Thursday, December 30, 2021

The Citizenship Angle of the Ghislaine Maxwell Sex Trafficking Case


The big news yesterday was that a federal jury in New York convicted Ghislaine Maxwell, a socialite charged with sex trafficking and aiding Jeffrey Epstein’s sexual abuse.  Maxwell was found guilty of sex trafficking of a minor, transporting a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity and three related counts of conspiracy.  She was acquitted on the charge of enticing a minor to travel to engage in illegal sex acts.

News reports suggest that Maxwell, who has lived in the United States for many years, has U.S., French, and British citizenship.  In an attempt to obtain bail and release from custody pending her trial, she offered to renounce her UK and French citizenship. The offer was one of many attempts by Maxwell’s lawyers to secure bail for her. “If the court deems it a necessary condition of release, Ms Maxwell will formally commence the procedure to renounce her foreign citizenship,” her lawyers wrote in a court motion.  Renunciation of her British and French citizenship, according to Maxwell’s lawyers, “should satisfy any concerns the court may have that Ms Maxwell may try to seek a safe haven in France or the United Kingdom.”  Prosecutors opposed the bail request, which the court denied.


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