Will Prince Andrew Be Stripped of His Royal Titles Over Jeffrey Epstein Scandal?
So far, the only celebrity to face major public scrutiny for their dealings with now-deceased Jeffrey Epstein has been Prince Andrew — the third child and second son of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip. At present, the Duke of York is eight in line for succession to the throne, but his association with the widely-accused sex offender recently culminated in a hotly criticized interview where Prince Andrew seemed to be out of touch with the severity of his situation and the depravity of the accusations.
Epstein was found dead in his Manhattan jail cell on August 10. He was awaiting trial for another round of accusations of sex trafficking where his then under-aged accusers claim they were forced to have sex with some Epstein’s powerful and well-known friends.
While not named as sexual predators, both President Donald Trump and former President Bill Clinton are just two of his high-profile associates. While the cause of his death has been determined as suicide by hanging, his former friendship with Prince Andrew has spawned speculation about the duke’s involvement with certain young women.
Prince Andrew steps back from royal duties
Just days after a globally-aired interview on The BBC, Prince Andrew announced he had received permission from Queen Elizabeth to “step back from public duties for the foreseeable future.” Undoubtedly, there are many reasons why this was the best move and the only move for the Duke of York to make.
Many of the companies and charities that are partnered with the royal family have sought to end their relationship with Prince Andrew, despite his family’s rich contributions. Possibly, the primary reason for Prince Andrew stepping back from royal duties is the number of women stepping forward.
Among the many organizations and institutions in which Prince Andrew will be suspending his duties include the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra; Murdoch University, in Perth, Australia; Advertising Week Europe; the English National Ballet; and the London Metropolitan University.
What are the accusations against Prince Andrew?
These women are very insistent and very verbal victims of Epstein’s confidential underworld of consorting with under-aged girls. New revelations surface almost weekly with details of girls being groomed by Epstein at a very young age, frequent trips to his private island, and the ever-present training and oversight of the woman who allegedly found the girls for Epstein: Ghislaine Maxwell.
Virginia Roberts Giuffre, the first woman to accuse Prince Andrew, gave an interview on Dateline. In the interview, Giuffre said the Duke of York first started abusing her when she was only seventeen years old and that Epstein “trafficked” her to Prince Andrew.
Will Prince Andrew lose his royal titles?
The question now facing the royal family is whether the prince’s association with an accused sex trafficker and pedophile is enough to strip him of his royal titles. Stepping back from royal duties is one thing, but being stripped of your royal titles is a highly dishonorable consequence, but it is not unheard of.
For example, Prince Harry and Meghan Marke have refused to give their son, Archie, a royal title. When Harry VIII fell in love and married an American divorcee, he was stripped of his royal titles and settled into life as a commoner.
Right now, royal watchers are speculating that when Prince Charles takes the throne, he may very well downgrade the royal status of his younger brother. In the past, Prince Andrew has fought for a higher-profile role for himself and the roles of his daughters. It is more likely to expect that to never happen.
Other signs of a royal shake-up include Prince Andrew’s obvious absence from the celebration that marked Prince Charles’ 50th anniversary of his investiture as the Prince of Wales. Right now, Prince Andrew is a royal without a role in the House of Windsor — the male-line descendants of Queen Victoria who are subjects of the Crown.
Prince Andrew has declared his regret for continuing his public friendship with Epstein but has stopped short of chastising the accused for his behavior. Instead, he has chosen to say he knew nothing about this side of a man with whom he stayed with for many overnight vacations.