Ghislaine Maxwell arrest: Dramatic details emerge of FBI raid that snared Jeffrey Epstein's former girlfriend

Ellena Cruse
REUTERS

Dramatic new details have emerged of the FBI raid that led to the arrest of Ghislaine Maxwell, the ex-girlfriend of convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein.

The British socialite was detained on Thursday after officers burst into her £800,000 house in Bramford, New Hampshire, following a year-long “cat-and-mouse” hunt.

She has since been charged with assisting Epstein’s abuse of minors by helping to recruit and groom victims known to be underage.

To ensure Maxwell did not flee, FBI spy planes flew over the 156-acre property for four hours before the 8.20am raid, the Mail on Sunday reported.

A locked gate blocked the driveway to the property where Ghislaine Maxwell was residing (REUTERS)

Officers then used bolt cutters to break the lock on a gate at her residence before armed agents smashed down her front door.

An FBI agent told The Mail on Sunday: ‘We drove at speed up the half-mile driveway in a convoy of 15 vehicles.

Epstein with Maxwell in 2005 (Getty Images)

"And let’s just say, we didn’t knock politely on the door. It was smashed down.

"Maxwell was up and dressed, in the living room, wearing sweat pants and a top. Strangely she didn’t seem to have much reaction. It was like it wasn’t registering with her.

"She was turned around quickly and cuffed. She was in custody in a matter of seconds."

A source with insider knowledge about FBI operation told the paper that agents have been "on her tail" since Epstein killed himself in August last year. The disgraced financier took his own life in a New York prison where he was being held on child prostitution and trafficking charges.

They said: "This has taken millions of dollars and hundreds of man-hours."

They added: "The FBI has been tracking her for a year. They had her, then they lost her.

"She was in Colorado and Wyoming then they lost her until she showed up in New Hampshire. It’s been a high-stakes game of cat and mouse"

The source revealed that the FBI had to build a case that could be heard in front of a grand jury which took time.

"She slipped through the net once but as soon as the grand jury came back with an indictment ten days ago, it was on."

Maxwell, who has always denied wrongdoing, is being held in custody in New York.

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Maxwell will 'never ever' speak about the Duke of York, friend claims

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