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Prince Andrew to lose royal titles in newest fallout from Epstein ties

Prince Andrew is to cease utilizing the title “his royal highness” and lose his function as a royal patron to scores of organisations as controversy continues over his hyperlinks with the convicted intercourse offender Jeffrey Epstein.

A statement from Buckingham Palace, official residence of the UK’s Queen Elizabeth II, introduced that the prince, 61, would additionally lose his lengthy checklist of honorary army titles, together with his ceremonial function as colonel of the Grenadier Guards.

The step is the newest try by the monarchy to restrict the harm from the prince’s shut hyperlinks with Epstein, who was discovered hanged in a New York jail cell in 2019 whereas awaiting trial for the alleged sexual abuse and trafficking of underage ladies.

A New York choose on Wednesday rejected an try by the Duke of York to forestall a civil motion by Virginia Roberts Giuffre, who claims she was trafficked for intercourse with the prince thrice earlier than she was 18. The prince has denied her claims.

Prince Andrew, the Queen’s second son, had beforehand stepped again from his royal public duties in 2019 within the wake of a disastrous interview with the BBC’s Newsnight programme concerning the allegations.

“With the Queen’s approval and settlement, the Duke of York’s army affiliations and royal patronages have been returned to the Queen,” the Palace’s transient assertion on Thursday stated. “The Duke of York will proceed to not undertake any public duties and is defending this case as a personal citizen.”

The controversy over the case comes because the Queen, 95, prepares subsequent month to grow to be the primary British monarch to succeed in 70 years on the throne.

It’s uncommon for a member of the royal household to lose or surrender the HRH title. Diana, Princess of Wales, misplaced hers in 1996 following her divorce from Prince Charles, the inheritor to the throne. Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex, and his spouse, Meghan Markle, voluntarily agreed to stop using HRH in early 2020 once they introduced they had been giving up royal duties and transferring to the US.

An aide to Prince Andrew insisted on Thursday night that the prince had given up his title by settlement, somewhat than being stripped of it.

Hiss royal duties had been closely targeted on organisations supporting enterprise and enterprise, together with Pitch@Palace, which helps start-up entrepreneurs. He additionally held a variety of army titles after 22 years’ service with the Royal Navy, which included time as a helicopter pilot through the 1982 Falklands conflict.

His authorized troubles have intensified since Ghislaine Maxwell, a British socialite and pal of the prince, was convicted final month in New York of 5 counts of intercourse trafficking stemming from her relationship with Epstein.

Though Giuffre’s allegations fashioned no a part of Maxwell’s case, Giuffre was among the many first of Epstein’s accusers to go public. A extensively printed image allegedly taken by Epstein exhibits the prince together with his arm round Giuffre’s waist and Maxwell within the background. The prince has insisted he has no recollection of assembly Giuffre.

The prince’s attorneys have given no indication of how they intend to answer Giuffre’s authorized motion following Wednesday’s defeat. That they had unsuccessfully argued her motion was dominated out by a earlier settlement she reached in 2009 with Epstein, which they claimed barred her from taking motion towards Epstein’s associates.

Nevertheless, an individual near the prince on Thursday harassed the procedural nature of Wednesday’s judgment and stated the prince would proceed to contest the case.

“It is a marathon not a dash and the duke will proceed to defend himself towards these claims,” the individual stated.

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