Ghislaine Maxwell bowed her head and cried as she was denied bail when U.S. District Judge Alison Nathan ruled she must stay locked up until her trial set for July 2021.
Maxwell, 58, a former British socialite, had pleaded not guilty to all the sex trafficking charges brought against her, appearing by video link from her New York state jail and wearing a prison-issued brown top, she decided not to wear a mask instead looking directly at the camera. Her normally cropped short hair is now long and she wore it swept back into a bun.
Judge Alison Nathan ruled Maxwell was a significant flight risk, citing her ‘substantial international’ ties and ‘extraordinary financial resources’ Maxwell’s legal team had argued she agreed to be confined to a ‘luxury hotel’ in the New York area and surrender all her travel documents, she also agreed to wear a GPS tracking device.
But, after a short deliberation, US District Judge Nathan ruled the British socialite was a significant flight risk, citing her ‘substantial international’ ties and ‘extraordinary financial resources’, and she set an anticipated trial date for July 12, 2021.
The charges Maxwell faces are of grooming girls as young as 14 for Jeffery Epstein to abuse between 1994 and 1997, allegedly perpetrated during a period when she was his girlfriend.
If convicted, she faces up to 35 years in prison, prosecutors successfully argued that along with her three passports, connections to some of the world’s most powerful people and her own fortune of more than €9.4 ($10 million) – Maxwell has every incentive to try and flee.
She will now return to the fortress-like Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn where she has been given paper clothes to ensure she doesn’t kill herself. According to reports, her legal team is already preparing an appeal against the decision and a statement will be given soon.