Ghislaine Maxwell will be sentenced TODAY and faces up to 55 years in jail
Ghislaine Maxwell faces up to 55 years in jail today when she is sentenced for recruiting and trafficking underage girls for Jeffrey Epstein.
The British socialite will appear before federal court in Manhattan at 11am and will have to listen to impact statements from at least two of her victims.
Annie Farmer and the woman known only as ‘Kate’ are due to read their testimony in person and face down Maxwell.
Statements from six other women could be read aloud by their lawyers.
Prosecutors have asked Judge Alison Nathan to impose a sentence of at least 30 years because of Maxwell’s ‘utter lack of remorse.’
Maxwell claims she should serve just four years as she is not a danger to the public.
The sentencing will mark the end of a decades-long fight for justice by victims of Maxwell and Epstein.
Ghislaine Maxwell will be sentenced today after being convicted of sex trafficking in December
The sentencing will mark the end of a decades-long fight for justice by victims of Maxwell and Epstein
Two victims, Annie Farmer and the woman known only as ‘Kate’, are due to read their testimony in person and face down Maxwell
After Epstein hanged himself while awaiting trial in 2019, their attention turned to Maxwell who was arrested a year later and found guilty in December following her sensational trial.
Prosecutors asked Judge Alison Nathan to impose a sentence of at least 30 years because of Maxwell’s ‘utter lack of remorse,’ while Maxwell claimed she should serve just four years as she is not a danger to the public
She has said she will appeal her conviction and claims that she is being made a ‘scapegoat’ for Epstein.
It is unclear if Maxwell will speak herself but during the trial and earlier hearings she has only uttered a few words when given the chance.
Four women gave evidence against Maxwell during her trial: a victim known as ‘Jane’, Annie Farmer, Kate and another woman called Carolyn.
Over three weeks, the jury heard how Maxwell ‘served up’ underage girls for Epstein and relished her role as the ‘Lady of the House’ at his mansion in Palm Beach, Florida.
Between 1994 and 2004 Maxwell was Epstein’s ‘right hand’ and paid $200 for sexualized massages or even took part in the abuse.
The victims, some as young as 14, were given a similar amount of money if they brought friends to Epstein, the jury was told.
During the trial, prosecutors called 24 witnesses to give jurors a picture of life inside Epstein’s homes – a subject of public fascination and speculation ever since his 2006 arrest in Florida in a child sex case.
A housekeeper testified he was expected to be ‘blind, deaf and dumb’ about the private lives of Epstein, a financier who cultivated friendships with influential politicians and business tycoons.
Pilots took the witness stand and dropped the names of luminaries – Britain’s Prince Andrew, Bill Clinton, Donald Trump – who flew on Epstein’s private jets.
Jurors saw physical evidence like a folding massage table once used by Epstein and a ‘black book’ that listed contact information for some of the victims under the heading ‘massages’.
There were bank records showing he had transferred $30.7 million to Maxwell.
Four women gave evidence against Maxwell during her trial: a victim known as ‘Jane’ (left) , Annie Farmer, Kate and another woman called Carolyn (right)
Jurors saw physical evidence like a folding massage table once used by Epstein and a ‘black book’ that listed contact information for some of the victims under the heading ‘massages’
Prosecutors produced a 58-page household manual covering every single aspect of running the house in Palm Beach that they indicated Maxwell had written. There were dozens of checklists for each area of the house, instructions on when to replace the toothpaste and what brands of creams to buy.
One instruction to all household staff that was seized on by the prosecution read: ‘You see nothing, hear nothing, say nothing’.
But the core of the prosecution was the testimony of four women who said they were victimized by Maxwell and Epstein at tender ages.
Three testified using first names or pseudonyms to protect their privacy: Jane, a television actress; Kate, a former model from Great Britain; and Carolyn, now a mom recovering from drug addiction.
The fourth was Farmer, who chose to use her real name after being vocal about her allegations in recent years.
The most gut wrenching was Carolyn who testified that she was one of several underprivileged teens who lived near Epstein’s Florida home in the early 2000s and took up an offer to give massages in exchange for $100 bills.
Maxwell made all the arrangements, Carolyn told the jury, even though she knew the girl was only 14 at the time.
The couple appeared to vacation to a cold destination. Seen together with warm coats and large fur hats in an undated photo submitted into evidence during the trial
The couple appear in one photo in what appears to be a European city. Ghislaine is seen kissing Jeffrey on the cheek. Many have testified that they believed Epstein and Ghislaine were boyfriend and girlfriend
The pair are seen sitting in the grass with a dog in this undated photo submitted into evidence by the government
Jane said in 1994, when she was only 14, she was instructed to follow Epstein into a pool house at the Palm Beach estate, where he masturbated on her.
Jane told the jury: ‘I was frozen in fear’, adding that the assault was the first time she had ever seen a penis. She also directly accused Maxwell of participating in her abuse.
Maxwell’s lawyer asked Jane why it had taken so long to come forward.
She responded: ‘I was scared. I was embarrassed, ashamed. I didn’t want anybody to know any of this about me’.
Kate said she was recruited by Maxwell in London in 1994 when she was 17 and described in vivid detail how she invited her round for tea and then asked her back to give Epstein a massage.
