The British socialist Ghislaine Maxwell, accused of helping to get underage girls to be a disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein for sexual abuse, returns to court Monday to be charged, which could result in up to 80 years in prison.
Maxwell, 59, has spent the past 16 months awaiting trial in solitary confinement at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn. Last week, she was denied bail for the fourth time despite claims from her lawyers that she has been subjected to physical and emotional abuse by prison guards, unhygienic living conditions and inedible meals.
Prosecutors dismissed the allegations as “rhetoric and anecdotes better suited to tabloids than briefs. Where legal arguments can be found, they are superficial and not convincing.”
Maxwell further pressured his claims in an interview with Daily mail released Saturday.
“I have been assaulted and abused for almost a year and a half,” she told the British tabloid. “They feed me rotten food. An apple had maggots in it.”
She described a “friendly rat” who routinely sat next to her on an open sewer while she went to the toilet.
“I told the guards, but nothing was done, until the rat jumped out and attacked a guard, who screamed in horror,” Maxwell said. “Finally, the sewer drain was covered.”
Kristie Breshears, a spokeswoman for the Federal Bureau of Prisons, told USA TODAY that for reasons of privacy, security and safety, she could not discuss conditions of incarceration for a particular inmate. But she wrote in an email that the agency “takes allegations of staff misconduct seriously.”
“Incidents of potential criminal activity or misconduct inside BOP facilities are thoroughly investigated for potential administrative discipline or criminal prosecution,” Breshears wrote.
Maxwell also told the Daily Mail she was “horrified that the overwhelmingly negative coverage would poison my jury pool” and result in a guilty verdict despite evidence she said proved her innocence.
“I look forward to having my day in court to prove I played no part in Epstein’s crimes,” she said. “I am innocent.”
Epstein, 66, was indicted in July 2019, charged with sexually abusing and abusing dozens of underage girls in his mansions in Manhattan, Palm Beach, Florida and elsewhere from the 1990s to 2005. The charges, including sex trafficking and conspiracy, could have landed Epstein in jail for decades. But he killed himself in his Manhattan jail cell one month later.
Maxwell was arrested in July 2020 on charges involving the transportation of a minor for the purpose of criminal sexual activity and conspiracy to entice minors to travel to engage in illegal sexual acts. Maxwell, who denies the charges, has been in custody ever since.
“Maxwell was among Epstein’s closest associates and helped him exploit girls as young as 14 years old,” Audrey Strauss, acting U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, said at the time.
The jury selection in her case begins in earnest this week in a federal courtroom in Manhattan, with opening statements tentatively set for Nov. 29. Judge Alison Nathan has repeatedly rejected a proposed $ 28.5 million bail package, saying Maxwell was an aviation risk.
The Epstein-Maxwell saga has reached British royalty. However, police announced last month that they will do not take action against Prince Andrew after a report prompted by an Epstein prosecutor claiming the prince sexually assaulted her.
Virginia Giuffre claims she was traded by Epstein for having sex with Andrew in London in 2001, when she was 17 and a minor under U.S. law. She is suing the prince, who has denied the claim.
The Maxwell family has long been headlines in the UK. Maxwell’s father, Czech-born British media baron Robert Maxwell, died in a yacht in November 1991. Weeks later, it emerged he had ransacked his corporate pension funds to support his declining financial empire.
Two of Ghislaine Maxwell’s brothers, Ian and Kevin, were later acquitted of fraud charges for their alleged roles in their father’s companies.
Starring: Associated Press
Disclaimers for mcutimes.com
All the information on this website - https://mcutimes.com - is published in good faith and for general information purpose only. mcutimes.com does not make any warranties about the completeness, reliability, and accuracy of this information. Any action you take upon the information you find on this website (mcutimes.com), is strictly at your own risk. mcutimes.com will not be liable for any losses and/or damages in connection with the use of our website.