Britain's Prince Andrew Steps Back From Royal Duties After Scandal

Пятница, 22 Ноя, 2019

In an official statement, Andrew wrote that his connection to Epstein had "become a major disruption to my family's work" and noted that the Queen had "given her permission" for him to effectively resign from public duties.

It was for that reason he asked the monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, for permission to step back from public duties.

Prince Andrew first met pedophile Jeffrey Epstein long before 1999, according to a letter from a Buckingham Palace aide. He said he "deeply sympathizes" with Epstein's many victims, many of whom were underage and victims of trafficking.

"I can only hope that, in time, they will be able to rebuild their lives".

Andrew now says he is willing to cooperate with any law enforcement agencies that would like to question him about his association with Epstein.

And major businesses including Barclays and BT distanced themselves from Andrew in charities they were involved with.

"I can't state enough that this statement is completely unprecedented - for a royal to step down, because of a scandal, in this way", she added.

In the interview, Andrew has claimed that "no recollection" of meeting Virginia Roberts, now Virginia Giuffre.

Criticism of his ties to convicted United States sex offender Epstein intensified amid a growing backlash following a BBC interview.

Andrew's recent televised interview with the BBC likely sparked this decision.

He died by suicide in August at a NY jail after facing fresh child sex trafficking charges.

After the interview, some charities and universities said they were reviewing their association with the prince.

It is rare for a member of the royal family to officially step down from duties.

Virginia Roberts Giuffre alleged she was groomed by Epstein and his associates to sexually service him, as well as his powerful friends.

Prince Andrew claims one encounter in 2001 did not happen as he spent the day with his daughter Princess Beatrice, taking her to Pizza Express in Woking for a party.

When asked by the interviewer about why he had chose to stay at the house of a convicted sex offender, the prince said "It was a convenient place to stay" and that while he now thinks it was the wrong thing to do, at the time he felt his decision was informed by his tendency to be "too honourable". He stepped down as Brian's trade envoy, in 2011, after coming under severe criticism over the Epstein scandal.

The Prince, 59, has come under increasing scrutiny after footage was published in August by United Kingdom tabloid the Mail On Sunday showing him at Epstein's Manhattan mansion in 2010, two years after Epstein had been convicted and jailed after pleading guilty to soliciting a minor for prostitution.