GHISLAINE Maxwell has spoken out for the first time from prison about her ‘dear friend’ Prince Andrew.
In a world-exclusive interview from prison where she’s serving 20 years for trafficking teenage girls, she confessed, “I feel so bad for him. I follow what happens to him.”
Maxwell, 60, appeared shaken to learn that the prince’s lawyers had claimed they were never close, before sadly adding: “I accept that this friendship could not survive my conviction.
“He pays such a price for the club. I consider him a dear friend. I take care of him.”
It comes as the Duke of York struggles to salvage his image in the face of hostile public opinion and heartbreak over the death of his mother, the Queen.
In two explosive interviews, one of which was conducted face-to-face in prison, Maxwell even shared how she’s now convinced Andrew is a victim of falsified evidence.
She also spoke for the first time about her close friendships with former US Presidents Bill Clinton and Donald Trump and her association with the “greatest regret of my life,” pedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
Our first meeting, conducted as part of an upcoming CBS Paramount Plus special, took place in June this year at New York’s infamous Metropolitan Detention Center, followed by another lengthy interview conducted far from their current Florida prison.
For the first time since her July 2020 arrest, Maxwell has spoken out about her regrets over her association with billionaire financier and sex offender Epstein, claiming it turned her into a “wicked witch” hate figure and harmed those she loved. And she revealed that she longs to turn back the clock.
“I said in my court statement that meeting Epstein was the biggest mistake of my life,” Maxwell admits.
“And if I could go back today, obviously I would avoid meeting him and I would make different choices.”
Andrew wasn’t the only friend she lost because of her ties to the tycoon, who was found dead in his cell in 2019 at the age of 66 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges.
Former US President Bill Clinton, who traveled on the tycoon’s private jet “Lolita Express,” was also a relationship she cherished.
“It was a special friendship that continued through the years,” she said.
“We had a lot in common. I feel bad that he’s another victim just because of his connection with Jeffrey. I understand that like others, he can no longer consider me a friend.”
One of the few people who have shown her loyalty is ex-President Donald Trump, she says.
“We knew each other and mingled in the same circles, in New York, Palm Beach. I was very grateful when he wished me well after (the arrest). He got bad media for it, but he dared while others didn’t.
“I was honored that he remembered me. Well, he’s known for saying what’s on his mind. That gave me a big boost.”
Maxwell complained that friends were “cancelled” just because they knew them.
“There are many people who have been influenced by this story,” she said. “Friends of mine who never met Epstein lost their jobs. People who literally had nothing to do with him were canceled.
“For all these people . . . I think it was a very high price that the abandonment culture paid. It was very difficult for many people.”
Still, she admitted that she was hurt by the lack of loyalty from so-called friends who were once desperate for a place in her social circle.
“There are people who have let me down and there are people who I’m surprised that haven’t been a little bit more proactive,” she said. “I fully understand that people have a livelihood that needs to be protected. . . to protect children.
“Nevertheless, there are people who have supported me privately. Quite a few, actually, and I am very grateful for their private support.
“I have friends that I’ve known literally my whole life since I was in kindergarten. It’s good to know that there are people out there who really know who I am.”
As for the others, Maxwell believes they accepted a false version of her as the “wicked witch” in Epstein’s story. “This is all a fictionalized version of me,” she said. “It was created to fit the plot. It has absolutely nothing to do with who I am.
There are many people affected by this story.
“I find it odd that so many people choose to contribute to the fake, made-up version, sort of a Disney character, the Wicked Witch, if you will. The real people who know me and still love me never spoke to each other.”
Maxwell is an intelligent woman who earned her degree in modern languages from Oxford University – and says she’s worked all her life – and hates showing weakness.
She said: “I think there are a lot of women who can relate to my story. Many have either fallen in love with men or had relationships with them that they look back on and say, “What was I thinking?” I can imagine there isn’t a woman on the planet who wouldn’t think that about one or the other of her boyfriends.”
But she said she would not discuss individuals – Epstein, Prince Andrew or Scott Borgerson, the husband who reportedly dumped her in a jail call – until her appeal was heard.
Maxwell even refused to dispute reports that she and Andrew were once a couple, claiming, “I have read, seen and heard and reported so many egregious inaccuracies that I can’t even begin to pick them all apart.”
“If I take one apart and don’t address everyone else, it’s going to be, ‘Well, she said no to that. What about all the others?’
“So I’m not going to discuss anything of that nature. After the appeal, I will be very happy to address all of these things with you.”
But could they become friends in the future? She said: “I have no expectation. People I was friends with – and very close friends with. . . I can’t imagine what they want or don’t want to do.”
In a stunning about-face, Maxwell branded one of the most damaging exhibits in the case against Andrew as a fake. . . the infamous photo of him with his hand cupping the bare stomach of teenage sex slave Virginia Giuffre.
“This photo is not real”
It is believed to have been taken at Maxwell’s London flat in March 2001 and shows her with a big grin in the background.
“This photo isn’t real,” she insisted, supporting Andrew’s earlier claim.
“An original was never produced.” She declined to say more about Giuffre — who sued the prince for sexual abuse and earlier this year accepted a reported $12 million in damages — adding with a dismissive wave of her hand, ” I don’t even want to start talking about Virginia.”
The prince dropped his defense of Giuffre’s lawsuit and agreed to pay – making him a palace outcast barred from royal duties – after a damaging email from Ghislaine in 2015 surfaced.
Epstein’s attorney, Alan Dershowitz, asked her if the picture was real. She replied: “It looks real. I think it is.”
When asked about it, Maxwell now insisted, “I don’t recognize this picture and I don’t think it’s a real picture.” She then claimed that all she wanted to say in that email was that she was her own house.
“I said it’s this picture that I recognize as my house, whatever it is,” she explained in a rambling reply. “But I came to discover this image, which I don’t believe is true. And the original was never produced because it doesn’t exist. I don’t think this picture is a true picture.”
So did she answer Dershowitz without thinking? “If you see a photo and it’s a photo of you at home and someone says to you, is that a photo of you? So don’t question.
It would never have occurred to me that anyone would have taken a picture or done anything with a picture back then. . . I recognized the surroundings of this photo, nothing more.”
Maxwell claims there were “over 50 problems with the picture” that led her to conclude it was fake.
- The first worldwide look at Daphne’s TV special will air Monday at 6.30pm on CBS News, Paramount Plus and ITV News. Daphne’s best-selling book, Saving Amy, based on her months of filming with Amy Winehouse and her family, is being adapted into an eight-part TV series by Halcyon Studio with the help of British author Mal Young.
https://www.the-sun.com/news/6452307/ghislaine-maxwell-close-friendships-clinton-trump/ Ghislaine Maxwell opens up about close friendships with Clinton and Trump for the first time in an exclusive interview from prison