Shamed socialite Ghislaine Maxwell will give evidence to help Prince Andrew fight sex abuse lawsuit, friends say after royal was sued by Virginia Roberts
- According to reports, Maxwell would be willing to give evidence to back Andrew
- But to be considered a credible witness, she would first have to be cleared of wrongdoing at her own sex trafficking trial
- On Sunday, Virginia Roberts Giuffre filed a civil lawsuit against Andrew in the US
- She alleges that he sexually assaulted her when she 17, Andrew denies this
Disgraced socialite Ghislaine Maxwell is prepared to give evidence to help Prince Andrew fight a sex abuse lawsuit, friends have reportedly said.
On Sunday, Virginia Roberts Giuffre filed a civil lawsuit against Andrew in the United States, alleging that he sexually assaulted her when she 17 and was aware that she was a victim of sex trafficking.
Andrew has always denied any wrongdoing and friends of Maxwell say she will support the prince’s assertions, The Telegraph reported. Maxwell has always supported Andrew’s claims of innocence.
Roberts, now 38, claims she was forced to have sex with Andrew on three separate occasions and was ‘lent out for sexual purposes’ by convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
Friends of Maxwell, who is currently in jail awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges, said she will testify on Andrew’s behalf should the case reach a court, according to The Telegraph.
However, for her evidence to be considered credible, she would have to first be cleared of wrongdoing in her own trial.
‘Ghislaine will be prepared to give evidence on the Duke’s behalf,’ the paper reported an unnamed friend as saying.
‘By the time the case against the Duke gets to court, Ghislaine will either be convicted and serving up to 85 years in jail [or if] cleared of course she would help Prince Andrew. They have been friends for a very long time. It is highly likely Ghislaine will offer to assist him.’
Disgraced socialite Ghislaine Maxwell (pictured) is prepared to give evidence to help Prince Andrew fight a sex abuse lawsuit, friends have reportedly said
On Sunday, Virginia Roberts Giuffre (centre, aged 17) filed a civil lawsuit against Andrew (left) in the United States, alleging that he sexually assaulted her when she 17 and was aware that she was a victim of sex trafficking. Pictured right: Maxwell
Maxwell is witness to several alleged incidents including one purported to have taken place in 2011 in which Roberts claims she was forced to have sex with Andrew at Maxwell’s London home.
Robert’s civil suit was filed at the Southern District of New York on Sunday, just days before the Child Victims Act expired.
The state legislation helps victims of historical sexual abuse to seek legal redress.
Legal experts said the civil case could drag on for years. A US lawyer warned that it could be devastating for the prince’s reputation and could force him to answer questions about his own sexual history, as well as his relationship with Epstein.
Roberts’ legal team could interrogate Andrew over whether he had faced any allegation of sexual misconduct or impropriety in the past, a US lawyer told the Daily Mail.
They would also be entitled to demand access to any communications between him, Epstein and the convicted sex offender’s alleged accomplice, Maxwell, who Miss Roberts claimed groomed her to carry out Epstein’s desires.
The lawyer, who asked not to be named, said: ‘It will be a train wreck for him. This case is a grenade waiting to go off.’
Andrew has 21 days to respond to Roberts’ claim and if he fails to do so, she could ask the court to find in her favour without the need for a trial, which would be potentially disastrous for his reputation.
It would raise the prospect of the ninth in line to the throne being branded a sex offender, and facing a demand for damages which could run into millions of pounds.
Neither Andrew nor Buckingham Palace have commented publicly on the lawsuit against Andrew.
Miss Robert’s lawyer, David Boise, claimed on Tuesday that Andrew’s lawyers had ‘totally stonewalled.
‘He can ignore me. And he can ignore Virginia … but he can’t ignore judicial process,’ Boise told Channel 4.
In the legal claim, lawyers said Epstein, Maxwell and the prince had all forced Roberts to have sex with Andrew against her will after she was trafficked to London.
They alleged Andrew also sexually abused the teenager at Epstein’s mansion in New York and at his private island in the US Virgin Islands, Little Saint James.
The legal document, filed to a court in New York, said Roberts had suffered ‘severe and lasting’ damage.
The lawsuit went on: ‘In this country no person, whether president or prince, is above the law, and no person, no matter how powerless or vulnerable, can be deprived of the law’s protection.
‘Twenty years ago Prince Andrew’s wealth, power, position, and connections enabled him to abuse a frightened, vulnerable child with no one there to protect her. It is long past the time for him to be held to account.’
For any evidence from Maxwell to be considered credible, she would have to first be cleared of wrongdoing in her own trial. Pictured: A court artist’s impression of Maxwell from July 2020
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