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Ghislaine Maxwell’s family ‘shocked’ that judge refused retrial after juror revealed he was abuse victim

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A judge has ruled court verdicts for Ghislaine Maxwell are safe. Photo: Getty

A judge has ruled court verdicts for Ghislaine Maxwell are safe. Photo: Getty

Ghislaine Maxwell with Jeffrey Epstein. Photo: US Department of Justice

Ghislaine Maxwell with Jeffrey Epstein. Photo: US Department of Justice

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A judge has ruled court verdicts for Ghislaine Maxwell are safe. Photo: Getty

The siblings of Ghislaine Maxwell say they are “profoundly shocked and troubled” that a judge rejected a new trial for the British socialite on sex trafficking charges.

This was despite revelations that a juror who helped to convict her failed to disclose he was sexually abused as a child.

In a statement, the “Maxwell family” said it was focused on an appeal of US District Judge Alison J Nathan’s ruling last Friday that left intact Maxwell’s conviction on charges that she served as the key recruiter of teenage girls for financier Jeffrey Epstein to sexually abuse from 1994 to 2004.

The judge said she concluded that a December verdict convicting Maxwell (60) of sex trafficking and other charges was still valid because the juror did not deliberately give wrong answers on a juror questionnaire and because he “harboured no bias toward the defendant and could serve as a fair and impartial juror”.

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Ghislaine Maxwell with Jeffrey Epstein. Photo: US Department of Justice

Ghislaine Maxwell with Jeffrey Epstein. Photo: US Department of Justice

Ghislaine Maxwell with Jeffrey Epstein. Photo: US Department of Justice

“Our family is profoundly shocked and troubled by the denial of a retrial for our sister, Ghislaine Maxwell,” family members said.

“The court’s ruling in this matter is as tainted as the original verdict is unsafe.”

The statement said the issue over Juror No 50’s revelations to media outlets after the trial will be one among many issues that will be appealed to the 2nd US Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan.

“Our family is optimistic about Ghislaine’s success on appeal,” they wrote.

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Juror No 50’s media interviews days after the verdict came after a month-long trial at which Maxwell was portrayed as the crucial component of Epstein’s sexual abuse conspiracy. Sometimes, prosecutors said, Maxwell joined in the abuse.

After the trial’s conclusion, the juror said publicly that he had been abused as a child and had persuaded some fellow jurors that a victim’s imperfect memory of abuse does not mean it did not happen.

He was among potential jurors in the case who filled out a 50-page questionnaire including a question that asked: “Have you or a friend or family member ever been the victim of sexual harassment, sexual abuse or sexual assault?”

The juror checked “No.”

He said in one interview that he did not remember being asked that question, which was No 48 on the form.

After rejecting defence demands that she immediately order a new trial, the judge conducted an unusual hearing at which she questioned the juror.

His answers were analysed by the judge in her written decision last Friday.

She said she concluded that his rush to finish the questionnaire led to inaccurate answers.

“Juror 50’s lack of attention and care in responding accurately to every question on the questionnaire is regrettable, but the court is confident that the failure to disclose was not deliberate,” she wrote.

“The court further finds that Juror 50 was not biased and would not have been stricken for cause even if he had answered each question on the questionnaire accurately.”

Defence lawyers had insisted they would have used one of a limited number of “strikes” that allow them to eliminate several jurors for any reason at all to force him off the jury.

In their statement, Maxwell family members said the judge had failed to uphold “the paramount interests of justice” by severely limiting the questioning of the juror and had “effectively ensured the loading of the dice” by granting him immunity from prosecution for perjury.

Epstein was 66 when he took his life in 2019 as he awaited a sex trafficking trial in Manhattan.


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