Prosecutors agree to dismiss perjury counts Ghislaine Maxwell faces if her conviction sticks

Prosecutors agree to dismiss perjury counts Ghislaine Maxwell faces if her conviction sticks

Prosecutors have agreed to dismiss separate perjury counts Ghislaine Maxwell faces at sentencing if she is unsuccessful in getting a new trial “in light of the victims’ significant interests in bringing closure to this matter and avoiding the trauma of testifying again,” according to a court filing on Monday.

The filing — by prosecutors and defense attorneys — was meant to be a jointly proposed schedule for Maxwell’s sentencing after she was convicted of five of six counts in December, including sex trafficking a minor.

But her defense attorneys argue that she should not have to “expend resources” on other post-trial motions until after US District Judge Alison Nathan decides whether or not Maxwell should be granted a new trial.

The two severed perjury counts Maxwell faces stem from a 2016 civil deposition where prosecutors allege she lied and were supposed to be handled in a separate trial.

“In the event the defendant’s post-trial motions are denied, the Government is prepared to dismiss the severed perjury counts at the time of sentencing, in light of the victims’ significant interests in bringing closure to this matter and avoiding the trauma of testifying again,” the joint filing stated.

Prosecutors asked Nathan to order a pre-sentencing report to be prepared and to schedule a sentencing in three to four months.

Defense attorneys want to delay setting a sentencing schedule because there is a “compelling basis” for the court to overturn Maxwell’s conviction and grant her a new trial.

Maxwell’s attorneys have argued that she should be granted a new trial after a member of the jury gave post-trial interviews saying he had been sexually abused and shared his story with fellow jurors during deliberations.

Jurors were explicitly asked on jury questionnaire forms if they had been sexually abused and, if so, if it would impact their abilities to be impartial while deliberating. It is unclear how the juror in question answered the question on the form. CNN’s request for a copy of his questionnaire was denied by prosecutors, who said they were “not public information.”

Defense attorneys argued in a court filing that the Supreme Court has ruled that a defendant is entitled to a new trial if a party can show a juror failed to answer a material question honestly during jury questioning.

The-CNN-Wire
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