04 January 2024

Duke of York named in court documents relating to paedophile Jeffrey Epstein

04 January 2024

A tranche of documents relating to paedophile financier Jeffrey Epstein have been published – including the evidence of a woman who claimed the Duke of York touched her breast.

US Judge Loretta Preska ruled last month that documents naming more than 170 people who were either associates, friends or victims of Epstein should be made public.

One site where the documents were being released on Wednesday evening crashed within minutes, warning that the server might be overloaded.

In one document, a woman named Johanna Sjoberg claimed Prince Andrew touched her breast while sitting on a couch inside the US billionaire’s Manhattan apartment in 2001, while giving testimony in May 2016.

Buckingham Palace previously said the allegations are “categorically untrue”.

The documents are part of a 2015 US defamation case by Virginia Giuffre against Ghislaine Maxwell, the disgraced British socialite who supplied Epstein with underage girls.

An email sent from Epstein to Maxwell, which was released as part of the tranche of documents, appeared to show the financier ask her to “issue a reward” to any of Ms Giuffre’s friends who “come forward and help prove her allegations are false”.

Among the allegations listed by Epstein in the email were a “Clinton dinner” and claims described as “the new version in the Virgin Islands that Stephen Hawking participated in an underage orgy”.

In Ms Sjoberg’s interview under oath, which is called a deposition in the US, she also said Epstein had told her former President Bill Clinton “likes them young, referring to girls”.

In other documents, Maxwell could be seen sending an email in January 2015, shortly after a civil claim had been filed against her, in which she described herself as “out of my depth”.

She added: “I have already suffered such a terrible and painful loss over the last few days that I can’t even see what life after press hell even looks like – statements that don’t address all just lead to more questions… what is my relationship to Clinton? Andrew on and on.”

The court documents show that during Maxwell’s videotaped deposition in 2016, she claimed she could only recall the duke on Epstein’s island once.

Asked whether any girls under the age of 18 were present on that one occasion, she replied: “There were no girls on the island at all.

“No girls, no women, other than the staff who work at the house.

“Girls meaning, I assume you are asking underage, but there was nobody female outside of the cooks and the cleaners.”

Andrew stepped down from public life after the furore over his friendship with Epstein and paid millions to settle a civil sexual assault case to Ms Giuffre, a woman he claimed never to have met.

The duke was cast out of the working monarchy and no longer uses his HRH style after Ms Giuffre, who was trafficked by Epstein, accused him of sexually assaulting her when she was 17.

He strenuously denies all allegations.

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