Ghislaine Maxwell Sentenced To 20 Years In Prison For Sex Trafficking
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At her trial Maxwell was convicted of sex trafficking minors, conspiracy to entice a minor to travel to engage in illegal sex acts, and conspiracy to transport a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity.
She was also found guilty of conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of minors and of transporting a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity.
Judge Alison Nathan passed down the sentence today, handing the 60-year-old a 20-year sentence and a fine of $750,000 (£615,000).
Maxwell apologised to the victims of her abuses and said she hopes her sentence will allow them 'peace and finality'.
The British socialite said meeting Epstein was the 'greatest regret of my life' and that she wanted to 'acknowledge the suffering' of her victims.
Ahead of her sentencing, Maxwell's legal team argued Justice Nathan should show 'leniency' in the verdict, claiming their client had been made a scapegoat for Epstein's crimes.
Arrested on sex trafficking counts in 2019, Epstein took his own life in a federal jail in New York while awaiting a trial of his own.
They argued she 'cannot and should not bear all the punishment' that would have been doled out to Epstein had he not died in jail before he could go to trial.
Describing Maxwell as 'not a dangerous criminal or a habitual offender', they claimed all she wants is to 'live a normal family life'.
However, speaking outside of court, one of her accusers said she should spend the rest of her life behind bars.
While her legal team could lodge an appeal against her conviction, an earlier bid for a retrial following the revelation that one of the jurors had been a victim of childhood sexual abuse was denied by Justice Nathan.
However, prosecutors described Maxwell as 'shockingly predatory' and said she displayed a 'callous disregard for other human beings' while committing the crimes she has been convicted of.
They had been pushing for Maxwell to face a sentence of between 30 and 55 years in prison, a verdict that would likely mean she would die behind bars.
The US probation service had recommended a 20-year sentence for Maxwell, while her defence team had tried to argue that between four and five years would be a more appropriate punishment.
According to Sky News, some lawyers have estimated that more than 160 women and girls were victims of Epstein, who abused girls as young as 14 at various mansions he owned and on his own private island.
If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact The Survivor’s Trust for free on 08088 010 818, or through their website thesurvivorstrust.org