Ghislaine Maxwell, Longtime Friend Of Jeffrey Epstein, Arrested By FBI
Jul 2, 2020, 7:48 AM | Updated: 9:13 am
(Photo by Joe Schildhorn/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
(CNN) — Ghislaine Maxwell, the longtime girlfriend and alleged accomplice of accused sex-trafficker Jeffrey Epstein, was arrested Thursday morning and charged by New York federal prosecutors with six counts in connection with the ongoing federal investigation into Epstein’s accomplices, according to court documents and a person familiar with the matter.
Maxwell is charged with enticement and conspiracy to entice minors to travel to engage in illegal sex acts, transportation and conspiracy to transport minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, and two counts of perjury, according to a federal indictment unsealed Thursday.
“In particular, from at least in or about 1994, up to an including at least in or about 1997, Maxwell assisted, facilitated, and contributed to Jeffrey Epstein’s abuse of minor girls by, among other things, helping Epstein to recruit, groom, and ultimately abuse victims known to Maxwell and Epstein to be under the age of 18,” the indictment says. Those victims, according to the indictment, included girls as young as 14 years old.
Maxwell was arrested Thursday morning in New Hampshire, said Nicholas Biase, a spokesman for the US attorney’s office.
She was arrested without incident, FBI spokesman Martin Feely tells CNN, adding Maxwell will make her initial appearance in New Hampshire, but is being charged in the Southern District of New York.
Maxwell, whose whereabouts have been unclear since the arrest last summer of Epstein, has been under investigation by the Manhattan US Attorney’s office for facilitating Epstein’s recruitment of young girls and women. She has been named in multiple lawsuits by women who said they have been abused by Epstein.
Prior to his death, Epstein faced charges of having run a trafficking enterprise in which he paid hundreds of dollars in cash to girls as young as 14 to have sex with him at his Upper East Side home and his estate in Palm Beach, worked with employees and associates to lure the girls to his residences and paid some of his victims to recruit other girls for him to abuse.
In the wake of Epstein’s suicide in August 2019, public pressure has mounted to hold those who assisted him — perhaps including Maxwell and a coterie of young women who allegedly worked under her — accountable not only for his actions, but also for their own roles.
In that investigation, Maxwell has remained a significant target. She has denied wrongdoing, and in a deposition has called at least one of her accusers “a liar.”