Prince Andrew: Key week for royal as accuser's document to be unsealed and made public

3 January 2022, 08:18 | Updated: 3 January 2022, 08:25

A settlement between Virginia Giuffre and Jeffrey Epstein is to be made public
A settlement between Virginia Giuffre and Jeffrey Epstein is to be made public. Picture: Alamy

By Will Taylor

A key week in Prince Andrew's legal dispute has begun as a document his lawyer believes will stop a lawsuit against the royal is to be unsealed and made public.

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Virginia Giuffre is suing him for allegedly sexually assaulting her when she was a teenager, with speculation suggesting she is seeking millions of dollars in damages.

Ms Giuffre says she was trafficked by Jeffrey Epstein, the convicted sex offender who died in prison in 2019.

Prince Andrew vehemently denies the allegations against him.

Now, a 2009 settlement between Ms Giuffre and the Duke of York’s former friend Epstein is due to be made public, which Andrew Brettler, representing the royal, says would end her lawsuit against his client.

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Mr Brettler previously said the agreement "releases Prince Andrew and others from any purported liability arising from the claims Ms Giuffre asserted against Prince Andrew here".

It comes after Ghislaine Maxwell, Epstein's ex-girlfriend and Andrew’s friend, faces life in jail after being convicted of helping to bring teenage girls for Epstein to sexually abuse. She is expected to appeal the verdict.

Ms Giuffre claims she was trafficked by Epstein to have sex with Andrew when she was 17, a minor under US law, which the royal denies.

She said "others must be held accountable" after Maxwell's conviction.

Episodes of Hunting Ghislaine: The Trial are released every Friday exclusively on Global Player.

US District Judge Lewis A Kaplan, who is presiding over the civil case, will hold a video call on Tuesday to hear a request by Prince Andrew's legal team to dismiss the case.

Ms Giuffre's lawyers say the settlement agreement excludes Prince Andrew and say he should not use it as a "get out of jail free card".

The Sunday Times has reported that the royal could be asked to stop using his title of Duke of York if he loses the lawsuit.

He may also be told to drop his remaining links to charities, scale back his housing and would no longer be able to travel due to the risk of extradition.