The allegations surrounding Prince Andrew and his purported sexual encounters with an American teenager have taken another twist following the publication of what is claimed to be the young woman’s diary.
A US website has printed details of what it says are 24 hand-written pages belonging to a diary of Virginia Roberts, the American woman who has claimed in court documents that she was a” teenage sex slave” of New York financier, Jeffrey Epstein. Ms Roberts has claimed that when she was 17, Epstein forced her to have sex with various friends of his, including Prince Andrew.
Prince Andrew has repeatedly denied the allegations that have been levelled at him. Buckingham Palace said today it had no new comment on the alleged diary but drew attention to previous statements which had said: “It is emphatically denied that the Duke of York had any form of sexual contact or relationship with Virginia Roberts. The allegations made are false and without any foundation.”
The latest details were printed on the website Radar Online, which claimed it had obtained the diary produced by Ms Roberts. There has been no independent confirmation of the diary’s authenticity and Ms Roberts, who is now married with three children and lives in Colorado, has not commented about it. Some have speculated that Ms Roberts may be planning to write a book about her alleged encounter with the prince.
It alleges the first time Ms Roberts met the prince was at the London home of another of Epstein’s friends, and that they went to dinner and then to London’s Tramp nightclub where they had cocktails. “He was the most incredibly hideous dancer I had ever seen,” says the diary, which then continues to detail Ms Roberts’ alleged sexual encounter with the prince later that evening.
The allegations against Prince Andrew were included in a law suit filed in Florida which claims Epstein passed Ms Roberts around rich and powerful friends as a “sex slave” while she was 17, legally a minor in Florida. The lawsuit claims that she was encouraged to recruit other similar girls to have sex with the banker and his friends.
“I never brought back a girl that ever said no, or didn't want to participate in an erotic massage,” she reportedly wrote in the “diary”.
Prince Andrew has been defended by his former wife, Sarah Ferguson, who has described him as “the best man in the world”. This week she repeated her defence of him, telling NBC's morning TV show Today he was a “humongously good man”.
“I won't stand by, because I know what it feels like to have salacious lies made up about you, and not support him so publicly because they are just shockingly accusatory allegations, which I don't think that's right,” she said.
She added: “It's defamation of character and, as a great father and humongously good man and all the work he does for Britain, I won't stand by and let him have his character defamed to this level. I’ll have not one word said about him on any level.”
Many of Epstein's high profile former associates, such as Bill Clinton, broke off contact with him after he was jailed, but Prince Andrew did not. His continued friendship with him was among the factors that added to the pressure for him to give up his role as Britain's trade envoy in 2011.
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