Ghislaine Maxwell can't keep Epstein testimony secret

A U.S. appeals court on Monday dealt a major blow to Ghislaine Maxwell, a close companion of the late convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Epstein was accused of recruiting and grooming dozens of underage girls as young as 14 to engage in illegal sexual acts.

And on Monday, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan said there was a presumption the public had a right to see Maxwell's 418-page deposition about her relationship with Epstein.

The court also said U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska did not abuse her discretion in rejecting Maxwell's "meritless arguments," which included that they concerned "extremely personal' matters whose release could prove embarrassing or annoying.

The order upheld Preska's decision in July to release the deposition, and hundreds of other documents from the 2015 lawsuit filed by Virginia Giuffre, one of Epstein's accusers.

Maxwell's lawyers had said bad publicity from disclosing "intimate, sensitive, and personal details" from the deposition could undermine her ability to defend against criminal charges that she enabled Epstein's sexual abuses.

They argued the British socialite thought her deposition would remain confidential, and that releasing it would violate her constitutional right against self-incrimination, and imperil a fair trial because jurors might hold its contents against her.

Lawyers for Maxwell did not immediately respond to requests for comment, including whether they plan a further appeal.

She has pleaded not guilty to helping Epstein, and not guilty to perjury for having denied involvement in the deposition.

Maxwell was arrested on July 2nd in New Hampshire, where prosecutors said she had been hiding out.

She has been locked up in a Brooklyn jail since the judge overseeing her criminal case called her an unacceptable flight risk.

A trial is scheduled for next July.