Ghislaine Maxwell, whose trial is starting this week for allegedly sex trafficking underage girls, has been at Brooklyn’s Metropolitan Detention Center for almost 17 months now. And it turns out she isn't really enjoying her stay in the klink, according to new reporting by Bloomberg.
Maxwell's lawyers have complained that she is "suffering weight loss, hair loss and failing eyesight because of her time in jail," the report says.
Her lawyers have compared her incarceration to that of “Dr. Hannibal Lecter’s incarceration” as a result of Feds trying to make up for the “incompetence” in handling Jeffrey Epstein's incarceration.
Filings from Maxwell's lawyers have requested items like an eye mask and have alleged "sexually inappropriate" patdowns from guards, the report says.
Bloomberg listed all of the assertions Maxwell's lawyers have made, including that she has been:
- Denied an eye mask to block sleep disturbances
- Denied access to the prison commissary, for no apparent reason
- Subjected to regular cell searches and open-mouth inspections
- Awakened every 15 minutes by night-time flashlight checks
- Subjected to a jail rife with vermin and exposed to the odor of overflowing toilets
- Served a moldy salad
- Shoved into her cell and then forced to scrub it in retaliation for reporting physical abuse
- “Touched in a sexually inappropriate manner by corrections officers on multiple occasions” during patdowns
- Threatened by a U.S. marshal, who warned her: “You are not special -- remember, you are in custody and the judge doesn’t care about you”
- Deprived of a desk or other writing surface for taking notes while reviewing documents
- Required by Covid protocols to sit across the table from her lawyers rather than next to them where they could use a laptop together
- Given no access to email and only 30 minutes a month for personal phone calls, while other pretrial detainees got 500 minutes because of pandemic visiting restrictions
The Bureau of Prisons denied comment for Bloomberg's story but had said in the past that it “takes allegations of staff misconduct seriously”.
Justin Paperny, a former investment banker at UBS Group AG who served 18 months in prison and now prepares others to do the same, told Bloomberg: “When you’ve had a life of luxury, sycophants around you, enablers, staff, and you flip that script to being in jail, it’s a shock."
Maxwell's trial starts this week and we recently reported that the trial will not be livestreamed.