Ghislaine Maxwell’s ‘little black book’ to remain secret after judge warns against ‘needless’ namedropping
Ghislaine Maxwell’s “little black book” containing the names and addresses of nearly 2,000 world leaders, celebrities and alleged victims will remain secret.
Ms Maxwell’s defence attorneys came to an agreement with prosecutors over the weekend not to release the 97-page directory to the public.
Judge Alison Nathan had previously said she wanted to avoid “needless” namedropping during the trial.
The book was filled with contact details of Ms Maxwell and Jeffrey Epstein’s famous friends, including Prince Andrew, and former US presidents Bill Clinton and Donald Trump, and had been mentioned sporadically during her sex-trafficking trial.
Prince Andrew, Mr Clinton and others mentioned in the directory have denied all accusations they were involved in any alleged sexual abuse.
Several entries were mentioned during the prosecution case and released as an exhibit under seal, meaning only jurors and attorneys could view them.
In a letter obtained by The Telegraph, Damian Williams, a US attorney to Judge Nathan, wrote: “It is not being offered for the truth of the matters asserted therein, and you may not consider it for that purpose.
“Rather, you may consider it only to the extent you believe it is relevant to show a link, if any, between Ms Maxwell and the names and phone numbers listed and how, if at all, the information was organised.”
Ms Maxwell, 59, is charged with six counts of sex trafficking, enticement and abuse of a minor. She has strongly denied all of the charges.
Epstein killed himself in prison in 2019 aged 66 while awaiting his own sex trafficking trial.
Former Epstein butler Alfredo Rodriguez admitted to stealing the book as “insurance”, and was jailed for trying to sell it to an undercover FBI agent for $50,000.
A redacted version of the book was published online by Gawker in 2015.
Juan Alessi, Epstein’s former Palm Beach house manager, had testified the directory was used by Ms Maxwell to book massages from young girls, including at least one of the accusers in Ms Maxwell’s sex-trafficking trial.
However the defence said there was no proof that the directory he saw was the same one prosecutors had sought to enter into evidence.
Ms Maxwell’s attorneys, who were caught off-guard when prosecutors rested their case more than a week early, have said they plan to call up to 35 witnesses when her defence opens on Thursday.
Among their witnesses are three who have said they may not testify unless they are allowed to do so anonymously.
Bobbi Sternheim, for the defence, wrote to Judge Nathan to say the court’s ruling on the issue of anonymity “may impact the willingness of these witnesses to testify, thereby compromising Ms Maxwell’s right to present her defence”.
Some witnesses are coming from overseas, Ms Sternheim said.
Prosecutors have objected to the request for witness anonymity.
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