Prince William speaks on climate change at the Foreign Office
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This week marks two years since Prince Andrew’s interview with BBC Newsnight’s Emily Maitlis, in which he faced questions about his friendship with the convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein. Andrew has himself been accused of sexually assaulting one of Epstein’s victims – Virginia Giuffre Roberts. He has always denied these accusations and looked to get his side of the story out in the Newsnight interview. However, the exchange with Ms Maitlis made headlines worldwide due to some of the Duke of York’s comments.
Andrew said he found the people he met through Epstein “useful” when asked if he regretted the friendship.
He also denied he could have assaulted Ms Giuffre on March 10 2001 because he says he was at Pizza Express in Woking.
As reported by The Times last month, Andrew remains convinced that he can return to public life despite the allegations made against him.
The same report, by the newspaper’s Royal Editor Roya Nikkhah, claims Prince William thinks Andrew’s absence from public life should be permanent.
One source said: “There is no way in the world he’s ever coming back, the family will never let it happen.”
A friend of the Duke of Cambridge claimed: “William is no fan of Uncle Andrew.”
Another source claimed William has another grievance with his uncle, claiming that he doesn’t like Andrew’s “ungracious and ungrateful” attitude.
They added that William considers this “a risk” and “threat to the family”.
The source added: “Any suggestion that there isn’t gratitude for the institution, anything that could lead anyone in the public to think that senior members of the royal family aren’t grateful for their position, [William thinks] is really dangerous.”
Ms Giuffre sued Andrew in August, accusing him of forcing her to have sex when she was underage at the London home of Ghislaine Maxwell, a former associate of Epstein.
The lawsuit also alleges that Prince Andrew abused Ms Giuffre at Epstein’s mansion in Manhattan and one of Epstein’s private islands in the Virgin Islands.
Maxwell is currently awaiting trial on charges of sex trafficking, which she denies. Her brother, Ian, has told Sky News recently that he believes prison officers have “physically abused his sister”.
As reported earlier this month, Andrew’s legal team filed a request to dismiss his accuser’s case.
In court documents accessed by Sky News, Andrew states the lawsuit should be dismissed because Ms Giuffre failed to “state a claim warranting relief” and has asked the court to hold oral arguments on his application.
The document, signed by his lawyer Andrew Brettler, said: “Accusing a member of the world’s best known royal family of serious misconduct has helped Giuffre create a media frenzy online and in the traditional press.
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“It is unfortunate, but undeniable, that sensationalism and innuendo have prevailed over the truth.
“Giuffre has initiated this baseless lawsuit against Prince Andrew to achieve another payday at his expense and at the expense of those closest to him. Epstein’s abuse of Giuffre does not justify her public campaign against Prince Andrew.”
Earlier this month, US district judge Lewis Kaplan said the Duke of York could face civil trial in the US at the end of 2022.
He anticipates a trial date of “somewhere in the September to December period of next year”.
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