A federal judge on Friday upheld Ghislaine Maxwell’s sex trafficking conviction – the top count she was convicted of at trial – but tossed two of the three conspiracy counts against her because they charge the same offense.
In an order filed Friday afternoon, Judge Alison Nathan upheld Maxwell’s conviction on transporting a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity and sex trafficking of minors, which the disgraced socialite faces the harshest penalties for.
But, Nathan ruled, the three conspiracy counts Maxwell was convicted of are “multiplicitous,” and sentencing the convicted sex trafficker on all of them would violate the Fifth Amendment’s Double Jeopardy Clause.
Nathan will therefore sentence Maxwell on one conspiracy count – count three – as well as the sex trafficking and transporting a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity counts.
She now faces a maximum sentence of 55 years in prison at sentencing, which is slated for June.
In her order, which was a response to a post-trial motion by Maxwell’s legal team to throw out her conviction on all counts, Nathan wrote the three conspiracy counts charged Maxwell for the same “overarching conspiracy” that she engaged in with Jeffrey Epstein for decades.
“The overarching conspiracy—which, as the Government argued and proved at trial, employed a single ‘playbook’ to groom and sexually abuse underage girls—constitutes a single conspiracy offense with multiple victims,” Nathan wrote.
Because the Double Jeopardy clause blocks judges from issuing the punishments for the same offense, Maxwell will only be sentenced on one of the conspiracy counts, Nathan wrote.
Maxwell was convicted on five of the six counts against her in Manhattan federal court in December.
A jury determined she trafficked a number of underage girls for Epstein to sexually abuse from the 1990s to the early 2000s.
Four victims testified at the trial, sharing horrific details about their sexual abuse at the hands of Epstein after they had been lured into his orbit by Maxwell.
Maxwell is scheduled to be sentenced on June 28.