Affiliates of convicted sex offenders Ghislaine Maxwell and Jeffrey Epstein should be concerned now that “victims are being believed”, a top lawyer has said.
Lisa Bloom, who represents eight victims of the disgraced pair, told the PA news agency her clients think Maxwell should never be released because “other women could be harmed in future”.
The lawyer said the number of women who have come forward to accuse the British socialite means she could be prosecuted again.
“I expect it to be a long sentence where she will probably spend the rest of her life behind bars,” Ms Bloom said ahead of Tuesday’s sentencing hearing.
“She made choices, she knew what she was doing, she harmed many girls’ lives and she has shown no remorse.
“So why should she get anything less than a very significant sentence of 30 years or more.”
Speaking about what her clients have been through since they were abused, Ms Bloom said: “My clients suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of being sexually abused by Jeffrey Epstein, which is what Ghislaine Maxwell facilitated.
“That is a lifelong condition. There is no cure for PTSD.
“One can get it under control, like diabetes, but it’s something that always has to be managed for the rest of someone’s life.
“My clients suffer from problems in their relationships and their careers, depression, suicidality, sexual disorders – and that’s something they will always have to live with.”
Addressing how her clients felt throughout the trial, Ms Bloom continued: “It’s very triggering for them to hear what’s going on at the trial, to hear the victims testifying … and then to hear her attorneys and all the excuses and all the defences.
“The jury’s verdict was very encouraging and vindicating for them.
“But it’s just one thing after another with Ghislaine Maxwell and her attorneys (and) their defences and it’s all very painful for the victims.”
Ms Bloom added: “They really feel encouraged and really take heart from the fact that this case was prosecuted and brought to trial.
“And now she’s going to be sentenced to, probably, a long prison term. That really means a lot to them.
They made choices that harmed girls and women and they should be held accountable
Lisa Bloom, lawyer representing Maxwell victims
“They don’t think she should ever get out because other women could be harmed in the future.”
Commenting on the number of women who have accused Maxwell of abuse, Ms Bloom said: “I believe there are hundreds and hundreds of victims.
“We know that 150 women came forward to the Jeffrey Epstein settlement fund and even that is probably the tip of the iceberg.
“I talk to many women who say they were abused by Epstein and Maxwell but they ultimately decided they just couldn’t go through with it.
“So there could be other victims who come forward, she could be prosecuted again – that is always possible.”
Asked if other people associated with Maxwell and Epstein could be prosecuted, Ms Bloom said: “I do believe there are other people who could be held accountable.
“They made choices that harmed girls and women and they should be held accountable.
“Prosecutors are going to need victims and they are going to need evidence to bring those cases.
“If anybody else out there was part of this scheme, we know that other names have been put out there including at Ghislaine Maxwell’s trial, they should be very concerned.
“We are now seeing a new era where victims are being believed even if they are imperfect, even if they made mistakes in their lives, which was the case in the Ghislaine Maxwell case.
“Nevertheless, they are being believed and I think it would be very important to bring others to justice.”