FBI located Ghislaine Maxwell by obtaining warrant to track her cellphone data


The FBI managed to locate Ghislaine Maxwell (pictured in 2016) at her New Hampshire hideaway by obtaining a search warrant to track her cellphone data, according to court documents

The FBI managed to locate Ghislaine Maxwell at her New Hampshire hideaway where she was arrested on sex crime charges last year by obtaining a search warrant to track her cellphone data, according to court documents.

The newly unsealed affidavit filed by an FBI agent on July 1 reveals how authorities tracked down Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged madam to the $1 million estate where she was holing up.

It was filed the day before Maxwell’s arrest, as part of an application for a search warrant to track down her whereabouts.

It reveals how authorities first obtained a warrant in New York to access GPS and historical cell site data for Maxwell which narrowed down their search for the suspect to a one square mile radius in New Hampshire.

The net then closed in further on Maxwell, 58, when the FBI obtained another warrant to use a ‘stingray’ device to send and receive signals from nearby cellphones, reported the Daily Beast.

This technology enables authorities to capture both a phone’s location and details of its registered user.

Its use led federal investigators to the $1 million estate in Bradford, New Hampshire, aptly named Tuckedaway, where they swooped and arrested Maxwell on July 2.

The documents also reveal that Maxwell’s phone, which was registered under the name ‘G Max’, had not been used to communicate with her husband Scott Borgerson, 44, since around March.

This apparent lack of phone communication between the spouses in the months leading up to her arrest comes as Maxwell was denied bail for a second time last month. 

In July it was reported that the FBI smashed down the door and discovered a mobile phone wrapped in tin foil which prosecutors called a ‘seemingly misguided effort to evade detection’ by law enforcement. 

Maxwell had claimed her marriage to Borgerson showed she would not be a flight risk if freed but prosecutors said Maxwell had been ‘in the process of divorcing’ her husband at the time of her arrest. 

Maxwell is now behind bars at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn awaiting trial on charges of procuring girls as young as 14 for convicted pedophile Epstein between 1994 and 1997. 

At the time of her arrest, federal prosecutors said Maxwell had changed her phone number to one registered under ‘G Max,’ changed her email address, moved at least twice and when she ordered delivery packages had them delivered to a different name. 

The newly unsealed affidavit was filed by an FBI agent on July 1, the day before Maxwell's arrest at the property (above), as part of an application for a search warrant to track down Jeffrey Epstein's alleged madam

The newly unsealed affidavit was filed by an FBI agent on July 1, the day before Maxwell’s arrest at the property (above), as part of an application for a search warrant to track down Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged madam

Maxwell and Jeffrey Epstein in 2005. The document reveals how authorities first obtained a warrant in New York to access GPS and historical cell site data for Maxwell which narrowed down their search for the suspect to a one square mile radius in New Hampshire

Maxwell and Jeffrey Epstein in 2005. The document reveals how authorities first obtained a warrant in New York to access GPS and historical cell site data for Maxwell which narrowed down their search for the suspect to a one square mile radius in New Hampshire

The July 1 arrest warrant states that Maxwell used the ‘G Max’ number to contact Borgerson, her sister Isabel and her lawyer Laura Menninger, according to the Daily Beast.

To track down Epstein’s alleged madam, authorities first obtained a search warrant in New York to get GPS and historical cell site data for this account, which had a northeastern Massachusetts area code, the document states. 

This enabled authorities to narrow down her location to one square mile in New Hampshire but this data did not determine her exact location within the area, it reveals.

The FBI then applied for a second warrant – this time in New Hampshire – to use the ‘stingray’ technology to pin down her exact whereabouts in the state, the Beast reported. 

‘The FBI does not know Maxwell’s current location and accordingly requires the information sought in this application in order to locate and arrest Maxwell,’ the document states.

