'It’s About Vindication': Prince Andrew Accuser's Dad 'Proud' His Daughter is 'Fighting Back'
© AFP 2021 / STEVE PARSONSBritain's Prince Andrew, Duke of York, attends Sunday service at the Royal Chapel of All Saints, at Royal Lodge, in Windsor on April 11, 2021, two days after the death of his father Britain's Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. - Queen Elizabeth II has described feeling a "huge void in her life" following the death of her husband Prince Philip, their son Prince Andrew said on April 11. Andrew, the couple's second son, said following family prayers at Windsor Castle that his mother was "contemplating" her husband's passing after his death on April 9 aged 99.
The lawsuit filed on Monday by alleged Jeffrey Epstein victim Virginia Guiffre claims that Prince Andrew “intentionally committed battery” by sexually assaulting her when she was a minor. The Duke of York has vehemently denied any sexual contact with the plaintiff.
The father of the alleged Jeffrey Epstein sex trafficking victim who has filed a lawsuit against Prince Andrew is proud that his daughter is “fighting back”.
The legal action launched in New York on 9 August by Virginia Roberts Guiffre on her 38th birthday accuses the Duke of York of battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress. The lawsuit came just days before the expiration of a New York state law- the Child Victims Act - allowing alleged victims of childhood sexual abuse to file civil claims when criminal charges might otherwise be barred by statutes of limitations.
Guiffre claims that she was forced to have sex with Prince Andrew three times, in London, New York and the Caribbean, in 2001 on the orders of the convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein when she was 17 years old.
The second son of Queen Elizabeth II has vehemently denied any sexual contact with Guiffre. In a BBC Newsnight interview in 2019 he claimed he never had sex with Giuffre, saying, "I can absolutely categorically tell you it never happened." He also suggested a photo supposedly showing him with Virginia Giuffre may have been doctored.
“I support my daughter 100 per cent. The royals are not above the law. That's not the way it works. They can't just do what they want. People fight back. That's what Virginia is doing, she is fighting back. She has to do what she thinks is right,” Sky Roberts was quoted by The Sun as saying.
Speaking from his ranch in Summerfield, Florida the 65-year old added:
“If Prince Andrew puts himself in my position, if this was happening to his daughter, how would he feel? He should be ashamed.”
Virginia Giuffre’s lawyer David Boies earlier said that Prince Andrew was slapped with the civil lawsuit after he failed to respond to repeated offers to settle the claims out of court.
“He has the money and the power, but I hope Virginia comes out ahead… He gets to go about his life, he is not prosecuted for anything. He should face up to these charges… I’m hoping this can set the record straight. I don’t think this is about money, it’s about doing the right thing. It’s about vindication,” said Roberts.
© AP Photo / Bebeto MatthewsVirginia Roberts Giuffre, center, who says she was trafficked by sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, holds a news conference outside a Manhattan court
Virginia Roberts Giuffre, center, who says she was trafficked by sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, holds a news conference outside a Manhattan court
© AP Photo / Bebeto Matthews
David Boies has warned the royal that it would be “very ill-advised for Prince Andrew to ignore judicial process”.
"They have totally stonewalled us just like they've stonewalled the criminal prosecutors in the United States. As a result, we've not been able to have a dialogue with him. They [Prince Andrew's team] have been totally uncooperative, not only with us, but with all of the lawyers representing victims of Jeffrey Epstein sex trafficking," the lawyer was quoted by UK media outlets as saying.
The Duke of York stepped back from public duties in November 2019 as the Jeffrey Epstein scandal had become a "major disruption" to the Royal Family. The Duke of York’s “car crash” BBC interview where he was grilled on his ties with Epstein and accusations that he had sex with a teenage girl had become tabloid fodder, unleashing a storm of negative media coverage.
Companies with ties to the prince’s charities began to distance themselves from him, and calls were voiced for him to testify to the FBI about his connection with the unsavoury tycoon, accused of sex trafficking.
Asking the Queen for permission to withdraw for the "foreseeable future", he had voiced sympathy for sex offender Epstein's victims and everyone who "wants some form of closure". The duke had been battling backlash over his friendship with the US financier, known to be a confidante of the wealthy ‘elite’, including US Presidents Bill Clinton and Donald Trump. He expressed public regret for his “ill-judged association” with Epstein in a statement on 20 November 2019.
Prince Andrew also said he would be ready to help “any appropriate law enforcement agency with their investigation, if required.”
However, on the first anniversary of Prince Andrew’s withdrawing from public duties, Lisa Bloom, who represents six of the alleged Epstein victims, called it “outrageous” he had still not cooperated with US authorities.
“He simply has not kept that promise. Meanwhile, the six victims I represent struggle to repair their lives. We implore Prince Andrew to submit to an interview with the FBI investigation of Ghislaine Maxwell and other accused co-conspirators, to tell what he knows, to turn over documents and evidence, and to instruct his staff to do so as well,” said Bloom.
Jeffrey Epstein was accused of setting up a criminal network for the sexual exploitation of girls, including minors. The convicted pedophile was arrested in New York in July, 2019. However, in August, while awaiting trial on federal child sex trafficking charges, the pedophile died at a federal Manhattan prison under suspicious circumstances. His death was officially ruled a suicide.
Epstein’s former partner and alleged “pimp”, Ghislaine Maxwell, accused of grooming teenage girls as young as 14 for him to abuse, is currently facing trial in November on sex trafficking charges. She has pleaded not guilty.