The British Prince Andrew (61), son of the Queen, can view a sealed court document that, according to his lawyer, can exempt him from all liability in an abuse case. However, the prince has been sued in the United States by Virginia Giuffre (38).
She is a victim of billionaire Jeffrey Epstein and says Prince Andrew also abused her. Prince Andrew’s lawyer can now view the confidential settlement that Giuffre previously reached with Epstein.
Virginia Giufrre (38) is one of the alleged victims of American billionaire Jeffrey Epstein, a former friend of Prince Andrew. Epstein and his partner Ghislaine Maxwell are said to have recruited underage girls and placed them in a sexual exploitation and abuse network. Although Epstein was charged in the US two years ago, he died in his cell awaiting trial.
Giuffre says she contacted Prince Andrew as a 17-year-old girl through Epstein and Maxwell’s network. The prince sexually assaulted her three times, in Jeffrey Epstein’s New York apartment, in the British capital London and on Epstein’s private island in the Caribbean.
In August, Giuffre filed a lawsuit against Prince Andrew in the United States. She accuses the prince of sexual assault and intentional infliction of emotional distress. She wants him to answer and demands compensation and punishment. Whether Prince Andrew will actively cooperate in the lawsuit remains to be seen.
In an introductory session, Andrew Brettler, Prince Andrew’s lawyer, initially contested whether Giuffre’s subpoena against the prince had been served, as it is legally called. In other words, whether the summons had been delivered to the prince’s home. Otherwise, the lawsuit could not even begin. Finally, after several attempts, it succeeded.
Brettler also cited a court document on Virginia Giuffre’s indictment of Jeffrey Epstein during that preliminary hearing. Giuffre is said to have reached a settlement with Epstein in 2009 in which she promised not to file a complaint against others who would also be involved in the case. The document is sealed and secret. The exact wording is not known, but according to Brettler, the document would “exempt the prince and others from all liability”.
Prince Andrew himself has always denied all allegations. However, in 2019, as the Epstein case broke out, a statement was issued saying that he is “appalled at the recent reports of Jeffrey Epstein’s suspected crimes. His Royal Highness rejects the exploitation of people and the suggestion that he would condone it, to participate in it or to encourage it is abhorrent.” Furthermore, he called his friendship with Epstein a mistake.
In November 2019, Prince Andrew gave an interview to the British public broadcaster BBC. In it, he again denied Giuffre’s allegations. For example, he couldn’t remember meeting Giuffre and described a picture of them together as “a picture of a picture of a picture”.
The interview raised more questions than answers and was labelled as “toe-curling” and “unworldly” by the British press. Andrew also stopped his public royal activities after that interview. One of the few times he could still be seen was at his father Prince Philip’s funeral in April.