Ghislaine Maxwell, 58, was arrested by federal agents in the small and rural town of Bradford, New Hampshire early Thursday morning. Late Wednesday evening, Maxwell’s attorney Laura Menninger filed several documents with the Southern District of New York (SDNY).
Jeffrey Epstein’s longtime girlfriend and alleged groomer was indicted by the SDNY on six federal charges related to her alleged role in the “sexual exploitation of and abuse of multiple minor girls by” the dead pedophile as part of a years-spanning sex-trafficking operation widely-presumed to have served many powerful members of the global elite including businessmen, artists and politicians.
Maxwell has long been implicated in the Epstein saga due to her close affiliation with the dead sex offender and is also alleged to have engaged in at least some of that sexual abuse herself, according to survivors who appeared in a recent Netflix documentary.
Virginia Roberts Giuffre has been sounding alarm bells about Epstein and Maxwell publicly since 2011 when an article appeared in the United Kingdom’s Mail on Sunday alleging the couple furnished her to Prince Andrew while she was Epstein’s “sex slave.”
Giuffre’s allegations concern the years 2000-2002. Prior to the publication of that initial article, the Epstein survivor filed a petition to vacate Epstein’s sweetheart deal in the summer of 2008. She then filed a complaint against Epstein in early 2009 which detailed her accusations against Maxwell. As part of those proceedings, Giuffre moved to depose Maxwell–who dodged the request by claiming her mother was sick and on the verge of death.
Those efforts effectively stalled, in 2014, Giuffre joined an ongoing case brought by several Jane Doe survivors against Epstein. In her motion, Giuffre leveled accusations describing Maxwell’s alleged “role as one of the main women who Epstein used to procure under-aged girls for sexual activities and a primary co-conspirator and participant in his sexual abuse and sex trafficking scheme.”
In early 2015, Maxwell began to malign Giuffre’s honesty and truthfulness in the press by way of her agent Ross Gow. In September 2015, Giuffre filed a defamation lawsuit against Maxwell which was eventually settled. The discovery in that lawsuit, known colloquially as the secret Epstein files, contains several names connected to Epstein’s global sex-trafficking empire. Its contents are thought to be particularly embarrassing for the men involved.
On July 1, Senior U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska issued an order clamping down on access to that trove of documents.
Maxwell’s attorney later filed eight documents in quick succession.
The first is a motion seeking leave to file a redacted reply and several exhibits under seal in response to the court’s Wednesday order:
“The Reply and Exhibits A-D contain information deemed CONFIDENTIAL by the parties pursuant to the Protective Order,” the letter motion argues. “References to and discussion of specific CONFIDENTIAL materials are necessary to support Ms. Maxwell’s request that these materials remain under seal.”
The second is a heavily-redacted reply memorandum which argues against upwards of 75 Epstein survivors’ “lurid” depositions:
“[B]y unsealing materials that were never subject to cross examination or rebuttal will permit these inaccurate and false statements to be widely publicized in the media without a fair opportunity to reply, even if one takes the wholly unsupported leap to assume that the types of publications covering this story are interested in the truth versus the salacious gossip that Plaintiff and her counsel peddle with great frequency,” the memo complains.
“In the absence of continued Sealing these items, the Second Circuit’s prediction that the court files will be ‘used to gratify private spite or promote public scandal’ is an assured result.”
The full Menninger memo contains several like criticisms of Giuffre, her attorneys and the news media as well as the following prescient estimation of Maxwell’s potential criminal culpability:
The third through eighth documents are a declaration by Menninger in service of her client’s expansive secrecy requests as well as several helpful one-page stand-ins for the documents filed under seal:
[image via Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images]
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