Prince Andrew’s Interview on Jeffrey Epstein Deemed a Disaster
Though Jeffrey Epstein died in August, his social circle and crimes against women and girls are still something of interest to the general public—and perhaps the authorities. Among those in orbit were political figures, celebrities, and members of the royal family.
Here and there, attention has been placed on Prince Andrew, son of Queen Elizabeth, but the high beams are on full blast once again after the royal’s sit-down with BBC News about the convicted sex offender. Royal public relations experts and everyday people are calling the interview a messy disaster.
Why people are pressed about Epstein and Prince Andrew
Prior to his death, Epstein was supposed to stand trial for sex trafficking charges involving a minor. During the summer, multiple stories from outlets such as The Washington Post and New York Times highlighted Epstein’s accusers and his history of sexually exploiting minor girls at his various homes throughout the globe.
At times, he’d allegedly supply these victims to his associates, and Prince Andrew was named as one of them. One victim in particular, Virginia Roberts Giuffre, testified during a deposition that Epstein and his then-girlfriend/assistant Ghislaine Maxwell ordered her to provide sexual favors to multiple men, including Epstein and Prince Andrew. She was just 17 at the time and can be seen in a now-viral photo with the Duke of York and Maxwell at one of Epstein’s homes.
Epstein was already a offender when Prince Andrew started regularly hanging out with him. Questions continue to be raised about the royal’s interactions with Epstein and his underage victims. Although the prince and Buckingham Palace have addressed this in the past, he’s chosen to address it with a TV interview.
What Prince Andrew said during the BBC interview
You can watch it for yourself, of course, but there are few statements made by the prince that stuck out. He told host Emily Maitlis that when he was around Epstein or staying in one of his houses in the U.S., there was no indication/sign he was engaging in sex trafficking.
She pointed out that an arrest warrant was issued for Epstein in 2006, but Prince Andrew invited him to his daughter’s 18th birthday party around that time and he attended. The duke stated that he wasn’t aware of the trouble because much of it was going on in the U.S. and he didn’t find out until the media jumped on it.
Stuttering, he told Maitlis he ceased contact with Epstein from 2006 until 2010, thinking “It was one of those things somebody’s going through…”
Maitlis brought up several instances where Prince Andrew stayed at Epstein’s house after he was a convicted pedophile, and witnesses said there were young girls present during those instances. Prince Andrew continued to deny he knew anything wrong was going on, or said certain things didn’t happen.
When asked if he regrets his friendship with Epstein he said “No” due to the opportunities he was given to learn and people he was able to meet through him.
Prince Andrew denies wrongdoing with Virginia Roberts Giuffre
The Associated Press points out that Prince Andrew’s recollection of Giuffre counters her account, with him saying he doesn’t remember meeting her and couldn’t have been with her on March 10, 2001 because he was with daughter Princess Beatrice at Pizza Express in London on that specific day for a party. He remembered that much.
As for Giuffre stating the two danced at a nightclub and he was very sweaty, he refuted that by saying he had a medical condition during that period that prevented him from sweating. He called it “factually impossible.”
How viewers reacted to the interview
The odds are not in Prince Andrew’s favor after this interview with many in the British media and public deriding the prince’s comments. Some feel he exhibited no empathy for Epstein’s victims, and others feel he flat out made ridiculously untrue statements during the chat.
Piers Morgan sent out a tweet about the interview saying, “Desperate, toe-curling bullsh*t from Prince Andrew” and wondered who sanctioned this. According to yahoo! news, one of the prince’s advisors quit over his decision to do the sit-down. Social media users chimed in to say the palace will be trying to do damage control, and the most jarring part of this whole thing is him saying he has no regrets over being friends with Epstein.
Former press secretary for the queen Dickie Arbiter tweeted, “If #PrinceAndrew thinks he’s drawn a line in the sand over the #Epstein saga he’s in cuckoo land. Whomever advised he did this interview ought to collect his/her P45.” He also called him arrogant for praising Epstein’s ability to make him new contacts.
As the weeks go on, it will be interesting to see if the Royal Household will address the statements made by Prince Andrew or if the scrutiny will just increase.