Defense lawyer Laura Menninger questions witness “Jane” during the trial of Ghislaine Maxwell, the Jeffrey Epstein associate accused of sex trafficking, in a courtroom sketch in New York City, U.S., December 1, 2021.REUTERS/Jane Rosenberg
Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell paid for and stayed at lodge located on the campus of a teen summer camp.
Court records at Maxwell’s sex trafficking trial Wednesday detail Epstein’s ties to Interlochen.Advertisement
An accuser says Epstein and Maxwell sexually abused her for years starting when she was 14 years old after first meeting her at the camp in 1994.
Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell funded and visited a building on the campus of a prestigious Michigan-based performing arts summer camp and boarding school for teenagers, according to records shown at Maxwell’s sex-trafficking trial Wednesday.
The records showed that Maxwell and Epstein stayed at the lodge, called the Jeffrey Epstein Scholarship Lodge, at the Interlochen Center for the Arts outside Traverse City, Michigan, on at least one occasion. Interlochen is a sleepaway “band camp” for middle and high school students, as well as a boarding school.
On Wednesday, prosecutors sought to use the records and testimony from Daniel Besselsen, one of the center’s administrators, to bolster testimony from “Jane,” one of Maxwell’s and Epstein’s accusers who testified under a pseudonym. Jane began her testimony on Tuesday and completed it earlier on Wednesday afternoon.
She testified that Epstein and Maxwell approached her in the summer of 1994 when she was 14 years old and between music classes at the Interlochen camp. When Epstein found out Jane lived in Palm Beach, as he did, he asked for her mother’s phone number, she testified.
It was the beginning of a relationship where Epstein and Maxwell groomed her for sex and repeatedly sexually abused her for at least the next half-decade, Jane testified this week.
Prosecutors have accused Maxwell of sex trafficking girls with Epstein, sexually abusing them herself, and lying about her actions in a deposition. Maxwell has pleaded not guilty to the charges against her and denied all accusations of wrongdoing.
Epstein and Maxwell jointly paid $200,000 to build the lodge, records show
On Wednesday, prosecutors presented exhibits that consisted of letters from administrators of the Interlochen Center for the Arts. They detailed how Epstein and Maxwell donated $200,000 for the rustic, two-bedroom building, and stayed there for a week in August of 1994.
The Jeffrey Epstein Scholarship Lodge — which was renamed to Green Lake Lodge in 2007, after Epstein was arrested on child pornography charges — was available for parents of students and other guests to rent out and spend time on the center’s campus.
Records shown in court also corroborated that Jane attended the camp in 1994, as well as over the next two summers. Jane testified that Epstein paid for her camp tuition in 1995 and 1996 when her family was in a difficult financial situation. Two of Jane’s brothers also attended Interlochen’s boarding school around that time, according to Besselsen’s testimony.
Epstein attended the camp himself in the 1960s, and associates have said he was passionate about classical music throughout his life.
A funding note previously obtained by The Daily Beast says the Epstein lodge was completed in 1994 and located near where “junior girls” lived.
Witness “Jane” cries as she testifies under redirect examination during the trial of Ghislaine Maxwell, the Jeffrey Epstein associate accused of sex trafficking, in a courtroom sketch in New York City, U.S., December 1, 2021.REUTERS/Jane Rosenberg
In 2019, following sex-trafficking charges against Epstein, Interlochen’s president Trey Devey acknowledged Epstein’s connections to Interlochen. Devey said Interlochen had no record of Epstein visiting except for one stay in the year 2000, although the records shown at trial indicate he stayed there in 1994.
Lawrence Visoski, a pilot who flew Epstein’s private jets between 1991 and 2019, testified earlier in the trial that he flew Epstein on trips to Interlochen on several occasions.
Devey’s note acknowledging Epstein’s ties to Interlochen is no longer available on the organization’s website. According to an archived version of the note, Devey said Interlochen had “no record of any complaint raised against Mr. Epstein at Interlochen.”
An Interlochen representative didn’t immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment. Epstein killed himself in jail in August 2019 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges.
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