The Ghislaine Maxwell Trial – Part 7: Victim-turned-Witness Kate

by Paul Serran

This is an ongoing series. To read the previous articles, click on the links below.

The Ghislaine Maxwell Trial – Part 1

The Ghislaine Maxwell Trial – Part 2: The Pilot Testifies

The Ghislaine Maxwell Trial – Part 3: Victim Jane’s Testimony

The Ghislaine Maxwell Trial – Part 4: A Victim’s Ex-boyfriend, School Officials and a Grooming Expert

The Ghislaine Maxwell Trial – Part 5: The Palm Beach House Caretaker Testifies

The Ghislaine Maxwell Trial – Part 6: The Palm Beach Detectives

There has been a lot of apprehension on the part of people following the Ghislaine Maxwell trial that the prosecution team might not have been doing a stellar work in this case.

That gets exemplified in the deposition of victim-turned-witness ‘Kate’ (pseudonym). Incredible as it seems, during the duration of the trial, Judge Alison Nathan decided that, as Kate was over the age of consent in Britain (she was 17), the jury has to understand that she is ‘not a victim’ of the alleged crimes, and any sexual encounters she described were not “illegal sex acts.”

The Judge said that the jury cannot convict Maxwell based on Kate’s evidence and cannot use it for assessing Maxwell’s ‘character’. The jury can only use it for things that are ‘relevant to the issues before [the jury]’, to demonstrate patterns in Epstein’s and Maxwell’s behavior.

The thing is, from Maxwell’s arrest in July 2020 until the start of the trial there have been literally dozens of pre-trial court sessions regarding every aspect of this case. That the prosecution can be blindsided with this very simple information this long into the proceedings seems very hard to believe. Is this the mighty DOJ with the 97% conviction rate?

Kate was downgraded from victim to witness, but her testimony may still damage Maxwell.

Kate testified that, in 1994, Ghislaine Maxwell groomed her to be abused by Jeffrey Epstein. She was 17, and struggling to make friends, after moving to Britain from France, living with her mother who was ill and ‘under a lot of stress’.

Maxwell was ‘very sophisticated and very elegant -everything that I wanted to be.’

It was in her house, in the elegant Belgravia neighborhood of London, prosecutors argue, that Maxwell befriended girls and helped make them susceptible to abuse by Mr. Epstein.

‘I felt that I had found a new connection that could be really meaningful to me”, Kate said. ‘She seemed as excited as I was to have a new friend.’

Kate told Maxwell that she was to study law at Oxford University, and that she was a musician, too. They also talked talked about how she was into athletics.

Maxwell would ask what she was up to, if she was dating anybody and if anything exciting was going on in her life. ‘Everything seemed to be a fun, silly joke.’

Kate: ‘She told me lots of amazing things about her boyfriend, a philanthropist who helped younger people.’

A foot massage is something innocent, is it not?

Kate testified that Ghislaine Maxwell called her: Epstein was in town, could she come over and meet him? ‘She was very activated, very excited. There was a sense of urgency.’

Kate was very strong, Maxwell told Epstein, and proceeded to suggest the ‘legally-aged in Britain’ girl massage Mr. Epstein’s feet. ‘Why don’t you give his feet a little squeeze to show him how strong you are?’

A few days after, Kate testified, Maxwell asked Kate to fill in for Epstein’s masseuse, even though she was not a massage therapist. ‘Epstein needed massages all the time’, Maxwell told her, ‘and it was very difficult to keep up’.

Kate told the jurors she was led to a dimly lit room in Maxwell’s house. Epstein took out his robe and stood naked. Maxwell closed the door. It was the first of many such sexual encounters.

These instances of abuse, that Judge Nathan admonished the jury were not to be seen as ‘illegal sex acts’, occurred in London, Palm Beach and New York, Kate testified.

‘I didn’t know how to say no’, and she also did not know what the ‘consequences’ would be if she refused.

Kate testified Maxwell asked her to help find girls for Epstein.

But that was not all that Kate had to say about the ‘new connection’ that she hoped ‘would be meaningful’ to her. She testified that Ghislaine Maxwell asked her to find young women for sexual encounters with Epstein, ‘because his demands were insatiable’.

‘Maxwell would ask me if I knew anybody who could come and give Jeffrey a blow job, because it was a lot for her to do”, Kate told the jury. ‘You know what he likes: cute, young, pretty, like you’, Maxwell said, according to Kate, ‘he needed to have sex about three times a day’.

Now this is a point where Kate’s testimony gets to be quite relevant, even though she was downgraded from victim to witness: not only did Maxwell groom her for Epstein, but then she proceeded to ask her to find him other girls – young.

This is what the prosecutors called the ‘pyramid of abuse’ in which victims bring other victims into the fold, slowly turning themselves into new victimizers.

