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Ghislaine Maxwell's defense attorney attacks accusers as 'consummate actresses'

Ghislaine Maxwell's defense attorney Bobbi Sternheim took aim at each of the four victims during scathing opening statements Monday. 

'Let's talk about those four accusers. As I said before, it's Jane, Annie, Kate, and Carolyn,' Sternheim said. 

All but one of the accusers are using pseudonyms; Annie Farmer has identified herself. The four women are expected to testify about the sexual abuse they allege they suffered at the hands of Maxwell and Epstein while they were underage. 

Sternheim branded one victim 'a consummate actress' before undermining the others, questioning their character and past drug abuse.   

Lawyer Bobbi Sternheim took the floor to deliver the defense's opening statements Monday, saying she is 'proud' to represent Maxwell

 Sternheim branded one victim 'a consummate actress' before undermining the others, questioning their character and past drug abuse


Sternheim began by introducing 'Jane' as a 'talented musician and a singer from a musical family.'

She described Jeffrey Epstein as a 'patron of the arts and a supporter of young talent, sponsored musicians and artists and actresses and others.'

Ghislaine Maxwell faces up to 80 years in prison if found guilty. This photo was entered into evidence yesterday

Epstein, Sternheim said, became Jane's benefactor and paid for her schooling, vocal lessons and even cosigned  for an apartment on Wall Street where Jane lived with her mother and brothers. 

According to prosecutors, the victim was about 14 when she first met Epstein and Maxwell and claims she was abused in New York and Palm Beach between 1994 and 1997.  

 'A month before Epstein's arrest in 2019, Jane did not want to be involved in any criminal case regarding Epstein,' Sternheim said. 'But after Epstein died, she changed her mind.  

'When money was on the line, she changed her mind. She hired a lawyer, she became a client, they got in touch with the government, and said she changed her mind. 

'Why? Because assisting the government would help a claim with the Epstein fund.'

Sterheim added that once Epstein died and Jane had a lawyer by her side she suddenly 'remembers all this horror that happened to her and places Ghislaine at the center of it all.'  

'Hundreds of things that happened to her that no one knew about, not her mother, not her brothers, not her teachers, not staff at the house, not her coaches, all of this that the government claims happened and she didn't skip a beat, nobody ever noticed anything amiss.'

Sternheim said that 'Jane' is a now a successful actress on a soap opera and has been on sitcoms, reality shows, movies, podcasts and drama series. 

'She is a consummate actress. She is a pro at playing roles. And as her scripts and characters change, so has her story that you will hear in this courtroom,' Sternheim said. 

'I ask you to examine her testimony, and you will find internal inconsistencies. When money was on the line, she tagged Ghislaine.'

Sternheim revealed that Jane received $5million from the victims fund. 

Annie Farmer is the only accuser to have her identity revealed. Prosecutors claims Maxwell encouraged her to massage Epstein

Annie Farmer  

Annie Farmer is the only accuser to have her identity revealed. 

She claims she was under 18 when she was flown to Epstein's New Mexico ranch and was groomed with shopping and movie trips in 1996.

Prosecutors claims Maxwell encouraged her to massage Epstein.

'Let's go back to Annie for just a couple of minutes,' Sternheim said in her presentation Monday. 'Whatever you hear Annie claim happened there, Annie did not believe that she was a victim until later.'

She said that it was others who convinced Annie that she was a victim. 

'Interestingly, she will tell you that she stopped writing in her diary before the events she will testify to concerning New Mexico,' Sternheim added. 

Annie, 41, is now a psychotherapist and Sternheim claims she met Maxwell once in Santa Fe but never saw her again, never saw Epstein after that and never traveled to New York after that. 

'She now promotes herself as a victim and speaks publicly,' Sternheim said. 'You should wonder why she is even a part of this case. Because from our perspective, what happened in New Mexico is not illegal conduct under the terms of this indictment.'

Sternheim told the jury that Annie will claim she's scarred by what happened in New Mexico.   

