Ghislaine Maxwell requests she be called ‘Ms. Maxwell’ instead of ‘defendant’

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Ghislaine Maxwell requests she be called 'Ms. Maxwell' instead of 'defendant'

She’s Ms. Maxwell, if you please.

Ghislaine Maxwell’s defense attorneys want their controversial client referred to as “Ms. Maxwell,” rather than “the defendant,” when the judge in her case instructs the jury on the legal nuances they need to take into account while deliberating.

Maxwell attorney Christian Everdell made the request during a rare Saturday morning hearing, as her defense team and prosecutors argued over the language that will be included in Judge Alison Nathan’s instructions to the jury.

Prosecutors did not object to her being referred to with the honorific in a number of instances in the proposed charge.

Seasoned defense attorneys described the request as “unusual” — and likely done as a subtle attempt to humanize Maxwell to the jury deciding her fate.

“I am not sure that I have ever seen such a request,” attorney Julie Rendelman, who is not connected to the Maxwell case, told The Post.

Ghislaine Maxwell is seen wearing a green coat in front of her brother Kevin Maxwell and sister Isabel Maxwell in a courtroom sketch on Dec. 18, 2021.
Ghislaine Maxwell is seen wearing a green coat in front of her brother Kevin Maxwell and sister Isabel Maxwell in a courtroom sketch from Dec. 18, 2021.
REUTERS/Jane Rosenberg
Christian Everdell, left, and Laura Menninger, attorneys for Ghislaine Maxwell, exit from federal court following the first day of jury selection in New York, U.S., on Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2021.
Ghislaine Maxwell’s attorney Christian Everdell requested Judge Alison Nathan call her “Ms. Maxwell.”
Bloomberg via Getty Images

“We saw the opposite happen in recent trials such as Rittenhouse, where the judge prevented the prosecution from using the word ‘victim’ to describe those shot,” added Rendelman, who worked for years as a prosecutor in the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office.

Attorney Jeffrey Lichtman, who has repped Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman and John Gotti Jr., said the request could also be an attempt to distance Maxwell from a criminal label.

Ghislaine Maxwell sits next to defense attorney Jeffrey Pagliucca while jotting down notes during a charging conference in a courtroom sketch on Dec. 18, 2021.
Ghislaine Maxwell sits next to defense attorney Jeffrey Pagliucca while jotting down notes during a charging conference in a courtroom sketch on Dec. 18, 2021.
REUTERS/Jane Rosenberg
Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell.
Ghislaine Maxwell is accused of grooming and trafficking several girls for Jeffrey Epstein to sexually abuse.
Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

“They’re trying to make her appear human. As a person instead of the cold description of ‘defendant,’ which also makes her sound defensive, as a criminal,” Lichtman told The Post.

“I wouldn’t say it’s rare. It’s unusual,” he added. “At the end of the day it’s a subtle way to influence the jury. But no one is acquitting or convicting due to it. Nevertheless, anytime a defense lawyer labors over every possible minute detail to win a case is a good thing.”

Ghislaine Maxwell
Ghislaine Maxwell told Judge Alison Nathan that she would not testify in her own defense.
United Nations Photo/Rick Bajornas via AP
Ghislaine Maxwell’s attorney Christian Everdell arrives at the Thurgood Marshall US Courthouse on Dec. 16, 2021
Ghislaine Maxwell’s attorney Christian Everdell arrives at the Thurgood Marshall US Courthouse on Dec. 16, 2021
Getty Images

Maxwell’s trial is expected to draw to a close early next week, with prosecutors and defense attorneys scheduled to give closing statements Monday.

Her defense team rested on Friday after two days of calling witnesses in an attempt to poke holes in the testimony of her accusers.

Maxwell said Friday that she will not testify in her own defense.

Journalists wait to enter the courthouse for day one of Ghislaine Maxwell’s sex trafficking trial on Nov. 29, 2021.
Journalists wait to enter the courthouse for day one of Ghislaine Maxwell’s sex-trafficking trial on Nov. 29, 2021.
AP Photo/John Minchillo
Ghislaine Maxwell speaks with her defense team amid her trial in a courtroom sketch on Dec. 17, 2021.
Ghislaine Maxwell speaks with her defense team amid her trial in a courtroom sketch on Dec. 17, 2021.
REUTERS/Jane Rosenberg
Ghislaine Maxwell
Prosecutors have called on four accusers allegedly involved in Ghislaine Maxwell’s sex trafficking.
Sylvain Gaboury/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

“Your Honor, the government has not proven its case beyond a reasonable doubt and so there is no need for me to testify,” Maxwell told Judge Nathan.

Prosecutors called some two dozen witnesses in their two-week case against the disgraced socialite, including four accusers who detailed how they were groomed by Maxwell and, in some instances, abused by her.

One accuser, who testified using her first name, Carolyn, told jurors that Maxwell groped her as she was setting up a massage table at Epstein’s Palm Beach mansion when she was 14 years old.

Ghislaine Maxwell
Ghislaine Maxwell could face a maximum 70-year prison sentence if convicted.
Jared Siskin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images
Ghislaine Maxwell attends jury selection in her trial on charges of sex trafficking, in a courtroom sketch in New York City, U.S., November 18, 2021.
Legal experts argue Ghislaine Maxwell’s defense attorneys are trying to humanize her image.
REUTERS/Jane Rosenberg

“She came in and felt my boobs and my hips and my buttocks,” Carolyn told jurors on Dec. 7.

Maxwell has maintained her innocence since she was first arrested. She faces a maximum of 70 years in prison if convicted on all counts.

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