NEW YORK, Nov 16 (Reuters) – A federal decide in Manhattan on Tuesday started questioning potential jurors for the sex abuse trial of Ghislaine Maxwell, asking people about matters starting from their opinions of individuals with luxurious life to what tv exhibits they watch.
Prosecutors have mentioned that Maxwell 59, recruited and groomed underage women for deceased financier Jeffrey Epstein to abuse. She has pleaded not responsible to 6 counts of sex trafficking and different crimes. Her attorneys have mentioned intensive media protection of her July 2020 arrest has tainted the jury pool.
U.S. District Choose Alison Nathan plans to query 231potential jurors about what they’ve beforehand heard about Epstein and Maxwell, in addition to about their very own experiences with sexual assault and abuse.
“It would be hard to not have heard something about the case,” one potential juror mentioned throughout questioning by Nathan, a course of referred to as voir dire.
The person, a feminine 69-year-old Manhattan resident, added that though she had heard of Maxwell and Epstein and had skilled sexual harassment previously, she believed she wouldn’t be biased someway.
“As a woman today, if you ask me if I have in my lifetime, if I have experienced, shall we say, sexual harassment … as we understand it today, I would have to say ‘yes,'” she mentioned.
The potential jurors’ names are being withheld from the general public. Voir dire is predicted to conclude on Friday.
Whereas some people interviewed within the first day of questioning mentioned that they had not heard of Maxwell, most had heard of Epstein, a rich U.S. investor who counted elite politicians and businesspeople amongst his associates.
Epstein died by suicide in a Manhattan jail cell whereas awaiting his personal trial on sex crimes fees in 2019 on the age of 66.
Reporting by Luc Cohen in New York
Enhancing by Noeleen Walder and Jonathan Oatis
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