New York: The siblings of Ghislaine Maxwell said they are “profoundly shocked and troubled” that a judge rejected a new trial for the British socialite on sex trafficking charges despite revelations that a juror who helped to convict her failed to disclose he was sexually abused as a child.
In a statement, the “Maxwell Family” said, on Tuesday New York time, it was focused on an appeal of US District Judge Alison J. Nathan’s ruling last Friday that left intact Maxwell’s conviction on charges that she served as the key recruiter of teenage girls for financier Jeffrey Epstein to sexually abuse from 1994 to 2004.
The judge said she concluded that a December verdict convicting Maxwell, 60, of sex trafficking and other charges was still valid because the juror did not deliberately give wrong answers on a juror questionnaire and because he “harboured no bias toward the defendant and could serve as a fair and impartial juror”.
“Our family is profoundly shocked and troubled by the denial of a retrial for our sister, Ghislaine Maxwell,” Maxwell family members said. “The court’s ruling in this matter is as tainted as the original verdict is unsafe.”
The statement said that the issue over Juror No. 50’s revelations to media outlets after the trial will be one among many issues that will be appealed to the 2nd US Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan.
“Our Family is optimistic about Ghislaine’s success on appeal,” they wrote.
Juror No. 50’s media interviews days after the verdict came after a month-long trial at which Maxwell was portrayed as the crucial component of Epstein’s sexual abuse conspiracy. Sometimes, prosecutors said, Maxwell joined in the abuse.
After the trial’s conclusion, the juror, identified in court papers only as Juror No. 50, said publicly that he had been abused as a child and had persuaded some fellow jurors that a victim’s imperfect memory of abuse doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.