Prince Andrew's return to public life has been criticised by Jeffrey Epstein victims' lawyers
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A number of lawyers who represented Jeffrey Epstein victims have condemned Prince Andrew's return to public life amid the Queen's passing.
Earlier this year, the Duke of York and Virginia Giuffre reached a 'settlement in principle' after she accused him of forcing her to have sex at a property belonging to Epstein's partner Ghislaine Maxwell when she was 17-years-old.
It's believed the settlement was in the region of £12 million. Andrew has consistently denied the allegations, after evidence demonstrating his friendship with Epstein emerged; Epstein was arrested on sex trafficking charges before his death in 2019.
The 62-year-old royal member had stepped down from royal duties amid the fallout of the controversy, but this changed when the Queen passed away last week aged 96.
As well as appearing for the processions, reports have emerged claiming King Charles III has appointed his younger brother as Counsellor of State.
Several attorneys who represented Epstein victims have criticised Andrew's reappearance in the public eye, with one describing it as 'shameful'.
In a conversation with the Guardian, Spencer T Kuvin, who represented more than six Epstein victims, said those women have been 'disgusted and appalled' at the duke's ties to Epstein.
He also noted the shock at how their friendship continued 'even after [Epstein's] conviction and the stories had come about about what Epstein had done to those young girls'.
Kuvin told the outlet: "It’s the epitome of poor judgment and, frankly, an embarrassment to the crown, that [Andrew] would consort with someone like Epstein after all that news would come out."
The lawyer also spoke about the protestor who was arrested last weekend for calling Andrew a 'sick old man' as he participated in the Queen's coffin procession in Edinburgh.
Kuvin said that while he understood people might not be happy with the timing, he also gets why it happened.
"You want to honour the memory of a very respectable monarch who served over 70 years – I get the fact that it’s probably not the correct place or time to be yelling something out at a funeral," he said.
"But at the end of the day, you also want to acknowledge the fact that [Andrew] should not be publicly allowed to benefit from society and these organisations, given his past and he should be held accountable by the public."
Meanwhile, Mariann Wang, who represented a similar number of Epstein survivors, described the fact that the duke is being given any level of honour or privilege within the royal family as 'beyond shameful' due to his ties to Epstein.
Wang told the publication: "The brave women who came forward to hold Epstein, Maxwell and others to account deserve better.
"His past conduct and judgment make clear that he is not worthy of any state-sponsored privileges, including reaping the benefits of being a royal."
If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact the Rape Crisis England and Wales helpline on 0808 802 9999 between 12pm–2.30pm and 7pm– 9.30pm every day. Alternatively, you can contact Victim Support free on 08 08 16 89 111 available 24/7, every day of the year, including Christmas
Topics: News, Prince Andrew, Royal Family, The Queen, Sex Trafficking, World News
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