As Ghislaine Maxwell prepares to spend a long twelve months at a New York detention center while awaiting trial on charges of sex-trafficking minors and other crimes, questions are swirling over the British socialite's wealth and marital status after claims made by US prosecutors during a virtual court hearing this week.
According to Assistant US Attorney Alison Moe, Maxwell's claims that she has less than $1 million in the bank and no monthly income is "implausible," according to Bloomberg. Her lawyers have suggested that the 58-year-old is far less wealthy than people believe, despite the fact that she was an integral part of deceased pedophile Jeffrey Epstein's life - who left an estimated $630 million estate behind after he was found dead in a Manhattan jail cell last year.
At the bail hearing, prosecutors said they’d identified more than 15 different bank accounts associated with Maxwell from 2016 to the present with balances ranging from hundreds of thousands of dollars to more than $20 million. She sold a Manhattan townhouse for $15 million in 2016 and still has one in London that she offered as a bail guarantee.
It’s also unclear whether Maxwell has access to funds from an unidentified spouse mentioned by prosecutors Tuesday. She previously toured the secluded New Hampshire estate where she was arrested July 2 with a man who said he was her husband. According to prosecutors, the property was actually purchased by Maxwell for $1 million in cash using a limited liability company. After she was arrested, she told authorities she didn’t know the name of the company that owned the house and that she merely had permission to stay there. -Bloomberg
According to prosecutors, over $20 million was transferred from Epstein-linked offshore accounts to Maxwell - of which millions were later transferred back. Maxwell sued Epstein's estate in March to cover her legal costs, asserting that the financier promised to financially provide for her.
Meanwhile, a Swiss Trust holding over $4 million may be at her disposal as well.
"It is very unclear whether the defendant is receiving proceeds from trust accounts or an inheritance or means of other kinds," said the US prosecutor, Moe, at Tuesday's hearing.
"I would venture to say 20 is probably what they found so far and that the net worth would be substantially more," said Jordan Waxman, managing partner of New York-based Nucleus Advisers wealth management. "The other thing is Jeffrey Epstein allegedly was worth $570-or-so million. What was she doing as his No. 2 and only with $20 million?"
Maxwell's attorney, Mark Cohen, refuted the government's claim regarding the 15 accounts, saying "No detail, no explanation to the court, just more dirt," and that "she has three bank accounts that she disclosed," though acknowledged that it was possible that there were other accounts related to Maxwell's shuttered nonprofit.
Cohen also said proceeds from Maxwell’s Manhattan townhouse sale have already been depleted due to various liabilities and expenses, including “extensive, substantial litigation.” Maxwell in 2017 settled for undisclosed terms a defamation suit by Epstein victim Virginia Guiffre and is now paying four lawyers to defend her against criminal charges. -Bloomberg
Another question is how much money, if any, she inherited from her wealthy father - British publishing tycoon Robert Maxwell, who died in 1991 under mysterious circumstances as his media empire - which included the New York Daily News - was imploding and had begun to default on loans. Maxwell was found to have diverted hundreds of millions of pounds from his companies' pension funds.
That said, Maxwell's brother declared the largest bankruptcy in UK history according to Bloomberg, so it's unknown what Ghislaine walked away with, if anything.
Epstein and Maxwell reportedly met and began dating around 1992 shortly after her father's death. In 1995, Epstein renamed a now-defunct Palm Beach company "Ghislaine Corp," which was dissolved in 1998 per the Wall Street Journal. In 2003, Epstein described Maxwell as his "best friend," who was not on his payroll - yet "seems to organize much of his life."
During Tuesday's hearing, prosecutors disclosed that Maxwell is secretly married, but that she would not provide the name of her husband.
"In addition to failing to describe in any way the absence of proposed cosigners of a bond, the defendant also makes no mention whatsoever about the financial circumstances or assets of her spouse whose identity she declined to provide to Pretrial Services," said Moe, according to the New York Post.
Last year, Maxwell was linked to 44-year-old British tech CEO and Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) member, Scott Borgerson - whose $3 million "secluded oceanfront property" in New England was the subject of speculation as to Maxwell's whereabouts.
The socialite's New England hideaway is an imposing three-story colonial property with five-bedrooms, wraparound terraces and sweeping grounds which reach to the ocean. The property is owned by tech CEO and maritime academic Dr Scott Borgerson.
Borgerson was seen by DailyMail.com in July running errands in the affluent community of Manchester-by-the-Sea, a half-hour drive from Boston.
The former Coast Guard officer, is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He was married and is believed to have two children. -Daily Mail
Maxwell has been accused by at least three women of procuring and training young girls to perform massage and sexual acts on the Epstein and his associates. Maxwell was said to have hired, supervised and fired household staff, while directing the visits of dozens of "massage therapists" to Epstein's residence, according to the Wall Street Journal.