Ghislaine Maxwell speaks about 'dear friend' Prince Andrew from prison
15th October 2022

From Florida prison where she is serving 20 years, sex trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell, 60, pays tribute to her ‘dear friend’ Prince Andrew and breaks silence on whether she expects to hear from him again, jail plots to KILL her and claims THAT photo is fake

  • Ghislaine Maxwell, jailed for child sex-trafficking offences, has spoken about her ‘dear friend’ Prince Andrew
  • Speaking from prison, she says she ‘feels so bad’ for the Duke of York for his association with Jeffrey Epstein
  • Maxwell is currently serving a 20-year sentence for helping disgraced financier Epstein to abuse women
  • She also revealed that she believes the notorious photograph of Andrew with Virginia Roberts, then 17, is fake 
  • Maxwell later spoke out about her shock at Epstein’s death in August 2019, saying ‘I just find it suspicious’

Her little black book was once crammed with the names of presidents, powerbrokers, movie stars and royalty. But none was more important than Prince Andrew.

Today, in an extraordinary interview from behind prison walls, Ghislaine Maxwell speaks for the first time about her ‘dear friend’, expressing heartfelt sadness at his own catastrophic fall from grace.

‘Yes, I follow what is happening to him,’ Maxwell confirms. ‘He is paying such a price for the association with Jeffrey Epstein. I care about him, and I feel so bad for him.’

It is rare for American prison authorities to authorise interviews – especially when the profile of the inmate is so high.

But I spoke to 60-year-old Maxwell face-to-face inside the Metropolitan Detention Centre in Brooklyn, New York during the summer, and again just a few weeks ago after she was moved to her current jail, Tallahassee’s Federal Correctional Institute.

This is where she will serve a 20-year sentence for her role in helping Epstein to abuse young women.

I ask her about one of the most notorious photographs in the world – one which has haunted Prince Andrew.

It shows the Prince with his hand around the waist of a then 17-year-old Virginia Roberts – now Giuffre – with Maxwell beaming to one side. The man behind the camera, clicking the shutter, is disgraced financier and paedophile Epstein.

Andrew has insisted that the photo has in some way been doctored. Maxwell, too, believes the picture must be fake – despite experts, commentators and Ms Giuffre herself maintaining the picture is real and unaltered. Whether the Duke of York will thank Maxwell for her intervention on the issue is hard to say.

Today, in an extraordinary interview from behind prison walls, Ghislaine Maxwell speaks for the first time about her ‘dear friend’ Prince Andrew. Pictured, a world-exclusive image shows Ghislaine Maxwell at Brooklyn’s Metropolitan Detention Centre

Ghislaine Maxwell has expressed heartfelt sadness at the Duke’s catastrophic fall from grace. Pictured, Prince Andrew

Maxwell, pictured with Epstein in New York in 2005, spoke exclusively from behind prison walls for the first time, revealing that she believes the financier’s death was ‘suspicious’

Maxwell (right) believes Prince Andrew is ‘paying such a price’ for his association with disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein (left)

Maxwell (pictured with Epstein) herself acknowledges, and articulates well, pointing out that any association with her name is, at best, a black mark

Where her company was once eagerly sought by leading figures in society, Maxwell – a convicted sex offender – is now little short of a pariah. It is something she herself acknowledges, and articulates well, pointing out that any association with her name is, at best, a black mark. At worst, she says, it has turned her into a ‘wicked witch’.

‘There are many people who have been impacted by this story who have been cancelled, some friends of mine who never even met Epstein lost their jobs,’ she acknowledges. ‘People who literally had nothing to do with him whatsoever have been cancelled.

‘So I think for all those people, including some of them who never met him, it’s been a very heavy price that has been paid due to the cancel culture. So, you know, from that perspective, I think it’s been very difficult for a lot of people.’

No more so than for 62-year-old Prince Andrew, of course, who had once been a regular companion.

