On the heels of a Reuters report that Maxwell was the main focus of an investigation by the FBI into several “people who facilitated” the dead pedophile’s alleged sexual abuse, a source tells Page Six: “Ghislaine is protected. She and Jeffrey were assets of sorts for multiple foreign governments. They would trade information about the powerful people caught in his net — caught at Epstein’s house.”

The source added of Ghislaine, who has homes in Manhattan and London, “She is not in the US, she moves around. She is sometimes in the UK, but most often in other countries, such as Israel, where her powerful contacts have provided her with safe houses and protection.”

The source added that Britain’s disgraced Prince Andrew had begged Maxwell to come forward and give an interview to protect him after he was accused of having sex with one of Epstein’s most vocal accusers, Virginia Roberts Giuffre, which he strongly denies. But Maxwell refused, forcing the prince to conduct his own disastrous interview. The source said: “Andrew pleaded with Ghislaine to publicly defend him. She carefully considered it, but decided no good would come of it (if she came forward). It isn’t in her best interests.” Lawyers for Maxwell didn’t get back to us.