In chilling testimony Kate described how Maxwell closed the door behind her as a naked Epstein lay on a massage table in front of her. After one such encounter Maxwell told her: ‘Did you have fun? Was it good?’
Farmer described how she was lured to Epstein’s ranch in New Mexico at the age of 16 with the promise there would be dozens of other bright students that he wanted to help.
Instead it was just her and Maxwell proceeded to massage her breasts before Epstein got into bed with her.
Summing up her experience, Farmer said: ‘I think this was all a pattern of them working on confusing my boundaries and malign me question myself about what was right and what was not right with the ultimate goal of sexually abusing me’.
Jurors deliberated for five full days before finding Maxwell guilty of five of six counts.
In court Maxwell often hugged her lawyers appeared in good health despite claims from her lawyers she had been losing weight and losing hair due to the grim conditions in prison pre-trial.
She declined to testify, telling the court: ‘You honor, the government has not proved its case beyond a reasonable doubt so there is no reason to testify’.
Maxwell’s fall from grace is all the more astonishing given her background as a wealthy socialite and the daughter of Robert Maxwell, the late newspaper tycoon who fell off his yacht in the Canary Islands in 1991 in mysterious circumstances.
Four of Maxwell’s siblings – Kevin, Christine, Isabel and Ian and – are seen arriving to court to support their sister during her trial in December
Ghislaine was Robert Maxwell’s youngest child, born on Christmas Day 1961 She’s pictured with her father in 1984
Her lawyers tried to argue that Robert Maxwell’s abusive behavior around his children made Maxwell ‘vulnerable’ when she met Epstein around the time of her father’s death.
She appears to have replaced one controlling, manipulative father with a nearly identical man – Epstein – who she dated before becoming the boss of his sex trafficking organization.
The true number of Epstein’s victims may never be known but the fund set up to pay compensation to them paid out $121million to 150 women around the world.
Most of the victim impact statements were released ahead of sentencing and they were blistering in their condemnation of Maxwell.
They included Virginia Roberts, who earlier this year settled a lawsuit with Prince Andrew for a reported $12m over claims that she was forced to have sex with him three times when she was 17.
According to Roberts, Maxwell recruited her when she was 16 at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club in Florida.
In her victim impact statement reads that Maxwell and Epstein did ‘unthinkable things’ to her.
The statement says: ‘Without question, Jeffrey Epstein was a terrible pedophile.
‘But I never would have met Jeffrey Epstein if not for you. For me, and for so many others, you opened the door to hell. And then, Ghislaine, like a wolf in sheep’s clothing, you used your femininity to betray us, and you led us all through it.
‘Ghislaine, you deserve to spend the rest of your life in a jail cell. You deserve to be trapped in a cage forever, just like you trapped your victims.’
Maxwell, Naomi Campbell, Donald Trump and Melania Knauss in November 2002 at a Dolce and Gabbana show in New York
In 2010 Maxwell attended the wedding of Clinton’s daughter Chelsea in Rhinebeck, upstate New York
And image shows Jeffrey Epstein and his ‘madam’ Ghislaine Maxwell holding a private audience with John Paul II at the Vatican during his blessing almost 20 years ago
Ghislaine studied history at the University of Oxford in the early 1980s where she began building connections of her own, including Prince Andrew, who would later invite her and Epstein to Windsor Castle and Sandringham, Queen Elizabeth’s country estate
Farmer’s victim impact statement reads: ‘I remember sitting at my desk in a Houston hospital physically shaking after seeing the photo of Maxwell with Virginia Giuffre and Prince Andrew because it became clear to me how their scheme had continued’.
Sarah Ransome, a former model from South Africa who grew up in Scotland, said that Maxwell and Epstein turned her into ‘nothing more than a sex toy with a heartbeat’.
Maxwell’s attorney said her client has been placed on suicide watch at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn
While trying to escape from Epstein’s private island in the Caribbean she tried to jump off a cliff but was found by Maxwell before she could.
Ransome wrote: ‘Maxwell was his right hand woman. She was the Five Star General of several recruiters and many others who provided the means and cover for Epstein’s predation.
‘Epstein and Maxwell were masters at finding young, vulnerable girls and young women to exploit. Like Hotel California, you could blindly check into the Epstein-Maxwell dungeon of sexual hell but you could never leave. Jeffrey and Ghislaine made sure of that’.
The sentencing was delayed after Maxwell’s lawyers raised questions over comments by one of her jurors, Scotty David.
He said that he did not disclose his past history of sexual abuse when filing out his jury questionnaire.
David was recalled to the court by judge Nathan for a hearing where she interrogated him and later ruled his nondisclosure had been an unintentional error.
Maxwell’s family have been unequivocal in their support of her and have refused to believe she is guilty.
In a recent newspaper column her brother Ian said that Maxwell, who is a French citizen, should have fled to France when Epstein was arrested in 2019 rather than stay in the US.
Maxwell only did so because she ‘had a clear conscience’ but her decision meant that she fell victim to a ‘lynch mob’.
Ian Maxwell wrote: ‘I know that Ghislaine is innocent and that she would never have been found guilty in any civilized country’.