When I point out the Prince’s lawyers reject the suggestion that Maxwell and Andrew were close, she accepts it with equanimity. ‘I accept that this friendship could not survive my conviction,’ she says.

She spoke about how people who ‘had nothing to do’ with Epstein have since been ‘cancelled’ because of their association with her

60-year-old Maxwell was interviewed in the Metropolitan Detention Centre in Brooklyn, New York during the summer, and again just a few weeks ago after she was moved to her current jail, Tallahassee’s Federal Correctional Institute

Epstein never faced the charges which have brought down his former associate Maxwell, following his August 2019 death in prison

In Andrew’s disastrous Panorama interview with Emily Maitlis (pictured), he appeared to pin the blame for his troubles on Maxwell

Significantly, in Andrew’s disastrous Panorama interview with Emily Maitlis, he appeared to pin the blame for his troubles on Maxwell. He claimed he had no knowledge that Epstein had been charged with sex offences when he invited the American tycoon to Windsor Castle – with Maxwell – in 2006.

Andrew said: ‘Remember it was his girlfriend that was the key element in this. [Epstein] was the, as it were, plus one.’

Following the interview in November 2019, Andrew was forced to step down from public royal duties.

Ghislaine Maxwell claims Mail on Sunday photo of Prince Andrew and 17-year-old Virginia Roberts is fake – but won’t say why 

It is one of the most notorious pictures in the world – and one that has haunted the Royal who stands at its centre. 

Taken late in the evening of March 10, 2001, it shows Prince Andrew with his hand around the waist of a then 17-year-old Virginia Roberts – now Giuffre – with Ghislaine Maxwell beaming to one side. 

The man behind the camera is disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein. That photo – which was first published by The Mail on Sunday on February 27, 2011 – came to symbolise Mrs Giuffre’s case that, having been trafficked to the UK by Epstein, she had been sexually abused by Andrew on three occasions. 

The Duke of York has always vigorously denied the allegations and continues to do so, insisting the photo with which he is intimately associated has in some way been doctored. 

Now, in a remarkable first interview from prison, Maxwell, 60, Andrew’s once-close friend, is attempting to come to his aid, insisting that she, too, believes the picture is a fake. ‘At this time, I no longer believe that to be a true image, and I don’t believe that it is what it appears to be,’ she says. 

Maxwell, 60, Andrew’s once-close friend, believes the picture above is a fake

It is a brave statement, and at odds with what most experts, commentators and Mrs Giuffre herself say. But Maxwell seems convinced. ‘There are so many things that are wrong with it,’ she says. ‘As soon as my appeal is over, I will be very happy to discuss it with you.’ 

Maxwell’s claims about the image, above, are intriguing, not least because they appear to contradict her 2015 reply to an email sent to her by Alan Dershowitz, one of the most highprofile lawyers in the United States.

In the message, Dershowitz wrote: ‘Dear G. Do you know whether the photo of Andrew and Virginia is real? You are in the background.’ Just 11 minutes later, Maxwell emailed back her response. ‘It looks real. I think it is.’ 

But she says now: ‘If you see a photograph and it’s a photograph of you in your home, and someone says to you, ‘Is that a picture of you?’ you don’t question it. 

It would never occur to me that somebody would have created a photograph or, you know, done something with a picture. ‘I recognised the surroundings of that photograph, nothing more than that.’ 

Given the chance of closer scrutiny, however, she says she now believes there are all manner of issues with the image. ‘I don’t know exactly how many points there are, but there are over 50 problems with the picture,’ she insists. 

‘So I don’t believe it’s a true picture.’ Mrs Giuffre said in legal documents for a 2016 defamation case that she had handed the original image to the FBI in 2011 when they visited her home in Australia, where she then lived. 

It is not clear if the original was returned and she has said it might be in storage. According to documents released in the same case, two FBI agents collected 20 original photographs from Giuffre, which were understood to include the one of her with Andrew.

