Politics

Jeffrey Epstein's alleged procurer Ghislaine Maxwell sues sex offender's estate for legal fees

Key Points
  • Ghislaine Maxwell, a former girlfriend dead sex criminal Jeffrey Epstein, is suing the investor's estate over legal fees she claims were promised her.
  • Maxwell's lawsuit says Epstein said he would help her pay to defend multiple civil lawsuits alleging that she procured young women and girls to sexually service him.
  • Epstein, a former friend of Presidents Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, as well as Prince Andrew of Britain, killed himself in August in a jail in Manhattan, where he was awaiting trial.
Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell attend de Grisogono Sponsors The 2005 Wall Street Concert Series Benefitting Wall Street Rising, with a Performance by Rod Stewart at Cipriani Wall Street on March 15, 2005 in New York City.
Joe Schildhorn | Patrick McMullan | Getty Images

Ghislaine Maxwell, a former girlfriend dead sex criminal Jeffrey Epstein, is suing the investor's estate over legal fees she claims were promised to help her defend multiple civil lawsuits alleging that she procured young women and girls to sexually service him.

Maxwell's lawsuit, first reported by The New York Times, says she "had involvement in or knowledge of Epstein's alleged misconduct."

But it also says Maxwell "has incurred significant legal fees, personal security costs and other expenses" because of her work for a number of Epstein's businesses from 1999 to 2006. 

Maxwell, daughter of the late fraudster and media mogul Robert Maxwell, and a friend of Britain's Prince Andrew, filed her suit in the U.S. Virgin Islands, where Epstein owned private islands.

The complaint says Epstein's estate has failed to make good on its pledge to honor Epstein's commitment to Maxwell before his death that he would cover her legal costs from lawsuits by his accusers.

Maxwell's complaint joins a slew of other lawsuits that have been filed against Epstein's estate by women who accuse him of abusing them. Epstein's estate has been valued at close to $600 million.

The executors of Epstein's estate are asking a Virgin Islands judge to approve a voluntary compensation program for victims of the financier.

Maxwell, 58, long has been named by Epstein's accusers as a woman who recruited underage girls so that he could sexually abuse them under the pretext of getting massages at his luxurious properties in Manhattan, Palm Beach, Florida, and the Virgin Islands.

Some accusers have also said Maxwell at times participated with Epstein in abusing them sexually. One employee of Epstein's called Maxwell the "lady of the house," referring to his Palm Beach mansion.

Maxwell has repeatedly denied the accusers' allegations.

In January,  the government of the U.S. Virgin Islands sued Epstein's estate, alleging he raped and otherwise sexually abused young women and girls — as young as 12 years old — at his secluded private island getaways.

The lawsuit seeks forfeit of those two islands, which are worth an estimated $86 million, as well as unspecified monetary damages and the breakup of corporate entities that Epstein allegedly used to provide him with girls who sexually serviced him three times each day.

Epstein, 66, was arrested last July on federal child sex trafficking charges from a grand jury in Manhattan.

Prosecutors said that from 2002 through 2006 he sexually abused dozens of underage girls at his luxurious properties in New York City and Florida, and that those girls were funneled to him with the assistance of unnamed conspirators.

Epstein, who was a former friend of Presidents Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, killed himself in August in a jail in Manhattan, where he was awaiting trial.

He pleaded guilty in 2008 to Florida state charges, which included paying for sexual services from an underage girl. He had served 13 months in jail in that case, but was allowed out on work release for hours each day.

VIDEO0:5800:58
NBC archive footage shows Trump partying with Jeffrey Epstein in 1992

Maxwell has never been criminally charged in connection with Epstein.

However, prosecutors from the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York have said they are continuing to investigate possible accomplices of Epstein.

In court documents released last year, an Epstein accuser named Virginia Giuffre said Maxwell directed her as a teenager to have sex with Prince Andrew, former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell, ex-New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, hedge funder Glenn Dubin, late MIT scientist Marvin Minsky, modeling company founder Jean-Luc Brunel, the owner of a large hotel chain and another prince.

All of the men, with the exception of the late Minksky, have denied Giuffre's claims.