Prince Andrew has reached an out-of-court settlement with Virginia Giuffre, a victim of Jeffrey Epstein who accused the royal of three times raping her when she was 17.
In court filings on behalf of both parties, Giuffre’s attorney, David Boies, said “the parties have reached a settlement in principle,” without disclosing the financial terms of the agreement. He asked that all deadlines be suspended in the meantime.
The couple’s legal teams said Andrew would make a “substantial” donation to Giuffre’s victims’ rights charity. MailOnline said a ‘The senior palace source’ described the settlement as being around $10 million, adding that he would be paid by the sale of his Swiss chalet.
“Prince Andrew never intended to slander Ms Giuffre’s character, and he accepts that she suffered both as an established victim of abuse and as a result of unjust public attacks,” reads the joint statement. “Jeffrey Epstein is known to have trafficked countless young girls over many years. Prince Andrew regrets his association with Epstein and commends the bravery of Ms Giuffre and other survivors in standing up for themselves and others. He pledges to show regret for his association with Epstein by supporting the fight against the evils of sex trafficking and supporting its victims.
The conclusion of the case in an out-of-court settlement should come as a relief to the Royal Family, who feared a constant onslaught of damaging headlines in the Queen’s Jubilee year. She recently celebrated 70 years on the throne and the British summer will be dominated by ceremonies.
News of the settlement emerged on the same day The Daily Beast revealed that Giuffre had lost the original copy of the photograph showing Andrew with his arm around his waist, allegedly taken at Ghislaine Maxwell’s flat.
Andrew has always said he has no recollection of ever meeting Giuffre and has sought to cast doubt on the authenticity of the photo.
While the terms of the settlement remain under wraps at this time, the case likely cost Andrew millions of dollars in legal fees alone.
It also destroyed his reputation and saw him ejected from the royal family. The Queen said in a statement last month that he was removed from all royal roles and duties and would fight the case as a “private citizen”.
He was not officially stripped of his HRH title but was told not to use it. A similar formula was applied to Meghan and Harry when they left the royal family.
Rachel Fiset, a senior partner at law firm Zweiback, Fiset & Coleman, which is not affiliated with the case, told The Daily Beast that settling the case “was by far the safest course for Andrew”.
“In fact, and regardless of the outcome, the most salacious facts of his life were going to be exposed throughout discovery and a trial,” she said. “Financially, defending the case would cost him millions. The risk for him on all fronts was very high. I’m sure the settlement cost royal money, but now both parties can start to put that behind them and move on with their lives.