Ghislaine Maxwell’s lawyers ask judge to drop new indictment

Lawyers for British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell have urged a judge to dismiss a rewritten indictment against her, saying prosecutors simply wanted to blame her for the sex crimes of ex-boyfriend Jeffrey Epstein.

The documents, dated May 7, were publicly filed Tuesday in federal court in Manhattan. They are among many – so far unsuccessful – approaches defense attorneys have taken to try to quash charges alleging their client recruited teenage girls from 1994 to 2004 for Epstein for sexual abuse.

Maxwell, 59, has pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial in November from her jail cell, where she has remained since her arrest last July. Three efforts to get her out on bail, twice on $ 28.5million (£ 20.15million) bail, have been dismissed by a judge. A federal appeals court also refused to grant bail.

In the recently released document, defense attorneys raised many of the same challenges they raised on his first indictment, including the fact that a no-prosecution agreement Epstein signed with federal prosecutors in Florida in the end of the 2000s also protects it.

Ghislaine Maxwell made three unsuccessful attempts to be released on bail pending trial (Chris Ison / PA).

But they said the rewrite of the indictment that adds a fourth accuser and extends the length of the indictment from 1997 to 2004 “demonstrates how far the government is willing to go to ‘get’ ‘Mrs. Maxwell and dishonestly blaming her for Jeffrey’s crimes. Epstein ”.

“No longer content to indict a 25-year case on the basis of alleged behavior in the 1990s, the government is now sweeping aside in the 2000s the allegations of one person – Accuser-4”, they said. written, using the pseudonym of the prosecutors in place. of real identity.

They said the woman’s allegations were known to prosecutors after the woman laid her charges over a decade ago and yet Maxwell was neither charged nor named as a co-conspirator when Florida authorities sued. lawsuits against Epstein.

Epstein was arrested in July 2019 for sex trafficking. He committed suicide a month later in a Manhattan federal prison.

In a case of their own Tuesday night, prosecutors defended their alternate indictment, saying they only had a chance to speak to the fourth accuser by video last summer and in person until January. .

“The defendant’s argument that the government acted in bad faith – insofar as it makes such an argument – is not based on any evidence, and for good reason: it is not true,” they said. written in a document dated last Friday.

They said the woman had only been questioned once by federal prosecutors in Florida in the 2000s and no questions were asked about Maxwell.

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