‘Zero co-operation’ from Andrew during Epstein inquiry, prosecutor says
Prince Andrew has provided “zero co-operation” with the Jeffrey Epstein sex trafficking investigation, a US prosecutor has said.
Geoffrey Berman, Manhattan’s top federal prosecutor, said his team – as well as the FBI – had contacted the prince’s lawyers and asked to interview him.
“To date, Prince Andrew has provided zero co-operation,” Mr Berman said at a news conference outside Epstein’s New York mansion.
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During a BBC Newsnight interview last year Prince Andrew suggested he would willingly co-operate with an investigation.
Virginia Giuffre, who claims she had several sexual encounters with the prince when she was 17, said: “Prince Andrew’s continued refusal to cooperate with authorities after freely acknowledging that he would be prepared to answer inquiries raises even more questions about the role he played in the international sex trafficking ring Jeffrey Epstein and others operated.
“Prince Andrew should take most seriously the deeply held belief in this country that no one is above the law.”
Last year, the prince announced he was withdrawing from royal duties amid renewed attention of his friendship with Epstein, who was a convicted paedophile, after his disastrous interviewabout the friendship.
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Both Andrew and Epstein’s former girlfriend, Ghislaine Maxwell have denied any knowledge that Epstein was sexually abusing teenage girls.
During the interview, Andrew insisted he was at a Pizza Express in Woking with his children on the night Ms Giuffre says they were together in London.
The Duke of York was criticised for failing to express sympathy for victims of Epstein, who killed himself in his jail cell last summer as he awaited trial accused of trafficking girls for sex.
Epstein had already served time in prison in 2008 for prostituting underage girls.
Andrew stayed at his house two years later, telling Newsnight it had been “a convenient place to stay” and thought it was “the honourable and right thing to do” after visiting him to end their friendship.
US attorney general William Barr has vowed to aggressively investigate and bring charges against anyone who may have helped Epstein.
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Mr Berman did not discuss further details about the case during Monday’s news conference, but reiterated the case didn’t end with his death.
He said: “Jeffrey Epstein couldn’t have done what he did without the assistance of others, and I can assure you that the investigation is moving forward.”
Meanwhile, two guards who were supposed to be monitoring Epstein the night he was found dead have been charged with falsifying the prison’s log books to indicate they were performing checks on prisoners, when they were in fact sleeping or surfing the internet.
Sky News understands the issue is being dealt with by The Duke of York’s legal team, and Buckingham Palace will not be commenting further.