Ghislaine Maxwell appeared very close to her former self when she sat in a New York court last month.
Dressed in loose-fitting sweatshirts and skirts instead of prison attire, her hair was brushed off, and she exuded the power of her socializing days while smiling at family and friends sitting behind her. But when the court adjourned the day, the scandal finally melted away when Maxwell was escorted by the US military commander out of the house and back to prison.
But on Wednesday evening, on the sixth day of the hearing, the 12-judge panel dismissed the fraud, and sent Maxwell, 60, back to his room, probably for the rest of his days. finding him guilty on five of the six charges for assisting his ex-partner, Jeffrey Epstein, in abusing 14-year-old girls.
It was an amazing decision, especially after a long discussion. The question now is what Maxwell will do next – and what other tricks that can get in the way.
Maxwell’s lawyers said Wednesday night that they were preparing an appeal. But, after serving 65 years in prison, he could say recently that it would be helpful for him to cooperate with government officials after years of obstruction. If so, this could lead to more people being prosecuted for Epstein’s surgery, such as former paramedics, who may have helped control what US officials say is a “pyramid” way of recruiting more young girls for abuse.
Maxwell’s alliance would also bring a new dimension of rich and powerful men who allied themselves with Epstein – who died of suicide in prison in 2019 – and who, whom his accusers say had sold them.
“I do not think this is the end,” said David Boies, whose company, Boies Schiller, represented Virginia Roberts Giuffre, one of Epstein’s first public prosecutors – and is now suing his former colleague, Prince Andrew of Britain. rape. Prince Andrew has denied the allegations.
“Now they have nothing to lose,” said Boies of Maxwell. “Perhaps he wanted to preserve his relationship with the rich and powerful. But those people can’t do him any good in this prison. ”
Considering the weight of the judges’ decision, freedom could no longer be an option, he argued. But naming him would only serve as a prison sentence for the rest of his life. (Boies criticized himself defending Harvey Weinstein, a Hollywood artist who was convicted of rape last year).
Maxwell’s case will have some changes in recent times. It can be a well-known time when a self-defense book of “reprimanding victims” on such cases and tarnishing their behavior has failed.
Maxwell’s legal team, led by Bobbi Sternheim and Laura Menninger, did just that. Their defense was almost entirely based on the cruel questions of the four women who testified against Maxwell.
The lawyers argued that a the witnesses were false, perverts the truth in search of a “jackpot” in return for money. In the past another accuser also reported on drug use. Another was falsely accused of embezzling funds from the family after the death of his father. Many shed tears once as Menninger described in detail the events that had taken place some 20 years earlier.
As the trial of the judges continued over Christmas and called for more evidence, many legal experts believe the defense is working. Then came the decision.
“This ruling sends a clear message that we can no longer tolerate the abuse of victims who have the courage to report it. who has represented a number of Epstein victims.
Carl Tobias, a professor of law at the University of Richmond, predicted that Maxwell would file an appeal, “because he will not lose a bit right now”. But, he added, “Maxwell will have trouble overturning the verdict, because Judge [Alison] Nathan was a good judge, and the case seemed fair. ”
So far, for Roberts Giuffre, the verdict was no cause for excitement over relief, according to his acquaintances. He was away, in his Australian foster home with his family, when it was read.
He blamed Maxwell for tarnishing his reputation in 2015 after calling him a liar for his public insults. The suit was disbanded but produced several Epstein and Maxwell national documents that were confiscated by journalists and lawyers.
Some of the comments were made by Maxwell when he said he was unaware of Epstein’s plot to recruit young girls or sex toys in his place. As a result, she was falsely accused, which is still the case.
“My life has been a struggle for justice for many years, and today the judges gave me that. I will always remember the day, “Roberts Giuffre said in a statement after the verdict.
In a shocking statement to some of Epstein’s colleagues, he also made it clear that he did not think the matter was over. “I hope today is not the end but for justice to be done,” he said. “Maxwell did not do it alone. Others should be held accountable. I am confident he will be present.”