Lawyers for Ghislaine Maxwell have released a photo of her in prison showing a bruised face, the first photo of the British socialite since her arrest last year for sex trafficking.
The photo of Ms Maxwell, 59, was included in a letter filed Thursday to a New York judge by attorney Bobbi Sternheim, who believes she was injured while having to cover her eyes with a sock or a towel at night because the guards turn on lights to him. cell every 15 minutes.
“Last night she was confronted by staff at the Metropolitan Detention Center (MDC) due to a visible bruise on her left eye,” Ms. Sternheim wrote in the letter.
“No guard addressed the bruise until Mrs. Maxwell, who does not have a mirror, saw the reflection of her sore eye in the glean of a nail clipper.
“At that point, MDC staff confronted Ms Maxwell about the source of the bruise, threatening to place her in the SHU if she did not disclose how she got it,” he said. she added, referring to the special housing unit.
Ms Sternheim added that prison guards place detainees in the special accommodation unit if they have been injured or subjected to abuse by other detainees.
“Although Ms Maxwell is not aware of the cause of the bruise, as has been reported to medical and psychological staff, she is increasingly reluctant to report information to the guards for fear of retaliation, discipline and punitive chores, ”the lawyer continued. letter to Judge Alison Nathan.
Ms Maxwell appears to have aged over the nine months she was in the Brooklyn Metropolitan Federal Detention Center, with sunken cheeks.
She appeared in court last week to plead new charges, appearing older and more frail, with graying hair and a slimmer figure.
Her lawyers claimed on a recent bail appeal that Ms Maxwell was being held in much worse conditions than other inmates in the prison.
David Oscar Markus, another of Ms Maxwell’s attorneys, said in his 23 years of work that he “never saw a defendant so badly treated”.
“We just want a fair opportunity, a fair chance, so that she can prepare for the trial of her life,” Mr Markus told an appeals court. “It is impossible to prepare for trial when you are not sleeping.”
They also claimed that Ms Maxwell lost hair and over 15 pounds of weight while in detention, due to the prison’s “inedible” food.
The British socialite is awaiting trial on sex trafficking and other charges related to allegedly procuring underage girls for Jeffrey Epstein for abuse in the 1990s and early 2000s.
She has pleaded not guilty and faces trial this summer.
Ms Maxwell’s legal team allege she is being treated differently due to the ‘Epstein Effect’, claiming she is a scapegoat for Epstein’s crimes following her suicide in prison last year.
They asked last week that guards no longer monitor her at night, arguing that she was not at risk of suicide.
Judge Nathan on Thursday ordered the government to explain why she was under surveillance and whether she could be given an eye mask if such measures were deemed necessary.