Prince Andrew, Queen Elizabeth's second son, has resigned from his royal duties in 2019 over his friendship and financial scandal Jeffrey Epstein. Virginia Giuffre is a US courtroom judge. She claims that she was forced to have sex in the royal's home when she was 17.
Prince Andrew and Queen Elizabeth II watching the 2013 horse race in England. Getty Images
The Key Facts
Giuffres suit was filed Monday in New York Federal Court. It alleges Andrew sexually assaulted her at Epsteins New York penthouse. Giuffre claims she was being sex traded by Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell in 2001. Maxwell is a wealthy British socialite who is also a friend of Andrews. Giuffre claims that the prince caused her emotional distress and battery. She is seeking unspecified punitive and compensatory damages. Giuffre describes the abuses as severe and long-lasting and accuses Epstein of this. The New York Child Victims Act allows victims of child sex abuse more time to sue civil courts for damages, regardless of the statute of limitations. Andrew could ignore the lawsuit and Giuffres lawyers might use a judgment against him to target assets as much international law allows, a rep stated. However, the U.S. is not able to enforce its respective court judgements because of a lack of a reciprocal agreement. In a BBC interview in 2019, Andrew denied any sexual contact with Giuffre. The interview saw Andrew widely criticised by viewers for not being sensitive to Epsteins victims. It was also described as a car accident by the British media.
No President or Prince is above the law in this country and no one, no matter how weak or vulnerable, can be denied the protection of the laws, Giuffres attorney David Boies stated to Forbes in a statement. Twenty years ago, Prince Andrews power, position, and Connor ruins allowed him to abuse a terrified, vulnerable child without anyone to protect her. He should be held accountable.
New York federal prosecutors claimed Andrew refused to cooperate last year and closed the door to lending a hand in the Epstein investigation. The accusation has been denied by Prince Andrews legal team, who claim that the investigators turned down three offers to help him. Andrew, a senior working member in the royal family, has been largely absent from the media since his resignation. He made exceptions for Princess Beatrice's wedding last year, and for the funeral of his father, Prince Philip in April. Andrew is the ninth in line to the throne.
Giuffre claims that Andrew abused her on numerous occasions in New York, London, and Epstein's private island in U.S Virgin Islands. Epstein committed suicide in New York prison in August 2019, while he waited for his trial on charges of sex trafficking and conspiracy. Epstein was first convicted in 2007 of soliciting underage girls to sex. He spent less than one year in prison in a highly-criticized plea agreement. Maxwell was detained last year in New Hampshire, and is currently in jail in anticipation of his trial on charges related to Epstein's grooming and sextrafficking underage girls.
The Tight Spot: What Prince Andrew Will Face If Virginia Roberts Guiffre Files His Civil Suit Against him This Week (Forbes).
Prince Andrew gives his first interview since he was made a working royal over Epstein Ties (Forbes).