Prince Andrew to face civil proceedings in sex assault case as judge dismisses plea

Prince Andrew to face civil proceedings in sex assault case as judge dismisses plea

A JUDGE in America has rejected Prince Andrew's plea to dismiss a sexual assault lawsuit brought against him, paving the way for a civil case against him to proceed.

Virginia Giuffre is suing the prince after making claims he abused her when she was 17 in 2001.

His lawyers argued the case should be thrown out as Ms Giuffre had signed a confidential settlement with disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein in 2009.

Andrew's attorney, Andrew Brettler, said Ms Giuffre had "waived her rights" to sue other defendants in relation to alleged sex crimes committed by Epstein.

Details from the 2009 settlement which were released this month show that Giuffre had agreed to drop a civil claim against Epstein for $500,000.

Ms Giuffre's lawyer said only the parties of the settlement agreement could benefit from it, and not a "third party", which they claimed Andrew was.

In a 46-page decision by Lewis A Kaplan of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, he said the "2009 Agreement cannot be said to demonstrate, clearly and unambiguously, that the parties intended the instrument "directly," "primarily," to "substantially" to benefit Prince Andrew."

The judge did not consider the "defendant's efforts to cast doubt on the truth of Ms Giuffre's allegations, even though his efforts would be permissible at trial".

"Ms Giuffre's complaint is neither "unintelligible" nor "vague" nor "ambiguous". It alleges discrete incidents of sexual abuse in particular circumstances at three identifiable locations. It identifies to whom it attributes that sexual abuse."

The "defendant's motion to dismiss the complaint or for more definite statement is denied in all respects," he concluded.

The 61-year-old prince has consistently denied the claims made against him.

In a BBC interview, he denied the claims made against him that they had shared a sweaty dance at a London nightclub, saying that at the time he could not sweat due to a medical condition.

Last week, Ms Giuffre's lawyers demanded that Andrew hand over medical records proving that he is unable to sweat.

Buckingham Palace have declined to comment on the case.