Fact check: Chris Wallace visited George Clooney in Italy, not Jeffrey Epstein's island

The claim: Chris Wallace visited Jeffrey Epstein's island
Following the initial presidential debate, moderated by Chris Wallace, who was criticized for struggling to control President Donald Trump's interruptions, social media posts emerged claiming the Fox News host had Jeffrey Visited Epstein's private island Little Saint James in the Virgin Islands.
In a Facebook post, Wallace's "bias during the debate" is attributed to his alleged relationship with Epstein, a convicted sex offender who was found dead in his prison cell while awaiting trial.
The photo claiming to show Wallace and Epstein together was widely shared on Facebook. Many entries have won up to thousands of shares.
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"Well, look at this, Mr. Chris Wallace on 'The Island' with Epstein," read an October 3rd post.
"Chris Wallace with Epstein. Are you awake now?" wrote another user.
USA TODAY has requested a comment from its users.
The man in the photo is George Clooney
A reverse Google image search reveals the shared photos were of Wallace and actor George Clooney on a boat dock.
In August 2012, Wallace and his wife visited Como, Italy, where Clooney owns a home, Business Insider reported.
Clooney bought his home in the town of Lagio in 2002 and was made an Honorary Citizen of Lagio two years later, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
The photos in the social media posts can be seen in an article in the Daily Mail that covered Wallace's visit to Clooney.
The images are also featured in a 2012 Politico video interview in which Wallace spoke about his vacation and friendship with Clooney.
"Yes, I was lucky enough to be invited ... to spend a few days with him at his home on Lake Como," said Wallace. "It was great. It was everything you can imagine."
Wallace said they had "great food, great wine and great conversation," adding that while they had different political views, they "might not agree".
Our verdict: wrong
Numerous reports show that the photos were taken by Chris Wallace and George Clooney in Italy. There is no evidence that Wallace visited Jeffrey Epstein's island in the Virgin Islands. We judge this claim to be FALSE based on our research.
Our fact-checking sources:
Business Insider, September 27, 2019, Amal and George Clooney celebrate 5 years of marriage today. Here is a look at the energy couple's global real estate portfolio, from the villa on Lake Como to the villa on the Thames.
Hollywood Reporter, Aug 27, 2019, George Clooney wants to sell Italian mansion over paparazzi (report)
Daily Mail, August 9, 2012, Everyone aboard the love boat! George Clooney shows his chivalrous side when he sails around Lake Como with Stacy Keibler
Politico, August 17th 2012, Chris Wallace on vacation with George Clooney
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Our fact-checking is partly supported by a grant from Facebook.
This article originally appeared in the US TODAY: Fact Check: Photo shows Chris Wallace with Clooney, not Epstein

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