And, according to Kate, in Maxwell’s request there was no disguising that the objective was to have sex. According to the Judge instructions, jurors can use that to corroborate other testimonies highlighting the same behavior.

Kate kept in touch with Epstein for many years. ‘I did not want to admit what had happened to me’, She also said she felt ‘fearful of disengaging’. ‘I had witnessed how connected they both were.’

Bobbi Sternheim’s job is to question the victims’ and witnesses’ motives, as well as the accuracy of their memories.

Maxwell’s defense lawyer, Bobbi Sternheim, described Kate as ‘an ambitious former model and jet setter’ during her opening statement. Sternheim said Kate was eager to spend time with Maxwell and Epstein, and that her motivation, as a British citizen, was working with prosecutors to secure an American visa.

On cross-examination, Kate denied to be trying to get a visa for people who have experienced abuse. She did admit that, at one point, she had thought that this type of visa would be in her interest.

Sternheim also asked if Kate’s (admitted) abuse of alcohol, cocaine and sleeping pills could have affected her memory. She replied that she was not allowed to be drunk or use drugs while with Epstein and Maxwell, and remembered the events she had described to the jury.

JPMorgan Chase’s Patrick McHugh detailed the money flow.

Prosecutors have stated in their opening remarks that Ghislaine Maxwell wanted to satisfy Epstein to ‘stay in the lifestyle to which she was accustomed.’

While it’s the prosecutors’ job to prove that assertion, two things are clear. The first is: with the death of Robert Maxwell, his media empire crumbled, and his theft of employee’s pension funds was brought out in the open. His favorite daughter was left with a pension that would guarantee an upper-middle class lifestyle – an unacceptable outcome for the ‘Lady Ghislaine’.

The second undeniable fact was brought from prosecutors into court right after Kate’s testimony: Jeffrey Epstein transferred over 30 million to Ghislaine Maxwell over a period of eight years, between 1999 and 2007.

That’s around 40 times what she made in her pension during that period, plus – of course – she had all expenses paid to jet around the world with Jeffrey looking for young, young, beautiful girls. As many as three a day.

JPMorgan Chase Executive Director Patrick McHugh produced bank statements and testified to the following facts:

In August 1999, Epstein’s Financial Trust Company sold US$18.3 million in shares and transferred it to a bank account owned by Maxwell.

The reason for the transfer was unclear.

In October 2000, Maxwell paid US$4.9 million for a townhouse on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.

In September 2002, an Epstein account sold $5 million in shares, transferred to a Maxwell account at a bank in Palm Beach.

In June 2007, an Epstein bank account transferred US$7.6 million to Maxwell. Also, on the same day, she transferred it to a company called Air Ghislaine, which she controlled. The very same day, Maxwell then wired the money to aircraft maker Sikorsky. The transfer states it to be destined for the purchase of a S76C green helicopter and ‘down payment on executive finish.’

Maxwell used money coming from Epstein to buy a S76C green helicopter. Our readers may recall how Epstein’s pilot described taking Maxwell to helicopter pilot training.

Maxwell’s lawyer Christian Everdell, during cross examination, suggested that such transfers were typical for a billionaire like Epstein.

[Note: Epstein was not a billionaire.]

Everdell asked if high-net-worth individuals like them have lots of assets. ‘They could,’ answered McHugh, who said  that the transfers alone don’t indicate any foul play.


This is an ongoing series. Stay tuned for more updates.

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Paul Serran

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1 year ago

So… The reports of the prosecution doing well, were pretty accurate, it seems…

Any new predictions for sentencing?

Nice Guy
Nice Guy
1 year ago


Another great trial piece. I am enjoying your color commentary and analysis.

1 year ago

Meet Ghislaine: Daddy’s Girl

Absent from mainstream discourse on Ghislaine Maxwell’s ongoing trial is any mention of the ties, not only of herself, but her family, to Israeli intelligence. Those ties, forged by Ghislaine’s father Robert Maxwell, are critical to understanding Ghislaine’s history and her role in Jeffrey Epstein’s sexual blackmail and trafficking network.

DECEMBER 16, 2021

Part 1 of an upcoming multi[art series

1 year ago

Didn’t Ben Myers, Nancy Salzman’s son in law, once work for a Communist Chinese company called BrainCo?

China Developing ‘Brain Control Weaponry,’ US Claims

Communist China’s Academy of Military Medical Sciences is helping the Chinese military to develop “brain-control” weapons, according to the U.S. government.

The U.S. Commerce Department on Thursday put the research academy and 11 other of its institutes on an “entity list,” which bans American companies from exporting technology to them.

