Ghislaine Maxwell Moved to NY for Epstein-Related Sex Abuse Charges

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Audrey Strauss, Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, speaks during a news conference to announce charges against Ghislaine Maxwell for her alleged role in the sexual exploitation and abuse of multiple minor girls by Jeffrey Epstein, Thursday, July 2, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
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By: AP

Jeffrey Epstein’s longtime confidante Ghislaine Maxwell was transferred Monday to New York to face charges that she recruited women and girls, one as young as 14, for him to sexually abuse, the Bureau of Prisons confirmed.

Prosecutors have asked a judge to schedule a Friday court appearance in Manhattan federal court for Maxwell, 58, who was arrested last week at a $1 million estate she had purchased in New Hampshire.

Maxwell, the daughter of British publishing magnate Robert Maxwell, was the former girlfriend and longtime close associate of Epstein, who killed himself in a Manhattan jail last August while he awaited trial on federal sex trafficking charges.

Maxwell has been indicted on multiple charges, including that she conspired to entice girls as young as 14 to engage in illegal sex acts with Epstein from 1994 through 1997.

Several weeks ago, it was reported that  Maxwell “fled to France, where she was born, to avoid questioning in the US by the FBI over her links to the late disgraced billionaire,” according to The Sun of the UK.  The apartment is reportedly just a five-minute drive along the Champs¬Elysees from Epstein’s ritzy apartment on Avenue Foch.

“The 58-year-old, who vanished from public life in 2016, moved into her secret bolthole on Avenue Matignon, in Paris’s exclusive 8th Arrondissement, to remain undetected,” reported The Sun. “Maxwell, who is a long-term friend of the Duke of York, was spotted on Avenue Matignon in the days before France announced its Covid-19 lockdown in March. She remained in Paris during the virus crisis and hopes to benefit from her status as a French citizen to avoid extradition, should she face any criminal charges in the US.”

Several of Epstein’s victims have described Maxwell as his chief enabler, recruiting and grooming young girls for abuse. She has denied wrongdoing and called claims against her “absolute rubbish.”

In a letter to a judge Sunday, prosecutors said they have communicated with Maxwell’s defense lawyer, Christian Everdell, who would like a Friday bail hearing where she will be arraigned.

Prosecutors have said Maxwell “poses an extreme risk of flight.” Maxwell has three passports, is wealthy with lots of international connections, and has “absolutely no reason to stay in the United States and face the possibility of a lengthy prison sentence,” they wrote in a memo.

She is currently being held at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn.

The Brooklyn lockup has had controversies of its own. Last month, an inmate died after correctional officers sprayed him with pepper spray.

A week-long power failure at the jail in January 2019 sparked unrest among shivering inmates. In March, the jail had the federal prison system’s first inmate to test positive for coronavirus.

The Bureau of Prisons has been the subject of intense scrutiny since Epstein took his own life while in custody in August, which Attorney General William Barr said was the “perfect storm of screw ups.”

The agency has been plagued for years by serious misconduct, violence and staffing shortages so severe that guards often work overtime day after day or are forced to work mandatory double shifts and has struggled recently with an exploding number of coronavirus cases in prisons across the U.S. (AP)

 

 

 

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