Ghislaine Maxwell Found Guilty of Child Sex Trafficking for Collaborating in Epstein Plot | International

A federal court in New York has found British celebrity Ghislaine Maxwell guilty of five of the six cases under investigation for child sex trafficking in the pedophile ring run by billionaire Jeffrey Epstein, while he still faces a second trial. accused of perjury.

The charges include conspiracy to entice a minor to travel to engage in sexual acts; conspiracy to transport a minor to engage in criminal sexual activities; transporting a minor with the intention of participating in criminal sexual activity and conspiracy to commit trafficking in minors and sex trafficking in minors, according to ‘NBC News’.

The other remaining charge, of which she has not been found guilty, is that of inciting a minor to travel to participate in illegal sexual acts, which carried a five-year sentence, although the computation of years in prison is equivalent to up to 65 years in a plot that lasted between 1994 and 2004.

Maxwell, who served 60 years behind bars awaiting the verdict, will appear again in court accused of having lied under oath about the abuse of minors committed by Jeffrey Epstein, who committed suicide in jail in August 2019 while awaiting his sentence .

In this perjury case, prosecutors argue that Maxwell lied during an appearance in 2016 that was part of a defamation lawsuit brought by Virginia Giuffre, the visible face of the Epstein case, who accused Prince Andrew of England of having had sexual relations with her. when I was younger, with Epstein as a go-between.

While this lawsuit was settled for an undisclosed amount, prosecutors used portions of Maxwell’s sworn testimony as the basis for the charges, arguing that he lied when asked about Epstein’s activities by denying knowledge of the recruitment and interactions with girls. minors, according to Bloomberg.

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Maxwell, who acknowledged hiring Giuffre as Epstein’s masseur when he was 17 at his Palm Beach estate, denied knowledge of any sexual abuse: “You can be a professional masseuse at 17 in Florida.” As far as I know, a Professional masseuse showed up for a massage. There is nothing inappropriate or wrong about that. “

Each of the perjury charges carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison. No date has yet been set for Maxwell’s sentencing in the sex trafficking case, and the judge could wait until the trial is complete, according to Bloomberg.

Maxwell will appeal the decision

Following the verdict, Maxwell’s legal team has assured that they will appeal the decision: “We firmly believe in Maxwell’s innocence and we are already working on the appeal,” Sternheim said.

Reactions have not been long in coming. Federal prosecutor Damian Williams said on Wednesday that “the road to justice has been too long,” recognizing “the courage of the girls, now adult women, who came out of the shadows and entered the courtroom,” according to what he collects. ‘CNN’.

For their part, Virginia Giuffre’s lawyers have said in a statement that “it is a great day for justice and the survivors of Maxwell”, since the verdict “vindicates the courage and commitment of our clients who resisted against the wind and tide over many years to bring Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell to justice. “

The prosecutor presiding over the trial, which has now ended, Allison Nathan, encouraged the members of the jury on Tuesday to extend their usual time of departure during the deliberations in the face of the threat posed by the omicron variant of coronavirus in the United States, since, in case contagion of any of the members, could have produced the annulment of the trial.

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Prosecutors have kept the case narrowly focused on Maxwell’s interactions with four girls between 1994 and 2004, at which time the British celebrity reportedly had a romantic relationship with Epstein. Later, he would start working for him, according to ‘ABC News’.

Maxwell’s legal team, led by Bobbi Sternheim and Laura Menninger, has defended her innocence throughout the length of the trial and presented her as a government-led scapegoat as they have failed to bring Epstein to justice after meeting. his suicide in jail.

The British celebrity refused to testify at her own trial on December 18: “Your Honor, the government has not proven your case beyond a reasonable doubt, so there is no reason for you to testify,” he replied to members of the jury while he was with his lawyer, ending the defense after calling for three weeks dozens of witnesses who have testified on his behalf.

Epstein’s victims

At the beginning of December, one of the four women who accused Maxwell of sex trafficking, claimed in the trial that she had been “caught” by the British when they introduced her to the former president of the United States, Donald Trump, at the age of 14.

The victim, under the pseudonym ‘Jane’, said that she met former President Trump in the 1990s at Mar-a-Lago, his mansion in Palm Beach, Florida, and that she participated in a 1998 children’s beauty pageant linked to various Trump companies. He also revealed that he was on one of Epstein’s famous flights with Prince Andrew of England.

This episode was confirmed at trial by the veteran pilot of Epstein’s private plane, Larry Visoski, who admitted to meeting ‘Jane’ on one of those flights, although he denied that he knew how old she was at the time, detailed ‘NBC News’ .

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These flights became the object of scrutiny in the media when it was published that illustrious figures such as Prince Andrew, former President Bill Clinton, Trump himself or his lawyer, Alan Dershowitz, would have traveled on them.

‘Jane’ told the court that Epstein regularly abused her at his Palm Beach, New York mansions and at his ranch in New Mexico. “They did despicable things to me and I wouldn’t want to keep talking about them,” he said.

He testified that he met Epstein and Maxwell at summer camp, when his father had just passed away and the situation at home was not good. “My family had money problems” and Epstein paid some bills, while the defendant acted like “an older sister” while “trafficking” with her.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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