Great Britain

Judge tells Prince Andrew sex abuse case is ‘not a game of hide and seek behind palace walls’ with dukes ‘worried’

PRINCE Andrew has been accused of playing a "game of hide and seek behind palace walls" by his sex assault accuser’s lawyers.

Lawyers for Virginia Roberts Guiffre, 38, filed papers documenting their bid to make sure the Duke of York, 61, is properly served papers so the case can proceed.

In a motion Guiffre’s attorneys argued that the Duke had already been notified and served with the suit. 

They said: "Service is not intended to be a game of hide and seek behind palace walls."

It comes after insiders say the Duke could change his home address to Balmoral to stay out of reach of being served with papers in a lawsuit against him. 

A court in London has ruled it can serve papers on the Duke of York on behalf of US lawyers after previous attempts to so were thwarted.

Andrew, 61, has been holed up in the Queen's 50,000-acre Balmoral estate since last Tuesday — and the court does not have automatic jurisdiction north of the border.

An insider said: "Andy and his highly-paid legal team must surely have known Scotland would be out of reach when he scarpered up there." 

But Andrew has denied Giuffre's accusations and on Monday his lawyer Andrew Brettler at a court hearing called Giuffre's case a "baseless, nonviable, potentially unlawful lawsuit".

The Duke has not left the 50,000-acre estate since arriving last Tuesday.

His mood has reportedly changed in the past few days amid reports he was 'not his usual blasé self

But US judge, Lewis Kaplan, it did not matter whether the Duke of York "authorised" the lawyer to accept them.

Service is not intended to be a game of hide and seek behind palace walls

Virginia Guiffre’s attorney

Giuffre was underage at the time of Andrew's alleged abuse, which she said occurred when his pal, the financier Jeffrey Epstein, was sexually abusing her.

She is arguing she was trafficked for sex by Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell while she was 17 and Andrew had sex with her on three occasions.

The civil lawsuit seeks unspecified damages.

The Royal stepped down from royal duties as details emerged over the last two years about his relationship with Epstein.

Epstein was a registered sex offender who killed himself in a Manhattan jail in August 2019 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges.

Prince Andrew billboards saying ‘no one should be above the law’ appear in Edinburgh

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