In her 58-page rule book, Ghislaine Maxwell instructed her workers at Jeffrey Epstein’s estates to “see nothing, hear nothing, say nothing.” She also instructed them to always ensure that the couple had a gun accessible at all times during the night.
On Thursday, the “Maxwell Household Manual” was revealed in the sex-trafficking trial of the accused madam, as former maid, Juan Alessi testified about the “very degrading” manner staff were treated at the Maxwell-Epstein house.
The 2005 manual showed how Maxwell, the 59-year-old “lady of the house” would obsess over making Epstein’s Palm Beach home “like a five-star hotel”.
The manual’s introduction said how staff members were expected to “anticipate the needs of Mr. Epstein, Ms. Maxwell, and their guests.”
This was stated on the first page of orders: “Remember that you see nothing, hear nothing, say nothing, except to answer a question directed at you.”
Detailed directions were provided for each room, particularly the master bedroom, which had to be kept at 60 degrees and have “JE and GM telephone directories” by the phone. Maxwell was not mentioned as having a separate bedroom, even though she did have her own bathroom.
Additional instructions included having a “gun placed in bedside table drawer”.
There were other directives in the 2005 manual that pointed to Epstein potentially having paranoia.
“Unless otherwise instructed, NEVER disclose Mr. Epstein or Ms. Maxwell’s activities or whereabouts to anyone,” the rulebook warned. “Do not be bullied … simply be firm.”
Staff was required to “advise Ms. Maxwell of any strange telephone calls or enquiries” — as well as of “any unusual behavior, such as strangers lurking around the vicinity of the property.”
In Epstein’s cars, it was never permitted to have less than three-quarters of a tank of gas, and it was always required to have at least $100 in the vehicle.
In his testimony during Maxwell’s trial in Manhattan, Alessi— said the pair nicknamed him “John” instead of “Juan”— told jurors that he was “supposed to be blind, deaf, and deaf-mute and say nothing about their lives.”
Even though the guideline was full of British spellings, it did not go as far as Alessi’s claim that he was commanded never to look Epstein in the eyes.
The document did, however, provide a thorough list of instructions on how staff members should guarantee that they used a “polite ‘aim to please’ approach,” which included a prohibition on discussing “personal problems” and a requirement to “be cautious of noise levels and noise.”
“Unobtrusive is the key,” it stressed.
The manual said, “Do not eat or drink in front of Mr. Epstein, Ms. Maxwell, and their guests”. It also banned the usage of chewing gum and allowed personal cellphone to ring. Also, the house phone “should be answered in three rings or less”.
When entering bedrooms, the guide instructed that “you do not expound on the weather or any other subject.”
“Yes,” “sure,” “gotcha,” “you bet,” “I dunno,” and “no problem” were among the typical words and phrases that were forbidden to be said.
Instead, they were instructed to use phrases such as “with pleasure” and “you are quite right” — and, if they were criticized, to respond with the words “It was completely my fault; I will make the changes immediately.”
There was a rigorous uniform of blue jeans and white golf shirts, which was later replaced with long-sleeved white shirts “for dinner service”.
The manual stressed, “Items in pockets must not create a bulge or be visible. Avoid using strong perfume or aftershave lotion.”
It contained lengthy lists of groceries and high-end products that the pair intended to have on hand at all times, including 32 toiletries that Maxwell required for her bathroom, where toilet paper had to be folded in a “V”.
Wine, champagne, beer, and spirits were among the 26 types of beverages expected in stock, and Epstein’s morning coffee had to have “creamer filled with Half & Half, warmed in the microwave for 25 seconds,” according to the expectations.
“Always serve from the left and clear from the right,” according to the protocol for dinner service.
JE and GM telephone directories, as well as headed notepads and cards, with Maxwell’s having “Lady Ghislaine” notepads.
There was a list of 13 daily cleaning tasks, 23 weekly ones, and monthly ones, as well as ones for April and October, including rotation of “seasonal clothing”.
Staff members were also required to rotate through “standby duty,” which required them to “not travel more than one hour from their home base.”
It stated in the manual that “if you are called, the maximum time it will take you to return is one hour,” with the caveat that “you could be called upon at any time of day or night.”
Despite the stringent guidelines, employees were told to “SMILE!”.
According to allegations, Maxwell, who is 59 years old, recruited and groomed young women to be sexually abused by Epstein. It is estimated that her trial will run up to six weeks.
Her attorneys claim that prosecutors are pursuing her because they are unable to prosecute Epstein, who committed suicide in his Manhattan jail cell in 2019 while awaiting his own trial on serious sex-related charges.
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