She also questioned the authenticity of the Duke of York’s infamous photo with an alleged teen victim
Disgraced British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell, who is now serving a 20-year sentence on sex trafficking-related charges, called Prince Andrew a “dear friend” in her first interview from prison.
The middle son of the late Queen Elizabeth II previously denied that he was close to Maxwell, a long-term girlfriend of billionaire sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, who died in jail under mysterious circumstances in 2019.
“I accept that this friendship could not survive my conviction,” Maxwell said in an interview with the Mail on Sunday, which was recorded in June in a New York detention center, but not published until October 16.
“Yes, I follow what is happening to him. He is paying such a price for the association [with Jeffrey Epstein]. I consider him a dear friend… I care about him,” she added.
Prince Andrew was stripped of his military titles and royal patronages earlier this year as he fought allegations of sexually abusing Virginia Roberts, one of Epstein’s alleged victims, when she was 17.
“I feel so bad for him,” Maxwell said.
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Commenting on a notorious 2001 photo of the prince with Roberts at Maxwell’s London home, she claimed that “there are over 50 problems” with it.
“I don’t recognize that picture and I don’t believe it is a real picture,” she said.
Prince Andrew, who settled the case with Roberts in February but made no admission of guilt, previously said that he did not recognize the photo. Some of his friends were quoted by the media as claiming that the image had been doctored.
According to Maxwell, Andrew is not the only friend she lost due to her conviction. Speaking about former US President Bill Clinton, she said, “it was a special friendship, which continued over the years.”
“I feel bad that he is another victim, only because of his association [with Epstein].”
She paid tribute to another former US leader, Donald Trump, with whom she “mingled in the same circles,” adding, “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.”
Maxwell went on to say that while many people have made her out to be “the Wicked Witch,” those who still love her “have never spoken.”
The former socialite revealed that she now works in her prison’s legal library and helps other inmates with their cases.