Is Ghislaine Maxwell being “mistreated” while in jail?
Last month, a federal judge denied bail for Ghislaine Maxwell, meaning she’ll have to await trial behind bars. The former girlfriend of disgraced financier and sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein has been charged in connection to his sex trafficking ring. She maintains her innocence and believes she should await the trial in the luxury she’s accustomed to as a socialite.
Ghislaine Maxwell’s lawyers tried to secure her bail on the argument that she won’t be a flight risk, and that the treatment she received at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, New York is in violation of her rights. Here are the details.
Ghislaine Maxwell was on suicide watch
According to prison officials, Ghislaine Maxwell is in solitary confinement and was just taken off suicide watch. The former is done to keep her safe from the other inmates. Maxwell is a high-profile inmate with a record of abusing children. Her charges involving Jeffrey Epstein’s sex trafficking ring make her a prized target for other inmates.
In the MDC, inmates who are on suicide watch in solitary confinement are given paper clothes designed to break if they try to harm themselves with them. They are also woken up every few hours for monitoring. Ghislaine Maxwell was put on suicide watch when she first entered MDC due to Jeffrey Epstein’s apparent suicide last year.
Ghislaine Maxwell wants to re-join general population
Ghislaine Maxwell would rather be with the general population, where she won’t be searched daily or monitored 24/7. Despite inmates having a zero tolerance for criminals who hurt kids, Maxwell would rather take her chances with them than spend another minute in solitary.
Inmates in solitary confinement like Ghislaine Maxwell are generally kept in the cells for twenty-three hours a day. They are let out for one hour to exercise or make phone calls to family & friends.
Ghislaine Maxwell can’t talk to her attorneys in private
Ghislaine Maxwell’s attorneys say her conversations with them are monitored by prison guards rather than conducted in private. They also claim that these prison guards don’t appear to be regular MDC guards, and change often. This is part of their basis for filing a motion to move Ghislaine Maxwell to the general population.
Ghislaine Maxwell has called her prison conditions “onerous” and her attorneys concur. They say she is being treated worse than most pretrial detainees because of her connection with Jeffrey Epstein. They claim her treatment is harming her ability to complete “discovery,” the phase where she & her lawyers gather information for defense.
When asked for comment, the MDC offered none. They said that for security & privacy reasons, they could not comment on Ghislaine MAxwell’s or any inmate’s treatment.
Can Ghislaine Maxwell be released based on these complaints?
Would it be possible for Ghislaine Maxwell to receive a new bail hearing based on her & her lawyers’ complaints? We’re not sure, but Maxwell’s attorneys haven’t explored that avenue yet. They claim Maxwell doesn’t want special treatment, only to be treated like every other pretrial detainee.
Ghislaine Maxwell’s bail was denied on the evidence that she could be a flight risk. Due to Maxwell’s French citizenship, she could flee to France where the U.S. won’t be able to extradite her.
Ghislaine Maxwell hasn’t been the only inmate of the MDC who complained about horrible conditions. MDC has earned the nicknames “The Tombs” and “The Guantanamo of New York” due to alleged horrible conditions.
A class-action lawsuit was filed against the facility due to a heater breaking and many prisoners freezing in their cells over the winter. There have also been concerns raised about COVID-19, which Ghislaine Maxwell’s attorneys brought up during her bail hearing.