Ghislaine Maxwell's $28.5M bail plea denied in Epstein abuse case, judge says she's still a ‘flight risk’
Jeffrey Epstein’s ‘madam’ Ghislaine Maxwell’s bail application has been rejected by a judge for the second time this year. The British socialite, who is in jail facing charges for allegedly hiring and grooming young girls as young as 14 to be sexually abused by the disgraced financier, was denied bail as Judge Alison Nathan believed she was still a "flight risk" as determined in an earlier bail hearing, The Sun reported.
The judge reportedly kept the wealth of Maxwell, possession of citizenship in different countries, and the gravity of the charges she faces in mind while giving the decision. “On July 14, 2020, this court conducted an extensive bail hearing and determined that pre-trial detention was warranted because the no conditions or set of conditions could reasonably assure the Defendant’s appearance at future proceedings,” Nathan said in Manhattan federal court, adding that the issue of bail can be reconsidered if a judge determines that there’s new information that could change things.
"The court concludes that none of the new information that the defendant presented in support of her application has a material bearing on the court’s determination that she poses a flight risk.”
“Furthermore, for substantially the same reasons as the court determined that detention was warranted in the initial bail hearing, the court again concludes that no conditions of release can reasonably assure the defendant’s appearance at future proceedings,” Nathan also said.
Maxwell's lawyers are yet to respond the the ruling.
Earlier, Maxwell husband of four years, Scott Borgerson, had offered to pledge $22.5 million for her release. Besides, her seven relatives and friends also reportedly pledged to pay additional millions. Epstein’s associate, who turned 59 on December 25, even suggested that she will be under house arrest at a New York City residence while wearing an electronic tagging device all the time. However, one of the accusers -- identified as Annie Farmer -- has called Maxwell a "psychopath" and claimed that if she was released on bail, she would avoid justice. Farmer was allegedly sexually abused by Maxwell at Epstein's 7,500-acre ranch in New Mexico when she was just 16.
The 41-year-old accuser said, “She (Maxwell) has lived a life of privilege, abusing her position of power to live beyond the rules. She will not hesitate to leave the country irrespective of whether others will be on the hook financially for her actions because she lacks empathy and, therefore, simply does not care about hurting others. I believe that she is a psychopath.” Maxwell will reportedly stand trial in 2021.
Meanwhile, a report in earlier December stated that Maxwell’s lawyer has claimed that her client was losing a lot of her hair and weight due to “extraordinarily onerous conditions” at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn. Attorney Bobbi Sternheim wrote in a letter written to judge Nathan, “While her weight may currently be fairly consistent, she had lost over 15 pounds, and she is sustaining hair loss.” The lawyer said, “It is obvious that Ms. Maxwell is bearing the brunt of BOP (Bureau of Prisons) incompetence,” before adding that the Brooklyn prison has “imposed extraordinarily onerous conditions of constraint on Ms. Maxwell to avoid the catastrophic consequences of negligence occurring at the MCC that resulted in the death of Jeffrey Epstein.”
Sternheim’s stand in favor of her client supported her previous allegations in which she said Maxwell was disturbed every fifteen minutes by a flashlight in her sleep to ensure she is alive. “Despite non-stop in-cell camera surveillance, Ms. Maxwell’s sleep is disrupted every 15-minutes when she is awakened by a flashlight to ascertain whether she is breathing,” the lawyer said, who also added that the alleged criminal “is overmanaged under conditions more restrictive than inmates housed in 10South, the most restrictive unit in the MCC; or individuals convicted of terrorism and capital murder and incarcerated at FCI Florence ADMAX, the most restrictive facility operated by the BOP.”