This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
Get The Real News Delivered To Your Inbox
Did a Drop-out Pedophile Groom an Oxford Graduate?
Born Ghislaine Noelle Maxwell on Christmas Day 1961, she was the last of Ian Robert Maxwell and Elizabeth Maynard’s children. Her father fled the ruins of Czechoslovakia and parlayed his military daring and language skills into an international publishing empire. Her mother witnessed the fall of France to the Nazis and later became a renowned Holocaust researcher. Each of the children who survived to adulthood graduated from the University of Oxford. Maxwell’s siblings include the Magellan internet search engine inventors, a former US Department of State chief of staff for Near Eastern affairs, and think tank directors.
Like all her siblings, she is a French citizen, born at Maisons-Laffitte, France. Maxwell inherited her place in a family with an already storied history. Maxwell’s father escaped Czechoslovakia in 1939 as it fell to Germany. A war refugee, he fought in the Czech, then French, and finally the British army against the murderous Nazi regime. Nearly his entire family perished at Auschwitz. Her mother, who had studied law at the Sorbonne through the barrage of German bombing raids, joined the French Resistance.
By the time the two met in Paris, he was a dashing British officer. Then, when he proposed, her father promised her mother three things. He would give her a large family, win the Military Cross, and be elected Prime Minister. As promised, he received the Military Cross in early 1945 and wore it at their wedding. Notice that he had received that honored decoration was buried in a supplement to the prestigious London Gazette. Later, his name would appear on its front page as a Member of Parliament. Thus, her parents’ exploits and honors naturally attracted interest and admiration, which further elevated her social status.
Education and Ambitions
Around 1960 the family moved into the spacious Heddington Hill House, where her elder siblings walked to classes at Oxford. As Maxwell entered primary school, her father’s reputation and lucrative publishing empire provided access to coveted addresses and Oxford educations. She and her siblings attended the top-ranked prep schools in Britain.
After Maxwell graduated high school, she attended Balliol College and then University of Oxford to earn bachelor’s and masters degrees. She reportedly speaks four languages. Glamorous, engaging, and smart, she thrived on the constant travel and contact with the socially well-connected. Her father named his yacht the Lady Ghislaine after her. Of all her accomplished siblings, she appeared to be her father’s favorite. Like her brothers, Maxwell worked in their father’s publishing empire. While they became active in business decisions, Maxwell did not. Her brothers Kevin and Ian described her role akin to an ornament for their father’s desk. Others described her as a business consultant.
Like her Oxford classmates, Maxwell devoted her leisure time to the party circuit in pursuit of a moneyed marriage. Oxford-educated, daughter of a former Member of Parliament, her social orbit included other young people of prominent families. Many, like her, could point to accolades from the Palace about family in the pages of the London Gazette. Moreover, guest lists for parties and events that young royals, aristocracy, and graduates of Britain’s best universities attended also included her.
Still living in the family home, Maxwell and her mother lost their prestigious Oxford address in November 1991. Her father had gone missing from his yacht, the Lady Ghislaine. Fishermen found his body near the Canary Islands. None of the three autopsies agreed on cause of death, which produced a firestorm of speculation. Three leading theories emerged: suicide, assassination, or accident. Whatever the cause, his death propelled the survivors into poverty. Unknown to them, he had raided the Mirror pension fund to finance their lifestyle. Overburdened with two billion British pounds in debt, the publishing empire collapsed and left their lives in ruins.
Left destitute, her mother moved into a borrowed apartment, then wrote an autobiography about her life with Robert Maxwell to generate income. Maxwell, then age 30, also lost her father’s funding for her luxurious lifestyle. Like her brothers, her resume consisted of an Oxford degree and unmarketable experience in a corrupt, defunct publishing empire.
Biting into the Big Apple
Devastated by her father’s death, she moved to a modest New York apartment. Maxwell arrived saddled with an over-drawn bank account and upside-down on mortgaged investment real estate. Initially, she survived in the Big Apple on her reputation as the favorite daughter of a prominent British publisher. Rumor of a generous Gibraltar trust account from her father concealed her precarious circumstances. Still chasing a moneyed marriage, soon after she met Jeffrey Epstein at a party in the early 1990s, she moved in with him.
Around the time Maxwell met Epstein, she had recently appeared in a sensualized photoshoot for Sotheby’s vintage collection. Ironically, it was the same auction house that had put her family home’s contents under the hammer. After the photo shoot, Maxwell had reportedly mentioned a party in which she gave sex toys to the guests. Some appeared to be underage girls.
