Some of Jeffrey Epstein’s accusers expressed relief and gratitude at the conviction of his longtime associate Ghislaine Maxwell on Wednesday, while vowing to hold others related to his sex-trafficking ring accountable for their crimes.
“It’s a bittersweet emotion because I have been fighting for so long. It’s definitely not over. There are so many more people involved with this. It doesn’t stop with Maxwell,” Virginia Giuffre, who did not participate in the trial but was repeatedly referenced and appeared in photos presented to the jury, told The Cut.
Giuffre has spoken out about how she was just 16 when Maxwell recruited her to work for Epstein, who died in 2019 in an apparent suicide while awaiting trial on sex-trafficking charges. Giuffre, now 38, said she was forced to have sex with Epstein and others, including Prince Andrew, whom she has filed a lawsuit against.
“I’m very happy. I’m still very shaken. I think it takes time to heal, and this justice is part of the process,” Giuffre said following Maxwell’s conviction on five out of six felony charges. “Now I can start really working past Maxwell and thinking about the others who need to be held accountable.”
A 2009 settlement she reached with Epstein related to the British royal is expected to be made public early next week after two New York federal judges ordered their release Wednesday.
Annie Farmer, who was the only witness to testify using her real name during the trial, expressed relief at the verdict on ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Thursday, while admitting, “I wasn’t sure that this day would ever come.”
Farmer testified that she was just 16 when Maxwell lured her to Epstein’s New Mexico ranch under the pretext that they could be mentors to her. Instead, she said, she was sexually abused.
“I just feel so grateful that the jury believed us and sent a strong message that perpetrators of sexual abuse and exploitation will be held accountable no matter how much power and privilege they have,” Farmer said.
Sarah Ransome, who settled a civil suit with Maxwell and Epstein in 2018 and did not testify at the trial, has accused Maxwell of recruiting her to Epstein’s house of horrors when she was 22. She celebrated the jury’s verdict on Thursday, but, like Giuffre, vowed: “This is just the beginning.”
“This is an example that, you know, the powerful, the wealthy, you can’t behave like this,” she said in an interview with CBS News. “You will eventually be stopped. And I hope people think really long and hard next time they want to hurt another human being.”
Maxwell, 60, faces up to 65 years in prison, essentially amounting to a life sentence, which Ransome said she absolutely deserves.
“She destroyed so many hundreds if not thousands of other women, young women and children, so I’m pleased that she will never be out again, ever, to hurt anyone else,” she said, while insisting that Maxwell was worse than Epstein.
“Because she was a woman, she normalized abuse. She participated, she tortured me and others and she’s worse than Jeffrey,” she said.