LONDON (AP) — The brother of Jeffrey Epstein’s former girlfriend Ghislaine Maxwell said Wednesday she should be released on bail from a U.S. jail, and claimed that she was being held in “degrading” conditions that amount to torture.
Maxwell, 59, is awaiting trial in July on charges she recruited teenage girls for the late financier to sexually abuse. The British socialite has been in a federal lockup in Brooklyn since she was arrested last July, and she has lost two bail requests — including a $28.5 million bail release proposal in December — because she was deemed a flight risk.
Her brother Ian Maxwell told the BBC Wednesday he was worried about her health and ability to prepare for her trial because of the conditions she was held in.
Ghislaine Maxwell is “in effective isolation” in a 6- by 9-foot (1.8- by 2.7-meter) cell without natural light that contains a concrete bed and a toilet, he said. She is under around-the-clock surveillance with 10 cameras and four guards tracking her movement, and is also being deprived of sleep, he added.
“She has a flashlight shone in her cell every 15 minutes throughout the night … it’s grotesque and in that respect it amounts to torture,” he said in a radio interview.
He added that she is not a suicide risk and remains “resolute,” but is losing her hair and having trouble with her eyesight.
Ghislaine Maxwell was charged with recruiting three teenagers aged as young as 14 for Epstein to sexually abuse between 1994 and 1997. She also was accused of sometimes participating in the abuse. She pleaded not guilty to an indictment.
Epstein killed himself in August 2019 at a Manhattan federal jail as he awaited a sex trafficking trial.