'Yet ask yourself, if it was so traumatic, why has she kept for 25 years the boots she claims Epstein purchased for her to wear in the snake-filled brush of Santa Fe, boots that have been well-worn over more than two decades.'  

Sternheim revealed Farmer was awarded $1.5 million for 'whatever she claims and didn't believe was victimizing in Santa Fe.'

Farmer claims she was under 18 when she was flown to Epstein's New Mexico ranch (pictured) and was groomed with shopping and movie trips in 1996

In this courtroom sketch, Ghislaine Maxwell enters the courtroom escorted on Monday 


Maxwell is accused of befriending the third alleged underage victim known as 'Kate' in London, and grooming her between 1994 and 1995. 

Prosecutors claim Maxwell introduced the woman to Epstein and encouraged her to give him massages, knowing it would lead to sexual abuse.

Prosecutors claim Maxwell introduced girls to Epstein and encouraged them to give him massages, knowing it would lead to sexual abuse

Sternheim said, 'Kate has admitted that she's ambitious. She led a jet-setter lifestyle.

'Before meeting Ghislaine and Epstein, she was in a relationship with a man twice her age, a former Oxford classmate of Ghislaine, a friend of Ghislaine, a prominent older British gentleman.'

Sternheim said Kate was above the age of consent in the U.K. and above the age of consent in New York, Florida and 'anywhere else she claims she had been.'

The attorney then took aim at Kate's admitted drug use during the period of time that she will testify about and that it 'fogged her memory.'

'You will learn that she eagerly spent time with Epstein and, at times, with Ghislaine,' Sternheim told the jury. 'But what is really telling is the emails that she sent to Jeffrey Epstein, continuing a relationship with him for over a decade. 

'She maintained contact with Epstein when he was in jail; she eagerly sent him pictures of herself. When his sentence was over, she contacted him, eager to visit with him and stay with him.'

'Kate' is now 44 and a former actress, model, and socialite from the United Kingdom. She has lived in the States for years, Sternheim said. 

'When Epstein died, she pointed the finger at Ghislaine. And you should wonder why she's here. She is no  alleged to be a victim in this case.'

 Sterheim revealed she received $3.25million from the victims fund and said she is seeking  assistance from the government to help her to get a visa -  a 'special visa for government witnesses.'

'Now, three and a quarter million dollars is a lot of money, but it cannot buy you a visa. And maybe her testimony will. You will evaluate that,' Sternheim said. 

The final accuser lived in Florida and was about 14 when she was recruited to give Epstein 'sexual' massages for money at his Palm Beach mansion, prosecutors claim


The final accuser lived in Florida and was about 14 when she was recruited to give Epstein 'sexual' massages for money at his Palm Beach mansion, prosecutors claim. 

The government says Maxwell would schedule the massages and send her gifts, including lingerie. She claims to have been abused from 2001-2004. 

Sternheim took aim at 'Carolyn's' troubled past and claims she 'lived a dangerous lifestyle' and was using drugs during the period that she interacted with Epstein.  

'Let me just stop for a second,' Sternheim said. 'There's a different time period that we're in now. We are now in about 2002, whereas Jane, Annie, and Kate were in the mid to late '90s.'

Sternheim said Carolyn was introduced to Epstein not by Maxwell, but by Virginia Roberts - who has been one of the most outspoken of Epstein victims.  She claimed Roberts was paid by Epstein to recruit females for him to get massages. 

'She offered the opportunity to Carolyn to meet Epstein, and Carolyn readily agreed,' Sternheim said, adding that Maxwell had nothing to do with it. 

'Now, like many of the other accusers, but even more startling here, Carolyn's story changed dramatically,' Sternheim claimed. 

In a startling accusation, Sternheim said it was Carolyn who groomed and trafficked other girls to Epstein. 

'And after Epstein died and there was money to be had, her lawyer contacted the government, and now her story included Ghislaine,' Sternheim said.  

She claimed Carolyn received $3.5million from the fund.