 

Is there any chance that Andrew could open his arms once more and ask her to be friends? ‘I don’t have an expectation,’ she says. ‘People who I have been friends with – and very close friends with – whoever they may be, well, I can’t think about what they will want to do or not do. I can only control what I do.’

In February, despite continuing denials, Andrew paid Ms Giuffre, now 38, a financial settlement reported to be in the region of £12 million to settle out of court a civil claim she had brought against him in the US.

Maxwell is similarly sanguine about other friendships that she knows she has lost, among them Bill Clinton, one of the many prominent names linked to Epstein in recent years.

At Maxwell’s sex-trafficking trial last year, Epstein’s former pilot testified that he had taken the former US President, alongside Prince Andrew and Donald Trump, to VIP locations all over the world on the financier’s private jet.

‘It was a special friendship, which continued over the years,’ Maxwell says of her association with Clinton. ‘Until…’ she tails off – a sentence there is no need for her to finish.

‘We had lots in common. I feel bad that he is another victim, only because of his association with Jeffrey. I understand that he, like others, can no longer consider me as a friend.’

One of the few who did speak out in her defence was Trump, in whose circles Maxwell regularly mingled. Following her 2020 arrest, the former US President was one of the few to wish her well publicly, something for which he was roundly criticised.

‘He dared, while others didn’t,’ is how she puts it today. ‘I was very touched that he would remember me and that he would wish me well. And I was very touched by his remembrance of me.’

She adds: ‘I think anybody who says anything remotely, either positive and/or generous about me seems to attract a lot of negative interest.

‘And in fact, President Trump is famous for thinking and saying what is on his mind like whenever he says it. So I was just very touched, as I said. I appreciate it. It gave me a big boost during such a time.’

I point out that it’s extraordinary that everything that has happened to her in recent years is a direct consequence of meeting one man. Does she regret it?

‘I said in open court in my statement that meeting Jeffrey Epstein was the greatest mistake of my life,’ she says. ‘And obviously, if I could go back today and I would avoid meeting him, and I would say that would be the greatest mistake I’ve ever made, and I would make different choices for where I would work. Obviously.

‘I think there are many women who can identify with my story. Many have either fallen in love with or had relationships with men that in hindsight they look back on and say ‘What was I thinking?’ I imagine there’s not a woman on the planet who would not think that about one or other of their boyfriends.’

What of the reports claiming that she and Epstein were more than friends? ‘I have read and seen and heard and had reported to me so many monstrous inaccuracies that I can’t even start to pick apart all of them,’ she replies.

Questioned on when she started to feel uncomfortable about Epstein’s proclivities, Maxwell clams up, saying only that she suspects that she ‘started to feel that way after he got into trouble’ in 2006, when he was indicted by the FBI for dozens of offences involving underage girls.

Under a subsequent plea deal, he served just 13 months in a county jail.

‘There were things to mention here about him that I cannot discuss because of the appeal, but I can’t say anything more than that,’ is all she will say on the matter.

Maxwell continues to maintain her innocence even in the face of her conviction, arguing that she was effectively demonised before she had even stood trial.

‘I think the adage ‘innocent until proven guilty’ should apply,’ she says emphatically.

‘And one of the things that is so shocking, the difference between America and England is quite dramatic.

‘In England, when you have an active case, there is no pretrial publicity that’s allowed, which I think is essential.

‘Here in America, you’re just swamped with appalling press when you are indicted and you have no right to speak.’

As a result, she has been portrayed as the ‘Wicked Witch’ in the Epstein story.

‘All this is a fictional version of me,’ she says. ‘It has been created to fit the storyline. It has nothing to do with who I am.

‘So many people contribute to the fake, created version, like a Disney character, the Wicked Witch if you will.’

Epstein, of course, never faced the charges which have brought down his former associate, following his August 2019 death in the Manhattan jail where he was awaiting sex trafficking charges.

At the time, Maxwell was still a free woman, although that would not last much longer: she was arrested eleven months later.

Today, she admits his death came out of the blue. ‘I was shocked,’ she says.

