Virginia Roberts Giuffre cried tears of joy following the arrest of Ghislaine Maxwell after she accused the British socialite and late US billionaire Jeffrey Epstein of forcing her to have sex with Prince Andrew when she was a teenager.
Maxwell was taken into custody at Bradford, New Hampshire on Thursday, following allegations she groomed three unnamed young girls for her former boyfriend Epstein and his friends.
Ms Roberts, described as Epstein’s teenage ‘sex slave’, told The Australian newspaper she was elated when her American lawyer phoned her with news of Maxwell’s arrest this week.
Ms Roberts has sensationally claimed Maxwell arranged for her to have sex with Britain’s Prince Andrew at her London townhouse and shared a photograph of her, Andrew and Maxwell she said was taken at the time, in 2000.
Andrew vehemently denied her story and Maxwell said in a deposition that Giuffre was ‘totally lying.’
Virginia Roberts Giuffre cried tears of joy following the arrest of Ghislaine Maxwell after she accused the 59-year-old and late US billionaire Jeffrey Epstein of forcing her to have sex with Prince Andrew when she was a teenager
Ms Giuffre claims she was only 17-years-old when the pair forced her to have sex with Prince Andrew in 2000 – an allegation the Duke of York has vehemently denied – while a photograph shows the then-teenager posing alongside her accused and Maxwell (pictured, Prince Andrew, Virginia Roberts Giuffre and Ghislaine Maxwell)
Ms Roberts said on Saturday: ‘When I got the call I was elated, crying tears of joy, laughing … finally we got her.’
In her Twitter feed, Ms Giuffre also posted a picture of a sunset along with the caption: ‘As I take a moment of silence watching the sun go down I find myself supremely grateful for this day.
‘#GhislaineMaxwellArrested made this sunset even more glorious.’
Ms Giuffre claims she met Maxwell when she was a 16-year-old spa attendant at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.
She had expressed her desire to become a massage therapist when Ms Giuffre said Maxwell made it seem like she wanted to help her.
‘This woman came off like Mary Poppins, like this really genuine nice lady, nicely dressed who wanted to help people get further in life,’ she said.
‘She said ‘Oh, I know this guy looking for a massage therapist, you’ll travel the world and make lots of money’.’
Maxwell (pictured, with late Jeffrey Epstein) was taken into custody at Bradford, New Hampshire on Thursday, following allegations she procured young girls for her former boyfriend Epstein and his friends
A source familiar with Maxwell’s case said she is being held at the Merrimack County Jail, a medium-security facility 20 miles from the luxurious home where she was arrested
A source familiar with Maxwell’s case told Reuters she is being held at the Merrimack County Jail, a medium-security facility 20 miles from the luxurious home where she was arrested.
THE ALLEGATIONS AGAINST MAXWELL
Conspiracy to entice minors to travel to engage in illegal sex acts (5 years max sentence)
Enticement of a minor to travel to engage in illegal sex acts (20 years)
Conspiracy to transport minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity (20 years)
Transportation of a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity (10 years minimum, life maximum)
X 2 counts of Perjury (x 10 years)
Prosecutors say Maxwell groomed three girls between 1994 and 1997 for Epstein.
They are not named in the indictment, but she allegedly targeted them in London, Florida, New York and New Mexico.
Maxwell, it is alleged, would befriend the girls by asking them about their life and their schooling. She would put them at ease by taking them to the movies and taking them shopping, winning their trust to later deliver them to Epstein, it’s alleged.
To ‘normalize’ the abuse that would come later, prosecutors say she undressed in front of the girls herself and asked them sexual questions.
She then not only facilitated Epstein abusing them, prosecutors say, but took part in some of it herself.
The alleged sex abuse includes ‘sexualized group massages’.
The indictment also says Maxwell made the girl feel ‘indebted’ to Epstein by encouraging them to take money from him and let him pay for their education and travel.
Maxwell is expected to be transferred to New York for a court appearance next week, a spokesman for the US Attorney’s Office in Manhattan said.
Epstein was awaiting trial on federal charges of trafficking minors between 2002 and 2005 when he was found hanged in a New York City jail in August.
Medical examiners concluded his death was a suicide.
‘Given what happened to Epstein and the special attention to this case, I would imagine there are orders from pretty high up to keep a close eye on her,’ said Andrew Winters, a New Hampshire defense lawyer not involved in Maxwell’s defense who is familiar with the jail.
Maxwell is likely in her own holding cell where she can be observed at all times, said Ted Lothstein, another New Hampshire criminal defense lawyer.
‘They are going to have her on the tightest security imaginable,’ said Lothstein, who frequently visits the jail but is not representing the British socialite.
A jail attendant directed requests for comment to a spokeswoman for the U.S. Marshals Service, who declined to comment on Maxwell’s conditions. Maxwell’s lawyer, Larry Vogelman, also declined to comment on her conditions.
The jail is a ‘well-run’ and ‘low-key’ facility, Lothstein said, and ‘a vastly better jail than where she will be sent to in New York City.’
Lothstein said new inmates at the Merrimack County Jail are generally held in a booking area for their first days there, where jail staff are able to keep a close eye on a few surrounding cells.
‘There’s nothing there,’ Lothstein said of the booking area. ‘You can’t interact with anyone in any other cell.’
After a psychological examination and risk assessment, inmates are moved into the general population. Women are held in a unit separated from the men.
Given Maxwell’s profile and imminent transfer to New York, she would likely never be moved to the New Hampshire jail’s general population, Lothstein said.
Despite the lack of company and television access in the central booking area, Maxwell is ‘probably happy to be there’ and not in the women’s unit, where she would likely be threatened and insulted, Lothstein said.
‘Anybody charged with child sex abuse is public enemy number one in terms of how other inmates perceive them,’ Lothstein said. ‘I would expect she would fall squarely into that category.’
Maxwell with Prince Andrew at Ascot in the UK in 2000
Winters said Maxwell also would be less likely to contract the coronavirus in the central booking area, away from the jail’s general population.
In March, a county official told the Concord Monitor that the jail was taking steps to mitigate spread of the virus, which at the time had about 170 inmates and 115 staff.
That month, a correctional officer at the jail tested positive for the virus, the official told the newspaper.
In general, the facility has a ‘good reputation’ for safety and professionalism on the part of staff and administrators, Winters said.
‘If I had to do time, that’s where I would want to do time,’ Winters said.