Years before MySpace, Facebook, and Twitter, Maxwell cultivated an expanding social network. Her connections included fellow Oxford graduates and prominent personalities she met at friends’ parties. They added her to their guest lists, which included royals, celebrities and other notables. Despite these enviable networking opportunities, she never capitalized on her Oxford education to establish an independent career. Instead, she continued to work for her father. Epstein put that loyalty to work for him. A socially awkward college drop-out, Epstein valued Maxwell’s academic and social connections. In return, Maxwell needed access to money.
Maxwell’s knack for organizing parties that included highly-sought after guests provided Epstein a new avenue for satiating his depravity. Eager to please her new benefactor, Maxwell expanded his world into her connections in France and the United Kingdom. Eventually, her tasteless alleged sex toy party pranks on girls in their early teens evolved into sex parties for minors. Some parties allegedly included adult participants. Perhaps this last step led to the pair’s alleged career in trafficking children to order for prominent guests at Epstein’s properties. Court documents allege that guests included former U.S. president Bill Clinton, New Mexico governor Bill Richardson, Great Britain’s Prince Andrew, and others.
According to a new book, Epstein sold the intelligence he picked up from his associations and sold it to the highest bidder. With her world-class connections and the most exclusive neighbors in Britain and France, Epstein may have recognized Maxwell as an investment. In return for the access she gave him to exclusive personalities and spaces in Britain and France, he funded her quest to live like the royals.
World Class Child Sex Trafficker
By about 2012, Maxwell organized the TerraMar Project (TMP), an environmental activism non-profit for children 5-18 years in age. TerraMar offered lesson plans and hands-on activities in “topics from climate change to plastic pollution in the seas, marine geology to coral reefs.” Westchester Digital Summit’s master of ceremonies introduced her during a June 2014 speech as “one of the smartest, most fascinating people I have ever met…holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree from Oxford, is a helicopter pilot, a trained EMT, a qualified ROV [pilot], a deep-worker submarine pilot, and fluent in four languages.”
Maxwell built on her Oxford education to attract respected contacts that would boost TerraMar’s credibility. For example, the Clinton Foundation invited Maxwell and TerraMar to participate in the 2013 Global Initiative, an opportunity to recruit both partners and contributions. She further boosted her profile by speaking before the United Nations at least nine times by 2014.
However, Maxwell and Epstein allegedly used TerraMar as a front for sex trafficking underage girls to his reputed private island orgy resort, Little Saint James. In fact, tax filings show that it never held fund-raising activities, provided no program services and received no contributions other than her own.
Workers at the nearby St Thomas airport attested that they witnessed underage girls transfer between Epstein’s private jet and a helicopter.. “On multiple occasions I saw Epstein exit his helicopter, stand on the tarmac in full view of my tower, and board his private jet with children — female children,” one former air-traffic controller told Vanity Fair. Maxwell’s helicopter, submersible/submarine pilot, and Remotely Operated Vehicle qualifications swim into sharp focus.
Immediately after Epstein’s July 2019 arrest on sex trafficking charges, Maxwell dissolved the TerraMar organization. Then, equipped with three passports, four languages, properties worth millions, and a world of social connections, Maxwell disappeared. Some thought she sought refuge in France, which does not extradite its citizens to other countries. Even David Boies, a world-class lawyer who represents some of Epstein and Maxwell’s alleged victims, couldn’t find her.
From In-Crowd to Inmate
A real estate agent had handled the sale of the secluded “Tucked Away” mansion to a couple with British accents who identified themselves as “Scott and Janet Marshall.” He claimed to be a British military retiree. “Janet Marshall” said she was a journalist who had sought privacy to write a book. The agent recognized Maxwell and told the FBI, who arrested her at the home near Bradford, New Hampshire on July 2.
Currently in custody at Brooklyn MDC, Maxwell faces 35 years imprisonment for her role in sex trafficking under age girls with Jeffrey Epstein. Prison officials keep Maxwell under constant surveillance and relocate her cell assignments frequently to avert assassination or suicide. In addition, the prison only issues her paper clothing and linens. At her July 14 hearing, the judge denied bail. During the bail hearing, prosecutors revealed that Maxwell is married but refused to identify her alleged spouse or anyone else able to satisfy bail conditions. Maxwell remains in custody until her trial, set for July 12, 2021.