‘I think anybody would be that somebody [had] died. So yes, I was totally shocked.’

Does Maxwell think suspicious forces may have been at play?

‘I don’t know whether he was or whether he wasn’t,’ she says. ‘I’m just saying that the history of, and the activities of, the Bureau of Prisons, the lack of transparency and the fact they have many unexplained things that happen within.’

She pauses. ‘There is a culture of untruth that frankly needs to be brought to light.

‘So I’m saying he’s one among many. But I wouldn’t know. I just find it suspicious.’

It is gripping testimony, whether we believe her or not. And I, for one, am in no doubt that there’s a great deal more to come.

WORLD EXCLUSIVE: Ghislaine Maxwell speaks from prison about how a woman plotted to kill her in her sleep and a bounty was put on her head at Brooklyn detention centre 

By Daphne Barak, Author and Film Maker, For The Mail On Sunday

Display of defiance in US prison 

Staring intently at the camera, Ghislaine Maxwell strikes a defiant pose from prison in this world- exclusive photograph, left.

Despite her claims about the appalling conditions in US jails, the disgraced daughter of the late tycoon Robert Maxwell appears healthy and even wears a touch of make-up.

The image was taken earlier this year inside the Metropolitan Detention Centre in Brooklyn, New York, where Maxwell claims that a fellow inmate plotted to murder her as she slept.

A world-exclusive picture shows Ghislaine Maxwell at Brooklyn’s Metropolitan Detention Centre – a far cry from the bruises showed off in April last year

In April 2021, the first shot of her behind bars showed a bruise under her eye. She may have received it while shielding her eyes with a sock or towel at night when guards shone a torch on her every 15 minutes to check she was breathing

It comes in stark contrast to the first shot of her from behind bars, above, which emerged in April 2021 and showed bruising under an eye. 

That photo was sent to a judge by her legal team to back complaints about her treatment.

It was claimed that she may have received the bruise while shielding her eyes with a sock or towel at night when guards shone a light on her every 15 minutes to ensure she was breathing.

For a woman who once traversed the world in private jets and superyachts, her current circumstances could hardly be more humbling. Ten months after being found guilty in a New York court of child sex-trafficking offences, Ghislaine Maxwell’s world has shrunk – to the 10ft by 8ft cell she shares with three other inmates at Florida’s Tallahassee Federal Correctional Institution.

Incarcerated for 23 out of every 24 hours, she is not even allowed outside for fresh air.

It’s one of the many extraordinary insights given by Maxwell in this, an exclusive interview spanning her time at Brooklyn’s Metropolitan Detention Centre (MDC), where she was kept after her arrest in July 2020 and the Florida jail where she has been since July – and where she is expected to serve out her sentence.

We first met face to face four months ago in the grim confines of the MDC, where she told me of the harsh isolation, lack of food and clean water and profound loneliness that had led to her filing 300 separate complaints to officials.

It was where she also revealed that a fellow inmate planned to kill her while she slept and a bounty was put on her head.

So when we speak again a few weeks ago, I’m anxious to know whether it was a relief to move to Tallahassee. Far from it. Over 90 minutes, Maxwell is emphatic that, contrary to reports, this ‘softer’ regime is, if anything, harsher than the one that preceded it.

At least the 60-year-old feels safe here. For, as she reveals, in addition to the death threats and the price being put on her head, she suffered weeks of torment in which she was forced to wear nothing more than a smock in freezing temperatures – because the authorities claimed she was a suicide risk.

She tells me: ‘It’s still jail. It’s very far from a cushy country club, as I have seen it reported. You’re locked up the entire time. When they do let you out for an hour there’s not a chair for everybody in the communal space and no way to watch TV.’

Of course, few if any will have sympathy for a woman dubbed a monster for her role recruiting teenage girls for her former lover and confidante, disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein, to abuse.

