|Ghislaine Maxwell attends day 1 of the 4th Annual WIE Symposium at Center 548 on September 20, 2013 in New York City. - Laura Cavanaugh/Getty Images
Prosecutors in the sex-trafficking case against Ghislaine Maxwell said she's being held in isolation at a Brooklyn jail for her own protection.
Lawyers for Maxwell — who's being held at Brooklyn's Metropolitan Detention Center as she awaits trial on charges of sex-trafficking girls as young as 14 for her former boyfriend, Jeffrey Epstein — argued in court papers earlier this week that she was being held under "uniquely onerous" conditions in "reaction to the circumstances surrounding the pretrial detention and death of Mr. Epstein." They said it was unfair that the Bureau of Prisons, which runs the jail, was keeping her away from its general population.
Manhattan Assistant US Attorney Alex Rossmiller responded to her filing on Thursday, saying the measures were designed to protect Maxwell.
"For reasons including safety, security, and the orderly functioning of the facility, BOP has made the determination that, at present, the defendant should not be fully integrated into the dorm-style accommodations of the general population," he wrote in a letter to the judge.
Lawyers for Maxwell have previously said she was under surveillance 24 hours a day, forced to wear special clothing, had undergone numerous body scans, and was woken up every few hours by guards.
But Rossmiller said Maxwell was "incorrect" in saying she was being treated worse than other inmates.
"There is no merit to her complaints about being monitored by staff, as it is entirely appropriate for BOP to carefully monitor any inmate, particularly a new inmate who has never before been incarcerated and who faces the strong likelihood of serving many years in prison," he said. "Additionally, like all inmates, the defendant may be subject to observation or searches of her person or space as appropriate."
Maxwell was arrested in July and is accused of helping Epstein recruit, groom, and sexually abuse minors. She's being held without bail.
In her court filing asking to be moved to the jail's general population, Maxwell's lawyers also asked for the names of the victims the government accused her of helping Epstein sexually abuse.
Rossmiller asked for this request to be denied as well, saying it was "premature given that the production of discovery, on the schedule agreed to by the defendant, has just begun."
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