A New York federal court jury found British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell guilty on Wednesday of recruiting underage girls to be sexually assaulted by the late convicted sex criminal Jeffrey Epstein.
The decision came after a month-long trial that featured harrowing allegations of sexual abuse of girls as young as 14, delivered by four women who said they were molested as teenagers at Epstein’s opulent houses in Florida, New York, and New Mexico in the 1990s and early 2000s.
Maxwell was convicted on five of the six counts after a five-day jury deliberation. Maxwell faces years behind bars, with maximum prison sentences ranging from five to 40 years for each charge. It was a consequence long sought by women who fought for years in civil courts to hold her responsible for her role in enlisting and grooming Epstein’s teenage victims and sometimes participating in the sex assault.
Maxwell appeared mostly quiet beneath a black mask as the verdict was announced. She was later observed pouring herself water while one of her lawyers patted her on the back. She was standing with her hands folded as jurors filed out, and as she was brought out the courthouse, she gazed at her siblings, who had been present every day of the trial.
On her way leaving, she didn’t hug her lawyers, which was a significant shift from previous days, when Maxwell and her team were frequently physically friendly with one another. One of her sufferers, Annie Farmer, expressed gratitude to the jury for recognising Maxwell’s “habit of abusive behaviour.”
Source: CBC News