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Prince Andrew settles in sexual assault lawsuit

InternationalPrince Andrew settles in sexual assault lawsuit

MANHATTAN, New York, Wed. Feb. 16, 2022– Prince Andrew, the Duke of York and the second son of Queen Elizabeth II, has settled the US civil sexual assault case filed against him by Virginia Giuffre, the woman who accused him of raping her. The 61-year-old Andrew, who is known to have been friends with convicted—and now deceased—sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, was accused of sexually assaulting Giuffre while she was a teenager at Epstein’s mansion in Manhattan as well as on his private island in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Andrew was also reported to have been friends with Ghislaine Maxwell, who procured underage girls for Epstein and was found guilty of child sex trafficking in 2021. The lawsuit also claimed that Maxwell, Epstein, and Andrew had forced Giuffre to have sex with the now-disgraced prince at Maxwell’s London residence.

While accusations surrounding Andrew’s alleged sexual assault first surfaced in 2019, when Virginia Giuffre claimed that Jeffrey Epstein had trafficked her to the prince, the lawsuit against him was filed in August 2021, despite attempts by Andrew’s lawyers to have the case dismissed. And on February 15, 2022, just weeks before he was set to be questioned, under oath, by Giuffre’s lawyers, the prince settled the lawsuit for an undisclosed amount of money while still not admitting that the accusations were true. In addition to agreeing to pay Virginia Giuffre, he has also agreed to make a “substantial donation” to a charity in support of victims’ rights, reported the New York Times. The settlement comes just months after Andrew and his lawyers accused Giuffre of simply trying to gain financially from the royal family.

According to CNN, Giuffre was able to bring the civil sex abuse case against the Duke of York under the Child Victim’s Law—a law in the State of New York that allows the extension of the statute of limitations in child sex abuse cases to allow victims more time to seek justice.

In November 2019, shortly after an interview with BBC in which Prince Andrew attempted, but failed, to end speculation about the nature of his association with convicted child sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, the prince announced that he would be stepping away from public life. Following the airing of the interview, a number of critics noted Andrew’s lack of sympathy towards Epstein’s many victims, and shortly after, several organizations cut ties with the prince. In January of this year, Andrew was stripped of all his military and royal titles, including the title of His Royal Highness.

Lisa Bloom, a lawyer for eight of Jeffrey Epstein’s victims, saluted Giuffre in a recent tweet, noting her “stunning courage.”

“We hail Virginia’s victory today. She has accomplished what no one else could: getting Prince Andrew to stop his nonsense and side with sexual abuse victims,” wrote Bloom.

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