Why do conspiracy theorists want to see Ghislaine Maxwell’s mugshot?
Have you been keeping up with the latest on Jeffrey Epstein & Ghislaine Maxwell and noticed something missing? Usually, when someone’s been charged with a crime, and that crime is talked about endlessly in the news, you see a certain picture of theirs.
In every article about Ghislaine Maxwell’s upcoming trial, there’s no mugshot. A mugshot was never released. People, especially conspiracy theorists, are beginning to wonder why.
However, there’s a simple explanation for why Ghislaine Maxwell’s mugshot isn’t in the public eye. Here’s what we know about the reason you aren’t seeing Ghislaine Maxwell’s mugshot.
Ghislaine Maxwell’s arrest
The FBI arrested Ghislaine Maxwell arrested on July 2, 2020, for her alleged connection to Jeffrey Epstein’s sex trafficking ring. Epstein’s victims describe Maxwell as his “madam in chief.” They reported that Maxwell recruited them for Epstein and even participated in some of the abuse herself.
Maxwell lived in hiding in Vermont before her arrest. She disappeared from the public eye after Jeffrey Epstein’s apparent suicide in custody. He was awaiting trial for multiple counts of sex trafficking when he died. Maxwell said she disappeared to avoid the press, not the authorities, during her bail hearing.
After Ghislaine Maxwell’s arrest, she was transferred to a local jail in Vermont to the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, New York. This is the same place Jeffrey Epstein was held before his trial. Maxwell maintains her innocence and pled not guilty at her bail hearing. The judge denied her bail, so she’s staying at the MDC.
One month later
If authorities arrested Ghislaine Maxwell, there should be a mugshot. The absence of one, a month after her arrest began to alarm the internet. Soon, the tweets came pouring in. True crime sleuths looked for Maxwell’s mugshot in crime databases like jailbase.com and turned up with nothing.
Thus, the theory that Ghislaine Maxwell wasn’t really arrested was born. They formed the conspiracy that Ghislaine Maxwell fled the country, never came back, and the government was covering it up.
A simpler explanation
Unlike when a local or state criminal is caught, federal guidelines for releasing mugshots differ. In a statement to Newsweek, the FBI and the DOJ stated that they normally don’t release federal mugshots. The only reason they release mugshots is to alert the public of safety issues, like in the case of a fugitive.
Ghislaine Maxwell has a mugshot
According to a DOJ spokesperson, the photo of Ghislaine Maxwell that’s included in her indictment folder, it’s different than the one taken when she was first in custody in Vermont. However, neither mugshot can be released to the public. Why? It could negatively influence a jury which would compromise Maxwell’s right to a fair trial.
This explanation is doubly not surprising, as a common argument made by Ghislaine Maxwell’s lawyers revolves around her ability to receive a fair trial. Maxwell’s attorneys argued against releasing thousands of deposition pages to the public because it could impact her trial.
Likewise, Ghislaine Maxwell’s attorneys are trying to move her to general population. They claim the way Maxwell is monitored in solitary impacts her right to counsel, privacy, and her right to a fair trial.
Will we ever see Ghislaine Maxwell’s mugshot?
Ghislaine Maxwell’s trial is set for July 2021. Jury selection will probably happen in the spring. If the jury is sequestered, kept away from the press and media coverage of Maxwell’s trial, we may see her mugshot.
Whether we see more footage of Maxwell in custody also remains to be seen. If the trial is filmed, we could see Ghislaine Maxwell in the courtroom in handcuffs.
So far, all we have is the word of authorities, court sketches of Ghislaine Maxwell’s bail hearing, and audio of Maxwell pleading not guilty in her bail hearing as proof she’s behind bars. Will that be enough for conspiracy theorists? Probably not.