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Ghislaine Maxwell is behind bars now, but for a long time, it looked like she'd slip away. Delve into new documents revealing how the FBI caught up to her.

Here’s how the FBI captured Ghislaine Maxwell: Read their story now

As of now, Ghislaine Maxwell is awaiting trial at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, NY. She’s just been denied bail a second time and her chances of getting out before her trial day now look very, very slim. 

How did she get here, though? Ghislaine Maxwell was the alleged partner & former girlfriend of Jeffrey Epstein who was arrested over a year ago and later died in his cell. She’s been accused of not only recruiting girls to abuse, but also of abusing girls herself. Throughout the year, the FBI conducted a massive push to gather evidence against her to ensure they could make an arrest and bring someone to justice. 

However, Ghislaine Maxwell didn’t make it easy for them. Maxwell maintains her innocence, calling the allegations against her “a tissue of lies”. She also claimed she went into hiding to evade the press, although the FBI says otherwise. Let’s dive into how the FBI captured Maxwell. 

Document drop

The story of how the FBI captured Ghislaine Maxwell has now come out. In a document drop yesterday, the public learned how authorities were able to capture Ghislaine Maxwell using cell phone capturing technology. After the FBI obtained a warrant to locate her, she was arrested the following day. 

The unsealed affidavit also revealed Ghislaine Maxwell and tech entrepreneur Scott Borgerson were married at the time of Maxwell’s arrest, and by the time they purchased Maxwell’s Bradford, NH home, she was arrested there on July 2nd. However, this isn’t the only unsealed document to reveal this information. 

Indeed, in Ghislaine Maxwell’s second attempt at securing bail, her filing revealed she & Borgerson had been married since 2016: “Ghislaine Maxwell married her spouse in 2016 and commenced filing joint US tax returns from the 2016 tax year until today. In 2016 Ghislaine Maxwell transferred the majority of her assets into a trust controlled by her spouse.” 

Search technology

“The FBI does not know Maxwell’s current location and accordingly requires the information sought in this application in order to locate and arrest Maxwell,” began the affidavit to use enhanced search technology to locate Ghislaine Maxwell. 

According to Ghislaine Maxwell’s first bail hearing, she had been wrapping her phone in tin foil to prevent her phone from being located. Although her lawyers argued it was to avoid the press, prosecutors used it as evidence that she was trying to evade capture. 

The technology the FBI sought to use would have allowed them to “use an investigative device or devices capable of broadcasting signals that will be received by” Maxwell’s phone “or receiving signals from nearby cellular devices,” including Maxwell’s device. We’re not sure, but we think this FBI technology could get around tin foil. 

Stingray

The technology the FBI used was known as a cell-site simulator. According to the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, these simulators are also known as “stingrays” or “ISMI catchers”. They masquerade as a cell phone tower to “ping” where a person is making calls from. That way, they can find a cell phone user’s exact location. 

Per The Daily Beast, “The portable equipment, which can fit inside a briefcase, simulates a cell tower and forces mobile phones in the immediate vicinity to connect to it instead of the actual tower. Once it connects, the stingray captures the phone’s exact location and the registered user’s identifying information.” 

G-Max

According to the unveiled court documents, Ghislaine Maxwell opened up a secret phone line under the name “G Max” to reach her family & lawyers, including her husband Scott Borgerson. 

Before then, she had allegedly been living with Borgerson in their Massachusetts home per The Daily Mail. Indeed, since Epstein’s mysterious death behind bars, the media had been relentlessly trying to find Ghislaine Maxwell’s whereabouts. It’s unclear when she went into hiding in New Hampshire, but realtors recalled she purchased the home with cash in December 2019 under an alias. 

The search warrant was filed on July 1st. It must have worked since authorities grabbed Ghislaine Maxwell from her secluded, New Hampshire home on July 2nd, bringing her to where she is now: a detention center in NY, awaiting trial. 

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