Prince Andrew is continuing to be implicated for his ties to accused pedophile and convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, despite Buckingham Palace's attempts to distance the royal from the scandal.
On Tuesday, Virginia Giuffre, one of Epstein's accusers, called out the Duke of York directly during a press briefing outside a federal court in Manhattan. She was one of almost two dozen women who spoke about alleged sexual abuse by Epstein during a court hearing after his death in prison on earlier this month, which was ruled a suicide.
“He knows what he’s done and he can attest to that,” Giuffre said when asked about Prince Andrew. “He knows exactly what he’s done, and I hope he comes clean about it.”
Brad Edwards, a lawyer representing a number of Epstein accusers, added, “With respect to Prince Andrew or anyone else who made statements, gratuitous statements, if anyone wants to come over here and talk with us, and answer real questions that the victims have, and that we have on their behalf, we welcome that invitation."
“I personally extended that invitation to Prince Andrew multiple times," he said. "Any time, we are ready, and we have a lot of questions for him.”
Buckingham Palace has not yet commented on Guiffre's statement.
According to The Guardian, Giuffre said in a testimony in 2011 that Prince Andrew “knows the truth” about Epstein’s abuse of underage girls, and said he should be made to testify. In a December 2014 court filing, she said that she was forced to have sex with Prince Andrew and more friends of Epstein's.
The Duke of York and Buckingham Palace have repeatedly denied any wrongdoings on his part. In his latest statement on Saturday, he said that he did not “see, witness or suspect any behaviour of the sort that subsequently led to [the] arrest and conviction” of Epstein.
“I have said previously that it was a mistake and an error to see him after his release [from prison] in 2010 and I can only reiterate my regret that I was mistaken to think that what I thought I knew of him was evidently not the real person, given what we now know," the statement read.
“This is a difficult time for everyone involved and I am at a loss to be able to understand or explain Mr Epstein’s lifestyle," he added. "I deplore the exploitation of any human being and would not condone, participate in, or encourage any such behaviour."
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