Maxwell’s conviction on five charges last December – including one of sex-trafficking of a minor – is the subject of an appeal. But with the process expected to take months, if not years, she has accepted that Tallahassee FCI, an all-female prison in Florida’s capital, near where the majority of her crimes took place, is her home for the foreseeable future.

She was moved here without notice in the middle of the night of July 22 and, after the privations of MDC, admits to being buoyed by the thought of moving to a compound, only to discover that, placed under strict Covid restrictions – known as ‘Covid red’ – the regime is even more restrictive.

‘I think that if this place ever came off ‘Covid red’, it would definitely be an improvement,’ she tells me. ‘But under the circumstances, it is not an improvement in some respects. It’s more restricted here than it is in MDC. So you only get recovery (time outside the cell) for a maximum of an hour. And you’re not allowed outside.’

She reveals that her cell, furnished with four bunks and a small cupboard for each occupant, is so small that she and her three cellmates cannot all stand in it. ‘You only have a little cupboard about 2ft by 3ft to put your stuff in.

‘From that perspective, it’s more restrictive than MDC.

‘Can you imagine? No four people can stand up in that cube and have access to anything at the same time, so it’s sort of like a dance around who can do what, when.’ Maxwell has become used to the monotony of prison and its privations. She also sounds more confident than at MDC, where The Mail on Sunday’s exclusive photograph on the right was taken.

Second time around, she is positively chatty. ‘Nobody has internet access,’ she continues. ‘You can send an email to a short list of approved contacts. But there’s no computer – if you have to type anything, it has to be on an old-fashioned typewriter. You haven’t seen something like that since probably the 1990s.’

Ghislaine Maxwell has revealed she has just got a job working in the jail’s small law library and education centre. Pictured: On Epstein’s private jet – a picture used in evidence

Maxwell was moved from a low-security federal prison to now being in a 10ft by 8ft cell she shares with three other inmates at Florida’s Tallahassee Federal Correctional Institution (pictured)

 Maxwell claims she suffered weeks of torment in which she was forced to wear nothing more than a smock in freezing temperatures – because the authorities claimed she was a suicide risk. Pictured: Florida’s Tallahassee Federal Correctional Institution

While phone calls are allowed, the lack of phones means that there is no guarantee of accessing them in the one-hour slot during which you’re allowed out of your cell.

‘It’s very difficult to get to the phone because up until just a few days ago, there were only two phones that worked,’ she says. ‘Everybody is trying to make calls to their families. So, you know, sometimes you can have a queue.’

Asked to describe a typical day, Maxwell grimaces at its monotony. ‘They wake you up at six, then at 6.20, something like that, they’ll call for what they call ‘mainline’, which is interesting because I would think that if you’re a drug addict that’s like the trigger word. That’s a meal and consists of milk, a cereal,’ she says.

‘So nothing happens then until around 10.30, when they call mainline again, when you go to what they call lunch. And then nothing happens again until you’ll have a count, so you have to stand up at 4pm and they count you. And after that you get what’s called the main evening meal, which you get approximately 20 minutes to eat. The lights go out at around ten.’

Those who go to ‘work’ do have some compensation – Maxwell reveals she has just got a job working in the jail’s small law library and education centre.

In an exclusive interview, she has revealed she is incarcerated for 23 out of every 24 hours and is not even allowed outside for fresh air. Pictured: Maxwell giving Epstein a foot massage – the image was used in evidence during her trial

Her low point was being placed on suicide watch for two weeks, something she believes was a politically motivated punishment for accusing the prison system of violating her rights

Daphne Barak: How I got the interview 

It’s no surprise that it took months of lobbying and persuasion before the authorities finally agreed I could meet Ghislaine Maxwell in jail.

The American penal system is not known for handing out favours – and this was a high-profile felon.

The first encounter with Maxwell was face-to-face, and took place inside Brooklyn’s Metropolitan Detention Centre in New York, where she was held before and during her trial.

It’s a sinister, sordid place. Even the air was rancid.