The net then closed in further on Maxwell, 58, when the FBI obtained another warrant to use a 'stingray' device to send and receive signals from nearby cellphones, reported the Daily Beast. Pictured a boulder inscribed with 'Tucked Away' going to the New Hampshire estate

The net then closed in further on Maxwell, 58, when the FBI obtained another warrant to use a ‘stingray’ device to send and receive signals from nearby cellphones, reported the Daily Beast. Pictured a boulder inscribed with ‘Tucked Away’ going to the New Hampshire estate

This enabled authorities to capture both a phone's location and details of its registered user and led federal investigators to the $1 million estate in Bradford, New Hampshire (above)

This enabled authorities to capture both a phone’s location and details of its registered user and led federal investigators to the $1 million estate in Bradford, New Hampshire (above)

To narrow down her location, the FBI asked for a warrant to allow it to use a device or devices that act like a cell tower to send and receive signals from Maxwell’s phone.

‘Such a device may function in some respects like a cellular tower, except that it will not be connected to the cellular network and cannot be used by a cell phone to communicate with others,’ the affidavit reads.

The documents say that the device would not intercept her calls, texts or other communications.

The device, known as a cell site simulator, a Stingray or IMSI catcher, works by acting as a cell tower and forcing cellphones within its vicinity to share information with it including the phone’s current location and its registered user.  

Within 24 hours of the warrant application being filed, authorities had located and arrested Maxwell at the sprawling estate. 

DailyMail.com previously revealed that federal authorities began flying planes over the property from 4.20am on the morning of July 2 amid concerns she would try to escape.

A total of 24 armed officers including FBI agents, officers from the local police force, New York police and New Hampshire’s gang task force then smashed down the front door to her home at 8.20am and slapped handcuffs on her wrists. 

Maxwell bought the 156-acre property in December 2019 for $1.07 million. 

The documents also reveal that Maxwell's phone, which was registered under the name 'G Max', had not been used to communicate with her husband Scott Borgerson, 44, since around March. The couple pictured in 2013

The documents also reveal that Maxwell’s phone, which was registered under the name ‘G Max’, had not been used to communicate with her husband Scott Borgerson, 44, since around March. The couple pictured in 2013

She paid in all cash using an LLC called Granite Reality LLC to hide her identity.  

Her arrest was the culmination of a year-long hunt, after Epstein was arrested on new sex trafficking charges in July 2019.   

Maxwell has since unsuccessfully tried twice to be freed from jail on bail with a federal judge turning down her latest request in December. 

She had put forward a $28.5 million bail package including $22.5 million in cash and assets from her and Borgerson, $5 million in property from her family and a $1 million bond from a private security company.

The judge said the package showed she had ‘extraordinary financial resources’ she could use to ‘flee the country undetected’ and voiced suspicions that the amount was much higher than the $3.5 million Maxwell claimed to be worth after her arrest in July.  

Maxwell had also argued that her 44-year-old husband, a tech entrepreneur, was a strong tie to the US as further proof she wouldn’t flee.

Prosecutors said, however, that Maxwell was in the process of divorcing Borgerson in the lead-up to her arrest. 

A courtroom sketch of Maxwell from July. Maxwell is now behind bars at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn awaiting trial on charges of procuring girls as young as 14 for convicted pedophile Epstein between 1994 and 1997

A courtroom sketch of Maxwell from July. Maxwell is now behind bars at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn awaiting trial on charges of procuring girls as young as 14 for convicted pedophile Epstein between 1994 and 1997

Epstein died by suicide at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan August 2019 while awaiting trial

Epstein died by suicide at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan August 2019 while awaiting trial

Maxwell’s lawyers claimed she only talked about divorcing her husband to ‘protect him’ from being associated with her. 

Epstein was found hanging in his cell at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan August 2019 while awaiting trial. 

He had pleaded not guilty to sexually abusing girls as young as 14 and young women in New York and Florida in the early 2000s. 

His death was ruled a suicide but his attorneys and some family members claim he was murdered to stop him from sharing what he knows about other high profile, powerful people.  

Maxwell is now awaiting her sex trafficking trial in summer 2021. 

She has been charged with conspiracy to entice minors to travel to engage in illegal sex acts, enticement of a minor to travel to engage in illegal sex acts, conspiracy to transport minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, transportation of a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity and two counts of perjury.  

Prosecutors say Maxwell groomed three girls between 1994 and 1997 for Epstein in London, Florida, New York and New Mexico. 

She then not only facilitated Epstein abusing them, prosecutors say, but took part in some of the abuse herself. 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk