Judge Lewis Kaplan ordered a trial over Virginia Giuffre’s claims that the Duke of York abused her when she was one of Jeffrey Epstein’s ‘teen sex slaves’.
Maxwell, who was convicted of child sex trafficking crimes last month, forced the then 17-year-old into having sex with Andrew, Ms Giuffre claims.
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The royal has vehemently denied the allegations – including when he took part in a BBC interview with Emily Maitlis, when he said Ms Giuffre claims must be false because he was unable to sweat during the period she said they met, and she also told interviewers he was profusely sweating.
The Duke’s relationship with his former billionaire pal Epstein stems back to 1999 when he was reportedly introduced to him through Maxwell.
Andrew had been a friend of Maxwell’s since her time at the University of Oxford.
The royal flew alongside Epstein on his private jet in February 1999, when he is believed to have travelled to the financier’s private island Little St James in the US Virgin Islands.
The royal invited both Epstein and Maxwell to the Queen’s Dance of the Decades event at Windsor Castle in June 2000.
Outlining his reasons for denying the Duke of York’s motion to dismiss the civil case against him, Judge Lewis Kaplan said an agreement in the civil settlement between Jeffrey Epstein and Virginia Giuffre “cannot be said” to benefit him.
In his ruling, he said: “The fact that the defendant has brought the matter before the Court on a motion to dismiss the complaint as legally insufficient is of central importance.
“As is well known to lawyers, but perhaps not known to the lay public, the defendant, by making this motion, placed upon the court the unyielding duty to assume, for the purposes of this motion only, the truth of all of plaintiff’s allegations and to draw in plaintiff’s favour all inferences that reasonably may be drawn from those allegations.
“In consequence, the law prohibits the Court from considering at this stage of the proceedings defendant’s efforts to cast doubt on the truth of Ms Giuffre’s allegations, even though his efforts would be permissible at trial.
“In a similar vein and for similar reasons, it is not open to the Court now to decide, as a matter of fact, just what the parties to the release in the 2009 settlement agreement signed by Ms Giuffre and Jeffrey Epstein actually meant.”
Buckingham Palace declined to comment on the development, saying: “We would not comment on what is an ongoing legal matter.”
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