United Kingdom

Ghislaine Maxwell should be released on $5million bail because she is 'not Epstein', say lawyers

Ghislaine Maxwell is seeking release on $5million bail, claiming she is 'not Jeffrey Epstein', hadn't contacted the pedophile for more than a decade before he killed himself and is the victim of a smear campaign by the press.

Lawyers for Maxwell, 58, argued Friday for her release as Epstein's former girlfriend and close associate insisted she is innocent of all charges brought against her.  

Her request was filed in the US District Court in Manhattan and claims she was not 'hiding' from authorities, is not a flight risk and is at risk of contracting COVID-19 if she continues to be held in the Brooklyn jail.

The filing comes eight days after authorities swooped on her luxury home in New Hampshire, where prosecutors say she was hiding out, and charged her with luring underage girls so Epstein could sexually abuse them. 

Ghislaine Maxwell, pictured in 2013, is seeking release on $5million bail, claiming she is 'not Jeffrey Epstein', hadn't contacted the pedophile for more than a decade before he killed himself and is the victim of a smear campaign by the press

Maxwell's lawyers put forward their proposal for her to be released on $5 million bail Friday, secured against property she owns in the UK that is worth $3.75 million. 

They claim in the filing that Maxwell had not been in contact with the pedophile for more than 10 years before his apparent suicide.

These claims come despite filings in a separate lawsuit brought by an Epstein accuser which show evidence of Maxwell and Epstein emailing each other as recently as 2015. 

The documents also claim Maxwell has been the victim of a smear campaign by the media and that it was the media - and not the authorities - that the suspect had been hiding out from for the last year. 

They argue she has no criminal record, strongly denies all allegations made against her by the multiple women who have come forward and is no danger of a flight risk.  

'Epstein died in federal custody, and the media focus quickly shifted to our client - wrongly trying to substitute her for Epstein - even though she'd had no contact with Epstein for more than a decade, had never been charged with a crime or been found liable in any civil litigation, and has always denied any allegations of claimed misconduct,' her attorney Mark Cohen wrote.

Maxwell was romantically involved with Jeffrey Epstein from around 1992, but then became his 'right-hand woman', managing his property empire and, it is alleged, his trafficking of minors

Her bail request (pictured) was filed in the US District Court in Manhattan and claims she was not 'hiding' from authorities, is not a flight risk and is at risk of contracting COVID-19 if she continues to be held in the Brooklyn jail 

'Sometimes the simplest point is the most critical one: Ghislaine Maxwell is not Jeffrey Epstein.'     

Cohen continued: 'Ever since Epstein's arrest, Ms. Maxwell has been at the center of a crushing onslaught of press articles, television specials, and social media posts painting her in the most damning light possible and prejudging her guilt. The sheer volume of media reporting mentioning Ms. Maxwell is staggering.

'She has seen helicopters flying over her home and reporters hiding in the bushes.'

The filing denies Maxwell was in hiding over the last year and say she 'maintained regular contact' with the federal government since the day after Epstein's arrest.

Authorities have said the British-born socialite had been hiding out in the New Hampshire retreat and prosecutors have called her an 'extreme risk of flight' who should remain detained until trial.  

Maxwell is currently in custody in the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn (pictured) 

The application also argues Maxwell is at risk of catching coronavirus if she continues to be held behind bars in her 'hell hole' Brooklyn jail.

The bail conditions put forward by Maxwell’s team say the bond would be co-signed by ‘six financially responsible people… [with] strong ties to Ms. Maxwell’ and will be secured against her property in the UK.

It is not yet clear who the six individuals are.

The filing says she would not leave New York, would hand over all travel documents and would be subject to home confinement at a New York property, where she would wear a GPS tracker and only immediate family, close friends and counsel would be allowed to visit.

A hearing on the bail request is scheduled to take place Tuesday in Manhattan Federal Court.

Maxwell is currently in custody in the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn. 

She is accused of procuring three underage girls for Epstein between 1994 and 1997 and having sex with them herself. 

She has previously, in civil court, denied similar allegations.  

Maxwell had been lying low since Epstein's death last year but was picked up from her luxury home in New Hampshire last week.

She was romantically involved with the pedophile from around 1992, but then became his 'right-hand woman', managing his property empire and, it is alleged, his trafficking of minors. 

Epstein was found hanging in his cell at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan last August. 

His death was ruled a suicide but his attorneys and some family members claim he was murdered to stop him from sharing what he knows about other high profile, powerful people.  

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