Ghislaine Maxwell will never sell Prince Andrew for a plea deal, friend says

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Ghislaine Maxwell will “never” provide information to federal prosecutors on Prince Andrew as part of a plea agreement, according to a close friend of the woman who has been charged in connection with an alleged sex trafficking network linked to the deceased billionaire Jeffrey Epstein.

Laura Goldman a this The Daily Telegraph she “would never sell” the Duke of York, according to an interview with the publication. She suggested that Ms. Maxwell may instead discuss with law enforcement officials their ties to former President Bill Clinton and Donald Trump, although no allegations have been made against either man.

The arrest of Mrs Maxwell and the charges against him by federal prosecutors intensified the examination of the king’s relationship with British society and Mr Epstein, who allegedly committed suicide in prison pending his trial.

“We would welcome Prince Andrew to speak to us,” said US lawyer Audrey Strauss at a press conference in Manhattan on Thursday. “We would like to benefit from his statement”,

When asked if Andrew intended to submit a statement following remarks by the US lawyer, a source close to the Duke task force said The independent that “the duke’s team remains perplexed since we have communicated twice with the [Department of Justice] in the past month, and to date, we have received no response. “

Prosecutors said in January The independent that the office had requested an interview with the duke but had offered no cooperation and that the office was working in close coordination with the FBI to get him to speak to the authorities.

Andrew has repeatedly denied accusations against him, including allegations by Virginia Giuffre, who claimed that she had been trafficked by the late American financier who was forced to have sex with her friends – including the British prince – when she was 17 years old. She said the attacks took place in London, New York and on the private island of Epstein in the US Virgin Islands.

In March, lawyer at the time, Geoffrey Berman, said that “unlike Prince Andrew’s very public offer to cooperate with our investigation into Epstein’s co-conspirators, an offer made public by press release, Prince Andrew has now completely closed the door to voluntary cooperation. ”

The office “was considering its options” to pursue the matter.

In June, Andrew’s lawyers said they had offered to help the Department of Justice three times.

“Unfortunately, the DOJ reacted to the first two offers by violating its own rules of confidentiality and by asserting that the duke did not offer any cooperation,” lawyers said in a statement. “In doing so, they may be looking for publicity rather than accepting the help offered. ”

Ms. Maxwell was charged with “inciting a minor to travel for the purpose of engaging in criminal sexual activity, transporting a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, conspiracy to commit these two offenses and perjury by link with affidavit ”. prosecutors with the US Attorney’s Office in New York announced.

The indictment alleges that Ms. Maxwell conspired with Epstein in the 1990s to exploit girls from the age of 14 while traveling with them “for the purpose of engaging in illegal sexual acts”.

Prosecutors allege that Ms. Maxwell “played a vital role in the grooming and abuse of underage victims” across the United States, including New York, Florida and New Mexico.

She is also accused of having made several false statements during affidavits in 2016.

Ms. Maxwell faces up to 35 years in prison if convicted.

“The only way for her to walk is to give up on someone, but it certainly won’t be Andrew,” said Goldman. The telegraph. “She is so thankful that when she arrived in New York, the Duke helped launch her into high society. She always talks about what a true friend is. She sees no reason to tell the authorities about him. ”

She suggested that he was too “naive” to understand why the young girls would be invited to Mr. Epstein’s properties and whose “sense of law” would make him believe that they were servants.

The Duke was also named in a federal trial by a woman who claims he was present at Mr. Epstein’s mansion in New York when she was raped by the late billionaire.

Caroline Kaufman, who was 17 years old at the time of the alleged offense in December 2010, alleges that she was invited to Epstein’s home in Manhattan by an associate for a “model interview”.

Now 26, Ms. Kaufman alleged she was escorted to a massage parlor by an “older woman” whom she believes to be Ms. Maxwell, where she was raped by Epstein, according to a lawsuit filed Thursday in the southern district of New York. .

Ms. Kaufman does not claim that the Duke of York participated in the incident, but only that he was present at the Epstein mansion in Manhattan.

Prince Andrew’s legal and public relations team did not comment The independent on the trial of Mrs. Kaufman.

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