Prince Andrew, son of Queen Elizabeth II, has been stripped of his military titles and royal patronage amid allegations of rape. About it informs Reuters, citing a statement from Buckingham Palace.
According to the agency, this decision is due to the fact that lawyers could not convince a US judge to dismiss a civil rape lawsuit filed against the Duke by US Virginia Giuffre.
“With the approval and consent of the Queen, the honorary military ranks and royal patronages of the Duke of York have been returned to the Queen. The Duke of York will have no public duties and will defend himself in this matter as a private individual,” Buckingham Palace said in a statement.
Recall that in 2019, in an interview with NBC News, Giuffre said that she was a victim of sex trafficking, when young girls were brought to meet with wealthy clients. She sided with the prosecution against controversial financier Jeffrey Epstein, who committed suicide in prison after being arrested on charges of sexual assault and the involvement of minors in prostitution.
In the same interview, Giuffre stated that the billionaire forced her to have sex with several powerful men, including Prince Andrew.
The prince himself later stated that he had no relationship with Giuffre. He confirmed that he was friends with Epstein even after he was first accused of soliciting underage prostitution and showed no remorse for maintaining that friendship. The British media called the interview a “disaster”.
At the beginning of January of this year became knownthat Giuffre received $500,000 from Epstein in 2009 in exchange for no claims against him and the “other potential defendants” associated with him.
Prince Andrew’s lawyers noted that the terms of the publicized agreement between Epstein and Giuffre prevented her from suing the prince, as more than 10 years ago, she agreed to drop all legal action against any person associated with Epstein who could be called a “potential defendant.”
One of Prince Andrew’s lawyers said that Giuffre mentioned “royalty” in a lawsuit she filed in 2009 against Epstein. According to the lawyer, this means that the terms of the deal apply to his client.
On January 12, it became known that Prince Andrew could stand trial in the United States, as the Southern District Court in New York refused to dismiss the lawsuit filed against him.