Jeffrey Epstein accuser sues UK's Prince Andrew for sexual assault
The woman who accused disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein of sexual trafficking filed a lawsuit against Britain's Prince Andrew on Monday for alleged sexual crimes in the United States. Virginia Roberts Giuffre alleged that Prince Andrew sexually assaulted and battered her two decades ago when she was a minor. He has had to step down from royal duties over links to Epstein—a convicted sex offender.
Giuffre filed a civil complaint in the US District Court in Manhattan. In the lawsuit, Giuffre alleged that Prince Andrew was aware of her age and that she was a sex-trafficking victim who was being forced to engage in sexual acts with him. She claimed she feared disobeying Epstein, his associate Ghislaine Maxwell, and the Prince "due to their powerful connections, wealth, and authority."
The complaint accused of battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress. The complaint also seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages. The amount will be determined at trial along with attorneys' fees and other relief "as the Court may deem just and proper."
Giuffre said in a statement, "I am holding Prince Andrew accountable for what he did to me." "The powerful and rich are not exempt from being held responsible for their actions," she added. "I hope that other victims will see that it is possible not to live in silence and fear, but to reclaim one's life by speaking out and demanding justice."
Jeffrey Epstein allegedly sexually trafficked and abused Giuffre during 2000-02 when she was 16. She was allegedly forced to have sexual intercourse with Prince Andrew at Maxwell's London home. Epstein was charged with sexually exploiting dozens of girls and women by Manhattan federal prosecutors in July 2019. He died in an apparent suicide on August 10, 2019.
In a 2019 BBC interview, Prince Andrew said he had no recollection of meeting Giuffre and refuted her allegations of sexual crimes. Further, he said that while Epstein's behavior was "unbecoming," he did not regret their friendship. After the controversial interview, charities and other organizations distanced themselves from Prince Andrew. The Prince eventually stepped down from royal duties.