One of Prince Andrew's Legal Battles Reportedly Ends
© REUTERS / LILLIAN SUWANRUMPHABritain's Prince Andrew, Duke of York leaves after speaking at the ASEAN Business and Investment Summit in Bangkok on November 3, 2019
© REUTERS / LILLIAN SUWANRUMPHA
The Duke of York is facing a civil lawsuit in the United States amid Jeffrey Epstein’s main accuser Virginia Roberts Giuffre's claims that she was sexually assaulted by the royal when she was still considered a minor in the US. The prince insists that she is lying.
The Queen’s second son is settling up at least one of his legal battles, according to The Sunday Times, by selling his £17 million chalet in Switzerland, which has been at the centre of an ongoing dispute between the prince and the mansion’s previous owner.
Isabelle de Rouvre, 74, sold the seven-bedroom Chalet Helora to Andrew and his ex-wife Sarah Ferguson in 2014, who grew fond of it after renting it for family skiing holidays with their daughters Beatrice and Eugenie.
The house, located in the exclusive ski resort of Verbier, reportedly cost the Duke and Duchess of York some £16.6 million at the time. The sum was allegedly paid thanks to a mortgage and the Queen’s private funding, which the Yorks used as a “long-term family investment."
However, the French socialite said the Yorks failed to pay the final instalment for the chalet on 1 January 2020 and took the case to the Swiss court.
The chalet is now being sold by the Yorks for a sum close to its £17.3 million asking price, The Times reveals. According to the report, the Yorks are planning on repaying the debt as soon as the transaction goes through.
De Reovre has reportedly agreed to drop her legal claims in response.
A source told The Times that the matter was “close to being resolved to everybody’s mutual satisfaction."
While it seems that Prince Andrew has nearly settled his legal dispute in Switzerland, the civil lawsuit filed by Virginia Roberts Giuffre in the United States in August is showing now signs of going away.
While the duke’s legal team has been trying to dismiss the case over the past few weeks based on technical claims, reports have now emerged suggesting that they have adopted a new strategy and want to do their best to “clear his name."
Roberts Giuffre insists that she was forced to have sex with the British royal at least three times when she was a part of Epstein’s “sex-trafficking operation.” The woman says the British royal knew everything about the late financier's sneaky deeds but still had sex with her when she was just a “vulnerable child” aged 17. Andrew has publicly denied the claims, saying that he can’t remember ever meeting the woman.