Ghislaine Maxwell: What we have learned from her sex trafficking trial
British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell has been convicted of sex trafficking following a month-long trial at a federal court in Manhattan.
Maxwell, 60, lured young girls to massage rooms to be molested by disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein between 1994 and 2004.
Here, the PA news agency looks at what we have learned from the trial.
– How many accusers testified in the trial?
There were four female accusers who gave evidence in the trial. Annie Farmer, who was 16 when she met Maxwell, was the only one of the four to testify using her full name. The other three women testified under the pseudonyms Jane, Kate and Carolyn.
– What did Jane say in her testimony?
Jane said Maxwell and Epstein summoned her for an orgy at the age of just 14 in 1994.
She told jurors Epstein would use sex toys on her “even though it hurt” and said he and Maxwell would “fondle” each other while “casually giggling” in front of her.
Jane said she was left “frozen with fear” after her encounters with the couple, and under cross-examination, she told the jury she did “not believe I have come up with a memory” of being sexually abused.
– What did Kate tell the court?
Kate told jurors she was presented with massage oils at Maxwell’s London townhouse when she was 17 and told to “have a good time” before giving Epstein a sexualised massage.
The British accuser also said she was invited to Epstein’s house in Palm Beach, Florida, when she was 18 and that Maxwell had laid a schoolgirl outfit out for her to wear because she “thought it would be fun”.
After sexualised massages with Epstein, Kate said Maxwell had called her “such a good girl”, describing her as one of the disgraced financier’s favourites.
– What did Carolyn tell the jury?
Carolyn told the jury Maxwell groped her at the age of 14 after she told the defendant about being molested and raped at the age of four.
Maxwell told Carolyn she had a “great body for Epstein and his friends” after touching her breasts in his massage room.
The witness told jurors she stopped seeing Epstein for massages at the age of 18 because she had become “too old” for him.
– What did Annie Farmer say in her testimony?
Annie Farmer said Maxwell told her to undress at Epstein’s New Mexico ranch and rubbed her breasts during a massage.
She told jurors Epstein had “caressed” her hand at the cinema and got into bed with her at his ranch because he “wanted a cuddle”.
– Which famous names were dragged into Maxwell’s trial?
A number of famous names were mentioned throughout the trial, including the Duke of York, former US presidents Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, and Pope John Paul II.
Jane told the court she flew on Epstein’s private plane with Andrew and met Mr Trump at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach.
Other notable passengers on Epstein’s planes included Mr Trump, Mr Clinton and actors Kevin Spacey and Chris Tucker.
The trial also heard Epstein had photos of himself with famous people hanging up in his houses, including former Cuban leader Fidel Castro and Pope John Paul II.
A photograph, shown to the jury, appeared to show Maxwell and Epstein at a log cabin on the Queen’s Balmoral estate.
– Who else testified as part of the US government’s case?
Juan Patricio Alessi, the former housekeeper for Epstein at his Palm Beach house, told jurors he drove Jane and Prince Andrew’s accuser Virginia Roberts to the house under orders from Maxwell when they were 14 to 15 years old.
He also said staff were given a “household manual” which told them to “see nothing, hear nothing, say nothing” and to never disclose Maxwell and Epstein’s activities or whereabouts to anyone.
FBI analyst Kimberly Meder took jurors through various photos which were found on CDs that were seized from Epstein’s New York house, including ones of Maxwell rubbing his feet.
Palm Beach law enforcement officer Gregory Parkinson was asked to identify a massage table which had been brought into court after being seized from Epstein’s house.
– What was said in Maxwell’s defence case?
During her opening statement to the jury, defence counsel Bobbi Sternheim said the charges against Maxwell were for “things Jeffrey Epstein did”.
The defendant declined to testify in her trial, telling the judge: “Your honour, the government has not proven its case beyond a reasonable doubt so there is no reason for me to testify.”
Maxwell’s lawyers attempted to demonstrate that victims had exaggerated the defendant’s involvement in any of Epstein’s crimes.
– What sentence can Maxwell expect now she has been convicted?
Maxwell was convicted of conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of minors, which carries a statutory maximum of 40 years in prison.
Her conviction for transporting a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity carries a maximum sentence of 10 years, while conspiracy to transport a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity carries a maximum of five years in prison.
The final charge of sex trafficking minors carries a statutory maximum of five years in prison.
Despite the maximum terms for each conviction, her sentence will be up to the sole discretion of the judge.
The best videos delivered daily
Watch the stories that matter, right from your inbox