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Ghislaine Maxwell denied bail again: US media

By AFP
29 December 2020   |   3:27 pm
Accused sex trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell has been denied bail again by a New York court, US media reported.

Ghislaine Maxwell, longtime associate of accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein, speaks at a news conference on oceans and sustainable development at the United Nations in New York, U.S. June 25, 2013 in this screengrab taken from United Nations TV file footage. UNTV/Handout via REUTERS

Accused sex trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell has been denied bail again by a New York court, US media reported.

The British socialite has repeatedly denied that she recruited underage girls for her former partner, the disgraced US financier Jeffrey Epstein, who killed himself in prison last year.

Manhattan federal court judge Alison J. Nathan on Monday noted that Maxwell, who has been detained since her arrest on July 2, remains an extreme flight risk.

The socialite’s lawyers had attempted to secure her release under a $28.5 million bail package, which would have seen her confined to her home under an electronic monitoring system, arguing that Maxwell had close ties to the US — such as her husband, who she married in 2016.

In a letter to the court, ABC News reported, Maxwell’s husband said he had “never witnessed anything close to inappropriate with Ghislaine; quite to the contrary, the Ghislaine I know is a wonderful and loving person.”

But Nathan wrote that “the court again concludes that no conditions of release can reasonably assure the defendant’s appearance at future proceedings”.

The Guardian reported that her full written opinion remains under seal.

Maxwell, the daughter of late newspaper baron Robert Maxwell, is due to go on trial in New York in July 2021.

Prosecutors also accuse the 58-year-old of lying in testimony she gave in 2016 in a defamation case filed against her by long-time Epstein accuser Virginia Giuffre.

Maxwell faces up to 35 years in prison if convicted in the criminal case, which covers alleged crimes from 1994 to 1997. She is also accused of sometimes participating in the alleged abuse.