Accuser Says Ghislaine Maxwell Gave her ‘Nude Massage’ When She Was 16, Epstein 'Wanted to Cuddle'
Following two weeks of testimony, with the fourth and final accuser taking the witness stand on Friday, prosecutors in Ghislaine Maxwell's sex trafficking trial have rested their case. The defence is expected to start its case on 16 December.
The fourth accuser testifying in the Ghislaine Maxwell federal sex-trafficking trial
in New York - the only one to use her full name during the current court procedure – took the stand on Friday.
According to Annie Farmer, now 42, she first met Epstein in late 1995 through her older sister, who worked for him in New York as a fine arts painter. Maria Farmer told her that the tycoon was possibly “interested in helping me with my education”, she told the court.
As Farmer, identified as "Minor Victim-2" in the indictment, testified on Friday, she read portions of her January 1996 diary entries pertaining to a trip to New York that Epstein had paid for, when she and her sister went to see "Phantom of the Opera" on Broadway.
She had written about Epstein holding her hand and "caressing" her foot throughout.
In spring 1996 her mother, Janice Swain, told her she would be travelling to see Epstein for a weekend at his New Mexico ranch.
Swain, the last witness in the government's case on Friday, told the trial that when Epstein invited her daughter to go to the ranch he claimed she would be one of around 20 other students he was “funding” for “enrichment trips” abroad later in the year.
purportedly told the woman that "his wife, Ghislaine" would be chaperoning the girls. Farmer recalled that news of another woman, Ghislaine Maxwell, being there with Epstein, made her feel more comfortable about the trip.
However, Farmer claimed she was 16 when Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged “pimp” gave her a nude massage at the late pedophile’s New Mexico ranch. Maxwell purportedly told her she wanted her to experience a genuinely professional massage and instructed her to get undressed.
At some point as she lay on her back, Maxwell pulled the sheet down, exposing her naked breasts and rubbed her chest and upper breast, Farmer testified.
"Once she pulled down the sheet I felt like kind of frozen. It didn't make sense to me that that would happen. I just wanted so badly to get off the table and have this massage be done," she testified.
Prosecutor Lara Pomerantz asked during her direct examination:
“Do you see anyone in this courtroom who has ever given you a massage?”
Farmer responded with, “Yes, I do,” adding that the individual in question was “wearing a brown sweater” and seated across the room, to her right.
The woman claimed that on her last day at the ranch Jeffrey Epstein came into the guestroom as she was still in bed and told her he wanted to "cuddle."
"He climbed into bed with me and kind of laid behind me and reached his arms around me and like pressed his body into me," she said.
According to the then 16-year-old, she quickly made up an excuse to get out of bed and went to the bathroom.
Farmer testified that she told her mother that while she was “not raped”, something had happened at the ranch that she didn't want to talk about.
Farmer also testified that she had told her boyfriend, David James Mulligan, about the massage in New Mexico. Mulligan, in turn, acknowledged that Farmer she told him the massage had made her feel "fearful and awkward and helpless".
In summer of 1996 Annie Farmer went on a cultural immersion trip to Vietnam and Thailand that was funded by Jeffrey Epstein. After returning home, she claimed she never had any more contact with Epstein.
In 2019 Annie Farmer filed a civil lawsuit against Maxwell and Epstein. However, she agreed to drop it to receive $1.5 million from the Epstein Victim Compensation Program, she testified.
Ghislaine Maxwell, allegedly a “pimp”, or “madam” of Epstein, was arrested in New Hampshire in July 2020 and faces six charges over her involvement with the late billionaire: one each of enticement of a minor to travel to engage in illegal sex acts, transportation of a minor with intent to engage in illegal sex acts, sex trafficking of a minor, and three counts of conspiracy related to the other counts. If convicted, the British socialite, who pleaded not guilty on all charges, faces up to 80 years in prison
9 December 2021, 17:14 GMT
Jeffrey Epstein, charged with running a sex trafficking network of minors in 2019, died in his Manhattan cell on 10 August while awaiting trial, having pleaded not guilty to the charges.
According to prosecutors, the daughter of the late media mogul Robert Maxwell and Jeffrey Epstein created a "pyramid scheme of abuse" to lure underage girls into sexual relationships with the billionaire.
Prosecutors in Maxwell's trial
rested their case on 10 December, with the defence expected to start its case on 16 December. According to defence attorneys, they anticipate resting their case on 20 December.