Jeffrey Epstein’s former lawyer lobbied Donald Trump to pre-emptively pardon Ghislaine Maxwell during the final days of his presidency after talks with her family.
Alan Dershowitz, 83, a former Harvard Law School professor, represented Epstein during the noughties and Trump during his first impeachment trial. He has since been accused of abuse by one of Epstein’s under-age victims, which he denies.
Towards the end of Trump’s time in office the lawyer used his close ties to the president to secure pardons for paying clients.
Trump, 75, used his executive powers to pardon or commute the sentences of various convicts, some of them political allies, and even considered pardoning himself for unspecified crimes. He was also reported to have taken a sudden interest in Maxwell’s fate. According to Landslide, by the American journalist Michael Wolff, he asked aides: “Has she said anything about me? . . . Is she going to talk? Will she roll on anybody?”
Trump’s interest in Maxwell, 60, came after Dershowitz spoke to him about her case when she was in prison awaiting trial for sex trafficking of under-age girls.
Dershowitz raised the possibility of Trump granting a pardon to Maxwell over crimes for which she might be convicted. The lawyer had discussed the idea of clemency with one of Maxwell’s brothers.
Last night Ian Maxwell, 65, said he had not paid Dershowitz for his services. He said: “There was one phone call between Professor Dershowitz and a family member during which the generic issue of pardons was touched on.”
Maxwell added that Dershowitz was not explicitly asked, nor volunteered, to raise the matter with Trump, and that any resulting contact with him was purely incidental.
Dershowitz declined to discuss his contact with Trump. Asked if it would be correct to say he raised the Maxwell case with Trump, a source said: “It would not be unreasonable to report that.”
Trump could not be reached.