Ghislaine Maxwell, longtime associate of Jeffrey Epstein, has been arrested as part of the continuing federal inquiry into the child sex trafficking.
WASHINGTON – Days after Jeffrey Epstein's longtime associate, Ghislaine Maxwell, was arrested, a model who accused the disgraced financier of sexual battery in 1997 is asking for an investigation into why her allegations where apparently ignored.
In letters sent Monday to California authorities, Gloria Allred, who represents the accuser, said her client was never contacted by police or prosecutors after she filed a police report more than 20 years ago and was never told whether there had been an investigation. Epstein was never charged.
Alicia Arden said she met Epstein at Shutters on the Beach, a hotel in Santa Monica, thinking she was coming in to audition to becomea Victoria's Secret model. Arden said Epstein, who met her at the hotel room barefoot, groped her and tried to take off her clothes by lifting up her skirt.
After Epstein became distracted with his phone, Arden said she managed to move away and began to leave the room, she told reporters Monday. Before she left, Arden said, Epstein put $100 on the table.
“I left the money in the hotel room and walked out …. I felt violated and mistreated,” said Arden, who was then an aspiring model in her mid-20s. She said she filed a police report with the Santa Monica Police Department days after the incident.
Allred, in letters to Los Angeles District Attorney Jackie Lacey and Santa Monica Police Chief Cynthia Renaud, asked the local authorities to determine what action, if any, police took in response to Arden's allegations.
“We'd like to know, first, what happened. Was there an investigation? Was there not an investigation,” Allred told reporters. “I don't think Alicia should have to live with the unanswered question. … Why was it apparently disregarded? Did they interview Mr. Epstein? Did he decline to be interviewed? Did they take his words against hers? Or did they not do anything?”
The Santa Monica Police Department told the Associated Press last year that Arden declined to press charges, a claim that Arden has denied. A detective's notes showed that Epstein was questioned shortly after Arden filed the report and gave a conflicting statement, the AP reported.
Epstein died by suicide in a federal detention center in New York while awaiting trial of sex trafficking charges last year.
His longtime associate, Maxwell, was arrested last week and charged with helping to procure young victims for Epstein's child sex trafficking operation that began more than 25 years ago.
Ghislaine Maxwell arrested: She's accused of grooming Epstein's victims
A federal grand jury in New York indicted Maxwell on perjury and conspiracy charges that accuse her of helping Epstein “recruit, groom, and ultimately abuse victims” between 1994 and 1997. Both allegedly knew the victims were under age 18 and as young as 14.
Maxwell and Epstein enticed and lured the victims to Epstein’s homes scattered across the United States and abroad, “which Maxwell knew and intended would result in their grooming for and subjection to sexual abuse,” the indictment charged.
Maxwell was arrested in Bradford, New Hampshire, where authorities said she had purchased a large property.
Contributing: Kevin Johnson
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