As her victims sat in the courtroom and watched, Ghislaine Maxwell made self-serving statements about the “stain” her relationship with pedophile Jeffrey Epstein would forever cause her.
“And despite the many helpful and positive things I have done in my life and will continue to do … I know that my association with Epstein and this case will forever and permanently stain me” said Maxwell in her first time publicly addressing the allegations.
Standing at a Plexiglass-enclosed lectern to speak, she said “I empathize deeply with all of the victims in this case. I also acknowledge that I have been convicted of helping Jeffrey Epstein commit these crimes,” said Maxwell.
“Jeffrey Epstein should have been here before all of you, he should have stood before you all those years ago, he should have stood before you in 2005, again in 2009, and again in 2019,” Maxwell continued. “I am sorry for the pain that you experienced …”
60-year-old Maxwell was sentenced to 20 years in prison on Tuesday in the sex-trafficking case against her for procuring underage girls for Jeffrey Epstein and his friends and colleagues to sexually abuse.
Maxwell’s attorneys argued for a sentence “well below” 20 years recommended by federal probation officials. Prosecutors in the case tried for a 30 to 55 year prison sentence. “Maxwell, a former British socialite, was convicted on 29 December of five of the six charges she faced. The jury came to their decision after 40 hours of deliberations spanning six days” reports The Guardian.
The Guardian reports of the trial:
In addition to sex trafficking, Maxwell was convicted of conspiracy to entice individuals under the age of 17 to travel in interstate commerce with intent to engage in illegal sexual activity, conspiracy to transport individuals under the age of 17 to travel in interstate commerce with intent to engage in illegal sexual activity; transportation of an individual under the age of 17 with intent to engage in illegal sexual activity; and conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of individuals under the age of 18…
…There were four accusers in the trial: Jane, Kate and Carolyn, who did not use their full names during proceedings, as well as Annie Farmer.
Jane said that she was 14 in 1994 when Epstein began to sexually abuse her – and that sometimes Maxwell was present when he did so. Sometimes, Maxwell participated in this abuse, Jane testified. “There were hands everywhere,” Jane said of an incident with Epstein and Maxwell. This abuse also took place when she was 15 and 16.
Kate said that she first met Maxwell in Paris around 1994, at 17. Maxwell asked Kate to tea at her London townhouse shortly thereafter, and then introduced the teen to Epstein at a subsequent meeting.
A few weeks later, Maxwell telephoned Kate, and told her: “Jeffrey was meant to get a massage but the massage therapist had canceled. Could I do her a favor and come over … because I had strong hands.”
Kate told jurors that Maxwell led her upstairs, where Epstein was in a robe. Maxwell shut the door, leaving Kate alone with Epstein. He initiated sexual contact with Kate. She saw him several times annually over the next few years.
Carolyn testified that she fell into Maxwell and Epstein’s abusive world around the early 2000s, when she was 14, at his Palm Beach mansion.
Ghislaine Maxwell sentencing provides ‘closure’, victims say – video
Carolyn said she traveled to Epstein’s house “over 100 times” between ages 14 and 18, and recalled a physical encounter with Maxwell while getting a massage table ready.
“I was getting fully nude, and she came in and felt my boobs and my hips and my buttocks and said … that I had a great body for Mr Epstein and his friends. She just said that I had a good body type,” Carolyn testified.
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Historic House Vote Expels Rep. George Santos Amidst Scandal
In a turn of events, the House of Representatives made history on Friday with a vote to expel Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.), marking the first such expulsion in over two decades. A moment fraught with gravity unfolded as Speaker Mike Johnson wielded his gavel to formalize Santos’ removal, setting a precedent in congressional annals.
Santos, indicted on 23 counts related to wire fraud, identity theft, and other charges, has not faced conviction but stands accused of misusing campaign funds for opulent purchases. The bipartisan vote, tallying 311 to 114, signaled robust support for expulsion, with a marginally higher number of Republicans opting to retain Santos.
Questions loomed as Speaker Johnson left the chamber, his silence leaving the fate of the ongoing government spending battle uncertain. According to reports from Fox News, Democratic Rep. Steny Hoyer emphasized the non-partisan nature of the decision, asserting that members concluded Santos had tarnished the House’s reputation and was unfit for representation.
Within the GOP, conflicting opinions emerged, with Rep. Darrell Issa arguing against expulsion, citing the presumption of innocence. The tight-lipped stance of the House Ethics Committee played a pivotal role in the deliberations.
Conversely, members of the New York Republican delegation, led by Rep. Marc Molinaro, asserted Santos’ commission of crimes, justifying expulsion based on a comprehensive investigation.
Santos himself predicted the outcome in an exclusive morning interview on “FOX & Friends.” This vote not only underlines the House’s rare use of expulsion powers but also sets a critical precedent in handling members facing severe legal challenges.
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