Published Friday, Dec. 3, 2021 | 3:36 p.m.
Updated 44 minutes in the past
NEW YORK (AP) — A inexperienced, folding massage desk utilized by financier Jeffrey Epstein was introduced right into a Manhattan courtroom and arrange in entrance of a jury on Friday to bolster allegations he teamed up with British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell to sexually exploit underage victims.
The theatrical flourish in federal court in Manhattan, courtesy of an investigator carrying rubber gloves, was meant to corroborate testimony from a key accuser at Maxwell’s ongoing sex-abuse trial alleging massages had been used as a pretense for the sexual encounters with Epstein that generally included Maxwell.
A witness who stated the abuse began when she was 14 described seeing a massage desk in a “massage room” that police say was in the identical location the place they recovered one at Epstein’s Palm Beach, Florida, mansion in 2005.
A police officer testified that investigators additionally seized information, computer systems and intercourse toys — a photograph of which was proven to the jury — from the residence.
Prosecutors confirmed jurors a police videotape of the residence that captured photographs of nude pictures on the partitions – decor that federal prosecutors declare is proof of a sexualized environment inspired by Maxwell to place stress on the victims.
The proof was offered over protection objections calling it prejudicial. Defense legal professional Bobbi Sternheim accused prosecutors of making an attempt to unfairly depict Epstein’s dwelling as a “domicile of debauchery.”
Prosecutors have alleged the British socialite groomed teen women by taking them on procuring journeys and film outings, speaking to them about their lives and inspiring them to just accept monetary assist from Epstein. The authorities additionally says she helped to create a sexually charged environment by speaking with the women about intercourse and instructing them on the alleged sexualized massages of Epstein.
Maxwell, 59, denies the allegations towards her, and her attorneys say prosecutors are going after her as a result of they will’t strive Epstein, who dedicated suicide in jail earlier than he might go to trial. She was Epstein’s onetime girlfriend and, later, worker.
The accuser, utilizing the pseudonym “Jane” to guard her privateness, testified earlier this week that when she first visited the Epstein dwelling she was disturbed by “some work of, like, bare girls or half-naked girls.” In the massage room off of a main bedroom Epstein and Maxwell shared, the pair had been “exhibiting me, you realize, what he likes, what — you realize, what males like, what girls like.”
Also on Friday, former Epstein housekeeper Juan Patricio Alessi returned to the witness stand to face cross-examination over his testimony that “Jane” and one other girl who has accused Epstein of sexually abusing her as a teen had been repeated guests at the Palm Beach mansion, the place Maxwell was “the woman of the home.”
A lawyer for Maxwell sought to discredit Alessi — who labored for Epstein from 1990 to 2002 — by confronting him with a deposition from a civil case that the protection says was inconsistent along with his trial testimony.
Alessi claimed on Friday that not one of the many younger girls who visited the Florida dwelling alerted him to any misconduct.
“I want they’d have as a result of I’d have executed one thing,” he stated.