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Historian Ben Macintyre who grew up Ghislaine Maxwell says she was 'threatening' girl

An author has shared his childhood memories of Ghislaine Maxwell, recalling how she was a 'beautiful' yet 'threatening figure' even as a young girl. 

Historian and newspaper columnist Ben Macintyre, 56, described Maxwell, 58, as 'an unlikely figure of glamour among the dons' daughters' who attended the prestigious Oxford High School, where she was an exact contemporary of his older sister. 

'Ghislaine was envied, admired, teased for her money, and mocked for her slow reading,' he continued in an article for digital weekly publication Air Mail ahead of her court appearance in New York tomorrow.  

'But she was more than capable of bullying, perhaps inspired by her father.'

An author has shared his childhood memories of Ghislaine Maxwell, recalling how she was a 'beautiful' yet 'threatening figure' even as a young girl. Pictured, Robert Maxwell pictured with his wife Betty (sat with youngest daughter Ghislaine on her knee) and seven of their eight children at home in Headington Hill Hall, Oxford. Seated with their mother: Philip and Anne; pictured standing with their father (l-r): Ian, Isabel, Kevin and Christine

Historian and newspaper columnist Ben Macintyre, 56, right, described Ghislaine Maxwell, 58, left, as 'an unlikely figure of glamour among the dons' daughters' who attended the prestigious Oxford High School, where she was an exact contemporary of his older sister

Macintyre told how Robert Maxwell, the late newspaper tycoon, would invite school friends to the family's home of Headington Hill Hall, the 'Versailles on the hill above Oxford', where he would make them take part in reading competitions with his daughter.

'However good the other girls were, he declared Ghislaine the winner every time,' Macintyre wrote.

School friends, including Macintyre's sister, would also attend birthday parties at the 53-room mansion, where they would leave 'laden' with expensive gifts.  

Maxwell will make global headlines on Tuesday when she appears in court via remote link from her New York jail cell. 

Macintyre told how Robert Maxwell, the late newspaper tycoon, would invite school friends to the family's home of Headington Hill Hall, pictured in stock image, the 'Versailles on the hill above Oxford', where he would make them take part in reading competitions with his daughter

She will be formally charged with sex offences between 1994 and 1997 and will plead not guilty to them all. Her lawyers will argue for her release from the high-security Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn on £4 million bail, arguing that her life is in danger from coronavirus and ‘multiple and credible’ death threats.

Maxwell is scheduled to appear before a judge in New York on Tuesday to be formally charged with procuring girls as young as 14 for Jeffrey Epstein – the serial paedophile and her former boyfriend

Maxwell, who is a long-time friend of Prince Andrew and who saw him most recently in 2019, was arrested at her £800,000 New Hampshire hideaway on July 2.

Prosecutor Audrey Strauss condemned her as ‘playing a critical role in finding and grooming victims’, while scores of Epstein’s victims claim that she acted as his ‘madam’, often driving from his £20 million mansion in Palm Beach, Florida, to nearby trailer parks to ‘procure’ vulnerable young girls for the paedophile.

Maxwell insists that her romance with Epstein ended in 2001 and that she did not see him in person after 2005 when she was photographed with him at a party.

At the time, she was dating billionaire Gateway computer founder Ted Waitt.

Maxwell also denies that she introduced her close friend Prince Andrew to Epstein, something her friends say ‘has been written in stone but is plain wrong’. 


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