Prince Andrew Stripped Of Titles Due To Epstein Connection & Future Trial
Queen takes Andrew's title: Duke of York won't use His Royal Highness 'officially', loses ALL of his military roles and royal patronages and is told he will have to face sex assault lawsuit as a 'private citizen'
Move to shred his ties with the military is likely to be particularly painful for Andrew, a Royal Navy veteran
Duke of York will also be banned from using the styling 'HRH' in an official capacity, according to royal source
News is a further blow for Andrew as he considers whether to press ahead with trial or settle with accuser
Experts say the duke must do a deal 'for the sake of the Queen', who is entering her Platinum Jubilee year
He was spotted today in the back of a Range Rover while being driven from his home in Windsor Great Park
Prince Andrew will no longer be known as His Royal Highness 'in any official capacity' in a stunning downfall as his family tonight abandoned him to fight his sex abuse lawsuit in America as a private citizen.
It comes after a day after a US judge unequivocally rejected the prince's bid to have his sex abuse case thrown out, leaving him facing the prospect of being cross-examined for seven hours on camera with embarrassing questions on everything from his sex life and 'private parts'.
Andrew has been urged to settle out of court with his accuser Virginia Roberts Giuffre 'for the sake of his mother', who celebrates her Platinum Jubilee this year. But he could face difficulties given Ms Giuffre is said to be pushing for 'her day in court'.
Buckingham Palace announced the Queen's decision to cast Andrew out of the royal fold in a statement released this afternoon.
'With The Queen's approval and agreement, The Duke of York's military affiliations and Royal patronages have been returned to The Queen,' it read. 'The Duke of York will continue not to undertake any public duties and is defending this case as a private citizen.'
Prince Andrew is now facing the biggest gamble of his life after a judge in the US unequivocally rejected a bid to have his sex abuse case thrown out of court.
Last night, the royal's lawyers on both sides of the Atlantic were locked in crisis talks after their motion to dismiss the civil lawsuit brought by Virginia Roberts was 'denied in all respects', meaning the case is now heading towards an unedifying trial this autumn.
The duke's team now have a stark choice, legal experts said. They can either take the risk to press ahead and attempt to clear his name by going in front of a jury, which means Andrew would face the humiliation of having to give public testimony against lurid allegations of rape and sexual assault on oath.
Or he could try to persuade Miss Roberts to accept a multi-million pound settlement in order to avoid further damaging the reputation of the monarchy – but have the stain of the proceedings remain with him forever.
However, her New York attorney David Boies last night indicated that his client was determined to go to trial, saying: 'She wants to achieve justice', but added that while she is determined to go to trial, 'settlement is always a possibility'.
Let's hope Virginia Roberts takes this case all the way to the end and helps with exposing this network of predators.