Prince Andrew denies lawyer’s claim he is ‘deliberately evading authorities’ over Jeffrey Epstein case
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Prince Andrew’s legal team have denied claims that he is deliberately “avoiding and evading” the US authorities investigating Jeffrey Epstein.
The Duke of York is facing calls to speak to US prosecutors after Epstein’s ex-girlfriend Ghislaine Maxwell appeared in court charged on allegations of sex trafficking.
Brad Edwards, who represents 55 of Epstein’s alleged victims, told Sky News he had personally invited Prince Andrew “at least three times” to share what he knows about Epstein, but he “flat out refuses”.
“I know personally, for over a decade we have been asking him to come and provide all of the information that he has,” he said. “I think I’ve personally invited at least three times to tell us what he knows and he just flat out refuses.”
He added: “There’s no doubt that he’s deliberately evading authorities.”
Prince Andrew and Ghislaine Maxwell (REX)
Spencer Kuvin, a lawyer who represents victims in a civil lawsuit against Epstein’s estate, has also accused Andrew of “hiding” behind the royal family and his legal team, insisting he must reveal what he knows.
“On behalf of the victims we have continuously asked him to step forward, step up, be a man and tell us what he knows,” Mr Kuvin told BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme. “He has been hiding behind not only the royal family but his attorneys.”
But Andrew’s representatives have insisted he has offered to speak to US prosecutors, but claim his approaches were ignored.
A spokesperson for the duke’s legal team told Sky News that Andrew “has offered his assistance to the Department of Justice investigation on a number of occasions this year”.
A statement said: “In addition, the working group have proactively contacted the DoJ twice in the last month and have received no response. That is why we remain utterly bewildered by the DoJ’s approach.
“However, a request from a commercial law firm is not and never will be the same as an official judicial process.”
The pair met at university (BBC PANORAMA)
Andrew, who denies any wrongdoing, has been accused of having sex with Virginia Roberts, now Giuffre, after she was allegedly trafficked to Maxwell’s London home aged 17.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson refused to say this morning how the Government would respond if US prosecutors asked to interview Andrew, insisting it is “a matter for the royal family”.
Epstein was arrested last year for a slew of sex charges and killed himself in prison while awaiting trial.
Maxwell, the daughter of press baron Robert Maxwell, has kept a low profile when news of the charges against Epstein broke.
She was arrested yesterday by the FBI at a mansion on the east coast of America. It is alleged that she played a key role in Epstein’s abuse of young girls and is said to have groomed them before taking them to the financier’s homes.
According to the indictment revealed yesterday, Maxwell is accused of grooming girls as young as 14 between 1994 and 1997.
Maxwell, who denies wrongdoing, is also accused of perjury in depositions she gave to a New York court in 2016. She appeared in a New Hampshire court via videolink from custody.
A judge ordered that she be taken to a New York court where the criminal charges are laid and where she will be able to apply for bail.