Palace denies Prince Andrew underage sex claims
WATCH: Rumours of Prince Andrew’s dalliances with some dodgy characters have been swirling for years. But now that he’s been named in a lawsuit, Buckingham Palace is denying allegation the Duke of York had sex with a teenage girl. Stuart Greer explains.
Buckingham Palace has refuted an allegation that Prince Andrew had sex with an underage girl who alleges she was loaned out by his wealthy friend.
In court papers filed in Florida, a woman alleged Jeffrey Epstein, a U.S. investment banker convicted in 2008 of soliciting sex from an underage girl, made her have sex with the Duke of York several times when she was just 17.
The palace said the allegation is untrue.
“[F]or the avoidance of doubt, any suggestion of impropriety with underage minors is categorically untrue,” Buckingham Palace said in a statement to the Guardian.
“This relates to long-running and ongoing civil proceedings in the United States to which the Duke of York is not a party. As such we would not comment in detail.”
Epstein was a longtime friend of Prince Andrew, and the Duke even remained in touch with the multi-millionaire following his 13-month stay in jail.
In 2011, the prince was seen walking with Epstein, but it was later reported he cut ties with his controversial colleague and apologized for the relationship.
According to the Guardian, the prince “is not a named part to the legal claim.” His name appears in documents filed as part of a motion, filed in a Florida court on Tuesday, to expand an existing lawsuit aimed at the federal prosecutors who agreed to a plea deal with Epstein.
Politico reported the lawsuit claims the prosecutors “violat[ed] a victims-rights law by failing to consult with Epstein’s victims before signing off” on the deal.
The motion filed Dec. 31 aims to include two new plaintiffs, including the woman who alleges she “was forced to have sexual relations” with the Duke in three locations — New York, London and Little Saint James, Epstein’s private island in the Caribbean. The woman, referred to as Jane Doe #3, also alleged she was loaned out as a “sex slave” to several high-profile men between 1999 and 2002, including renowned U.S. lawyer Alan Dershowitz. Dershowitz has also denied her claim.
“Epstein…trafficked Jane Doe #3 for sexual purposes to many other powerful men, including numerous prominent American politicians, powerful business executives, foreign presidents, a well-known Prime Minister, and other world leaders. Epstein required Jane Doe #3 to describe the events that she had with these men so that he could potentially blackmail them,” Politico reported the court documents saying.
The Telegraph reported last June, 61-year-old Epstein could face more charges because the two original plaintiffs, who claim they were ages 13 and 14 when they were loaned out as sex slaves, won a bid to see all the documents related to the plea bargain.
The Telegraph also reported Epstein reportedly made out-of-court settlements with 16 women, while the Sun Sentinel newspaper reported in 2009 there were between 30 and 40 alleged victims of Epstein’s abuse.
It’s not the first time the allegations against Prince Andrew have been made public — a 2011 Vanity Fair article provided the same details — nor is it the first time the royals have been under fire for connections to Epstein.
Andrew’s former wife, Sarah Ferguson, apologized in 2011 for having accepted a loan from Epstein to pay off thousands of dollars in debt.
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