FBI arrests, arraigns Ghislaine Maxwell on involvement in sexual assault

FBI arrests, arraigns Ghislaine Maxwell on involvement in sexual assault
Ghislaine Maxwell

British socialite, Ghislaine Maxwell, has been arraigned, following her roles in the sexual assault against underage girls by Jeffrey Epstein.

Maxwell was arrested by the FBI in Bradford, New Hampshire on Thursday July 2, 2020, on charges relating to her former boyfriend and long-time associate.

While speaking about Maxwell's arraignment, Audrey Strauss, acting US attorney for the southern district of New York, stated that "Maxwell played a critical role in helping Epstein identify, befriend and groom minor victims for abuse."

While alleging Maxwell's  involvement in some of the abuse, the judge ordered she be transferred to the custody of US marshals in New York.

"Maxwell was among Epstein's closest associates and helped him exploit girls who were as young as 14 years old," Ms Strauss stated. 

"In some cases, Maxwell participated in the abuse herself," she added. 

According a court filing,  Maxwell, who has wealth, extensive international ties, three passports, and citizenship in two other countries, had been hiding out in locations in New England since Epstein's arrest last July and she faces up to 35 years in prison if convicted.

She had been living in a property in Bradford, New Hampshire, which she bought for $1m (£800,000) last December.

Prosecutors claimed Maxwell was well aware of Epstein's preference for underage girls, and that he intended to sexually abuse them.