The life of millionaire Ghislaine Maxwell, accustomed to luxuries and VIP treatment since birth, will be spent during her remaining years behind bars. I’ve been following the case for at least two years here on the blog, and before on CLAUDIA, It’s an absurd case from end to end, where a woman helped powerful men sexually abuse, traffic, and exploit minors. Be that as it may, once Jeffrey Epstein and Jean-Luc Brunel both committed suicide, there was only Ghislaine left to answer in court. The prosecution recommended 30 years without parole. Justice gave 20 years. When the period ends, Ghislaine will be close to 70 years old.
Ghislaine’s life was marked by tragedy, mystery, luxury, and crime from a young age. Daughter of British media mogul Robert Maxwell, who died under never-before-clarified circumstances, she became involved with Epstein in the early 2000s while in New York. The courtship turned into a unique friendship and complicity. Even without being romantically involved, later on, she was known as the millionaire’s “lady of the house”. Cited in victims’ testimonies as always present in the abuse, she conspired with Jeffrey Epstein for more than a decade to carry out the sex trafficking for which she was convicted.
Before turning up dead, supposedly by suicide, Epstein did everything he could to protect Ghislaine. His agreement with the Justice cleared her of guilt and that is why she did not run away after he was arrested in 2019, remaining in the United States, albeit practically hiding. Her location and arrest in July 2020 were cinematic.
Personal gratification. A two-pronged argument. As an adult, Ghislaine made her choices and they were all wrong, precisely because she agreed to participate and enjoy the luxuries and travel provided by her ex-boyfriend in exchange for helping him have sex with minors.
Ghislaine claims the total innocence of all charges and believes it. A dangerous empathy trap. Many women learned to survive sexist oppression by giving in to what men wanted, but she went further. Her role in the scheme was to select, approach, and bring underage youth to Epstein and friends. In their noxious perspective, they believed that abuse was actually “opportunities”, where young women from simple backgrounds (she called them “trash”) traveled the world and met powerful and wealthy men in a consensual exchange. Not. It was abuse.
In her defense, Ghislaine says she suffered in her childhood, being vulnerable and being manipulated by Epstein. As her lawyers argued, “Epstein was the mastermind, Epstein was the primary perpetrator, and Epstein orchestrated the crimes for his personal gratification. ”
Personal gratification. A two-pronged argument. As an adult, Ghislaine made her choices and they were all wrong, precisely because she agreed to participate and enjoy the luxuries and travel provided by her ex-boyfriend in exchange for helping him have sex with minors. Lawyers may say she’s paying the bill on her own, but she participated in everything and must answer for what she did.
Two decades behind bars is a harsh sentence but, for some, “short”. The team of defense attorneys will still appeal, but if the conviction is upheld, she could get out sooner, because of the time potentially deducted for good behavior and credit for the two years she’s already served.
At the hearing where she heard her sentence, Ghislaine was silent and showed no reaction. She addressed the survivors lamenting the trauma and pain caused, but her statement was not seen as either an admission or an apology. Ghislaine, in fact, adopted the victimization speech, exempting herself from all crimes committed.
There is minimally a karmic irony in the story’s conclusion. Since he [Epstein] preferred not to go through Justice, Ghislaine answers for both of them. As she always did. Willingly.
Even in death, Epstein hovered over Maxwell’s trial – his name came up repeatedly and Maxwell’s lawyers took every opportunity to separate their client from him. In total, there were 24 witnesses accusing the businesswoman of being present in the abuses and even occasionally participating in them. The victims were minors at the time. Therefore, she was convicted of conspiracy to attract minors to perform illegal sexual acts, conspiracy to transport minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activities, transporting a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of minors, and child sex trafficking.
After Prince Andrew bought his freedom, paying compensation to ensure the silence of his use in Epstein’s scheme, and the suicide of Epstein’s partner at the French modeling agency, Jean-Luc Brunel, it’s a relief to hear that the survivors’ courage to come out publicly had an official response. It is unlikely that the sentence will be changed. Ghislaine Maxwell will spend many years far away from the social universe of which she was a part, but in a convenient location for those who made her choices.
There is minimally a karmic irony in the story’s conclusion. Ghislaine Maxwell has spent over a decade doing everything for Jeffrey Epstein. Since he preferred not to go through justice, she answers for both of them. As she always did. Willingly.