After nearly six hours of closing arguments and 12 days of testimony, the jury in Ghislaine Maxwell’s sex trafficking trial began deliberations on Monday afternoon. They were instructed to consider Ms. Maxwell’s role in Jeffrey Epstein’s sexual abuse of teenage females.
After three weeks of testimony from 30 witnesses, closing arguments were the final opportunity for both sides to be heard in court and for lawyers to give a narrative to jurors that could help them understand what they had heard.
Jane, Kate, Carolyn and Annie Farmer testified that Ms. Maxwell assisted Mr. Epstein in sexually abusing them as minors, and both the prosecution and defence focused their attention on their testimony.
This is what we learned from the last arguments:.
Prosecutors pleaded with jurors to trust the accusers.
Prosecutor Alison Moe began her final statement by claiming that Ms. Maxwell had worked closely with Mr. Epstein, bringing young girls into his orbit with the knowledge that he was going to sexually assault them.
According to Ms. Moe, Maxwell was an expert predator who understood exactly what she was doing. “She used her victims as pawns in a game of sexual manipulation.”
Miss Moe alleged that the two found vulnerable females, befriended them, and afterwards mistreated them. Her duty was to make the girls feel at ease by posing as a friend or mentor and then accustom them to sexual touches, making the abuse appear natural.
Prosecutor Maurene Comey told jurors that Ms. Maxwell had underestimated the adolescent females who were now adult women and accusing her of supporting Mr. Epstein’s predations during the defense’s closing argument. According to Ms. Comey, the defendant “didn’t count on all four of them coming out with a mountain of evidence.”
The defence emphasised the shakiness of the accusers’ recollections.
Ghislaine Maxwell is an innocent woman who has been falsely accused of crimes she did not commit, one of her defence lawyers Laura Menninger told jurors as she began her summation in court.
“Erroneous memories” from witnesses, according to Ms. Menninger, were the consequence of “manipulation” by civil lawyers and were driven mainly by a desire for money.
It was “the ultimate victim apologist” who ignored information from an expert witness for the government concerning the prevalent practise by many paedophiles of “grooming” potential victims, she said.
Then, Ms. Menninger went over portions of the testimony of each of the government’s key witnesses, pointing out to the jury any inconsistencies or defects she found.
It’s also possible that Ms. Maxwell serves as a convenient stand-in for Mr. Epstein, who committed suicide while he was in federal detention for sex-trafficking accusations in 2019. That’s what Ms. Menninger claimed the government had done to Ms. Maxwell, according to her.