Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II withdrew military titles and royal patronage from her second child, Prince Andrew, at his request, after a US judge authorized a civil sexual assault case against him to proceed.
According to The Guardian, Andrew will no longer use the “His Royal Highness” distinction and Buckingham Palace has reported that “the Duke of York will continue to hold no public office and is defending himself in this case as a private citizen.”
Earlier, 150 military veterans had sent a letter to the Queen asking her to remove Andrew from his honorary military posts.
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Royal Sponsorships are sponsorships by members of the royal family to organizations such as charities, giving visibility to their causes.
This week, a Manhattan judge rejected a request by Andrew to dismiss a sexual assault lawsuit filed by US attorney Virginia Giuffre, 38, against him.
She claims to have been a victim of sex trafficking by financier Jeffrey Epstein and forced to have sex with powerful people, including Andrew, when she was 17. The Duke denies the allegations.
The move is the latest attempt by the British monarchy to limit the damage caused by the prince’s close ties to Epstein, who was found hanged in a New York cell in 2019 while awaiting trial for alleged sexual abuse and trafficking of underage girls. age.
His royal duties were heavily focused on organizations supporting businesses and ventures, including Pitch Palace, which supports budding entrepreneurs.
He also held a wide range of military titles after 22 years of service in the Royal Navy, which included time as a helicopter pilot during the Falklands War of 1982.
Her legal troubles have intensified since Ghislaine Maxwell, a British socialite and friend of the prince, was convicted last month in New York on five counts of sex trafficking stemming from her relationship with Epstein.
Although Giuffre’s allegations were not part of Maxwell’s case, Giuffre was one of the first Epstein accusers to come forward.
A widely circulated photo allegedly taken by Epstein shows the prince with his arm around Giuffre’s waist and Maxwell in the background. The prince insisted that he does not remember meeting Giuffre.
The prince’s lawyers have given no indication of how they intend to respond to Giuffre’s legal action following Wednesday’s defeat.
They unsuccessfully argued that Giuffre’s lawsuit was dropped by an earlier settlement she reached in 2009 with Epstein, which they claimed prevented her from taking action against Epstein’s associates.
However, a person close to the prince stressed the procedural nature of Wednesday’s trial and said the prince would continue to challenge the case.
“This is a marathon, not a sprint, and the Duke will continue to defend himself against these allegations,” the person said.
An aide to the prince declined to comment last night on whether the queen was continuing her financial support for the prince’s legal costs. There was no immediate response to questions on the subject of Buckingham Palace.
However, an aide to the Duke of York confirmed he was selling a ski chalet in the Swiss resort of Verbier, valued at around £18m, in a move widely attributed to his need to raise funds for the accounts.