As Ghislaine Maxwell’s trial on sex trafficking nears, federal prosecutors have been ordered to reveal the two currently unnamed alleged co-conspirators who will testify at her trial.
Maxwell, a British socialite, has been charged with procuring underage girls to be abused by convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, who was facing sex trafficking charges at the time of his 2019 death in a Manhattan jail.
Maxwell has pleaded not guilty to a sex trafficking conspiracy charge and an additional sex trafficking charge lodged against her. Maxwell, 59, has been in custody at a federal prison in Brooklyn since her arrest in July of 2020.
On Sept. 3, Judge Allison Nathan said Maxwell has a right to know the “identities of any unnamed co-conspirators” in order to “adequately prepare her defenses,” according to the New York Post.
Additionally, prosecutors must “disclose all co-conspirator statements it intends to offer at trial,” Nathan decided.
The judge rejected a government claim that doing so would cause “potential danger to co-conspirators” or risk “compromising continuing investigations.”
“The Government provides no explanation for this purported harm and none is apparent to the Court,” Nathan wrote.
“Thus, the Court finds that this concern alone does not outweigh the risk of surprise to the Defendant in this case or the need for the parties to litigate co-conspirator issues in advance of trial to ensure the absence of delay.”
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Maxwell had requested prosecutors name the two co-conspirators described in their indictment.
Her trial is scheduled to begin on Nov. 29.
Maxwell also faces perjury charges in a separate case for allegedly lying in a deposition in a civil case filed by Virginia Giuffre, who has claimed she was sexually abused by Britain’s Prince Andrew.
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The prince was served with legal papers in the suit on Monday, according to Reuters.
Federal rules give Prince Andrew 21 days to respond or he could face a judgment against him by default.
Giuffre has claimed she was underage when she had sex with the prince at Maxwell’s London home as well as at Epstein’s mansion in Manhattan and on Epstein’s private island.
The prince has denied the allegations.