Prince Andrew ‘appalled’ over ex-friend Jeffrey Epstein sex scandal claims | UK News
Prince Andrew has said he is “appalled” by recent sex abuse claims surrounding Jeffrey Epstein after footage emerged of the royal inside the convicted paedophile’s Manhattan mansion in 2010.
The royal released a statement after the video, obtained by MailOnline, was reportedly shot on 6 December 2010, around the time he was photographed with disgraced billionaire Epstein in New York’s Central Park.
It shows the duke peering out from a large door of the mansion waving a woman goodbye after Epstein leaves to get in a chauffeur-driven car.
A Buckingham Palace statement said: “The Duke of York has been appalled by the recent reports of Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged crimes.
“His Royal Highness deplores the exploitation of any human being and the suggestion he would condone, participate in or encourage any such behaviour is abhorrent.”
Andrew, 59, has been dogged by accusations of a lack of judgement about his links with Epstein, who was found hanged in his prison cell in New York on 10 August.
The royal has quit his role as UK trade envoy after fallout from the Central Park photos.
The Palace has issued strong denials over claims from a woman who said she was forced to have under-age sex with the duke.
Virginia Roberts alleged in court papers in Florida that she was forced to have sex with Andrew when she was 17, which is under the age of consent in the state.
She claimed she had sex with the duke “three times, including one orgy” in London, at Epstein’s home, and at an “orgy” on his private island in the Caribbean.
However the Palace said the allegations are “false and without any foundation”, stating: “Any suggestion of impropriety with under-age minors” by the duke was “categorically untrue”.
Epstein’s death sparked outrage as he was facing a 45-year sentence if convicted of multiple counts of sexually abusing underage girls.
The 66-year-old had been on suicide watch at the prison, having been found with marks around his neck on 23 July.
He was reportedly taken off suicide watch after a week and put back into the high-security housing unit where he was less closely monitored.