- The Washington Times - Monday, June 8, 2020

Prince Andrew has “unequivocally” refused to cooperate with the U.S. investigation into sex trafficking crimes committed by deceased billionaire sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, the Justice Department said Monday.

Geoffrey Berman, the U.S. Attorney for Manhattan, turned up the heat on Andrew, disputing claims by the British prince’s legal team that he volunteered to be interviewed on at least three occasions this year.

“The prince has not given an interview to federal authorities, has repeatedly declined our request to schedule such an interview, and nearly four months ago informed us unequivocally — through the very same counsel who issued today’s release — that he would not come in for such an interview,” said Mr. Berman said in a statement.

Andrew’s lawyers fired back that the Justice Department breached its own confidentiality rules.

“In doing so, they are perhaps seeking publicity rather than accepting the assistance proffered,” the lawyers said in a statement.

The dueling statements come after a British paper reported the U.S. Department of Justice sidestepped Buckingham Palace and filed a “mutual legal assistance” request with the United Kingdom in a bid to force Andrew to testify, the reports said.

A mutual legal assistance agreement is a rare step that countries use when evidence needs to be gathered in a criminal investigation that transcends international borders.

“If Prince Andrew is, in fact, serious about cooperating with the ongoing federal investigation, our doors remain open, and we await word of when we should expect him,” said Mr. Berman.

Epstein killed himself in his Manhattan jail cell last year while he awaited trial on federal sex trafficking charges.

Virginia Roberts Giuffre, a victim of Epstein, has repeatedly claimed she was trafficked to Andrew for sex when she was underage.

Andrew has denied her claims. He tried to address the Epstein issue in a widely-panned BBC interview that resulted in his removal from royal duties.

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

Manage Newsletters

Copyright © 2020 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Please read our comment policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide