For more than a year, people have been watching the developments in the Ghislaine Maxwell case. Maxwell, girlfriend of Jeffrey Epstein, has now been found guilty of five of six charges that she faced in relation to sex-trafficking and sexual abuse.
Maxwell, age 60, is a former British socialite. In recent years, it had come to light that she and her late boyfriend, Jeffrey Epstein, were involved in sex-trafficking scandals, as well as sexual abuse. Some of the victims that fell prey to the couple were as young as 14 years old.
Of the charges Maxwell faced, she was found guilty of conspiracy to sex-trafficking, conspiracy to entice individuals under the age of 17 to travel in interstate commerce with intent to engage in illegal sexual activity, conspiracy to transport individuals under the age of 17 to travel in interstate commerce with intent to engage in illegal sexual activity, transportation of an individual under the age of 17 with intent to engage in illegal sexual activity; and conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of individuals under the age of 18.
Of the six counts she was faced with, Maxwell was found not guilty on one. The charge was enticement of an individual under the age of 17 to travel with intent to engage in illegal sexual activity.
All in all, it took jurors 40 hours of deliberations over six days to come to a verdict. The jury was unanimous in the decisions made on Maxwell’s verdict. The Manhattan US Attorney, Damien Williams, called the crimes Maxwell was convicted of, “…one of the worst crimes imaginable: facilitating and participating in the sexual abuse of children.” They would go on to say that these crimes were committed alongside Jeffrey Epstein, her longtime co-conspirator.
Williams would go on to say that the women who testified against Maxwell were courageous, admiring the bravery it took to step forward to face one of their abusers.
As the verdict was read, Maxwell appeared to be completely detached from the scene. She was expressionless, looking forward, as if she felt nothing. The only indication that she gave that she was present was pouring a cup of water from her bottle and drinking it. Otherwise, it was as if she was completely unattached.
Maxwell’s lawyer, Jeffrey Pagliuca, patted Maxwell on the back as the jurors stated the decision had been unanimous. After being initially dismissed, Maxwell’s lawyers requested that Maxwell be able to arrange for a COVID booster shot. Then, leaving the courtroom, she glanced at her siblings.
When Maxwell is sentenced, she’ll face up to 65 years in prison, effectively a life sentence for her.
Maxwell’s co-conspirator, Jeffrey Epstein, was arrested in 2019 for sex-trafficking. Upon being arrested, Epstein began talking about others involved with his and Maxwell’s activities, with names like Prince Andrew, former president Donald Trump, and former president Bill Clinton coming up. Roughly one month after being arrested, Jeffrey Epstein committed suicide. At this point in time, the state of New York has ended the case against Epstein’s jail guards, which was originally concerned with foul play.
The trial against Maxwell was originally anticipated to take up to six weeks. However, the trial took place over only 10 days, moving at a pace much faster than originally expected.
Four accusers took the stand in the case, three of which used only a single name or pseudonym, and one used her full name. Each gave an account of their personal stories with Maxwell, many of which were similar in nature. Maxwell would befriend the young girls, then introduce them to Epstein. As time went on, favors would be asked, until eventually the invitation for more notorious activities took place.
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The Epstein and Maxwell cases are two cases that have haunted many Americans, and people abroad as well.. At this point in time, there are ongoing cases regarding the evidence in the original case against Epstein, as well as the case against Maxwell. As these cases develop, it won’t be surprising to see more prolific names listed. In a case that shocked the nation as it was uncovered, there’s only more that has yet to be discovered in the near future.