Maxwell deserves 30- to 55-year prison term – U.S. prosecutors

Ghislaine Maxwell appears via video link during her arraignment hearing in Manhattan Federal Court in the Manhattan borough of New York, New York, United States, July 14, 2020 in this courtroom sketch . REUTERS/Jane Rosenberg

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NEW YORK, June 22 (Reuters) – Ghislaine Maxwell is expected to face 30 to 55 years in prison after being found guilty of helping sex offender and globetrotting financier Jeffrey Epstein sexually abuse teenage girls, U.S. prosecutors announced Wednesday.

Maxwell, 60, was convicted in December by a federal jury on five counts, including sex trafficking, of recruiting and grooming four girls between 1994 and 2004 for sexual encounters with Epstein, then her boyfriend. Read more

In a sentencing memorandum filed in Manhattan federal court, prosecutors called Maxwell’s conduct “scandalously predatory.”

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“His practice of targeting vulnerable victims reflects his view that troubled young girls could be treated like disposable objects,” they wrote.

Circuit Judge Alison Nathan, who presided over Maxwell’s four-week trial before he was promoted, will sentence the British socialite on June 28.

Maxwell’s lawyers argued last week that she deserved less than the 20-year sentence recommended by probation officers and no more than 5 and a quarter years in prison based on their review of federal sentencing guidelines. pain.

They argued that Maxwell, the daughter of late British media mogul Robert Maxwell, was the scapegoat for Epstein’s crimes and had already spent a long time behind bars. Read more

Prosecutors said Maxwell’s reports of poor prison conditions at the Brooklyn Metropolitan Detention Center were not grounds for a lighter sentence.

“Going from waiting to incarceration is undoubtedly a shocking and unpleasant experience,” they wrote.

Epstein killed himself in 2019 at the age of 66 in a Manhattan jail cell while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges.

Maxwell’s trial was widely seen as the judgment Epstein never got.

It was one of the highest-profile cases in the wake of the #MeToo movement, which encouraged women to speak out against sexual abuse, often at the hands of wealthy and powerful people.

In often emotional and explicit testimony, four women said Maxwell was a central figure in Epstein’s years of abuse. Read more

The US probation office had recommended a 20-year sentence for Maxwell.

But prosecutors said that did not take into account the cases of two additional women who were proven at trial to be victims, despite not being named in the writ. Maxwell’s original charge, and said 30 years should be the minimum, based on their interpretation of the US sentence. guidelines.

In April, Nathan denied Maxwell’s request for acquittal, but overturned the guilty verdicts on two counts because they overlapped. This reduced Maxwell’s maximum possible sentence to 55 years from 65 years. Read more

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Reporting by Luc Cohen in New York; Editing by Clarence Fernandez, Robert Birsel

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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