Alan Dershowitz, who defended Jeffrey Epstein against charges that he had serially abused young girls in 2008, has written an essay in The Spectator defending Epstein’s onetime girlfriend Ghislaine Maxwell, who was arrested on Thursday and charged with six counts related to the trafficking of underage girls, including transportation of a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity.
“Like every other arrested person,” writes Dershowitz, “she must be presumed innocent.”
The lawyer then spent most of the rest of the essay assailing Netflix for its recent multi-part documentary, Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich, in which one of Epstein’s most prominent accusers says Dershowitz abused her multiple times while she was under Epstein’s control.
Dershowitz has for weeks been assailing
“She claimed to have sex with me on six or seven occasions,” writes Dershowitz in the Spectator, “although she had previously admitted in her own words that she never met me or even heard of me.”
Dershowitz has confirmed he jetted to Epstein’s private island where sex trafficking allegedly took place, but only once. He says he was accompanied on that trip by his wife and daughter.
As for Maxwell, Dershowitz writes in his essay that he never saw her do anything untoward and assumed she was simply Epstein’s girlfriend.
My wife and I were introduced to Ghislaine Maxwell by Sir Evelyn and Lady Lynne de Rothschild, and we subsequently met her on several occasions — generally in the presence of prominent people such as Bill and Hillary Clinton, Nobel Prize-winning scientists, presidents of universities, and prominent academic and business people. We never saw her do anything inappropriate. We knew her only as Jeffrey Epstein’s thirty-something girlfriend.
Later however, Dershowitz negotiated a controversial plea deal for Epstein in Palm Beach County that shielded the billionaire from federal prosecution in 2008. Epstein pleaded guilty to a state charge (one of two) of procuring for prostitution a girl below age 18 and he was sentenced to 18 months in prison. The deal also shielded Maxwell.
One year ago, Epstein was re-arrested after a cache of explicit photos of girls was allegedly found in his home. The financier was charged with sex trafficking and sex trafficking conspiracy and faced a combined maximum sentence of up to 45 years in prison. Before he could be tried, Epstein hanged himself in his jail cell.
At the time, the New York Times said the arrest deepened “questions about why federal prosecutors in Miami had cut a deal that shielded him from federal prosecution in 2008.”
Today, ever the defense lawyer, Dershowitz urged readers of the Spectator to “keep an open mind about Maxwell.”
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