1 year ago

“A foot massage is something innocent, is it not?” From the Story

Foot fetishism

Foot fetishism, also known as foot partialism or podophilia, is a pronounced sexual interest in feet.[1][2] It is the most common form of sexual fetishism for otherwise non-sexual objects or body parts.[3]

"They all meant something"
"They all meant something"
1 year ago

Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction has a famous debate over “innocent foot rubs”.

Aristotle’s Sausage
Aristotle’s Sausage
1 year ago

Judge rules that witness for the prosecution Kate is not a victim because she was of legal age and the things she testified about are not crimes, and the jury is to disregard them.

Potent grounds for appeal right there.

The same kind of thing happened at Harvey Weinstein’s trial, where testimony from three women was permitted even though Weinstein wasn’t charged with crimes in connection with any of them. Now it looks likely his appeal will go forward and he’ll get a new trial.

1 year ago

christinaoxenberg [ Instagram]

Most interesting behind the scenes is who is on Maxwell’s side and who is not.

Second to worst is the Evening Standard who sent me actual copy, full sentences scripted out, all I need do is sign. Initially the ES asked me to write for them and I sent something in. They hated everything accusing me of having opinions instead of retelling the facts and then they sent me their version for me to sign (they wanted details on Ghislaine’s outfits). I told them to eff off.

One journo, the LST, suggested I was ‘settling scores’ with Maxwell. Rather trite given the gravity of the circumstances.

The Aussie TV dude watched me settle into the interrogation seat and said, ‘You look confident!’ (you look full of yourself?).

We had agreed to one hour and twenty questions and instead the session lasted two hours and there were twenty questions about only Prince Andrew.

‘I don’t speak about Prince Andrew and he is not in my book,’ I became exasperated with the Aussie dude, ‘My purview is Maxwell. And not only because she is the focus of the issue, in my opinion, she is who I know.’

‘Have you met Prince Andrew?’ Mr. Oz spluttered.

‘Yes, I stood next to Andrew on that balcony at Buckingham Palace and waved at the peasants.’

That shut him up, momentarily, which amused me.

‘You did that?’ he said, gathering himself.

Fed up with this nonsense I nodded wanting very much to be gone.

We hated each other. Mercifully the episode has been removed for which I am grateful as I behaved atrociously.

But the reason it is gone has nothing to do with me. Rather with the other person interviewed, an eyewitness on Epstein’s island, and his story needed squashing. So the episode is gone and that is the power and reach of Maxwell.

1 year ago
Reply to  Anonymous

India Oxenberg’s aunt, Christina Oxenberg, has written a book about Ghislaine Maxwell.
I understand that Christina cooperated with the FBI.

One of My Many Gross Encounters With Ghislaine Maxwell
Close encounters of the worst kind
DECEMBER 09, 2021

Last year, the writer Christina Oxenberg found herself with a unique perspective on scandal. A second cousin of Prince Andrew (through her mother, Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia), and a former acquaintance of both Jeffrey Epstein and his accused procurer, whose trial started in November, she recently released the e-book Trash: Encounters with Ghislaine Maxwell. In this exclusive excerpt, Oxenberg recalls the horror of being caught in a party photograph with the woman who is now a social pariah.

In 2012, while happily living in Key West and needing some income, I reached out to Ghislaine, asking her if the ghostwriting job [for a novel she had previously proposed] was still available. I was probably broke, and I was certainly not thinking about her legal problems. I have an email; otherwise, I would not believe it myself.

But she told me no thank you, times had changed, and it was no longer appropriate, or something like that. She said we would get back to it when we were both old and gray. Which conveniently is the case now as I write this unauthorized biography. I hope she likes this.

A few months later, I was up in New York City organizing a book party for a collection of short stories I had written, and someone must have brought me up to speed regarding whether or not to invite her, as I did not consider it. But then I heard from Ghislaine herself. In retrospect, her email looks suspiciously like she was angling for an invitation. Though not invited, she showed up anyway, famously so.

So there I was, seated in the lower level of a tony brownstone on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, presiding over a book presentation, when Ghislaine Maxwell, a large presence, surged in and yelled, “Ox!”

I did not officially invite anyone, as my friend had offered to host the party and insisted she would use her list of well-heeled contacts. I did, however, spread the word casually, mentioning it to people in passing and posting about it on Facebook publicly, as that is where my readers are. And on the night I did in fact meet face-to-face with certain readers I had only known online, which was wonderful fun. I also saw many old friends from my time living and working in New York City since the 1980s.

I was seated at a table near the front door and surrounded by piles of my books. From such a vantage point, I could greet whoever arrived, as well as sell and sign my books in relative comfort. A photographer stood near me to capture the lights of the night. Ghislaine Maxwell must have thought herself one of them, because she showed up and dominated the oxygen supply, as is her way.

