A lawyer for Ghislaine Maxwell, the one-time girlfriend of Jeffrey Epstein, has said her client has lost weight and hair as she suffers under harsh prison conditions.
Bobbi Sternheim made the claims after lawyers representing the Metro- politan Detention Centre in Brooklyn, New York, defended conditions at the facility in a letter.
"Ms Maxwell remains in good health," the lawyers wrote as they defended her treatment.
Judge Alison J Nathan has said she will decide later this month whether to conduct a hearing on a bail application.
Ms Maxwell (58) has been held since her arrest in July on charges that she pro- cured teenage girls for Epstein to abuse in the mid-1990s.
The British socialite has pleaded not guilty and is preparing for a trial next July.
Seeking bail, lawyers Mark S Cohen and Chris- tian Everdell said they have assembled a "compre- hensive bail package" in- cluding financial infor- mation and letters from family and friends who will support Ms Maxwell but want to keep their identities secret.
Ms Sternheim said Ms Maxwell was being treated harshly in part because the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) wants to repair its reputa- tion after failing to prevent the suicide of Epstein last year in a Manhattan federal prison as he awaited trial on sex-trafficking charges.
"The conditions under which she is detained are punitive and unwarranted," Ms Sternheim said.