Prince Andrew is hoping that the sexual abuse lawsuit against him will be dismissed, claiming that the accuser was the age of consent at 17 years old and that no one can corroborate the allegations against him.
His accuser, Virginia Roberts Giuffre, filed a civil suit against the royal that he raped and sexually assaulted her after she was sex trafficked to him by disgraced financier and convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein. Giuffre has made allegations publicly against Andrew since January 2015.
Giuffre says that Andrew assaulted her when she was 17. New York state’s age of consent is 17, but the act used to file the lawsuit serves to protect victims of abuse under the age of 18. In the U.S., the typical age of consent is seen as 18.
Prince Andrew’s lawyers filed a memo this week that Giuffre’s claims cannot be used under the New York Child Victims Act, and furthermore claimed that the case should be thrown out because Giuffre has a “tortured interpretation” of the law. The act allows accusers to sue beyond the statute of limitations.
The memo continues with a list of reasons that Andrew wants the court case thrown out, including citing a currently sealed 2009 settlement between Epstein and Giuffre.
The memo has also asked the court to dismiss the complaint or to force her to provide a more definitive statement about the allegations, claiming her claims were vague.
Andrew’s lawyer said that the only people who can verify Giuffre’s claims are Epstein, who killed himself in his jail cell in 2019 while awaiting trial for sex trafficking, and Ghislaine Maxwell, who currently is standing trial for sexual abuse charges and grooming teenage girls.
The Duke of York’s main lawyer is Andrew Brettler, a Hollywood-based lawyer who is famous for representing high-profile people accused of sexual assault.