The Daily Telegraph

Trump ‘wishes Ghislaine Maxwell well’

- By Nick Allen in Washington

DONALD TRUMP said he “wished Ghislaine Maxwell well” in an extraordin­ary interventi­on in the case against the British socialite accused of recruiting young girls for the late paedophile financier Jeffrey Epstein.

The US president said he had met Ms Maxwell “numerous times” when she lived in the same part of Florida as his Mar-a-lago club.

Mr Trump declined to comment on the Duke of York, saying he “did not know the situation”, but twice wished Ms Maxwell well.

The president was asked whether he thought Ms Maxwell was “going to turn in powerful men”. He said: “I don’t know, I haven’t really been following it too much. I just wish her well, frankly.

“I’ve met her numerous times over the years, especially since I lived in

Palm Beach and I guess they lived in Palm Beach. But I wish her well, whatever it is.” He added: “I don’t know the situation with Prince Andrew. Just don’t know, not aware of it.”

The daughter of the late media magnate Robert Maxwell was arrested in New Hampshire three weeks ago and is currently being held in jail in New York until her trial next July.

She has pleaded not guilty to six criminal charges, including four related to transporti­ng minors for illegal sexual acts and two of perjury. Her lawyers have argued that she has been made a scapegoat following the death of Ep- stein by suicide in a prison cell last year.

Mr Trump and his wife Melania were photograph­ed with Epstein and Ms Maxwell at Mar-a-lago in 2000.

Following Epstein’s arrest last year Mr Trump said: “I was not a fan of his, that I can tell you,”

Virginia Roberts Giuffre has claimed she was recruited by Ms Maxwell, trafficked from the US to London, and forced to sleep with the Duke of York when she was 17.

The Duke himself has always strongly denied the claims and said he has no recollecti­on of meeting Ms Giuffre. There has been speculatio­n that Ms Maxwell could give informatio­n to US authoritie­s about the Duke, and other powerful men she has met, including Bill Clinton and Mr Trump, neither of whom have been accused of any wrongdoing.

‘I’ve met her numerous times over the years... I don’t know the situation with Prince Andrew. Just don’t know’

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