I had not seen Ghislaine since 1997. In the photos you can see us embracing, which is on account of her leaning over the desk as I half stand up and land in her arms like a bear cub. A simple kiss on the cheek would have sufficed, but that was not enough for Ghislaine the press hog.

She demanded I come out from behind the desk and pose for a shot. The photographer did as she was instructed, and thus these few photos of us together unfortunately exist.

If you look closely at the photograph where I am standing beside her, you will see her claws digging into my upper right shoulder. She was pulling me close to her. Everything was intentional, orchestrated. All she needed was the appearance of closeness with me in this particular photo. A strategy in aid of her reintegration into society; she hoped if people saw others reconnecting with her, then maybe they’d think she wasn’t so bad. But if you look at my face you will see I am not looking at her or smiling at her. And if you look even closer, you can see I have a quizzical look on my face, as if I’m trying to signal, “Can you believe this witch?”

I do not know of anyone in 2013 who remonstrated openly and refused to have their photograph taken with Ghislaine. Of course, we all should have, and the social norms of New York polite society have a lot to answer for. But, things as they were, we would never have declined. What we did do instead was deny her the photograph that she wanted. We were standing beside her, but not looking at her, nor were we showing her any respect; we were both clearly mocking the situation. And that was our way of broadcasting our feelings without saying a word, of signaling a threat without giving the game away. There is no question that by the time I was standing up next to her at her insistence, all that she now represents was forming in my mind, and it showed on my face.

Trash: Encounters with Ghislaine Maxwell is available exclusively
on Amazon Kindle ($5.99)

Former Osteopath Roberts: Fundraising Update
Former Osteopath Roberts: Fundraising Update
1 year ago

Raised : $2,510

$1500 from one recent anonymous donor has more than doubled the total.

Was that shadowstate, Alanzo, Spanky or Nice Guy? Did they join forces and pool their money?

1 year ago

“Was that shadowstate, Alanzo, Spanky or Nice Guy? Did they join forces and pool their money?”

I could donate more than 1500 dollars several times over,.

Don’t hold your breath expecting me to do so!

1 year ago

Paul, without the circular crop, your profile icon is a swastika.

The Wisdom of Alanzo
The Wisdom of Alanzo
1 year ago

By refining, we exist.

Nature requires exploration. You and I are starseeds of the totality.

The nexus is approaching a tipping point.

We can no longer afford to live with ego. Bondage is born in the gap where beauty has been excluded. You must take a stand against delusion.

Non-locality is the nature of growth, and of us. Power is a constant. Today, science tells us that the essence of nature is interconnectedness.

Throughout history, humans have been interacting with the universe via meridians. Reality has always been beaming with entities whose brains are enveloped in beauty. We are in the midst of an internal maturing of spacetime that will align us with the galaxy itself.

1 year ago

I don’t know, Paul… You raise some serious concerns. But I’ve also read analysis that the prosecution are killing it.

It’s hard to predict what the outcome will be if not present for every single moment.

1 year ago
Reply to  Anonymous

“I’ve also read analysis that the prosecution are killing it.”

Trust me.
The prosecution is killing it.

About the Author

Frank Parlato is an investigative journalist.

His work has been cited in hundreds of news outlets, like The New York Times, The Daily Mail, VICE News, CBS News, Fox News, New York Post, New York Daily News, Oxygen, Rolling Stone, People Magazine, The Sun, The Times of London, CBS Inside Edition, among many others in all five continents.

His work to expose and take down NXIVM is featured in books like “Captive” by Catherine Oxenberg, “Scarred” by Sarah Edmonson, “The Program” by Toni Natalie, and “NXIVM. La Secta Que Sedujo al Poder en México” by Juan Alberto Vasquez.

Parlato has been prominently featured on HBO’s docuseries “The Vow” and was the lead investigator and coordinating producer for Investigation Discovery’s “The Lost Women of NXIVM.” Parlato was also credited in the Starz docuseries "Seduced" for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

Additionally, Parlato’s coverage of the group OneTaste, starting in 2018, helped spark an FBI investigation, which led to indictments of two of its leaders in 2023.

Parlato appeared on the Nancy Grace Show, Beyond the Headlines with Gretchen Carlson, Dr. Oz, American Greed, Dateline NBC, and NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, where Parlato conducted the first-ever interview with Keith Raniere after his arrest. This was ironic, as many credit Parlato as one of the primary architects of his arrest and the cratering of the cult he founded.

Parlato is a consulting producer and appears in TNT's The Heiress and the Sex Cult, which premiered on May 22, 2022. Most recently, he consulted and appeared on Tubi's "Branded and Brainwashed: Inside NXIVM," which aired January, 2023.

IMDb — Frank Parlato

Contact Frank with tips or for help.
Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083


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