Ghislaine Maxwell’s legal team is working on an appeal after a jury found her guilty of sex trafficking and other crimes on Wednesday.
“We firmly believe in Ghislaine’s innocence. Obviously, we are very disappointed with the verdict. We have already started working on the appeal and we are confident that she will be vindicated,” Maxwell attorney Bobbi Sternheim told reporters after the verdict on Wednesday, according to The New York Times. Sternheim did not reveal on what grounds she planned to challenge Maxwell’s convictions.
Maxwell, a socialite and close associate of financier and convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, has been on trial since late November. She was found guilty on five of six counts of sex trafficking and other charges connected with allegations that Epstein, who died by suicide in a federal prison in August 2019, sexually abused and trafficked underage girls. As The Daily Wire reported:
The jury found Maxwell guilty on five of six counts on Wednesday, including conspiracy to entice individuals under 17 to travel in interstate commerce with intent to engage in “illegal sexual activity,” conspiracy to transport individuals under 17 to travel in interstate commerce with intent to engage in “illegal sexual activity,” transportation of an individual under 17 with intent to engage in “illegal sexual activity,” conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of individuals under 18, and sex trafficking of an individual under 18.
The judge in the trial, Alison Nathan, has not yet set a date for Maxwell’s sentencing hearing. The most serious conviction for Maxwell, sex trafficking of a minor, carries a punishment of up to 40 years in prison. Transportation of a minor with intent to engage in illegal sexual activity carries a sentence of up to ten years. The three conspiracy charges carry a sentence of up to three years each.
Maxwell also is due in court again later to face trial again on two counts of perjury. She has pleaded not guilty.
Prosecutors rested their case against Maxwell late last week after nearly a month of testimony. As The Daily Wire reported:
Over the course of the trial, the prosecution painted a picture of a pair of fully-grown adults, Maxwell and Epstein, who were “partners in crime” and had a “playbook” for targeting minors and sexually abusing them.
“Ghislaine Maxwell was dangerous. She was a grown woman who preyed on vulnerable kids,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Alison Moe said in closing arguments.
Maxwell and Epstein’s “horrifying crimes” caused “deep and lasting harm to young girls,” Moe said.
The defense attempted to cast doubt on the credibility of Maxwell’s accusers, saying the women have “contaminated” memories of their abuse. The defense also tried to assign selfish motives to nearly all the government’s witnesses, saying the women are motivated by money in going after Maxwell decades after the alleged abuse occurred.
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