Maxwell, Epstein were ‘partners in crime,’ prosecutor says

NEW YORK (AP) — A prosecutor says Ghislaine Maxwell and the late Jeffrey Epstein were partners in crime in the sexual abuse of teenage girls. Assistant U.S. Attorney Lara Pomerantz told the New York jury in opening statements Monday at Maxwell’s sex trafficking trial that she is accused of recruiting and grooming girls for the financier to abuse from 1994 to 2004.

Defense lawyer Bobbi Sternheim countered in an opening statement that the 59-year-old British socialite was being made a scapegoat after Epstein killed himself two years ago.

Maxwell used to date Epstein and has been jailed in Brooklyn since her arrest. She says she is innocent.

Who is the real Ghislaine Maxwell?

Ghislaine Maxwell spent the first half of her life with her father, a rags-to-riches billionaire who looted his companies’ pension funds. She spent the second with another tycoon, Jeffrey Epstein, who killed himself while facing charges he sexually abused teenage girls.

Now, after a life of both scandal and luxury, a U.S. trial will decide whether Maxwell’s next act will be serving decades in prison. Prosecutors in New York will argue that even as she was sipping cocktails with the likes of Prince Andrew, Bill Clinton and Donald Trump, Maxwell was secretly abetting Epstein’s crimes with girls as young as 14.