Andrew's 41 denials: Prince demands jury trial in fight back against sex assault claims

26 January 2022, 19:29 | Updated: 27 January 2022, 01:55

Prince Andrew has demanded a jury trial
Prince Andrew has demanded a jury trial. Picture: Rex/Alamy

By Asher McShane

Prince Andrew has demanded a jury trial as he seeks to defend a civil sex case brought by Virginia Giuffre, according to documents filed by his legal team in the US.

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The Duke of York hit back over the allegations from Virginia Giuffre, which he has always strenuously denied.

In a letter to Judge Lewis Kaplan, the Duke's lawyer Andrew Brettler set out a detailed response denying all of Ms Giuffre’s allegations that she was trafficked by the late paedophile Jeffrey Epstein.

The legal papers contain a rebuttal of 41 of Ms Giuffre's claims and request that the Royal is granted a trial by jury.

One of the claims denied by Andrew is that he was a "close friend" of Epstein's girlfriend and convicted sex trafficker, Ghislaine Maxwell.

He also "admits that he met Epstein in or around 1999", but denies that he ever sexually abused Ms Giuffre.

However, the papers say a further 40 times that he "lacks sufficient information to admit or deny" the claims.

It comes as the prince held back from immediately addressing the claims while his lawyers applied to shut down the case all together. But it was instead dismissed in early January.

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The duke submitted reasons why the case should be dismissed in an 11-page document, including that Ms Giuffre's claims are "barred by the doctrine of consent" and by "her own wrongful conduct".

In the court document which communicated his reasons for requesting a dismissal of the case, Andrew's lawyers concluded: "Prince Andrew hereby demands a trial by jury on all causes of action asserted in the Complaint."

The move could mean Andrew will have to go to the US to give evidence.

In Ms Giuffre's allegations, she accuses Andrew of sexually abusing her at the London home of disgraced British socialite Maxwell, at paedophile financier Jeffrey Epstein's New York mansion and Epstein's private island, Little St James.

Judge Lewis A Kaplan previously denied the duke's application to dismiss the case.

Lawyer David Boies, who is representing Virginia Giuffre in her lawsuit against Andrew, said his client and legal team were anticipating "confronting" the royal about his "denials".

Mr Boies said: "Prince Andrew's Answer continues his approach of denying any knowledge or information concerning the claims against him, and purporting to blame the victim of the abuse for somehow bringing it on herself.

"We look forward to confronting Prince Andrew with his denials and attempts to blame Ms Giuffre for her own abuse at his deposition and at trial."

Earlier this month Prince Andrew was stripped of all of his military titles and the use of HRH in a decision approved by the Queen.

Buckingham Palace said in a statement on January 13: "With the Queen's approval and agreement, the Duke of York's military affiliations and Royal patronages have been returned to the Queen.

"The Duke of York will continue not to undertake any public duties and is defending this case as a private citizen."

His roles have been returned to the Queen and will be redistributed among other members of the royal family.