16:54 GMT11 April 2021
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    Jeffrey Epstein’s former girlfriend is charged with six crimes - including the enticement and sex-trafficking of minors – over her decades-long association with the infamous and now-dead financier. Ghislaine Maxwell is currently in jail awaiting her trial this summer, as her last three attempts to get out on bail have failed.

    Ian Maxwell, the older brother of Ghislaine Maxwell, believes that his sister will not ask Prince Andrew, her long-time pal, to come as a defence witness in her case when the trial begins this July.

    The 64-year-old businessman told the Telegraph that following the Duke of York’s infamous interview to BBC’s ‘The Newsnight’ – which Mr. Maxwell described as “the most remarkable piece of self-destruction”, it wouldn’t be wise to ask the Queen’s son to speak in his sister’s defence.

    “I think he would be – as he proved in that interview – I think he's a pretty serious hostage to fortune. I don't think that's going to happen,” Mr. Maxwell said.

    Ghislaine Maxwell, 59, is being accused of grooming and sex trafficking minors to engage in sexual acts with her former lover and friend Jeffrey Epstein. She is now facing eight charges overall, after two more additional counts were added to her “guilt” list last month over allegations that the British socialite had groomed a 14-year-old girl between 2001 and 2004 for Epstein’s pleasures.

    The woman denies the charges, all of which come from anonymous accusers, and her brother vehemently stands by her account of events. “It’s not in her nature to do any of these things,” Mr. Maxwell says.

    “What is most puzzling is the court’s refusal to identify the now four anonymous complainants who only stepped forward after Epstein’s death, 25 years after the offences were alleged to have been committed. As you may be aware, Ghislaine is adamant that she has committed no crime,” the businessman claims.

    He is pretty frustrated that the accusers’ allegations “have never been put to the test, no-cross examination, no evidence furnished, no names provided”.

    “It's completely Kafka-esque. You don't know who's accusing you; you don't know what you're accused of specifically; you don't know when it's alleged to have happened other than it did happen,” he insists.

    Ghislaine Maxwell appears via video link during her arraignment hearing where she was denied bail for her role aiding Jeffrey Epstein to recruit and eventually abuse of minor girls, in Manhattan Federal Court, in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S. July 14, 2020 in this courtroom sketch
    © REUTERS / JANE ROSENBERG
    Ghislaine Maxwell appears via video link during her arraignment hearing where she was denied bail for her role aiding Jeffrey Epstein to recruit and eventually abuse of minor girls, in Manhattan Federal Court, in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S. July 14, 2020 in this courtroom sketch

    Speaking to the newspaper, Mr. Maxwell has also pointed out that Epstein and his sister had never had anything resembling a traditional 'boyfriend and girlfriend' relationship, as they lived in separate properties.

    “I don't think you could characterise this as a kind of conventional lovey-dovey living together relationship,” Mr. Maxwell says. “I think the most important thing that you could possibly report is that they never lived together, ever. He had his place. She had her place. It's hugely important for a man who was as compartmentalised as Jeffrey Epstein clearly was.”

    Previously, Ian Maxwell pointed out to the media that he wished that his younger sister “had never met Jeffrey Epstein”.

    The heir of the publishing empire is now going public in trying to shed light on Ms. Maxwell’s “torturous” prison conditions, which have caused her to lose weight and hair. He says that the financier’s ex-girlfriend is watched 24 hours a day in her 1.8 x 2.7m prison cell and is sleep-deprived, as she is apparently woken up every 15 minutes to make sure that she doesn’t take her own life – as Epstein did in August 2019.

    Meanwhile, Maxwell’s third bail attempt was rejected in March over a flight risk concerns, despite assurances from her lawyers that the socialite would give up her French and British citizenship in a bid to prove that she would stay in the United States. US District Judge Alison Nathan has remained adamant – the proposed restraints were “insufficient” to guarantee Maxwell would turn up for July 2021 trial if released on bail.

    Britain's Prince Andrew leaves his home in Windsor, England, Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019
    © AP Photo / Steve Parsons
    Britain's Prince Andrew leaves his home in Windsor, England, Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019

    Previously Mr. Maxwell was unsure whether Prince Andrew would be one of Maxwell’s defence witnesses over his own troubled association with Epstein. One of the financier’s accusers, Virginia Roberts Giuffre, maintains that she was sex-trafficked to the Duke in 2001, while she was still 17, and their first sexual encounter took place in Ghislaine Maxwell’s London home.

    The Queen’s son made an attempt to clear this name during a November 2019 BBC interview, but this effort proved to be ill-fated. Many have ridiculed the Prince for trying to dismiss his acquaintance with Roberts Giuffre – despite an existing photo that is believed to show them together – as well as assurances that he was at Pizza Express restaurant at the time of their alleged encounter. The interview rose more questions than answers back then, prompting the royal to step down from his public duties.

    Tags:
    Prince Andrew, Jeffrey Epstein, Ghislaine Maxwell, United Kingdom, United States
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