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15th Sep 2021

Prince Andrew could be made to give evidence in court after High Court ruling

Charlie Herbert

High court to serve prince Andrew with court papers

The High Court has agreed to formally notify Prince Andrew about the accusations against him

Prince Andrew could be made to give evidence in the legal proceedings against him after English judges accepted a request from Virginia Giuffre to formally contact the royal about the legal proceedings launched against him in America.

The court had initially rejected the request due to a technicality.

In order for one person to sue another in a civil case, the claimant must formally present legal papers directly to the other party in order to make them aware of the action being taken against them. In legal language, this is commonly known as a service of proceedings.

The Mail reports that Giuffre’s legal team had tried to serve Prince Andrew with the legal papers last week by leaving them with a police officer at his home in southern England. But Andrew’s legal team argued he has not yet been properly served these papers so the case, in which Giuffre accuses the Duke of York of sexually assaulting her as a teenager, has been unable to move forward.

The 38-year-old’s team therefore decided to use the Hague Service Convention to ask the High Court to formally notify Andrew of the legal proceedings.

The court will now serve him the papers if Giuffre’s lawyers are unable to.

The High Court said on Wednesday: “The lawyers acting for Ms Giuffre have now provided further information to the High Court, and the High Court has accepted the request for service under the Hague Service Convention.

“The legal process has not yet been served but the High Court will now take steps to serve under the convention, unless service is arranged by agreement between the parties.”

Giuffre was one of a number of women who were victims at the hands of Jeffrey Epstein, and claims she was sexually assaulted by Prince Andrew at three locations. She was 17 at the time and a minor under US law.

Andrew has consistently denied the claims made against him by Giuffre, who went by the name of Virginia Roberts when she claims the abuse took place, and has not been charged with any crime.

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