A look inside the ‘Disneyland’ prison Ghislaine Maxwell hopes to spend her 20-year sentence in

From music stars to billionaire hotel heiresses, the Federal Correctional Institution in Danbury, Connecticut, has been home to some of the most famous female inmates in United States history.

The low-security prison, sometimes referred to as Club Fed, is where convicted child-sex trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell has requested to serve her 20 year federal prison term.

In stark contrast to the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, where the 60-year-old spent nearly two years awaiting trial, FCI Danbury has a reputation as one of the more hospitable penitentiaries, and has garnered a special place in US pop culture.

Most famously, the fictional Litchfield Prison in the hit Netflix comedy Orange is the New Black is partly based on FCI Danbury.

Author Piper Kerman spent 13 months at the prison in the mid- 2000s after her conviction for money laundering and drug trafficking.

Her memoir Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison was based on her experiences behind bars and later turned into the Emmy-winning TV series.

Six-time Grammy winner Lauryn Hill, 47, spent three months in FCI Danbury in 2013 for failing to pay about $1m in taxes.

On the day of her release from prison, Ms Hill released a new song called Consumerism .

The R&B singer had “wanted to get this music out while she was incarcerated, as it is a product of the space she was in while she was going through some of the challenges she has been faced with recently”, according to a promotional release at the time.

Leona Helmsley, often referred to as the “Queen of the Mean”, was convicted in 1989 on 33 counts of tax evasion, tax fraud and mail fraud, and sentenced to a four-year prison term.

Ms Helmsley married hotel mogul Harry Helmsley in 1972, and became synonymous with the “greed is good” mantra of the 1980s.

According to a biography written by her former lawyer Sandor Frankel, she was overheard saying: “We don’t pay taxes, only the little people pay taxes.”

When Ms Helmsley died in 2007 at the age of 87, she left behind a $5bn estate.

The Connecticut facility was also temporarily home to former The Real Housewives of New Jersey star Teresa Giudice.

Ms Giudice served 11 months behind bars at FCI Danbury in 2015 after pleading guilty to bankruptcy and mail fraud in a scheme with her husband, Joe Giudice.

Joe and Teresa Giudice leave court after facing charges of bankruptcy and mail fraud

In an interview with Good Morning America after her release, the reality TV star described her incarceration as living in “hell”.

“There was mould in the bathrooms. There was not running water constantly. The showers were freezing cold. The living conditions were really horrible,” she said.

“There were some nights that we didn’t even have heat… it was hell.”

Outside of Orange Is the New Black, the prison has provided a gritty backdrop to several other television shows.

Leona and Harry Helmsley

Danielle Brooks, Schilling, Vicky Jeudy and Samira Wiley in Orange is the New Black

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