Jeffrey Epstein‘s former girlfriend and alleged groomer Ghislaine Maxwell may have hired conservative activist and would-be smear artist Jacob Wohl for unknown reasons, according to a lobbying disclosure form filed with the U.S. Congress.
According to an LD-1 Disclosure Form filed with the Clerk of the House of Representatives and the Secretary of the Senate, J M Burkman and Associates—a lobbying firm owned by far-right activist Jack Burkman and co-run by Wohl—claims to have been hired by “Granite Realty [sic] LLC” in order to lobby on “[i]ssues relating to US DOJ, Senate Judiciary, [and the] House Judiciary.”
The form lists both Burkman and Wohl as lobbyists of record.
The description on the form reads equal terms expansive, vague and boilerplate; however, it is a far cry from previous reporting on the alleged Maxwell-Wohl relationship.
This filing may corroborate a Tuesday morning story published by DailyMail.com which said that Wohl and Burkman were paid $25,000 by Maxwell in an effort to intimidate New York prosecutors and tar Epstein’s victims.
Per that report:
As part of a $25,000 deal made in June, Wohl and his lobbyist colleague Jack Burkman also allegedly pushed to get New York US Attorney Geoffrey Berman, who had led Epstein’s case, fired in order to stall or stop the criminal investigation into Maxwell.
“Her company Granite Realty [sic] LLC hired them to first get rid of the US Attorney Jeffrey [sic] Berman,” paralegal Kristin Spealman told the outlet. “She wanted him fired. And then I guess she assumed the charges would go away or maybe she wouldn’t be prosecuted. I think that was the goal.”
Yet there is at least one glaring error with the congressional filing.
Maxwell’s alleged shell company is “Granite Reality” (as in the “quality or state of being real“). However, the official form on file with congress lists a company named “Granite Realty” (as in real estate). The LD-1 does list the address for the Boston-based company that federal prosecutors have tied to Maxwell. The different name — perhaps a misspelling, perhaps a mistake — may prove problematic.
Law&Crime’s Aaron Keller previously addressed the distinction between those two separate companies in an article available here. Granite Realty of New Hampshire again on Tuesday confirmed to Law&Crime that it had never dealt with Maxwell or with Wohl or Burkman or their firm. The company even said that the ongoing confusion between it (Granite Realty) and the company linked to Maxwell (Granite Reality) in local property deeds may require it to change its name.
A detention memo signed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Alison Moe describes the alleged activities of Granite Reality, the shell company in question which is linked to Maxwell’s property in New Hampshire:
In particular, the defendant has effectively been in hiding for approximately a year, since an indictment against Epstein was unsealed in July 2019. Thereafter, the defendant – who had previously made many public appearances – stopped appearing in public entirely, instead hiding out in locations in New England. Moreover, it appears that she made intentional efforts to avoid detection, including moving locations at least twice, switching her primary phone number (which she registered under the name “G Max”) and email address, and ordering packages for delivery with a different person listed on the shipping label. Most recently, the defendant appears to have been hiding on a 156-acre property acquired in an all-cash purchase in December 2019 (through a carefully anonymized LLC) in Bradford, New Hampshire, an area to which she has no other known connections.
A Merrimack County warranty deed and Bradford, New Hampshire property information card obtained by Law&Crime offers additional details about the expansive acreage purchased by Granite Reality, LLC, where Maxwell was arrested by federal agents on July 2.
Notably, the effective date of representation on the lobbying disclosure form is July 3 — the day after Maxwell was taken into custody under disputed circumstances and after news of the LLC’s name became widely known to the public.
The timing here may evidence of what federal prosecutors have repeatedly referred to as Maxwell’s “extensive international connections.” It’s difficult to imagine a scenario where Maxwell herself obtained lobbying help from within the confines of a jail cell, but her vast network of moneyed people could easily make such arrangements.
Despite the July 3 date on the congressional documents viewed by Law&Crime, the Mail‘s story claims Wohl’s firm was obtained in June — well before Maxwell was actually arrested.
Law&Crime has reached out to the Boston law firm associated with Maxwell’s LLC for clarification as to whether it did or did not hire the lobbying firm linked to Wohl. If a response is received, this report will be updated.
Aaron Keller contributed to this report.
[images via photo by Laura Cavanaugh/Getty Images; and screengrab/NBC News/YouTube]
Editor’s note: This report has been updated to include additional information and for clarity.
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