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Maxwell pictured in 2015. Andrew Savulich
Juan Patricio Alessi

Epstein employee drove underage girls to house under Maxwell’s orders, jury told

The 59-year-old allegedly told the housekeeper to only speak to Epstein ‘when he asked questions’.

LAST UPDATE | 2 Dec 2021

THE FORMER HOUSEKEEPER of Jeffrey Epstein has told a court he drove two underage girls to the disgraced financier’s house under instructions from Ghislaine Maxwell.

Juan Patricio Alessi said today that he picked up one of Maxwell’s alleged victims, who gave evidence under the pseudonym “Jane”, and the Duke of York’s accuser Virginia Roberts to bring to Epstein’s Palm Beach estate when they appeared to be around 14-15 years old.

The 72-year-old witness told jurors he saw Jane’s contact details in Epstein’s telephone directory listed under masseuses.

The witness was handed a 58-page booklet on how 59-year-old Maxwell expected staff to behave and carry out their duties, including an order to “unless otherwise instructed, never disclose Mr Epstein and Ms Maxwell’s activities or whereabouts to anyone”.

The British socialite, described as the “lady of the house” by Alessi, is accused of preying on vulnerable young girls and luring them to massage rooms to be molested by Epstein between 1994 and 2004.

The witness told jurors he had seen “many, many, many females” at Epstein’s Palm Beach house and “75, 80%” of those spending time at his pool were topless when visiting.

Earlier, the witness told the court Maxwell ordered staff not to look in Epstein’s eyes when they spoke to him.

Asked by Assistant United States Attorney Maurene Comey how many females he had seen at Epstein’s Palm Beach house, Mr Alessi said: “Many, many, many females.”

“About how many times did you see the female guests by the pool?”

“Many, many times. Hundreds of times.”

“What percentage of those times were these females topless?”

“75%, 80% probably.”

Alessi then told jurors about the booklet he received from Ms Maxwell towards the end of his employment.

He said: “It was, I’m sorry to say, very degrading to me.

“Most of the pages were just unbelievable to me.”

Alessi said the booklet gave staff a number of instructions, including how to address Epstein and how to dress themselves.

The witness was then presented with a more recent version of the booklet titled the “household manual”.

“How many, if any, young females do you remember seeing at Mr Epstein’s house?”

“Just two females that appeared to be underage to me.”

“How did you meet Jane?”

“I met Jane the first time she came to the house at Palm Beach with her mother.

“She was introduced by Ms Maxwell.”

“When you first met Jane how old was she?”

“I would say 14-15.

“I don’t know how old but she looked young.”

“About how many times do you remember seeing Jane at the house with her mother?”

“I remember at least three times with her mother.”

jeffrey-epstein-maxwell-trial In this courtroom sketch, Ghislaine Maxwell is seated at the defense table while watching testimony of witnesses during her trial. AP / PA Images AP / PA Images / PA Images

Alessi said while at the Palm Beach house, Jane would spend her time with either Epstein or Maxwell.

He continued: “I was told to pick her up either by Ms Maxwell or Mr Epstein.”

“Where do you remember picking her up?”

“I remember picking her up from school… and I picked up Jane from her house.”

Alessi then told the court of the first time he met Virginia Roberts, who was in what looked like a “nurse’s uniform” outside a spa in Palm Beach.

The witness then told jurors he met Roberts again later the same day at Epstein’s house.

“After that visit, about how often did she come to the house?”

“Very often.”

“Do you know how Virginia Roberts got to Epstein’s Palm Beach home when she visited?”

“She came with her boyfriend a couple of times and I was told to pick her up a couple of times from her house.”

“Did Ms Maxwell ever instruct you to pick up Virginia Roberts?”

“Yes she did.”

Asked if Roberts ever brought any other girls to the property, Alessi said: “At the end of my stay here I saw her bring two other girls.”

Continuing her examination of the witness, Comey asked: “About how often did Mr Epstein receive massages when you worked for him?”

“At the beginning, he received about one, at the end of my stay he received about three a day.”

“Who scheduled Mr Epstein’s massages?”

“Ms Maxwell and Mr Epstein.”

Alessi was then questioned about a directory in which a number of masseuses were listed for Epstein.

Asked if Jane was one of the names on the list, he said: “Yes it was her in the contact information.”

‘Lady of the house’

Earlier, Alessi said of Maxwell: “I understood she was the lady of the house.

“She told me she was going to be the lady of the house.”

Asked how his relationship with Epstein had changed while he worked for him, Alessi said: “It went from being cordial to being more just professional.

“Our conversations became less and less and less.”

Questioned on whether he was given instructions on how to speak to Epstein by Maxwell, Alessi said: “Only that I was supposed to speak to Mr Epstein when he asked me questions.

“At the end of my stay, I was told Jeffrey doesn’t like looking in his eyes so don’t look in his eyes, just look at another part of the room and answer him.”

“It was extensive preparations. It was very elaborate,” Alessi said of Epstein’s arrivals in Palm Beach.

“From the cleaning of the house, to change the sheets in his room, changing the sheets in the guest rooms, to the shopping, taking care of the cars, making sure the cars were clean, make sure there were 100 dollar bills in the car.

“The house needed to be immaculate – like a five star hotel.”

sex-trafficking-trial-of-ghislaine-maxwell-in-new-york-city Siblings of Ghislaine Isabel Maxwell and Kevin Maxwell speak to the press in front of the Thurgood Marshall Federal Court in New York City on 1 December. SIPA USA / PA Images SIPA USA / PA Images / PA Images

The full indictment against Maxwell lists six charges: conspiracy to entice minors to travel to engage in illegal sex acts; enticement of a minor to travel to engage in illegal sex acts; conspiracy to transport minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity; transporting a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity; sex trafficking conspiracy; and sex trafficking of a minor.

The defendant is further alleged to have lied under oath by hiding her participation in Epstein’s offences during a separate civil case.

Epstein was found dead in his cell at a federal jail in Manhattan in August 2019 while he awaited trial on sex trafficking charges.

The death was ruled a suicide.

Maxwell, who has been held in a US jail since her arrest in July last year, denies all charges.

The trial continues.

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