Should we check in on Prince Andrew, the member of the British royal family who was friendly with the dead rapist pedophile and accused sex trafficker now being sued for sexual abuse by Virginia Roberts Giuffre? After all, that should be the bigger royal headline, non?
Here’s the latest – an unnamed source who is said to be involved in the US investigation into Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell’s sex trafficking operation told Reuters that Andrew is a “person of interest”. Well that’s a feather in the cap! A “person of interest” in a sex trafficking case involving a number of underage girls over a number of years and across several continents! How cosmopolitan! Is this royal?
If it’s not royal to guest-edit a fashion magazine, is it royal to be called a “person of interest” in a criminal investigation where dozens of girls were recruited and groomed to be abused by a secret club of wealthy men?
In their report on the story, The Guardian spoke to an American legal expert, Mark Stephens, for interpretation on the characterisation of Prince Andrew as a “person of interest”:
“Normally you would say ‘we believe he has information which would assist our inquiries’, or ‘assisting the law enforcement with their inquiries’, or ‘we only see him as a witness but he has important evidence to give’. All of these are formulations and phrases which are restricted to someone in the capacity of a witness,” said Stephens.
“In my judgment, lexicon, a person of interest is different. That is saying we believe that there may have been some wrongdoing but we don’t know. And so our minds are still open but we need to speak to him in order to either include or eliminate him from our investigations.”
He added: “What they are trying to do, both in the civil and the criminal case, is to pile on reputational pressure so that it becomes impossible, reputationally, for him.”
Prince Andrew and Buckingham Palace have repeatedly denied involvement but, remember, he also promised to cooperate with investigators and has yet to do so. And he may never follow through with that, especially not when he’s hiding underneath his mother’s royal robes. Earlier this week, the Daily Beast reported that the Queen had her lawyer send letters to the British papers warning them not to seek or publish photos of any royal family members at Balmoral, where she’s been spending the summer, and where Andrew immediately fled as soon as Virginia Roberts Giuffre’s lawsuit was announced.
“The timing of the letter being sent the day after the lawsuit landed is likely to fuel speculation that the queen is using her enormous domestic influence to protect her favorite son.”
An editor of a British newspaper told the Daily Beast that, “I’ve never seen a warning like this before from the queen’s lawyers. It’s clearly to keep people away from Prince Andrew. There is no coincidence in the timing coming after Virginia Roberts filed her lawsuit against Andrew.”
And while the palace insists that this is standard procedure and “not remarkable”, the fact is, the Queen’s been at Balmoral since July 24 and the letters were sent the day after the lawsuit was made public and upon Andrew’s arrival at the castle. It’s not a stretch to connect the dots. This is the kind of support that he’s counted on his whole life – so is it any wonder that he’s lived the way he’s lived, with such an aggressive sense of entitlement?
Yours in gossip,