Lawyers for Ghislaine Maxwell, who stands accused of procuring young girls for Jeffrey Epstein, petitioned a judge on Monday complaining of the “onerous conditions” under which she is being held at a Brooklyn detention center. They claim that Maxwell is receiving substandard treatment because of the fate of Epstein, who killed himself at a Manhattan jail last year, prompting widespread outrage (and conspiracy theories).
“As a result of what occurred with Mr. Epstein, Ms. Maxwell is being treated worse than other similarly situated pretrial detainees, which significantly impacts her ability to prepare a defense and be ready for trial on the schedule set by the Court,” the letter reads.
The lawyers say that the 58-year-old ex-socialite, who was associated with Epstein for decades — including a spell as his girlfriend — has been placed in isolation throughout her entire detention; has been held on suicide watch, even though she exhibited no signs of suicidal behavior previously; and is not being given time at a computer to go over documents related to her defense.
Documents unsealed in July offered new details about the sordid accusations against Maxwell, including a deposition from Virginia Giuffre, who was 15 when she says Maxwell recruited her to be Epstein’s “sex slave.” Maxwell often accompanied Epstein to his private island in the Caribbean, Little St. James, where Giuffre says “orgies were a constant thing that took place.”
Maxwell was arrested in New Hampshire last month and charged with six counts, including transporting a minor for the purposes of criminal sexual activity and conspiring to entice minors to travel to engage in illegal sex acts. She pleaded not guilty, and was denied bail.