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Vermin droppings recently fell through the air vents of Ghislaine Maxwell’s Brooklyn jail cell, according to a litany of complaints about the conditions lodged by her attorney.
In a new court filing, obtained by The New York Post, Maxwell’s attorney, Bobbi Sternheim, alleges that Maxwell’s cell was also “permeated” with a smell of raw sewage last week that was so strong the 59-year-old British socialite had to be moved to another location.
The latest allegations are made in a letter filed this week to Manhattan federal Judge Alison Nathan outlining the conditions within the Metropolitan Detention Center, where Maxwell has been housed since her July 2020 arrest.
In addition to the vermin poop, Sternheim complained that jail guards monitor Maxwell’s legal visits and was critical of faulty equipment she said Maxwell has been given to conduct virtual conferences with her attorneys.
As part of the letter, Sternheim referenced comments Manhattan federal Judge Colleen McMahon had made about the conditions of the Metropolitan Detention Center in another case.
During the sentencing of convicted drug dealer Tiffany Days, McMahon claimed the federal jails in the city were “run by morons.”
“[T]here is no excuse for the conditions in those two institutions,” McMahon said. [Detainees] shouldn’t suffer for the incompetence of the United States Department of Justice and its subsidiary agency, the Bureau of Prisons.”
Maxwell’s attorneys have previously complained that she was forced to endure “uniquely onerous conditions”, has been subjected to stressful conditions causing her to lose hair and weight in jail, and was threatened by guards after she was found with a black eye.
Nicholas Biase, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York declined to comment on the latest allegations to Oxygen.com; however, prosecutors addressed the conditions of Maxwell’s confinement in letter to the judge filed June 7.
“The defendant continues to receive more time to review discovery than any other inmate at the MDC,” U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss wrote in the letter, which was obtained by Oxygen.com.
According to Strauss, Maxwell is permitted to review her discovery 13 hours per day, seven days a week, in a separate day room outside her cell.
While in the room, prosecutors said she has access to a desktop computer, laptop computer, television, phone and a shower. She’s able to use the computers or phone to have regular communication with her attorneys or make social phone calls, Strauss said.
“The defendant also continues to receive as much, if not more, time as any other MDC inmate to communicate with her attorneys,” Strauss wrote, noting she is given up to five hours of video conference call time with her attorneys each day and is allowed in-person visits with her legal team each weekend.
While the room where the video calls are made is monitored, Strauss said it’s only monitored by a camera placed 30 feet away from the door of the room and insisted that the camera does not capture any sound.
The same method is used to monitor the attorney visit room while Maxwell is visiting with her attorneys, she said.
Maxwell stands accused of helping groom underage girls for wealthy financier Jeffrey Epstein, who killed himself in a federal jail in 2019 while facing sex trafficking allegations.
“Epstein’s Shadow: Ghislaine Maxwell” will include exclusive interviews and never-before-seen video as it examines the “powerful, connected, and mysterious” world of Maxwell and her connection to Epstein, her former boyfriend.
“This series sheds light on Maxwell’s path from her past to the present to unravel the enigma that she is, and takes us from the highest echelons of society to a Brooklyn jail cell awaiting trial while the world watches,” director Barbara Shearer said, according to a press release announcing the project.
Maxwell’s trial is expected to begin this fall.
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