Yet when I met Maxwell, she seemed more confident than I’d expected. Self-possessed in fact – as our world exclusive picture shows.

A far cry from the last time she was pictured, shortly after her detention – a horrific image that showed her drawn and seemingly emaciated with a black eye.

Now, her tumble of hair was glossy and dark. There was a touch of makeup on her face.

I spoke to Maxwell once again when she was moved to the Tallahassee federal jail in Florida, where she is now serving a 20-year-sentence.

This time, she was positively chirpy in a wide-ranging discussion lasting 90 minutes.

These conversations with Maxwell – which appear in the Mail On Sunday today – will form the basis of my next documentary for the American television network, CBS, and its streaming service Paramount Plus.

Working closely with Susan Zirinsky, the first woman to run CBS News in America, we persuaded the US authorities to authorise what I believe is an important piece of testimony.

ITV News will broadcast an exclusive clip from my interview tomorrow evening [SUBS: Monday, October 17], during their 6.30pm evening bulletin.

By speaking out, Maxwell hopes to highlight serious questions that remain unanswered about Jeffrey Epstein, the billionaire financier jailed for a campaign of abuse against teenage girls, in which Maxwell had taken part.

How, for instance, was Epstein able to evade justice himself for so long? What are the true circumstances of his death?

And would the American justice system have been so keen to see Ghislaine punished if Epstein hadn’t died in prison while awaiting his own sex trafficking trial?

Throughout her 2021 trial, Maxwell and her defence team maintained that she was being treated as a scapegoat for Epstein’s crimes. Certainly, she remains the only one of Epstein’s associates to ever have been jailed.

And what does she really think of her former friend Prince Andrew, whose association with the case has led to his retirement from public life – despite his strenuous denials of any wrong-doing?

The answers, like the case itself, are compelling.

‘I’ve been helping people with anything that is possible,’ she says. ‘I look at it as an opportunity to use whatever abilities I have to help the people around me, because some of them really don’t have much.

‘There are many who don’t speak English, who are not educated. By comparison, I have a lot, so I use the skills I have to help them.’

That means helping to translate documents and, in some cases, teaching English. ‘And, honestly, it’s very rewarding,’ she says. In fact, for all her complaints, it’s clear that life in Tallahassee suits her better than Brooklyn, where she was pale and withdrawn.

‘I saw the sunlight for the first time and I saw grass for the first time. So that was lovely,’ she says.

‘And the food is actually better here by a large margin. Although I can probably tell you, I will be happy never to see an apple. I haven’t seen a piece of fruit except an apple. You think in Florida, at least there’d be an orange. But no.’

She also feels safer than at MDC, where she felt under constant threat from inmates. ‘As you are aware, there was a woman who made a threat, said she had a plan to murder me as I was sleeping,’ she says. There had even been claims of a $1million bounty on her head. ‘But everybody here so far has been extremely professional, and I have not experienced any of the gross violations of my rights that I experienced at MDC,’ she says. ‘I don’t feel unsafe. And I am perfectly able to live and work here.’

It must nonetheless feel a million miles from her old life. I ask her to cast her mind back to her arrest by the FBI in July 2020 at her home in Bradford, New Hampshire.

‘It was definitely shocking, no question about that,’ she says. Did she know in that moment that her life would be forever changed? ‘I don’t think you ever see a fire in your home and think, ‘Oh, this is nothing, this is completely normal’. You definitely take those things very seriously,’ she says.

‘I didn’t anticipate everything that happened subsequent to that. Even after I was arrested it never occurred to me I would not receive bail.’ That was a profound blow – but worse was to come.

She reveals that the lowest moment came two years later at the end of June this year, when she was placed on suicide watch for two weeks, something she believes was a politically motivated punishment for accusing the prison system of violating her rights.

‘I do not possess a single suicidal bone in my body,’ she insists. ‘I have never been suicidal. I’ve never contemplated it. I’ve never thought about it. It has never crossed my mind in my entire life. And I am very adamant on who I am and I’m very excited and look forward to my appeal.

