It looks like Prince Andrew will be headed to court this autumn. A judge in New York has refused Andrew’s legal team’s latest attempt to throw out the sexual assault civil case filed against him.
Legal experts say that the royal has “no good options left” after his legal team failed to have the case dismissed. Manhattan federal court judge Lewis Kaplan rejected the motion to dismiss the case “in all respects.” This means Andrew will likely be in court come this autumn. The news is an extremely unwelcome development for the British monarchy.
The case is filed against him by Virginia Giuffre, who accuses Andrew of sexually assaulting her when she was 17 years old.
In the 46-page ruling, Kaplan rejected Andrew’s legal team’s argument that Giuffre waived her rights to sue him when she made a separate legal settlement with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
Giuffre alleges that Epstein trafficked her to have sex with several prominent men, including Prince Andrew.
Kaplan said that the 2009 agreement between Epstein and Giuffre cannot be said to demonstrate that the parties intended in any way to benefit Prince Andrew.
The only likely option for avoiding testifying in court would be to reach an out-of-court settlement with Giuffre, but many experts believe she wants her day in court.
An agreement would also cause huge repetitional damage to the British monarchy. Not to mention expensive — a settlement with no admission of liability could be costly, and furthermore, Giuffre shows no signs of wanting to settle.
Giuffre’s lawyer David Boies said that Giuffre wants justice, not merely to focus on one person and that this is part of a wider campaign to expose the evils of sexual abuse and sex trafficking.
The duke could also contest the case, but it would mean providing a deposition under oath and even potentially giving oral evidence in which he would be questioned heavily on personal matters.
Law experts have said that Andrew has no good options left, and he cannot make things better, so he will either have to engage in the trial process or settle.