Prosecutors: Maxwell Poses Extreme Flight Risk. Sex-Abuse, Grooming Suspect Caught In Secluded Estate In N.H.
Written by R. Cort Kirkwood
Ghislaine Maxwell, the woman accused of helping deceased Wall Street financier and sex pervert Jeffrey Epstein sexually abuse three girls, should not be released on bail before trial, federal prosecutors argue in a 10-page detention memorandum filed Friday.
The megawealthy British socialite, arrested at about 8:30 Thursday morning at a luxurious hideaway in New Hampshire, must be kept behind bars because she poses too great a flight risk given the heinous crimes with which she is charged
The federal grand jury’s 18-page indictment detailing those crimes was unsealed Friday.
The daughter of deceased British press tycoon and Israeli spy Robert Maxwell, Ghislaine Maxwell faces four charges of enticing and transporting, and conspiracy to entice and transport three minor girls that Epstein sexually abused. She also faces two charges of perjury in connection with false testimony for a civil lawsuit in 2016.
The indictment alleges that Maxwell befriended, recruited, and groomed the three victims and participated in abusing them.
“As alleged, Ghislaine Maxwell facilitated, aided, and participated in acts of sexual abuse of minors,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss. “Maxwell enticed minor girls, got them to trust her, and then delivered them into the trap that she and Jeffrey Epstein had set. She pretended to be a woman they could trust. All the while, she was setting them up to be abused sexually by Epstein and, in some cases, Maxwell herself. Today, after many years, Ghislaine Maxwell finally stands charged for her role in these crimes.”
Maxwell, who was Epstein’s lover, participated in the sex-trafficking from 1994 to 1997, the indictment alleges, and the girls were “as young as 14” when she groomed them.
Maxwell should be denied bail because she “poses an extreme risk of flight,” prosecutors argue in their detention memo.
The nature of the crimes and the strength of the evidence likely mean Maxwell will spend considerable time behind bars, prosecutors argue. Thus, she has strong reasons to run if released on bail:
These offenses carry significant penalties, and the defendant faces up to 35 years’ imprisonment if convicted. The possibility of a substantial sentence is a significant factor in assessing the risk of flight…. The defendant is facing a statutory maximum of decades in prison. This fact alone would provide a compelling incentive for anyone to flee from prosecution, but the incentive to flee is especially strong for this defendant, who, at age 58, faces the very real prospect of spending a substantial portion of the rest of her life in prison.
Maxwell’s international travel and three citizenships — France, the United States, the United Kingdom — along with her fabulous wealth, offer more reasons for the judge to deny bail, prosecutors argue.
“The Government has identified more than 15 different bank accounts held by or associated with the defendant from 2016 to the present, and during that same period, the total balances of those accounts have ranged from a total of hundreds of thousands of dollars to more than $20
million,” prosecutors argue.
The defendant also appears to have reaped substantial income from a 2016 property sale. In particular, in 2016, the defendant appears to have sold a New York City residence for $15 million through a limited liability company. On or about the date of the sale, amounts totaling more than $14 million were then deposited into an account for which the defendant was listed as the owner. Several days later, more than $14 million was transferred from that account into another account opened in the name of the defendant.
As well, prosecutors argue, between 2007 and 2011, “more than $20 million was transferred from accounts associated with Jeffrey Epstein to accounts associated with the defendant, including amounts in the millions of dollars that were then subsequently transferred back to accounts associated with Epstein.”
Fox News reported that Maxwell appeared in a virtual hearing before a federal magistrate and waived her right to detention hearing, which means she’ll go to New York.Maxwell was hiding in Paris, France, Fox reported, and the FBI was “discreetly keeping tabs” on her when the agency learned she was holed up in Bradford, New Hampshire, about 40 miles northwest of Manchester.
She was hiding in a $1 million home, the New York Post reported, “secluded along the 5-mile mountain ridge of picturesque Mount Sunapee, a major area for hiking and skiing. The 4,300-square-foot timber frame house sits on 156 acres of land, at the top of a half-mile dirt driveway, making it an ideal location for someone looking to stay out of view.”
“It’s where you go to be secluded and it’s where you go if you want to be left alone,” a resident told the Post.
Image: screenshot from YouTube video
R. Cort Kirkwood is a longtime contributor to The New American and a former newspaper editor.