A British victim of convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein has told for the first time how she was slowly groomed by him until she was completely vulnerable and defenceless.
Anouska De Georgiou, a near contemporary of Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge at Marlborough School, said Epstein preyed on her insecurities to the point she felt unable to escape his abuse.
Ms De Georgiou, who says she was repeatedly raped by Epstein, said she met the tycoon through well-connected friends in London during the 1990s.
The 42-year-old said she has complacently believed her educated background gave her some form of protection against putting herself in a position where she risked being sexually abused.
But she said Epstein’s strategy of slowly grooming her led her to drop her guard and become his victim.
In an interview alongside other of his victims on NBC's Dateline Friday Ms De Georgiou said: “It wasn't zero to 100 in one day. It was introduced piecemeal, along with constant emotional, financial reinforcement that this was the path, the only path."
But soon Epstein, who was found dead in his cell last month while awaiting trial on charges of child sex trafficking, started flying her to his properties across the globe, including his lair in the Caribbean, dubbed ‘Orgy Island’ by local inhabitants.
For Ms De Georgiou, Epstein’s millionaire lifestyle only served to lull her further into a false sense of security.
"For me, I was involved in that kind of lifestyle growing up and so I thought I could cope. And I thought I could handle it,” she said, only to add: "By the time I was being raped, it was too late."
Ms De Georgiou, who now works at The Kintsugi Foundation, a refuge for women battling trauma or addiction, told of how Epstein's accomplices would turn a blind eye to his behaviour.
The former model said: "In every location there was this microcosm of acceptance, of yes people, who acted like this was normal.
"If you're a young person walking into a mansion or someone's island and all the people who are present are acting as though this is OK and you're the only one who thinks it's weird, it's hard to say something."
During the interview Ms De Georgiou said she felt "powerless" to help the other girls being abused by the tycoon.
After seeing a girl younger than herself, she said: "I wanted to say something. I was in the ocean and she was on a paddleboard or something...and I wanted to say, 'You have to leave.' But I didn't."
Ms De Georgiou said Epstein could not hide his excitement before raping her.
"When Jeffrey would see me he would physically shake because he wanted to get at me and that was very unnerving,” she said.
After escaping his clutches, she went on to land a role in the Jude Law film “Alfie” in 2004, before moving to Los Angeles to pursue her acting career.
Ms De Georgiou spoke alongside Virginia Roberts Giuffre, who alleges she had sex with Prince Andrew. She claims the Duke of York had sex with her when she was just 17 at the townhouse of Epstein's girlfriend' Ghislaine Maxwell. Buckingham Palace insists there is no truth in Ms Giuffre’s allegations.
Ms De Georgiou says she now finds solace in helping other victims, saying: "My healing came through that, that I could walk alongside these women and girls and be a witness to their suffering."
Buckingham Palace said yesterday: "It is emphatically denied that The Duke of York had any form of sexual contact or relationship with Virginia Roberts. Any claim to the contrary is false and without foundation.”