We were so afraid that we wouldn't be able to interview Kate and Will. That also quashed the story.... It was unbelievable what we had. [Bill] Clinton — we had everything. I tried for three years to get it on to no avail and now it’s all coming out and it’s like these new revelations. And I freaking had all of it. I'm so pissed right now. Every day I get more and more pissed.... What we had was unreal."

In a statement provided first to The Hollywood Reporter, ABC News responded: "At the time, not all of our reporting met our standards to air, but we have never stopped investigating the story. Ever since we’ve had a team on this investigation and substantial resources dedicated to it. That work has led to a two-hour documentary and six-part podcast that will air in the new year."

Robach, who co-anchors 20/20 and reports for Good Morning America, provided a more extensive response explaining her comments, which she did not intend to be aired.

"As a journalist, as the Epstein story continued to unfold last summer, I was caught in a private moment of frustration," she said. "I was upset that an important interview I had conducted with Virginia Roberts didn’t air because we could not obtain sufficient corroborating evidence to meet ABC’s editorial standards about her allegations. My comments about Prince Andrew and her allegation that she had seen Bill Clinton on Epstein’s private island were in reference to what Virginia Roberts said in that interview in 2015. I was referencing her allegations — not what ABC News had verified through our reporting."

Robach continued: "The interview itself, while I was disappointed it didn’t air, didn’t meet our standards. In the years since no one ever told me or the team to stop reporting on Jeffrey Epstein, and we have continued to aggressively pursue this important story."

In the video, Robach also expresses confidence that Epstein's death was a murder, not a suicide, and says that Ghislaine Maxwell should be worried about her safety. "Do I think he was killed? Hundred percent, yes, I do," she says. "He made his whole living blackmailing people. There were a lot of men on those planes. A lot of men who visited that island. A lot of powerful men who came into that apartment."

In an interview with NPR in August, Giuffre expressed confusion about why her 2015 interview with ABC was not broadcast. "I viewed the ABC interview as a potential game changer," she said. "Appearing on ABC with its wide viewership would have been the first time for me to speak out against the government for basically looking the other way and to describe the anger and betrayal victims felt."

An Epstein attorney, Alan Dershowitz, told NPR that he pressed ABC not to publish the interview.

Project Veritas, which is led by James O'Keefe, also recently published a series of videos shot by a onetime CNN employee, though the network never publicly responded to the contents of the videos.

The organization said Tuesday that the Robach video was provided by "an ABC insider" who still works at the network. "The video from our insider speaks for itself, they are still at ABC, and we are in contact!" O'Keefe said in an email.