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30 Dec, 2021 18:22

BBC sorry for interview on Maxwell trial

Lawyer Alan Dershowitz’s connection to Jeffrey Epstein was not disclosed before BBC interview, sparking criticism
BBC sorry for interview on Maxwell trial

The BBC has apologized for asking Alan Dershowitz for his take on Ghislaine Maxwell’s guilty verdict without disclosing his connection, with critics citing the lawyer’s direct links to the sex-trafficking case.

Dershowitz appeared on the British state broadcaster shortly after Maxwell was found guilty on five of the six charges against her, and it was only hours after this appearance that the network released a statement apologizing for the interview.

“We will look into how this happened,” BBC News said, adding the segment did not meet their “editorial standards” as Dershowitz was “not a suitable person to interview as an impartial analyst.”

In their listed editorial standards, the BBC says it is committed to "due impartiality" in all of its output. 

As critics were quick to point out to the news organization, Dershowitz’s name has publicly been tied to the late financier and convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein through Virginia Giuffre. She has claimed Dershowitz sexually abused her while serving as Epstein’s lawyer. 

There was no disclaimer about his connection to the Maxwell trial, but Dershowitz blasted Giuffre – one of Maxwell’s accusers – anyway.

“The most important thing for British viewers is that the government was very careful who it used as witnesses,” he said. “It did not use as a witness the woman who accused Prince Andrew, who accused me, who accused many other people, because the government didn’t believe she was telling the truth.”

Maxwell is a former romantic and business partner of Epstein. She was accused by prosecutors and multiple alleged victims of taking part in Epstein’s abuse of young women. 

Social media users expressed shock over Dershowitz’s appearance on the BBC, as well as the network’s claim of ignorance as to how it happened. 

Dershowitz has defended his appearance on the BBC, calling it “entirely appropriate” while blasting Giuffre’s accusation as “false.”

“I made full disclosure of Virginia Giuffre’s false accusation against me before expressing my opinion about the prosecution’s wise decision not to vouch for her credibility by using her as a witness in the Maxwell case,” he said in a public statement. 

Fox News also interviewed Dershowitz on Wednesday about Maxwell, where the lawyer also slammed Giuffre, though it provided a disclaimer about Dershowitz’s connection to the case beforehand, unlike the BBC.