Ghislaine Maxwell Faces Two New Trafficking Charges, Raising Pressure On Prince Andrew And Others Listed In Jeffrey Epsteins Little Black Book -…

Party Like It's 1999: A February 2000 event at Mar-a-Lago. From left, then-real estate developer ... [+] Donald Trump and his girlfriend (and future wife), former model Melania Knauss, financier (and future convicted sex offender) Jeffrey Epstein, and British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell pose together at the Mar-a-Lago club, Palm Beach, Florida, February 12, 2000. (Photo by Davidoff Studios/Getty Images)

Ghislaine Maxwell has had a tough winter. During January and February this year, her attorneys have filed serial motions to dismiss part or all of the charges against her that have yet to succeed. For their part, the prosecutors of the Southern District of New York have been hard at work digging up evidence to do the exact opposite, namely, to widen the scope of the case she faces at trial, still foreseen to begin in Manhattan on July 12. The new now-eight-count indictment of the British socialite, pictured above at a Mar-a-Lago party with Epstein and Donald Trump in 2000, was released on March 29.

Specifically, federal attorneys have increasedthe time frame of her alleged criminal activity by seven years, to 2004 from 1997, and, based on evidence from a new witness, have added two significant new charges, the first, conspiracy to sex traffic (with Jeffrey Epstein), and the second, sex-trafficking of a minor. Both charges are based on the government's evidence obtained from an alleged victim named by the prosecutors as "minor victim-4." In other words, the new charges do more than just bring the number of counts she faces up by a third. The indictment now brings to four the number of minor females that the government has found who allege that they were recruited by Ghislaine Maxwell for Jeffrey Epstein's subsequent exploitation.

Royal Ascot Race Meeting, Ladies Day: Prince Andrew, Duke Of York and Ghislaine Maxwell At Ascot. ... [+] (Photo by Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images)

Maxwell's attorneys have yet to respond, but the increase in time frame in which her alleged criminal behavior occurred and the existence of minor victim-4, who was reportedly recruited by Maxwell when she was fourteen, presents Maxwell and her legal team with yet another direct accusation of tremendous gravity with which they must contend. As first submitted in summer 2020, the indictment presented the Maxwell team with a highly complex, multi-pronged fight. Now, that will be layered with, presumably, a believable then-young witness who reportedly underwent serial abuse from Epstein and Maxwell at the beginning of her teenage years. Suffice it to say that any jury would be moved by listening to testimony such as that.

Drinks With Friends: Ghislaine Maxwell and Piers Morgan attend a party in 2013 in New York City. ... [+] (Photo by Paul Bruinooge/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

Unlike that of Virginia Roberts-Giuffre, whose testimony is not included in the trial, the narrative of minor victim-4 does not include national or international travel, but that, according to the indictment, was only because she turned down the invitation from Ghislaine Maxwell to help her get a passport.

For her part in further investigating Epstein, U.S. Attorney Denise George is not done with her assessment of the many Epstein flight logs into and out of the U.S. Virgin Islands, in whose jurisdiction Little Saint James, Epstein's private island, falls. What that means for Prince Andrew and many other denizens of Epstein's 'little black book' who visited Little Saint James at Epstein's invitation, remains to be seen.

Despite that unresolved flight-log investigation, the redoubled pretrial federal pressure on his good friend Ghislaine Maxwell means that Andrew's difficulties in being able to find ways to delay his cooperation with the U.S. prosecutors will grow rather than diminish. The Southern District of New York prosecutors have also announced that they will be submitting at the Maxwell trial evidence from their investigation of Epstein, himself, that includes statements from an extraordinary 250-plus additional witnesses, which, as in the Virgin Islands inquiry, will include service staff.

In short, in addition to the hard, direct accusations of criminal behavior within the March 29 amended indictment, Ghislaine Maxwell's prosecutors are literally bringing a mountain of circumstantial evidence that places their quarry firmly at the center of Epstein's operations. In other words, the prosecutors will present a detailed schematic of the Epstein procurement operation's reporting structure, in which Ghislaine Maxwell reportedly exercised a tremendous amount of responsibility. That will increase the likelihood of Andrew's presence at this or that Epstein venue or event coming into the courtly discussion, for instance, his presence at the dinner held in his honor in Epstein's mansion in December 2010, attended by, among other denizens of the Epstein black book, Woody Allen, Katie Couric, disgraced former broadcaster Charlie Rose, and political pundit George Stephanopolous.

The indictment raised the question of whether Ghislaine Maxwell's defense team would have the time to prepare to fight these additional charges by the July 12 start of the proceeding. Clearly, by releasing the amended indictment more than 90 days before that courtroom date, the government's opinion is that three-plus months is sufficient. In light of their to date unsuccessful attempts at winnowing the charges facing their storied client, it's considered likely that Ms. Maxwell's attorneys will be arguing that point differently.

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Ghislaine Maxwell Faces Two New Trafficking Charges, Raising Pressure On Prince Andrew And Others Listed In Jeffrey Epsteins Little Black Book -...

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