The Queen has stripped Prince Andrew of his military titles and charities, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday. The announcement comes the day after a federal judge in New York denied a motion to dismiss a sexual assault lawsuit against Andrew brought by Virginia Giuffre.
A brief statement from Buckingham Palace read, in its entirety, “With The Queen’s approval and agreement, The Duke of York’s military affiliations and Royal patronages have been returned to The Queen. The Duke of York will continue not to undertake any public duties and is defending this case as a private citizen.”
Andrew is still listed on the Palace’s website as a patron of dozens of charities, including hospitals, schools, athletic clubs, and scholarship foundations, but Thursday’s statement is posted at the top of his biography. He also served in the Royal Navy for 22 years.
According to the BBC, a source said he will also stop officially using the style His Royal Highness.
In November 2019, Andrew stepped back from his public royal duties, following an interview that was widely viewed as disastrous during which he denied Giuffre’s allegations that he’d sexually assaulted her.
In 2021, Giuffre filed her lawsuit claiming Epstein trafficked Giuffre to his longtime friend Andrew for sex when she was 17, and that she received “express or implied threats” from Epstein, convicted sex-trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell, and/or Andrew to perform sexual acts with Andrew.
Andrew’s team filed a motion to dismiss the suit saying a 2009 settlement between Giuffre and Epstein exempted Andrew from legal action by Giuffre. The judge rejected the argument and ruled on Wednesday, Jan. 12, that the case can move forward.