Ghislaine Maxwell trial: who are Prince Andrew’s friends, what happened in court – and will she be retrial?

Jeffrey Epstein’s ex-lover found guilty of sex trafficking in December 2021

Ghislaine Maxwell once led the high life New Yorkattend fundraisers, launches and weddings with the likes of Donald Trump, Bill and Hillary Clinton.

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Maxwell is currently in prison awaiting sentencing for being convicted of sex trafficking in December 2021.

So, what happened in the 60-year-old woman’s trial – and why are her lawyers seeking a retrial?

Ghislaine Maxwell’s trial is scheduled to begin on November 29 and is expected to last for six weeks (photo: AFP/Getty Images)

Who is Ghislaine Maxwell?

Ghislaine Maxwell originally became famous thanks to her late father, media mogul and former congressman Robert Maxwell.

Born on Christmas Day 1961, she is the youngest of nine children of the former Daily Mirror owner and is rumored to be his favorite.

After completing her degree at Oxford University, Maxwell was put in charge of the Oxford United football club which her father owned at the time.

But shortly after her 30th birthday in November 1991, Robert Maxwell was found dead off the coast of the Canary Islands apparently falling off the ship from the yacht he named after her – Lady Ghislaine.

Ghislaine Maxwell’s father, media mogul Robert Maxwell, died in 1991 after falling from his yacht ‘Lady Ghislaine’ (pictured: AFP/Getty Images)

After the mysterious death of Robert Maxwell, it was reported that he left a £460 million loss in the pension funds of his companies to keep his companies alive and boost their share prices. their.

With her family’s fortune dwindling and its condition becoming dilapidated, Maxwell quickly moved in USA and started a career in real estate.

Around this time, she met financier Jeffrey Epstein and the two began a romantic relationship.

Epstein is said to be extremely wealthy, owning large properties in New York and Florida, as well as the entire Caribbean island – although the origin of his fortune is unknown.

Even after their relationship ended, Maxwell and Epstein remained close – she is said to have acted as a confidant and personal assistant to him.

When did the accusations about Maxwell surface first?

The first public hint of charges the couple would face came in 2008 when Epstein was jailed for 18 months by a Florida state court for prostitution of underage girls.

In 2015, allegations surfaced in Florida court documents that Prince Andrew had sex with Virginia Giuffre, née Roberts, then 17 years old and therefore considered a minor in the state of Florida. .

The papers say the encounters took place in 2001 at several locations, including at Maxwell’s home in Belgravia, London.

Prince Andrew sought to address sexual abuse allegations against him in a famous 2019 interview with Emily Maitlis (pictured: BBC/PA)

Ms Giuffre alleges Maxwell recruited her as Epstein’s masseuse at his Florida mansion when she was 15 – a job she believes led to her being sexually abused by Epstein.

Maxwell was later sued by Giuffre alleging that she lied in the documents – a case that was settled out of court.

In 2016, Maxwell sold his New York townhouse and disappeared from public life.

She was then arrested by the FBI in July 2020 on charges related to Epstein, who committed suicide in his cell in August 2019 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges.

What happened at Ghislaine Maxwell’s trial?

The trial began on November 29, 2021, with US commentators saying that the case was essentially to represent the trial Jeffrey Epstein faced before committing suicide.

Ghislaine Maxwell faces a number of charges related to the sexual abuse and sex trafficking of underage girls (Image: Getty Images)

Maxwell faced six charges from federal prosecutors at a trial that allegedly took place between 1994 and 2004, including:

  • Conspiracy to entice a minor to travel to perform illegal sexual acts
  • Conspiracy to transport minors with intent to engage in criminal sex activity
  • Transporting a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity
  • Sex trafficking conspiracy
  • Child sex trafficking
  • Enticing an individual under the age of 17 to travel with the intent to engage in illegal sexual activity

She also faces two separate charges of perjury.

Ghislaine Maxwell was described by accusers as Jeffrey Epstein’s ‘criminal partner’ (pictured: handout/PA)

Maxwell pleaded not guilty to all charges, but was found guilty of five of the six counts – the last charge being the only one for which she was not guilty.

All four women detailed how the couple would lure them in with money, friendship, and gracious promises, before “criminal partner” Maxwell used massages as a way to make the ladies feel better. girl touching Epstein.

She would then normalize their abuse and subsequent sexual abuse by entering the room with the girls and sometimes staying in the room while these behaviors took place.

Ghislaine Maxwell was found guilty of five of six charges against her in December 2021 (Image: Getty Images)

Other testimony came from Epstein’s former manager, Juan Alessi, who graphically detailed a daily cycle of abuse that included three massages a day and sex toys.

Maxwell’s attorneys spent just two days providing their files for defense.

They seek to puncture holes in the case by questioning the memories and motives of the accusers.

It appeared to be an attempt to thwart the prosecution’s request to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.

However, her plea failed to win juries and Maxwell now faces up to 65 years in prison when she is sentenced in June 2022.

Why are Maxwell’s lawyers seeking a retrial?

Shortly after the trial ended, a juror told the media that he convinced other members of the jury to believe victim Maxwell’s testimony because of his own history of sexual abuse.

Unlike in the UK, where it is illegal for jurors to talk about discussions in a case, US jurors are free to speak after the trial is over.

Using his surname and middle name, Scotty David said some of his fellow attorneys have wavered from the credibility of women.

“I know what happened when I was sexually abused. I remember the color of the carpet, the walls. Some of it could be played back as a video,” he told the jury. , according to The Independent and Reuters. “But I can’t remember all the details, there are some things running together.”

“When I share that, they can turn around the memory aspect of the sexual abuse.”

Ghislaine Maxwell’s defense lawyer Bobbi Sternheim has filed a request for a retrial (Image: AFP/Getty Images)

He said he didn’t remember being asked about his sexual abuse experience, but added that he would answer honestly if he was.

This disclosure led to Maxwell’s attorneys filing for a retrial on Wednesday (January 19).

No chance of her securing a retrial is yet known.

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Huynh Nguyen

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