Ghislaine Maxwell is said to have procured girls for the late sex offender Epstein and to have participated in the abuse. Now she is in custody and charged. The new development does not leave Prince Andrew without a trace.
By Peter Mücke, ARD Studio New York
The 58-year-old British woman had been under investigation for some time. Then, early Thursday morning, the FBI struck in New Hampshire, William Sweeney of the New York Federal Police Office said: “We tracked Maxwell’s whereabouts and then saw that she was hiding in a New Hampshire property, where Ghislaine Maxwell lived a privileged luxury life while the victims suffer from their traumas. There were no incidents during the arrest. “
The New York prosecutor has made serious allegations against the daughter of the late British publisher Robert Maxwell. She is said to have been not only a business partner and at times the friend of Jeffrey Epstein, but also his accomplice.
“Maxwell was one of the closest confidants and helped Epstein abuse girls, some of whom were only 14 years old. She helped him recruit these girls and make them compliant. In some cases, she even participated in the abuse,” says the responsible New York prosecutor Audrey Strauss.
The allegations refer to the period from 1994 to 1997. Maxwell and Epstein systematically lured minors into the trap: “They made friends with the young women, invited them to the movies or on shopping trips. Maxwell persuaded them to give Epstein’s gifts so that they feel committed to him, and then she continued to act on the girls until they found sexual abuse normal, which is known as ‘grooming,’ according to Strauss.
Everything denied – even under oath
Maxwell had repeatedly denied that he had been involved in or knew about the machinations of the US investment banker and multimillionaire Epstein. In 2016 she testified twice under oath. That is also why it is now being investigated against them. If convicted, she would face life imprisonment.
Prosecutor Would “Very Welcome Prince Andrew’s Testimony”
The new development also increases the pressure on the British Prince Andrew, who was friends with Epstein and against whom a woman makes allegations of abuse. When asked about the case, Prosecutor Strauss said reluctantly: “I do not want to comment further. But I can say that we would very much welcome a testimony from Prince Andrew.
Andrew was surprised by this statement. The Duke of York team was “stunned by the fact that we communicated with the US judiciary twice in the past month,” Andrews said on Thursday evening.
The New York prosecutor had accused the British queen’s son of unwillingness to cooperate in the Epstein case. The Royals’ lawyers had refused.
Epstein was arrested a year ago and later found dead in his Manhattan prison cell. The authorities assume suicide. If convicted, he would face up to 45 years in prison.