Jury in Maxwell’s sex crimes trial ends third day of deliberations without verdict

Jurors in Ghislaine Maxwell’s sex crimes trial ended their third full day of deliberations Monday without reaching a verdict in a case that could see the British socialite spend the rest of her life behind bars.

Maxwell, who turned 60 on Christmas Day, is accused of recruiting and grooming girls to be sexually abused by the late American financier Jeffrey Epstein.

The 12-person jury began considering Maxwell’s fate on December 20 after a three-week trial and they were granted a vacation break starting Thursday.

The jury reconvened Monday morning and sent Judge Alison Nathan a note requesting markers, colored sticky notes and a white board.

Jurors also asked for a legal definition of seduction and to review the transcript of testimony given by the ex-boyfriend of “Jane,” one of the four women who testified against Maxwell.

One of the six charges Maxwell is charged with relates to enticing a minor to travel and engage in illegal sexual acts. Another is the conspiracy to lure minors to travel to engage in illegal sexual acts.

They also asked to read the trial transcripts of a former Florida police officer and a former Epstein pilot.

US prosecutors argued that the daughter of former British newspaper baron Robert Maxwell knowingly participated in the conduct of Epstein, who committed suicide in an American jail in 2019 while awaiting his own trial for sex crimes.

Maxwell did not testify, but in a defiant statement in court, he said prosecutors had not been able to prove his guilt.

The jury must reach a unanimous decision on any of the six charges Maxwell faces if she is to be found guilty. If they do not reach unanimity on any of the charges, the judge could declare the trial null and void.

Nathan fired the jurors shortly after 5:00 pm (2200 GMT) and they will reconsider Maxwell’s fate at 9:00 am Tuesday.

‘The key’

The charges against Maxwell stem from 1994 to 2004. Two of Epstein’s alleged victims said they were only 14 years old when Maxwell allegedly began grooming and arranging for Epstein to receive massages that resulted in sexual activity.

“Jane” detailed how Maxwell recruited her to summer camp and made her feel “special.”

He said sexual encounters with Epstein became routine, and that sometimes Maxwell was present.

Another, named “Carolyn,” said she was usually paid $ 300 after sexual encounters with Epstein, often by Maxwell herself.

A third alleged victim was Annie Farmer, now 42, who said Maxwell fondled her breasts as a teenager on Epstein’s New Mexico ranch.

Prosecutor Alison Moe has argued that Maxwell was “the key” to Epstein’s plan to tempt young women into giving him massages, during which he would sexually abuse them.

Maxwell’s defense team responded that there was a lack of evidence to convict and questioned the ability of the prosecutors to recall events from a quarter of a century ago.

The team also argued that Maxwell was being used as a “scapegoat” for Epstein’s crimes after he evaded justice.

(AFP)

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