NEW YORK (REUTERS) – A US appeals court on Tuesday (April 27) rejected Ghislaine Maxwell’s latest request for bail, after her lawyer said guards in her Brooklyn jail were keeping her awake at night to ensure she wouldn’t commit suicide like the financier Jeffrey Epstein.
In a brief order, the 2nd US Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan said that to the extent Maxwell is being deprived of sleep, she should seek relief from US District Judge Alison Nathan, who oversees her criminal case.
David Markus, a lawyer for Maxwell, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Maxwell, 59, has pleaded not guilty to sex trafficking and other charges over her alleged role in procuring four teenage girls for Epstein to abuse between 1994 and 2004.
She had been appealing Nathan’s March 22 rejection of a US$28.5 million (S$37.7 million) bail package which the judge, who has denied bail three times, said did not keep Maxwell from being a “significant risk of flight.”
In oral arguments on Monday, Markus objected to jail guards’ waking Maxwell every 15 minutes with flashlights to make sure she was still breathing.
Epstein, a financier, killed himself in a Manhattan jail in August 2019 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges.
“We just want a fair opportunity, a fair chance, so she can get ready for the trial of her life,” Markus told the appeals court.
“It’s impossible to prepare for trial when you’re getting no sleep.”
Maxwell faces up to 80 years in prison if convicted.
She is seeking a delay in her scheduled July 12 trial.