Friday, July 24, 2020

Double Setback For Ghislaine Maxwell--Could Be Interesting

Ghislaine Maxwell is involved in two separate cases in federal courts in New York--the civil case involving one of the Epstein victims (Giuffre) and the federal criminal charges that led to her recent arrest. She has suffered two setbacks, one in each case, meaning: There have been two separate victories for transparency in these cases. This could have significant ramifications going forward--during campaign season--because in the civil case voluminous documents are going to be released, including the flight logs for Epstein's private jet. 

Here is the Reuters account:

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Ghislaine Maxwell, the former associate of late financier Jeffrey Epstein, suffered dual setbacks in a U.S. court on Thursday, as a judge authorized the release of new materials related to her, while another judge refused to block prosecutors and lawyers from publicly discussing her criminal case. 
U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska in Manhattan directed the release of large portions of more than 80 documents from a 2015 civil lawsuit against Maxwell, the British socialite now facing criminal charges that she lured girls for Epstein to sexually abuse. 
The materials ordered unsealed include flight logs from Epstein's private jets, testimony from depositions in 2016 in which Maxwell's lawyers said she was asked "intrusive questions" about her sex life, and police reports from Palm Beach, Florida, where Epstein had a home. 
Maxwell, 58, is being held in a Brooklyn jail after pleading not guilty last week to charges she helped Epstein recruit and eventually abuse girls from 1994 to 1997, and committed perjury by denying knowledge of his abuse in depositions. 
Preska said the presumption the public had a right to access the documents outweighed Maxwell's arguments to keep them under wraps, including that they concerned "extremely personal" matters whose release could prove embarrassing or annoying.
The judge gave Maxwell one week to file an emergency appeal, but said both sides should proceed as though the documents will be made public "within a week." 
Lawyers for Maxwell did not immediately respond to requests for comment. 
Earlier, U.S. District Judge Alison Nathan rejected Maxwell's separate effort to block prosecutors, FBI agents and lawyers for some accusers from making out-of-court statements about her criminal case. 
Nathan, who oversees the criminal case, said a gag order was not needed to protect Maxwell's right to a fair trial, but that she "will not hesitate" to act if needed.

Will the Court of Appeals try to bury this case again?


  1. "Will the Court of Appeals try to bury this case again?"

    Inquiring minds want to know, that's for sure.

  2. I thought the flight logs have already been released in another case?

    1. That was an older case. The current docs are probably much more up to date.

  3. Has Epstein prosecutor Alex Acosta ever explained what he meant when he said he offered Epstein a lenient plea deal because he was told that Epstein "belonged to intelligence", was "above his pay grade," and to "leave it alone"?

    1. he meant..."you don't get to be a cabinet-level pol without being able to mumble a lot of the right buzz words in an authoritative way to distract people effectively..." If he did belong to 'intelligence,' I doubt Acosta would have said so publicly! haha

    2. But now he's a disgraced out-of-work former cabinet-level pol...maybe he's got a different spin?

  4. I understand why the flight logs and Epstein reports are important, but as for the other materials, I'm not sure what public interest is served by their release.

    I'm not being coy: I'm really not sure what the reasoning is. Certainly, Maxwell's sex life would provide a few lurid click-bait headlines, but beyond that, what's the point? Is it the normal practice to release such things publicly?

    1. The judge is a 71 year old female Bush1 appointee. I doubt she's doing it to get some jollies. I suppose that in addition to details of what she called a life there are names and other details of public interest.

  5. Isn't it unethical for prosecutors to discuss their on-going prosecution case outside a court of law?

    I thought the point of an adversarial system of justice was that prosecutors bring indictments (their speaking) and the rest goes on in court until a decision is reached.

    what am I missing?


      Rule 3.6: Trial Publicity

      (a) A lawyer who is participating or has participated in the investigation or litigation of a matter shall not make an extrajudicial statement that the lawyer knows or reasonably should know will be disseminated by means of public communication and will have a substantial likelihood of materially prejudicing an adjudicative proceeding in the matter.

      (b) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), a lawyer may state: [numerous additional sub sections]

      Rule 3.8: Special Responsibilities of a Prosecutor

      (f) except for statements that are necessary to inform the public of the nature and extent of the prosecutor's action and that serve a legitimate law enforcement purpose, refrain from making extrajudicial comments that have a substantial likelihood of heightening public condemnation of the accused and exercise reasonable care to prevent investigators, law enforcement personnel, employees or other persons assisting or associated with the prosecutor in a criminal case from making an extrajudicial statement that the prosecutor would be prohibited from making under Rule 3.6 or this Rule.

    2. Those, of course, are "model rules". Local courts also have rules. Prior restraints on speech--which such rules are--are frowned upon in 1st amendment thinking. The public, after all, has an interest in hearing about pending prosecutions.

      That said, unscrupulous prosecutors (Team Mueller, for example) have been known to flout rules with impunity, while defendants like Roger Stone get hammered.

      In Barr's DoJ I think normal standards will be observed.

    3. If you're interested in reading 76 pages on this topic:

    4. Extrajudicial statements were a problem when Eliot Spitzer was the NYS AG. He kept trying his cases in the media, using all sorts of tactics to extract settlements--not in a court of law, where very few cases found their way.