Would Ghislaine Maxwell have gone free if Jeffrey Epstein was still alive?
In 2019, multiple news sources, including Town & Country reported disgraced financier & sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein was found dead in his jail cell at the Metropolitan Correctional Center from an apparent suicide. Other sources reported he was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital.
The Guardian outlined how Jeffrey Epstein’s death came directly after unsealed documents had arrived in New York. These documents contained the names of women he allegedly abused in his Palm Beach, New York, and Virgin Island homes. These names were to be used in Epstein’s upcoming trial as evidence by the prosecution.
Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged co-conspirator, Ghislaine Maxwell, was arrested last summer in connection with Epstein’s crimes. Maxwell denied even being aware of her former boyfriend, Epstein, sexually assaulting underage women. After an investigation conducted by the FBI, Maxwell was formally charged. She awaits trial at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn after being denied bail in July.
However, some speculate whether or not Ghislaine Maxwell would have even been arrested if Jeffrey Epstein hadn’t died in custody. While the answer to that question could remain a mystery, Epstein’s non-prosecution agreement could shed some light on the answers. Here’s what we know so far.
Epstein & Maxwell’s history
The New York Times reported Ghislaine Maxwell, a British socialite and daughter of media tycoon Robert Maxwell, moved to New York in the 1990s. After her father’s death, her friendship with Jeffrey Epstein allegedly helped her maintain a “luxurious” lifestyle. In exchange, Maxwell introduced Epstein to prominent figures in her circle, such as Prince Andrew, Duke of York.
Although many women accused Jeffrey Epstein of sexually abusing them, Ghislaine Maxwell has continued to state that she had no involvement in the matter. Back in April 2016 before Epstein’s death, CNBC confirmed Maxwell firmly said under oath: “I never saw any inappropriate underage activities with Jeffrey ever.” Her statements came from an unsealed deposition from a lawsuit between Maxwell & one of Epstein’s accusers.
The accuser, Virginia Roberts-Giuffre is adamant to prove Maxwell was as big of a sexual offender as Epstein was. From CNBC: “Giuffre said Maxwell instructed her to have sex with a number of men, including (Prince) Andrew.” Prince Andrew & Buckingham Palace emphatically deny Roberts-Giuffre’s accusations.
Virginia Roberts-Giuffre isn’t the only woman alleging Ghislaine Maxwell abused her. The New York Times reported on other women who came forward. Maria Farmer allegedly claimed in a different civil case, Jeffrey Epstein & Ghislaine Maxwell assaulted her when she was just a graduate student in 1996.
Maria Farmer also claimed her fifteen-year-old sister was also assaulted. In Netflix’s documentary Filthy Rich, Farmer reported Jeffrey Epstein offered her sister an opportunity to teach abroad, invited her to his New Mexico ranch for a fake orientation, and molested her there. Farmer also claimed Ghislaine Maxwell took part in the abuse.
The New York Times also referred to Sarah Ransome’s reported sexual abuse experience, and her account of Epstein’s operation. Ransome alleged Maxwell “appeared to be in charge of their activities, what they did, who they did it with, and how they were supposed to stay in line”.
The sweetheart deal
After all these allegations, how could Ghislaine Maxwell have remained a free woman after Epstein’s arrest? The eyewitness accounts from Roberts-Giuffre, the Farmers, and Ransome should have implicated Maxwell in Epstein’s crimes, prompting her arrest. However, when Jeffrey Epstein was first arrested in 2007, he cut a “sweetheart deal” to avoid prosecution, which allegedly included immunity for four unnamed associates.
The Scottish Sun reported Ghislaine Maxwell could be immune from prosecution thanks to this deal. Lawyers from Southern District of Florida lawyers claimed the language of Epstein’s non-prosecution agreement was so loose, it could apply to “any potential co-conspirators of Epstein, including but not limited to” the four women it named.
However, Jeffrey Epstein’s victims most likely won’t back down. In August 2019, Virginia Roberts-Giuffre’s lawyer David Boies told The Miami Herald they’d continue to fight for all the women who were abused by Epstein, even after his death. “Jeffrey Epstein did not act, and count not have done what he did alone. Justice demands that those who acted with him also be held accountable.”
Ghislaine Maxwell is currently in custody and is scheduled to be tried in 2021. According to BBC, Maxwell could be in prison for a maximum of 35 years.