Judge asked to end Prince Andrew’s sex abuse trial

NEW YORK (AP) — Lawyers for Prince Andrew and an American woman who accused him of sexually assaulting her when she was 17 formally asked a judge on Tuesday to dismiss his lawsuit.

The attorneys sent a document to Judge Lewis A. Kaplan that would dismiss the August lawsuit once he signed it. The judge had given the two parties until March 17 to reach the agreement, otherwise he would set a trial date.

Lawyers revealed three weeks ago that they had tentatively agreed to a settlement in which the prince would make a substantial donation to Virginia Guiffre’s charity and say he had never intended to slander her character.

Andrew strenuously denied Giuffre’s allegations after she sued him, accusing the British royal family of sexually assaulting her while traveling with financier Jeffrey Epstein in 2001.

Giuffre, 38, reached an agreement with Andrew after the judge rejected the prince’s bid to have the trial dismissed earlier this year.

In a letter to the judge last month from Giuffre’s lawyer, David Boies, a statement was included which read, in part: ‘Prince Andrew intends to make a substantial donation to Mrs. Giuffre to support victims’ rights. 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.

According to the statement, Prince Andrew acknowledged that Epstein had trafficked “countless young girls” over many years and said the prince “regrets his association with Epstein and salutes the bravery of Ms Giuffre and other survivors who defended themselves and defended others”.

He also pledged to support the victims of sex trafficking as part of the expression of his regret.

The AP generally does not identify people who say they are victims of sexual assault unless they choose to come forward publicly, as Giuffre did.

The settlement ended the trial before the collection of evidence began, including depositions that would have forced Andrew to answer questions posed by lawyers.

Andrew – who had previously stepped back from royal duties – was recently stripped of his honorary military titles and roles and the leadership of various charities, known as royal patronages. He also can no longer use the title “His Royal Highness” in official settings.

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