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Prince Andrew has settled a sexual abuse lawsuit with Virginia Giuffre for an undisclosed amount of money and voiced his “regrets” for his past association with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
The settlement was announced in a joint filling Tuesday, which was obtained by Oxygen.com.
“Virginia Giuffre and Prince Andrew have reached an out of court settlement,” the joint statement reads.
The lawsuit, which had alleged that Prince Andrew sexually assaulted Giuffre as a teenager on three separate occasions, will be dismissed after Giuffre’s “receipt of the settlement.”
In addition to the undisclosed settlement, Prince Andrew also “intends to make a substantial donation to Ms. Giuffre’s charity in support of victims’ rights.”
The Duke of York never directly addresses or admits to the allegations laid out in the lawsuit, which was filed by Giuffre’s attorneys in August.
“Prince Andrew has never intended to malign Ms. Giuffre’s character, and he accepts that she has suffered both as an established victim of abuse and as a result of unfair public attacks,” the statement reads.
Prince Andrew’s legal team reached the settlement just weeks before the royal was slated to testify under oath in a deposition as part of the suit and weeks after he had demanded a jury trial through his attorneys to publicly address the allegations, according to The New York Times.
Giuffre, one of the most vocal accusers against Epstein, had accused Prince Andrew of sexually assaulting her when she was just 17 years old and in the company of Epstein and convicted sex trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell.
In one instance, she said Epstein, Maxwell and Prince Andrew “forced” her to “have sexual intercourse with Prince Andrew against her will” at Maxwell’s London townhome, according to the lawsuit previously obtained by Oxygen.com.
Epstein had been accused of sexually trafficking dozens of underage girls before taking his own life in a Manhattan jail cell in August of 2019, while awaiting trial on federal sex trafficking charges. Maxwell, who prosecutors say helped recruit and groom young girls for Epstein to abuse, was convicted of five counts of sex trafficking in December.
“It is known that Jeffrey Epstein trafficked countless girls over many years,” the joint settlement filing reads. “Prince Andrew regrets his association with Epstein, and commends the bravery of Ms. Giuffre and other survivors in standing up for themselves and others.”
It goes on to add that Prince Andrew “pledges to demonstrate his regret for his association with Epstein by supporting the fight against the evils of sex trafficking, and by supporting its victims.”
Prince Andrew faced intense scrutiny after the allegations against him surfaced and was stripped of his military affiliations and royal charities by the Queen last month, according to a statement from Buckingham Palace.
Prince Andrew stepped back from public duties in 2019, shortly after appearing on an interview on the BBC to refute Giuffre’s allegations against him.
“It has become clear to me over the last few days that the circumstances relating to my former association with Jeffrey Epstein has become a major disruption to my family’s work and the valuable work going on in the many organizations and charities that I am proud to support,” he said at the time. “Therefore, I have asked Her Majesty if I may step back from public duties for the foreseeable future, and she has given her permission.”
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