Ghislaine Maxwell, the British socialite accused of becoming the late sex offender Jeffrey Epstein’s madam, was arrested and indicted on multiple federal charges for the sex trafficking of minors on Thursday.
Maxwell has long been accused of helping Epstein — a financier who escaped harsh federal charges during a Florida sex abuse investigation in the late 2000s — recruit underage girls so that rich men could abuse them. Maxwell has denied these allegations. But her whereabouts have been a source of speculation since Epstein died in police custody in Manhattan in late August, after he was arrested on federal sex trafficking charges.
Maxwell was arrested in New Hampshire and will appear in federal court Thursday, according to News 4 New York, the first outlet to report that Maxwell had been arrested.
Maxwell’s arrest comes nearly a year after federal law enforcement officers arrested Epstein in early July 2019. He stood accused of abusing dozens of underage girls between 2002 and 2005, in New York City and in Palm Beach, Florida, where he maintained palatial properties.
He allegedly maintained this steady stream of victims by working with several employees and confidantes, as well as paying his minor victims to recruit others.
About a month later, Epstein was found hanged in his cell in the Manhattan Correctional Center. Officials concluded that his death was a suicide. In the days after his death, federal authorities raided Epstein’s private island in the Caribbean and pledged that his demise wouldn’t stop the investigation into his associates from moving forward.
According to the indictment, Maxwell helped Epstein groom and sexually abuse his victims, including at least one girl who was as young as 14, between 1994 and 1997, when the two were dating. She allegedly built friendships with these girls by taking them on outings, such as to the movies, before convincing them to provide sexualized massages to Epstein, who would then often abuse them.
Maxwell also allegedly participated in group sex encounters with Epstein and one of the victims, who are not named in the indictment.
These victims were groomed and abused in Epstein’s residences in New York, Florida, and New Mexico, as well as in Maxwell’s home in London, according to the indictment.
Maxwell has also been charged with perjury. She allegedly lied in a 2016 deposition, when she claimed that Epstein never used sex toys and that he never had sexual activities with anyone else while the two were dating.
Maxwell has already been the target of multiple civil lawsuits brought by women who say they survived Epstein’s abuse. Maxwell herself has sued Epstein’s estate, claiming that Epstein had pledged to support her financially and that she had no knowledge of any misconduct.
Women who’ve spoken out against Epstein adamantly disagree.
“She orchestrated the whole thing for Jeffrey,” Sarah Ransome told the New York Times in 2019. Ransome, who said she was abused by Epstein, sued Maxwell and other Epstein associates in 2017.
Cover: Ghislaine Maxwell attends the 4th Annual WIE Symposium at Center 548 on September 20, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Paul Zimmerman/WireImage)
This article originally appeared on VICE US.