‘So the reason they put me on suicide watch was as a punishment – because I have filed a number of grievances and have made clear that [the authorities] broke the rules and harmed me physically and my ability to defend myself and many other things besides.’

She describes the experience as one of profound humiliation that ‘strips you of any remaining shred of dignity that you have’.

‘They have you with no clothes, and they put you in a suicide smock, which has Velcro straps on it. So there’s nothing to protect your modesty,’ she says. ‘And you were in a room of sub-zero temperatures, so you literally are freezing, with neon lights like you see on TV and in concentration camps.’

Deprived of access to a shower, a toothbrush and handed just two sheets of toilet paper each time she needed to use the bathroom, Maxwell was fed the same meal for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Maxwell’s conviction on five charges last December – including one of sex-trafficking of a minor – is the subject of an appeal. But for now, she will remain in the all-female Tallahassee FCI

Daphne Barak biography 

Daphne Barak is a renowned interviewer and documentary film maker, whose subjects have included Nelson Mandela, Donald Trump, Hilary Clinton, Johnny Depp and Michael Jackson among many others.

Her latest book, ‘Struggling for One America’, written with Erbil Gunasti, is published by Skyhorse Publishing. 

www.amazon.co.uk/Struggling-One-America-Hollywood-Houses/dp/1510768084

The full interview with Ghislaine Maxwell will appear on CBS Paramount Plus later in the year.

Daphne Barak, a renowned interviewer and documentary film maker

‘It was two pieces of bread, a piece of baloney (luncheon meat) and a piece of cheese. I’m on a vegetarian diet. So I couldn’t eat the baloney. And the cheese had fingerprints on it. Not very sanitary,’ she says.

‘And you’re left in a room like that with no… there’s nothing to do. And I had two cameras on me all the time.’

She says she lost more than a stone while at the MDC – and was so hungry that at one point she was driven to eat petroleum jelly, adding: ‘The food in Brooklyn was truly, truly terrible. One day I was so hungry that I ate the only thing I had – Vaseline.’

That too, she says, was disgusting. It is one of many experiences that have disturbed her in her time behind prison walls.

‘Jails are dangerous,’ she says. ‘And, actually, given what I have seen and witnessed in jail – guards selling drugs and being inappropriate in every way, I have seen all those things and therefore feel prisons are not safe spaces. Until you’ve been here, you really don’t understand how appalling it is. I would tell anybody to do everything possible to avoid coming to jail.’

It is perhaps the most ironic statement of all for a woman who had everything and threw it away.

Today, Maxwell is pinning her hopes on her appeal, which she describes as ‘already in full bloom’. ‘It is a very, very, very strong appeal, across multiple important aspects of the law that need to be looked at and re-adjudicated so that it can be rewritten.’

Perhaps it is this determination to maintain her innocence that means there is little discussion of Epstein’s crimes, her role in them – or of the young women who suffered. There’s certainly an optimism that seems at odds with her grim surroundings.

‘I don’t particularly like the word victim,’ she says. ‘I think it’s one that should be used very sparingly. I’m going to wait until post appeal to evaluate aspects of my life, but I won’t use that word ‘victimhood’.

‘Obviously, an experience like this changes you, but I’m some of the same person I was. And so rather than look at what I’ve lost, I’m trying to look at what I’ve gained.’

  • Daphne’s interview with Ghislaine Maxwell will feature on an ITV News special on Monday Oct 17, 6.30pm and on CBS News in the US. The full interview appears on CBS Paramount Plus later in the year.
  • Daphne’s best-selling book Saving Amy, based on her months’ filming with Amy Winehouse and her family, is being adapted into a scripted eight part TV series by Halcyon Studio with the help of British writer Mal Young

GAMECHANGER: www.amazon.co.uk/Gamechanger-Trump-Card-Turkey-Erdogan/dp/1642934593

ERBIL WRITES: erdoganandtrump.com/erbil-writes/

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