Prince Andrew served with papers in sexual assault lawsuit

Virginia Giuffre says she was 'lent out' to British royal by Jeffrey Epstein

FILE- In this June 6, 2012 file photo, Britain's Prince Andrew leaves King Edward VII hospital in London after visiting his father Prince Philip.  Prince Andrew says in a BBC interview scheduled to be broadcast Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019, that he doesn’t remember a woman who has accused him of sexually exploiting her in encounters arranged by Jeffrey Epstein. Andrew has made similar denials for years but has come under new pressure following Epstein’s arrest and suicide last summer. (AP Photo/Sang Tan, File)
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Britain's Prince Andrew has been served legal papers in a US lawsuit brought by a woman who says he sexually abused her when she was a teenager, a court filing showed on Friday.

The complaint was delivered to the royal's home in Windsor, England, on August 27, an affidavit filed in the Southern District of New York read.

Virginia Giuffre says she was “lent out” for underage sex by late US financier Jeffrey Epstein, who killed himself in a New York prison in 2019 while awaiting trial for the alleged sex trafficking of minors.

Ms Giuffre sued Prince Andrew last month, saying he had sexually abused her at the London home of socialite Ghislaine Maxwell more than 20 years ago, when she was under 18.

She also claims Prince Andrew abused her at Epstein's New York mansion and on Little St James, Epstein's private island in the US Virgin Islands.

Prince Andrew, 61, has vehemently denied claims he had sex with Ms Giuffre, and said he has no recollection of meeting her, but the allegations have damaged the British royal family.

An agent for Ms Giuffre said in the affidavit that he handed the papers to a police officer at the main gates of Prince Andrew's property and did not meet Queen Elizabeth II's second son.

The British royal, a father of two and former Royal Navy helicopter pilot who flew in the 1982 Falklands War against Argentina, was forced to step back from front-line royal duties in late 2019.

Virginia Giuffre alleges she was sexually abused by Prince Andrew when she was a teenager. Reuters

That followed furore over a rare television interview he gave to the BBC, in which he defended his relationship with Epstein, a multimillionaire hedge fund manager who had befriended countless celebrities.

Prince Andrew — who as a young man was considered one of Britain's most eligible bachelors and was called “Randy Andy” in the tabloid press — later issued a statement in which he said he “unequivocally” regretted his “ill-judged association” with Epstein.

He has made few public appearances since, although he joined other senior royals for the funeral of his father, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, at Windsor Castle in April.

Ms Maxwell pleaded not guilty in April to charges of recruiting underage girls for Epstein. She is due to go on trial on November 29.

Ms Giuffre has filed suit against Prince Andrew under the Child Victims Act, as she was 17 at the time of the reported sexual assault. The first hearing in the case is set for Monday.

Updated: September 11, 2021, 5:46 AM