She’s evidently fascinating for a bunch of reasons. For starters, she’s hung around with lots of rich, famous people. She’s apparently wealthy herself. Her prominent dad died under mysterious circumstances. As a result, she suddenly came into loads of money. She moved halfway across the globe and re-invented herself. She was publicly accused of being both a predator and an enabler.
Her sidekick and former boyfriend and benefactor were arrested. He took his own life while in custody. Meanwhile, she seemingly disappeared. As recently as two weeks ago, she was ‘off the grid.’ But law enforcement found and arrested her. Then, in court, she claimed she has no income. And she claimed she doesn’t know who bought the home she was living in.
She is, of course, Ghislaine Maxwell, a close associate of Jeffrey Epstein, the wealthy serial child molester who spent time with Bill Clinton, Donald Trump, Rudy Giuliani, Alan Dershowitz, Prince Andrew, and other high-profile society types.
What can we learn from this woman and her sordid history? First, we are reminded that women can sexually abuse the vulnerable, as well as men. Second, it’s worth keeping in mind that women can be enablers like men and either ignore or even help facilitate child sex crimes. Third, not to excuse Maxwell’s misdeeds in any way, but the pull and power, and charm of charismatic individuals can’t be overstated. Many of us get swept up in proximity to power and prominence. We’re enthralled. We let our guard down. And we get temporarily blinded by people who seem to ‘have it all,’ overlooking behavior that would otherwise set off our alarm bells.
That, in turn, can sometimes lead us actually to help them – sometimes inadvertently – commit crimes. Or, at a minimum, that can lead us to doubt our own experiences and observations and continually give them the benefit of the doubt. Fourth, we are reminded that even the seemingly untouchable can be brought down, especially when enough victims speak up and when enough law enforcement commitment and resources are applied. And finally, we must acknowledge that the overwhelming majority of victims and predators, and enablers are NOT rich or famous. Their cases must also get attention. The harm they suffer is just as great. Their suffering must not be ignored or minimized, even though they attract no headlines or media scrum.
We at Horowitz Law have represented the victims of Jeffrey Epstein. We’d be glad to help more. But the bulk of our practice centers on the unseen victims. And if you feel unseen or ignored, or not worthy, call us. If you feel like your perpetrator is not a ‘big fish’ or ‘big name,’ call us. We want to help you and every victim of abuse to get justice, healing, and closure, no matter who hurt you.