Trump took a 'sudden interest' in Ghislaine Maxwell when discussing who to pardon, according to a new book

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Trump took a 'sudden interest' in Ghislaine Maxwell when discussing who to pardon, according to a new book
Donald Trump Getty
  • Trump discussed Ghislaine Maxwell, when considering who to pardon, according to a new book by journalist Michael Wolff.
  • He took a "sudden interest" in the case of Jeffrey Epstein's associate in the final week of his presidency, the book said.
  • Trump said in July 2020 of Maxwell: "I wish her well."

Donald Trump took a "sudden interest" in Ghislaine Maxwell's case as he was considering who to pardon in the final week of his presidency, journalist Michael Wolff alleges in a new book.

Maxwell, a close associate of Jeffrey Epstein, is awaiting trial on sex-trafficking charges, to which she has pleaded not guilty. Epstein died in jail last year while he was awaiting trial on sex-trafficking charges.

According to Wolff's new book "Landslide"- his second detailing the Trump presidency - the former president's attention turned to Maxwell and her case as he looked for potential candidates for a presidential pardon, according to an extract published by the Times of London.

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According to Wolff, Trump was "bored" by the "process and details" of pardoning individuals but was determined to use the executive power granted to presidents before he departed the White House.

Wolff said he would frequently interrupt conversations to ask: "Why do you think should be pardoned? Give me one person - who's your top pick?"

Of Maxwell, he asked "Has she said anything about me?" according to the book. Wolff reports that he added: "Is she going to talk? Will she roll on anybody?"

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The former president also considered giving himself a federal pardon, telling aides that "they say I can. Unlimited pardon power," but was dissuaded from doing so due to the risk of triggering individual states to pursue prosecutions, Wolff alleges.

Trump took a 'sudden interest' in Ghislaine Maxwell when discussing who to pardon, according to a new book
From left, American real estate developer Donald Trump and his girlfriend (and future wife), former model Melania Knauss, financier (and future convicted sex offender) Jeffrey Epstein, and British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell pose together at the Mar-a-Lago club, Palm Beach, Florida, February 12, 2000. Getty
Trump socialized with Maxwell on at least one occasion in 2000, when he was photographed with his wife Melania as well as Maxwell and Jeffrey Epstein. He sent her well-wishes in July last year after she was arrested and did so again the following month.

When asked "why you would wish such a person well" by Axios reporter Jonathan Swan, Trump replied: "She's now in jail, so yeah, I wish her well. I would wish you well. I would wish a lot of people well. Good luck. Let them prove somebody was guilty."

Trump ultimately did not pardon Maxwell. His former chief strategist Steve Bannon and the rapper Lil Wayne were among those he did pardon.

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