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Court hammer, image to illustrate judgment note against Ghislaine Maxwell
Maxwell's trial began Monday, Nov. 29 at a federal court in Brooklyn. Photo: Pixabay.

Ghislaine Maxwell, the 'socialite' accused of sex trafficking of minors

Lover and close friend of the late millionaire Jeffrey Epstein, Maxwell faces charges of recruiting minors for sexual favors for members of high society.

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The charges against Ghislaine Maxwell point to her having organized sexual encounters between late-child predator Jeffrey Epstein and several minors in exchange for money. The prosecution says she also participated in some of the abuses at her London house and on several properties of millionaire in the United States.

Who is Ghislaine Maxwell?
 
Currently 59 years old, she is the ninth daughter of Robert Maxwell, a British press mogul, now dead. She studied at Oxford University and, in addition to speaking several languages, has English, American and French citizenships.

According to the U.S. press, from a young age, Maxwell has been a person with multiple contacts in the upper echelons of society, and she was the one who introduced many high-profile friends to Epstein.

Although she had a relationship with the shady financier, after breaking up, she continued being his friend and working for him. She was in charge of managing properties, supervising staff, and serving guests.

After the death of her father in a boating accident off the Canary Islands, Maxwell left the United Kingdom to live in the United States and work full-time for Epstein

Following the child prostitution accusations against Epstein, Maxwell walked away from him and founded the NGO Proyecto TerraMar, dedicated to preserving the oceans. She tried to keep a low profile until last July, when she was arrested and imprisoned in New York after the DOJ decided to prosecute the millionaire's accomplices in a case that has also put the third son of Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Andrew, under the microscope.

The trial against the "socialite"
 
With a jury of 12 members and six replacements, the trial is expected to last until mid-January. Maxwell could face up to 80 years in prison, in what has been called the "trial of the decade." The first accusations against her came to light in court documents from 2009.
 
It has the full attention of the New York and London press, despite the ban on cameras during hearings. At least four Epstein victims are expected to take the stand, but it is not yet clear whether Maxwell, who has pleaded not guilty of all the charges against her, will also testify.
 
Of the six crimes she is accused of — surrounding the recruitment of minors and conspiracy of sex trafficking — four of them occurred between 1994 and 1997, and the other two between 2001 and 2004. The victims identified Maxwell as being the one who controlled the women in Epstein's service.
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